Inclusion and Special Educational Needs
As Thomas Clarkson Academy enters new and exciting times, it remains dedicated to ensuring the inclusion, development and progress of all students. We believe that supporting, encouraging and challenging all learners including those with special educational needs, with English as an Additional Language and those who are gifted and talented, is of paramount importance.
On site, we have an Enhanced Resource Provision called the Cooper Centre, which is dedicated to the education and well-being of some students who have a Statement of Special Educational Needs. Here, the students are taught in small mixed year classes of either Key Stage Three or Four, and about half their timetable comprises English, Maths and Topic work which is taught in the Cooper Centre, while more specialist subjects are taught by mainstream staff elsewhere in the school. The Cooper Centre has a team of committed teachers and teaching assistants, and the latter also support the students when they attend lessons out of the Cooper Centre. This nurturing environment ensures that the students reach their potential, whilst developing self-confidence and resilience by using facilities such as the Restaurant and Eden.
Students with Special Educational Needs
Our aim at Thomas Clarkson Academy, is for all students with Students with Special Educational Needs to have an individualised support programme, based on careful monitoring and assessment by our large Inclusion team, to ensure appropriate progress is made at all times. We endeavour to offer provisions which are geared to students’ individual needs, in partnership with teachers, parents and carers.
Provision at Thomas Clarkson can range from:
• In-class support
• Individual support
• Group work
• Differentiated curriculum
• Individualised intervention in our Learning Support Centre
• Language / cultural support from the English as an Additional Language Team (EAL)
We offer a range of interventions, both in and out of school. These are based on the needs of individual students and can include conflict management, social skills, behaviour management and life skills.
The Academy has a commitment to raising the literacy levels of all students.
Each year all Key Stage 3 students’ reading ages are assessed and intervention is put in place to support students who experience difficulties. The Academy has a range of interventions from small group literacy sessions to 1:1 precision teaching that can be used to support students’ literacy progress. The Special Educational Needs team have further diagnostic reading and spelling analysis tools that can be used to create a personal learning plan for students with literacy difficulties. Progress is closely monitored and reviewed on a termly basis.
Students with English as an Additional Language
Students with English as an Additional Language are assessed upon entering Thomas Clarkson Academy, in order to establish students’ skills and abilities. Each student can access a dedicated induction programme designed to equip them for their first, potentially daunting, days in a new environment. Students and parents can access an own-language DVD intended to inform and reassure about life at Thomas Clarkson Academy.
Thomas Clarkson Academy are dedicated to ensuring all of its students reach their full potential, and are developing an ever expanding of specialist EAL staff to complement the team. Our EAL Co-ordinator, who can also translate communications and liaise with parents, is complemented by our teaching staff with EAL responsibilities and the Cambridgeshire Race Equality and Diversity Service, who visit the Academy to support newly arriving students with their adjustment to Thomas Clarkson life and lessons.
In addition, Thomas Clarkson Academy has a team of extremely dedicated ‘young interpreters’ and ‘English language Buddies’ to assist students in lessons and around the Academy.
Thomas Clarkson Academy is dedicated to developing links and building confidences within its feeder communities. We continue to strive to involve parents, carers and families of all students in the education of its students and school life.