Post-16 Campus

Proposed Post-16 SEND Campus in Kingston

Achieving for Children (AfC) and Kingston Council are working with Orchard Hill College & Academy Trust (OHC&AT), which runs Bedelsford School, Dysart School, St Philip’s School and Orchard Hill College, to progress an exciting proposal for a new post-16 SEND campus in Kingston.

We want to keep you informed on progress and we will update this website with more information as it becomes available. If however you have any questions or feedback regarding the proposal please email rtucker@orchardhill.ac.uk . For more information on OHC&AT please visit the website www.ohcat.org

Key Updates

On 27 September 2021 a meeting took place with parents, Principals of the Schools and College and representatives of AfC and OHC&AT to gather their views on the proposal. Please see below the documentation from that meeting:

 

Question and Answers

Q: What will be the age range of the provision?

A: The provision will be for 16 – 25 year olds, however we would expect most young people to have transitioned into employment or training by the age of 21 or 22

Q: What areas and sites will be looked at to accommodate the proposed campus?

A: Our ideal would be the Kingston town centre area in order to access all the benefits of the town centre community to enhance the school day.  We will let parents/carers and students know as soon as a suitable site has been secured.

Q: Will there be outdoor space and opportunities for outdoor activities – both skills based and for physical and occupational therapy activities?

A: The specification for the facilities is being developed. We hope that the site will have good outdoor space for a variety of activities and nearby access to community spaces, e.g. parks, leisure.

Q: What kind of indoor/outdoor sport facilities (indoor gym, outdoor gym, swimming pool, trampoline etc.) and teaching to help with sensory needs and health benefits are you planning? Also will there be kitchen facilities and the opportunity for cooking lessons?

A: We will include opportunities for parents and students to have input in the specification for the campus facilities.

Q: As well as young people looking to have independence, what is the plan for those young people who are co-dependent, how are they to be supported?

A: For co-dependent young people, there is a separate project led by Kingston Council’s Adult Services which would look to establish supported accommodation within the borough, in the wider context of an ongoing review of services for adults with learning disabilities.

Q: The age is up to 25 but you also say adults will have access outside of school hours, what age groups would use the facilities at what time during the week?

A: The greater proportion of young people would be in the 16–19 range with more specialist provision for 19 onwards. During the school day, young people and staff would use the campus facilities. During the evening, over the weekend and in holiday periods, it is proposed that the wider community, most particularly services for adults with learning disabilities, would use the facilities for training and information, advice and guidance sessions.

Q: Please could the provision be wholly wheelchair accessible and if in the town centre a reasonable amount of parking and disabled parking must be factored in?

A: This is very useful feedback, which will help to inform the specification.

Q: Please can you consult with parents in detail so that facilities are suitable, for example toilets?

A: We will include opportunities for parents and students to have input in the specification for the campus facilities.

Q: Will the provision be run by Orchard Hill College and Academy Trust (OHC&AT) or Achieving for Children (AfC) or is it a joint venture?

A: The provision would be run by OHC&AT.  It would be a Campus with a College Centre with satellite classes for the three special schools. AfC will commission the placement of students at the campus.

Q: Will there be afterschool provision for the young people?

A: Yes. Our young people have already expressed that they are very keen to have a variety of clubs for their interests.

Q: Will it be a full time provision, i.e. like school?

A: Yes. For college, the educational offer is over four days, i.e. Monday–Thursday, and on Friday we offer a full day enrichment provision. The education offer is 24 guided learning hours per week. There would also be a holiday programme, which would be contained away from any separate community use of facilities during those periods.

Q: Will transport arrangements continue in the college provision?

A: The eligibility for transport will not change. The ability to travel independently came out clearly as an aspiration for our young people in the AfC consultation sessions, but eligibility for transport will remain the same as it is now.

Q: Could you set up a working group with parents to make sure that the facilities meet our young people’s needs?

A: This is a useful suggestion. Once we have the business case approved it would be very helpful to have a group of parents and young people we could have regular conversations with for the planning phase.

Q: Could we have detail of the timeline between now and 2023?  It’s important to parents that there is realism and clear communication about this.

A: We understand that good communication is really important for parents and we will have a dedicated page on each school website to provide up to date information.  Once a site has been identified for the campus, timescales will be clearer and we will relay this to you as soon as we can.

Q: How will responsibility for each of the three schools and the college be governed (e.g. for Health & Safety, Safeguarding, Data Protection)?

A: Each of the three schools and the college would have separate areas on the campus and each would be responsible for their own provision.

Q: Is there a model of the proposal anywhere else and is there any indication that DfE will approve the model?

A: The college has similar co-located provision with other schools across OHC&AT, at Hillingdon and Wandsworth.  OHC&AT has engaged with the Regional Schools Commissioner (part of the DfE) on this proposal.

Q: How many students will there be in total?

A: We are aiming for a maximum of 150 but realistically it will start smaller and grow incrementally as demand grows.

Q: Will the provision be only for Kingston families?

A: We very much see it as a local provision for local families and if there is capacity it will be offered for bordering authorities.

Students develop very high levels of positive behaviour and feel extremely safe. They are very considerate, very respectful and caring of others and highly positive about learning.

– Ofsted report

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