Professional Support Services
A number of Support Services are linked to our school and support our work:
are particularly involved in pupil assessment, but also offer advice and support with the management of behaviour and effective teaching approaches.
help to ensure that families are supported to meet their children’s needs in the home. They can assist with applications for benefits, the provision of respite care, access issues, the transition to Adult Services and many other social care issues.
Hearing Impairment and Visual Impairment Support Teachers
come to school specifically to work with individual children identified with sensory impairment. They advise staff on resources, individual programmes and our learning environment.
School Medical Team
School Medical Office/Consultant Paediatrician – Dr Jackie Taylor
Dr Taylor conducts medicals and consultations for our pupils on a regular basis.
The Schools Nursing team are available to offer advice on a range of health related issues.
Therapists at Castle school
Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Speech and Language Therapy are available on site at Castle School and are provided by Cambridgeshire NHS Children’s’ Services. The therapists work together as a multidisciplinary team with Music and Play Therapists, Nurses, visiting support teachers and with the school teachers and support staff so that therapy aims are included in the daily curriculum.
All Therapists use the school as a base from which to see children in mainstream nurseries and schools. This supports inclusion, uses the school as a resource for staff support and allows use of the excellent facilities including therapy rooms and hydrotherapy pool.
The Therapists like to attend Parents’ Evenings and are available to see parents or carers at other times by arrangement.
The aim of Occupational Therapy within the school is to enable children to become as independent as possible (at home, at school and in play) and to make the most of the skills they can develop. This may be by:
- Promoting the development of functional skills such as:
- Self-care skills (e.g. eating, dressing)
- Hand function (fine motor skills)
- Perception (e.g. body and spatial awareness, visual discrimination)
- Assessing and advising on specialist equipment such as special seating, feeding, toileting, hoists, slings, bathing etc
- Assessment of moving and handling needs of the child
- Using Sensory integration and modulation techniques to help calm and organise children in order that they might better concentrate and so participate in activities
OT’s also assess, advise and in consultation with parents and the relevant Housing Authority, authorise adaptation work to a child’s home.
OT intervention can include:
ing a child for a set number of 1:1 treatment sessions or occasionally in group
- Setting up a programme of exercises and activities to be carried out regularly at school and/or at home
- Advising on strategies to minimise the risk to the child and the carer in moving and handling
- Providing general advice to be incorporated into daily living activities at home and/or curricular activities at school
- Advising on and demonstrating specialist equipment
- Writing reports, attending reviews and liaising with other professionals
Within Castle school is aimed at helping the children to maintain and develop their mobility skills, joint range of movement and muscle strength, and overall gross motor skills as well as to ensure the children are comfortable and have adequate equipment to achieve these aims. The physiotherapist works closely with teaching staff, parents, and other medical personnel to this end.
The physiotherapist will review children as requested and may provide a programme including stretches, exercises, standing and/or walking as appropriate. She may also supervise programmes such as hydrotherapy or PE to ensure an individual child’s physical needs are being met in these sessions within school. The physiotherapist may also make referrals to appropriate outside agencies such as the wheelchair service or orthotists.
Speech and Language Therapy
Currently has three and a half days of time allocated to the school. We work with children who have specific difficulties with any of the following areas of communication:
- Understanding and using spoken language
- Understanding and using speech sounds; fluency; voice and social communication
We also work with children who have eating and drinking difficulties
We support the school to have a total communication policy which includes:
- Spoken language
- Makaton signing
- Use of objects, photos, pictures or symbols, including PECSand high or low technology alternative and augmentative communication
The speech and language therapists’ intervention with a child may include:
- Staff training
- Discussion and advice
- Writing and reviewing a class based programme
- Demonstrating activities or strategies
- Whole class, small group or individual therapy for time specific periods with regular review
The Therapists regularly provide treatment plans for each child with targets for current therapy and a report for the Statement Review.
Children are discharged from the therapy roll after discussion with parents and school staff, when speech and language skills are in line with their other skills and / or when their future communication development needs can be met within the curriculum. They can be re referred at any time if new concerns arise and new targets can be set.
Sensory Support Team 0-25
What we do:
We provide specialist educational support for children who have significantly reduced or no vision. We work with children of all ages and with parents/carers, teaching and school support staff and other professionals.
Services include early identification of needs, advice and practical help for teachers and parents, specialist teaching skills and loan of specialist equipment.
How to contact us:
Sensory Support Team 0-25
People & Communities
Cambridgeshire County Council