At Beacon Hill Academy, we believe in 'Excellence for All'. To help us accommodate all of our learners, we have set up various initiatives to give them that helping hand that they may need. These initiatives are available for all of our learners should they feel they need that little bit of extra support, but an area specifically tailored for our SEN learners is our highly successful 'AS Base'. For more information on each initiative, please click or tap the heading below.
Learning Support Faculty
Beacon Hill Academy aims to ensure all learners have access to a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum. The Learning Support Dept. provides support programmes to meet the needs of a number of learners, who for a range of reasons find it difficult to access education. Some learners may have historical special educational needs which impact upon their learning; whilst it may include Learners who have a temporary need e.g. suffering a bereavement, whereas, others may have had a prolonged absence, or be new to the school and need a period of supported induction.
The faculty works with a range of outside agencies and services including Autism Outreach, Educational Psychology, Learning Support Service, Connexions, the community police, Specialist Physical Impairment Services and Speech and Language to ensure that our learners are given the support they need to achieve their full potential. Learners on the Special Educational Needs register (SEN) or those identified as requiring additional support, can access LS for specific help: they are taught within smaller groups or individually.
Lead Member of Staff: Mrs J Webster (SENCO)
Learner Support Centre & Personalised Learning Center
Learner Support Centre
The Learner Support Centre and Learning Zone in H Block offers small group teaching accommodation. The LSC tailors support for learners in Key Stage 3 and the learning Zone personalises learning pathways for Key Stage 4 learners. The team of Higher Level of Teaching assistants deliver a bespoke programme of interventions to address difficulties with Literacy, Numeracy, Science and Personal Social skills.
All of the Interventions aim to support learners who need specifically tailored input to enable them to keep on track in terms of attainment and progress; these interventions are intended to be short term – enabling Learners to develop and consolidate a range of skills.
Groups up to a maximum of six learners work together at any one time and some learners work on a one to one basis. Other learners are supported within the Learning support faculty to improve their basic literacy/numeracy and social skills; within a smaller environment; this enables staff to adapt the curriculum to the needs of the individuals. Social, Emotional and Mental Health difficulties are also supported through a range of developed programmes, working in close partnership with Autism Outreach, Educational Psychology and Learning Support Services.
Lead Member of Staff: Mrs J Webster (SENCO)
Personalised Learning Centre
The Personalised Learning Centre offers a range of interventions/programmes to Learners who are finding school difficult to cope with. This may be due to social, emotional or behavioural difficulties, anxiety or settling in issues. The Centre offers a nurturing environment and its aim is to identify barriers to learning, to support Learners to develop coping strategies and to integrate Learners back into mainstream school as quickly as possible. The PLC staff liaise with teaching staff and parents to support this process.
The PLC also supports Learners who are struggling to respond appropriately to our Values-Driven Expectations through a series of workshops as follows:
- Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
- Anger Management
- Art therapy
- Social Skills
- Aspirations and 'Dreaming Big'
The programmes are delivered one lesson per week over a period of up to six weeks. Every effort to avoid disrupting the same class each week is made by rotating the programmes.
During the course of the workshops, Learners have the opportunity to express any concerns, seek support and address the concerns that cause barriers to their learning.
PLC Manager: Mrs M Murphy
Assistant PLC Manager: Mrs E Katic
The AS Base
The AS Base opened in October 2010; it caters for the learning needs of pupils from the Dudley Borough, who have an Education, Health Care Plan and a Primary Need in relation to Autistic Spectrum Disorder. The Learners are ‘high functioning’ and study highly personalised GCSE pathways in the mainstream setting with support.
The principle intention is to instil confidence in Learners and equip them with essential skills, which will enable them to participate more fully within the wider context of the school and eventually the local community. All AS Base Learners aspire to achieve GCSEs, so they can progress to further education and have a future career.
The AS Base is situated next to Learning Support and is surrounded by a landscaped garden area, where pupils grow, harvest and prepare produce as part of their life skills training. A holistic approach to learning is adopted within the AS Base; all barriers to learning are considered and the individual strengths of pupils fostered. The work within the base comprises of a personalised curriculum that is designed to maximise potential; it encompasses the Core curriculum of English, Maths and Science, but is directed by individual need, for example, learners are encouraged to develop their personal strength areas such as Science. Social and interaction skills sessions underpin the curriculum and are taught discreetly; Learners are also involved in community work and cookery lessons.
Lead Member of Staff: Mrs H Coburn