Therapy and therapeutic principles work hand-in-hand with academic achievement to support social development, positive mental health, emotional wellbeing and aspirational outcomes. At Westbourne School, we strive to ensure that a holistic approach is used to support the pupils not only at school, but also in their everyday lives. Through the use of a variety of specialisms, we are able to meet each pupil’s unique individual needs through either group or 1:1 focussed sessions. Our therapeutic inputs include: Speech & Language therapy, occupational therapy, movement therapy, counselling, art therapy and cognitive behaviour therapy amongst others.
The reason therapeutic principles are so important to Westbourne School is because without these interventions, we are not challenging our pupils to be the best that they can be. Through the use of both formal therapeutic input and informal learning and coaching we can really help develop our pupils’ self-esteem, want to achieve and most importantly, improve their own self-image. This in turn allows pupils to recognise their own talents and foster a sense of pride about what they can achieve both academically and personally.
As a school we do not just focus on the here and now and we do not operate using a quick fix model. The overall aim of our therapeutic support is to provide our pupils with solid foundations which allows them to develop resilience and coping mechanisms which will support them for life.
Each child is individual and they are treated as such. Some pupils may have specific therapeutic needs identified on their Education, Health & Care Plan (EHCP) whereas some others may never need formal sessions.
Referrals for therapeutic support can be made by the Local Authority, parents/carers, education staff or the pupils themselves and these can be made at any stage of each child’s school career. Referrals can be made for a variety of reasons including noticeable changes in attitude to learning, change in home circumstances and puberty. Referrals are reviewed each half term be the Headteacher and therapy team and are prioritised accordingly.
Therapy will normally be delivered 1:1 in planned 45 minute sessions once a week with the same therapists. These sessions will be individualised in order to meet each child’s individual needs. Therapy has no predetermined amount of time or sessions, but when deemed appropriate, the therapy team will work with the pupil and parents/carers to reach a natural end point.
Therapy is a confidential process, however, the therapy team will feedback appropriate and relevant information to all stakeholders it may impact. Reports will also be produced half termly to give an overview of developments made. The Therapy team will share these and then also work with education staff to help create strategies to support all pupils in lessons and around school. The same support will also be offered to parents/carers.
The Therapy team carries out a series of assessments which provide detailed information about our pupils; these details can be used to set individual targets, to identify areas of strength and targets, and to draw up accurate profiles for each pupil. Results gained from these assessments are shared with the individual pupil, parents, members of staff and other professionals involved with each young person.