Our therapies team help students improve their quality of life, become more independent and gain a sense of belonging and purpose.
All our therapists are registered professionals and they work closely with the curriculum team for a fully-integrated approach to learning, behaviour and wellbeing support.
Our therapies team help with skill development on both an individual and group basis, through targeted and indirect interventions.
We also follow positive behaviour support and help families implement this model in daily life to support students holistically.
Speech & Language Therapy
We promote a total communication environment at college so that all students can communicate, understand the lessons and be understood by others. This means we use a combination of communication methods that reinforce each other and strengthen meaning, for example:
- written language
- verbal speech and computer-based speaking devices
- sign systems (Makaton)
- objects of reference
- photos and symbols
- non-verbal cues
Our Speech Therapists provide in-depth communication assessments as well as 1:1 and group sessions for specified needs.
We work with students to identify their communication needs and develop personalised strategies, so that we can put support in place to help each student engage in a way that is accessible and appropriate for them.
Our Speech Therapists focus on:
- Expression: providing ways for students to express their needs, wishes and desires through the use of verbal, visual, signs and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) strategies.
- Understanding: helping students understand information they have been given through the use of strategies, resources and support to ensure that they make the best possible progress at Homefield and into adulthood.
- Social Skills: supporting students to develop the social skills to enable them to build friendships, access learning opportunities and move into employment of their choices. They aim to promote skills that facilitate meaningful relationships and a real sense of purpose and belonging in the world.
- Eating & Drinking: providing assessments where dysphagia (difficulties swallowing) is a concern to ensure that eating and drinking remains a safe and enjoyable activity for all of our students.
We help students be as independent as possible and embed independence skills into the curriculum, which can then be used beyond college.
Our Occupational Therapist also delivers 1:1 and group sessions for specific needs, working collaboratively with each student to achieve set goals and outcomes.
We can support students with:
- Activities of daily living – for example, washing and dressing, shopping and cooking
- Enabling and promoting access to the community
- Graded suggestions for engagement in activities
- Facilitating hand-writing and crafts through adaptive equipment
- Strengthening fine and gross motor skills through activity
We help students when they experience difficulties or changes to their behaviour presentation. We work with the student and their staff team to identify the causes of distress and develop strategies that will support the student effectively so that they can safely engage in the learning programme.
Our therapies team also analyse data collected across the College to identify trends and patterns that highlight areas that require support. This helps us be pro-active in helping students regulate emotions and communicate needs before their distress escalates.
Our Behavioural Specialists focus on:
- Functional Behaviour Assessments
- Teaching alternative skills
- Functional communication training
- Development of independence
- Specific behaviour strategies
- Developing primary behaviour strategies across college
- Embedding sensory recommendations into everyday practice
Mental Health & Wellbeing
We support mental health and wellbeing by offering interventions, support, advice and information to students and their families. We create an environment where students feel able to openly discuss their mental health concerns and get access to the right support.
As well as offering drop-in sessions once a week for one-off support and self-referrals, we provide targeted 1:1 and group interventions as required. We take holistic approaches to mental health and wellbeing support to enable students to fully participate in an educational programme that prepares them for adulthood.
Our Counsellor and Mental Health Practitioner can help with:
- general wellbeing support
- cognitive behavioural therapy-based programmes
- anger management
- self-help techniques
Health & Care Support
We monitor all of our students’ health needs including medication and can source specialist training for staff. Our therapies team create care plans and risk assessments based on individual needs, and can help students and families access external health services where needed.
We offer support in the following areas:
- General health and access to GPs
- Dental concerns and access to dentists
- Physical disabilities
- Learning disabilities
- Social, Emotional & Mental Health needs
- Signposting to specialist support
- Organising specialist training