Our classes are organised as follows:
Class 1: Younger students, usually Years 5-7
Class 2: Older students, usually Years 7- 9
Both of these classes has a “base” teacher for English (literacy) and mathematics (numeracy), which are the first two lessons of most days. They will also have this teacher for other subjects, depending on the teacher’s specialisms. For the rest of the time the classes will move to other teachers for a range of subjects. The two nurture based classes spend the majority of the time with their class teacher:
Class 3 (Bridge): A nurture-based class for students of any age who need to develop the essential skills for learning.
Class 4: A class for students who manage better with a limited number of adults. These students are likely to have been out of education before coming to Chalk Hill.
Intervention: Identified students are given additional support one-to-one and in small groups away from their main class, to help them make accelerated progress in literacy and numeracy.
SEMH Intervention: Identified students are given weekly 1:1 sessions in Art Therapy, Drawing and Talking, emotional literacy and social skills when necessary.
Our curriculum is based on the National Curriculum and consists of:
- Emotional Literacy
- Food Technology
- Physical Education (PE)
- HEROES (including Relationships and Sex Education)
- Religious Education (RE)
- Design Technology
In addition, Nurture based classrooms offer sessions in social skills, sensory and free play.
We have adapted our plans across the curriculum so that they include tasks and challenges that contribute to nationally recognised awards accredited by ASDAN. Boarding students also have the opportunity in residential time to earn additional points towards these qualifications.
Personal development lies at the heart of our work. All our students are either at risk of permanent exclusion from their mainstream schools, or have been excluded permanently. This is typically a consequence of behaviour resulting from their social, emotional and mental health needs. Most of our students have experienced difficulty, disturbance or trauma in their childhood. They frequently experience low self-esteem, often alongside conditions such as attachment disorder, ADHD and ASD, struggling to recognise and regulate their emotions and consequently their behaviour.
It is our purpose not only to ensure that our students make accelerated academic progress, making up for missed and disrupted learning, but also to equip them to become resilient, confident, responsible and respectful students and citizens, who understand and embrace fundamental British values, in particular the rule of law, mutual respect and tolerance.
This aim is supported by a number of elements of the curriculum outlined above, in particular HEROES (formerly PSHE and Emotional Literacy), one-to-one and small group SEMH Interventions and extended learning opportunities, in the form of:
- Horse riding for selected students
- Forest Schools
- Nurture sessions for all students
- Social skills and emotional literacy
Furthermore, staff are actively encouraged to exercise freedom and flexibility within their planned lessons, to respond to social and emotional issues as they arise.
In support of this all our staff have undertaken training in Restorative Justice, and Trauma Informed practice, with some colleagues undertaking the practitioner diploma in Trauma and Mental Health Informed Schools and Communities. Other staff have received training in order to extend further the range of SEMH interventions we offer.
For up to 12 students this offer is further enhanced by Monday to Friday residential provision, which builds on and develops the work done during the school day. Boarders can access a wide range of activities, the nature of which is based on their attitude and behaviour in school that day, in an environment which seeks to promote positive social and emotional development, build self-esteem, and teach appropriate behaviours. The residential team also plan and deliver additional interventions, such as workshops on managing anger, according to the needs of the boarders