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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.

Wondered if any of you would like to help me?

(30 Posts)
nymphadora Sun 07-Dec-08 20:10:36

I have an interview for a job as extended services coordinator in a special school. I have worked in SN for 10 years but would like a prents perspective.

Go as basic as you like, then I can tailor it to fit the situation.


MaryBeWaiting Mon 08-Dec-08 15:23:52

What's the question?

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Mon 08-Dec-08 15:41:15

we'll help if we can but you need to be more specific

r3dh3d Mon 08-Dec-08 15:53:05

Give us a bit more to work with Nymph! A parents perspective on what? I imagine very few of us (at least those without 24 hour curriculum or similar) have any experience of extended services - I know our school are thinking about it.

nymphadora Tue 09-Dec-08 12:18:11

ok sorry took so look to get back to you.

What you want from extended schools

magso Tue 09-Dec-08 13:11:44

Wow an extended school at sn school!
Safety and fun and socialising for my child. I would like to know my child is secure and having a good time. Other things -coordination with transport (or at least still allowing transport on the days I don't work), flexibilty and 8.00 - 6 coverage virtually all year round. Communication ( day book)is important especially if child has limited communication. Breakfast and tea. Affordable!

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Tue 09-Dec-08 13:40:58

absolutely safety- if thats not in place then we wot use anyway

agree with magso really, plus the 'little' things like having the confidence to know that special diets etc are followed; links with summer playschenes for a whole year approach- and indeed close to similar services (or shared with playschemes? depends on pupil needs) for siblings as this constant 3 places at once thing does my head in

personally i'd like some outreach: the service would work well for ds3 going into a s-ed school shortly; ds1 s in a right no-mans land as he is in ms but cant access either ms or the exclusively sn school after school club either. Helllloooo service providers/ we're out here too..... quite a lot of us sn kids in ms schools, in fact

good luck with your interview

nymphadora Tue 09-Dec-08 14:02:03

The school has lottery funding for a 2 year project to set up clubs etc.Some funding will come from the project rather than the parents. MY hope is that it will be affordable enough that parents are paying minimum and some of that would be in place of respite/CC costs anyway

Peachy-1 thing I had thought of was some links with local M/S schools.Would you want to join s/s clubs or join them in 'neutral' base?

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Tue 09-Dec-08 16:13:57

I'd happily access them at a special school, indeed I'd just be grateful to have them! DS1 is aggressive- social services said we cannot send him to mainstream care but thre is nothing else- so here I sit onn my (increasingly) fat arse (OK, class it as Maternity leave atm but you know what IO mean)

I do know some aprents who coil up and shriek at any time someone mentions s-s around their precious sn child but I'm a bit hmm at that- I don't care where they go as long as it is the best place for them.

magso Tue 09-Dec-08 17:25:24

Security is a major issue. Some ms school premises are poorly set up for good security.

Actually parent support might be another issue I would like to have - although perhaps its only me. I cannot go to evening meetings (need to care for dc) but often struggle for support and solutions to behavioural challenges. Attending courses can be challenging due to lack of childcare.

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Tue 09-Dec-08 17:55:42

Not just you magso; Dh works nights so just as everyone else is saying 'lets hold a meeting' we are saying its off to work time- really frustrating at times, was amajor factor towards me not doing my MA in ASD at becuase the times didn't fit.

MannyMoeAndJack Tue 09-Dec-08 18:44:24

I would be delighted if my ds's SN school ever offers any extended hours!

I would be happy for my ds to attend an after school club but only if it was held at his SN school (he wouldn't be able to go to a m/s setting anyway) because I know it is safe and secure and that he has not escaped from it as yet (AFAIK). I would want my ds to be able to access the playground, the sensory room, the soft-play room and so on. It would be a play opportunity for a couple of hours and I would be happy to collect him myself but I realise this wouldn't suit everybody or be logistically possible for everyone.

I'd be prepared to pay the going rate for an after-school club, although I guess a SN club could be more expensive due to the need for more staff?

I would expect the staff to be training in SN (although I realise that this is a very broad term). My ds would need 1-1 at all times.

I would like a club/home book so that I could learn what my ds has been doing, how he behaved, etc.

I would like to be able to book my after-school club dates a half-term in advance and for my ds to be able to attend a session about twice each week (increasing to more as he gets older).

Not much to ask is it?!

r3dh3d Tue 09-Dec-08 20:10:12

I'd like to know staffing ratios & how they were funded. (Bearing in mind that the economics of mainstream extended hours is 20 kids to 1 support staff (no teachers.) & DD1's school is 1:1 or 1:2, 1 teacher to max 7 kids. OK you have lottery funding for 2 years. But it's not good to subsidise this facility for 2 years, parents foolishly rely on you, get jobs, etc. and then where are they when the cash runs out? So I'd have to believe in the long-term financial plan before I'd back it.)

Security. Medical support & emergency procedures. What they'd actually be doing. Is it play, or babysitting, or what? Nothing wrong with either of these but need to know.

Transport logistics. A big issue is that if most of your kids come in on Transport, pretty much everyone has to buy in (and thus afford whatever you are charging) in order to make the Transport routes still work.

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Tue 09-Dec-08 20:16:37

After school club.

Holiday clubs.

But would need to be safe. The holiday club he goes to at the moment takes 6 children a day- each has 1:1 and it is held in a special school boarding unit with high fences, locks on doors and windows.

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Tue 09-Dec-08 21:19:56

yes- the hliday club here(and iirc others have been offered similar? )is a free-to-leave site, where the provided 1:2 support cannot prevent a child taking off.

Given that ds1 considers himselfomnipotent, and ds3 just bolts, that's no good. So we do without, because we fear for what would happen.

so a club has top be physically secure, and also financially- for the reasons given but also because if youre going to spend a long time adjusting your child to a group, pulling it will damage them potentially. ds3 is typica of this; we know at Christmas we will lose toilet training and some language, changes damage him and one day he might not regain the skills (usually takes 3-4 eeks atm)

nymphadora Wed 10-Dec-08 18:22:05

what particular club /activities would you like?

Obviously these would affect staffing as a play/free time but supervised is a lot less staffing than a sport (for example) though I feel both should be offered .

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Wed 10-Dec-08 19:27:51

ds1 likes arty things, board games etc and sports- ds3 prefers more toddlert play stuff, computer games and dvd's

a suggestion i to link up with local groups if you want sports- the rugby club here does a fab sn rugby group (non contact!!!) and the kids vary from16 year old total commitment to loosely andering on the edge refusers; the club don't care one bit. Clearly the parents go, but its a way of upping numbers to do sporty things

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Wed 10-Dec-08 22:05:28

ds1 can't really do sports. At his holiday club they have a soft play room, a tv room, a room with a computer and some toys and a trampoline in the garden. Activities are 1:1 and sometimes the kids get taken out or use the hydro pool.

MannyMoeAndJack Wed 10-Dec-08 22:16:56

My ds doesn't understand sports, nor can he do or is interested in arts and crafts. He is a physical child and is just interested in activities that can meet those needs, so: trampolining, hydro, climbing, running about, ball-pit, etc.

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Wed 10-Dec-08 22:20:43

That sounds like ds1's playscheme Manny. He likes to help with the hoovering too

MannyMoeAndJack Wed 10-Dec-08 22:35:40

grin - my ds likes to 'help' with the hoovering that I plug in, turn on and start hoovering...ds turns the hoover off, I turn it back on and hoover another square foot, ds turns it off and runs off giggling maniacally, I turn it back on, briskly hoover another square foot, ds returns to turn the damn thing off again, then runs off totally impressed with himself and splitting his sides and so on ad nauseam!!!

And I thought that ASD kids hated hoovers!!

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Thu 11-Dec-08 08:51:50

Ha ha, we had that for a while. But then ds1 moved onto finding bits of papers, ripping them up and stuffing them down the hoover. Of course with no concept of the importance of the piece of paper (watch out money).

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Thu 11-Dec-08 10:14:17

nymphadora- tehre's an important tip here I thnk: SN kids vary soooo much. And its not fair to exclude any of them either-JimJams son needs a chance as much as mine, and mine don't deserve to go without provision because they fall into all the gaps. can't access MS = deserves something else in my book!

A dual level set up would of course wor best, one level for kids needing more support- 1-1, another for kids who can get by on small groups: ds3 is OK is maybe 3 people sometimes but thee will always need to be someoena vailbale for loo breaks, to und4erstand his speech. DS1 doesn't need'active' help with the sort of things I think would be offered- he does need constant (I do mean constant) supersision from soemone trained in anger issues within ASD.

PeachyBidsYouNadoligLlawen Thu 11-Dec-08 10:16:06

(We had the hoover switching off with ds3. very funny.... PMSL hmm)

DS1 used to hug the 'noonoo' and seemed to have a strange worshi cult going where he wuld follow it or just sit close going 'nnooooooooooooonppp' in a semi-tantric sorta way

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Thu 11-Dec-08 11:32:08

I guess the thing is to look at what is available locally for each group. Here there is one holiday provision that I would say is suitable for the ds1's of this world. It only takes a fixed age group (so excludes others like ds1) and only has 6 spaces a day.

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