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Special schools for higher ability ASD

(21 Posts)
firecracker123 Thu 12-Mar-15 12:07:26

Can anyone suggest independent secondary special schools for average/higher ability ASD with ADHD. I am willing to look at boarding - So far am looking at Breckenbrough

firecracker123 Thu 12-Mar-15 12:10:00

We have very limited appropriate state schools here and so I want to have other options in mind. Ideally where he will have opportunity to take GCSEs as academically he is not that far behind his mainstream peers

ouryve Thu 12-Mar-15 12:12:29

Hah! That's the one I was going to suggest when I saw the thread title!

Are you in the North? There's a couple of threads I can dig up with some suggestions down South.

ouryve Thu 12-Mar-15 12:23:58

Was going to suggest this one (got nosy and realised it's closer to you), but realised that they only offer entry level GCSE, which is a bit crap, really

firecracker123 Thu 12-Mar-15 12:29:02

We are in North Midlands area. It would be 3 hours drive for us to Breckenbrough so would have to be boarding and I think even weekly might be too disruptive for him. I am wiling to move though. Does anyone know what LEAs have a good record of getting children into Breckenbrough? I am shocked at the limited higher end of the spectrum specialist provision for children with ASD

firecracker123 Thu 12-Mar-15 12:32:18

I will look at Alderwasley too. We have another near here Cruckton. However I have heard it has many looked after children there and severe behavioural issues related to abusive backgrounds etc. I would rather my son not be in that sort of environment as presently his behaviour is not aggressive etc. Just hyper due to ADHD

ouryve Thu 12-Mar-15 12:40:24

I think they have a few kids from the Leeds area and quite a few from Teesside and Durham. North Yorkshire would fight you all the way, though! Durham might have got harder, too, since they've finally opened up a couple of ASD provisions in mainstream secondaries, this year. It's rare that a child gets in from anywhere without a tribunal.

It's worth phoning up Gilly (mentioned on their website) and having a good chat with her. They're also very accommodating if you want to visit and have a look around.

The lack of provision has been a headache for us. There's a massive assumption that a bright child must be able to manage in mainstream, which is just not true at all. Our local primary is probably one of the most inclusive school imaginable, plus has fairly small class sizes, yet, even with full time support, it was too much for DS1. (DS2, OTOH, despite learning difficulties and severe speech delays, is loving it)

ouryve Thu 12-Mar-15 12:49:05

Here's a thread or two covering options down south

ouryve Thu 12-Mar-15 13:01:41

Up North, again
Ackworth school has a small ASD resource, but I don't know how well they'd deal with a bouncy boy with ADHD
It's a lovely school but I know a couple of MNers who have had recent bad experiences with MS indy schools offering enhanced provision.

firecracker123 Thu 12-Mar-15 13:10:44

Thanks. These are all well worth looking at. He will need to board and that is where the ADHD needs careful thought as he is very hyper and loud early in the morning before his meds. Daytime his behaviour is fine as meds are effective. We have a new ASD unit here but only 24 places across while secondary age range so no guarantee of a place

Pebbles72 Fri 13-Mar-15 07:57:24

I looked at Breckenbrough and visited a number of times. I loved it but it was 3 1/2 hours from home and the school did not feel confident that it could manage my DS's extreme anxiety/mental health needs. Academically I was impressed. He is now at Swalcliffe Park near Banbury. Only 2 1/2 hours from home! meets his high academic, ADHD, ASD and anxiety/mental health needs.

firecracker123 Fri 13-Mar-15 09:26:34

Pebbles that's very similar to me in so far as we are 3.5 hours from Breckenbrough and 2.5 hours from Swalcliffe. Does Swalcliffe five them chance to do GCSEs? Did you have a battle to get a place there? What LEA are you in if you don't mind me asking ?

fairgame Fri 13-Mar-15 22:19:00

I looked at Ackworth for DS. It's a lovely little unit but only has 5 places and was full. It's also not a secure site so children could potentially go offsite if they are known runners.
I would ring Alderwasley because they do aim at the more higher functioning end and i'm sure when i looked around last year they said they do offer GCSE's and A-levels.

Pebbles72 Sat 14-Mar-15 08:41:03

Yes, Swalcliffe do the full range of GCSEs and my sons day is academically structured as it would be in mainstream secondary but in a class of 6 with the teacher and a TA plus 1:1 support at the times he needs it. He has his form teacher for the humanities, PSHE etc, and moves around rooms and has specialist teachers for science, maths, DT, English, PE, Food Tech etc. He is studying the full KS 3 curriculum at Level 6 and 7 in the subjects he is strongest in and there are other boys in his class are also working at very high academic levels. I am in Cambridgeshire. There are 4 boys from my LA there. The journey is tough! We collect about 4.30/5pm on Friday evening and drop him back at 8pm on Sunday night. Many of the boys come home alternate weekends but my DS is not ready for this. I did not have a battle for specialist independent but I did have a battle to avoid the one my LA wanted but it was definitely worth it. It seems that almost all the parents there have had a huge battle for places including school failure and significant periods of time out of school.

firecracker123 Sat 14-Mar-15 12:47:14

Do you have any idea what Swalcliffe charges for weekly boarding?

Pebbles72 Sat 14-Mar-15 21:30:55

£100k+? Our LAs preferred school was £130k but my DS has lots of additional provision written into his statement so that may push costs up.

firecracker123 Sun 15-Mar-15 22:36:59

I think the school near here that the LA would use is £100k day fees!

Pebbles72 Sun 15-Mar-15 23:21:22

I know the fees at Breckenbrough were £80k+ for a weekly boarding place so it sounds like either Breckenbrough or Swalcliffe could work on costs but the transport costs would Be much more. Swalcliffe are having an open day on 27th March. I'll see if I can figure out how to PM you the details which I have on a screen shot. I'm not sure if PM will let me?!

Pebbles72 Sun 15-Mar-15 23:27:31

I couldn't figure out how to PM it so I have attached it here!

LittleFluffyMoo Thu 19-Mar-15 23:46:38

I've heard of the Center Academy schools, which are supposed to be for exactly that, but don't know much about them I'm afraid:-

Donki Wed 12-Aug-15 17:26:55

Resurrecting a slightly elderly thread here.

The Young Donki is (I hope) finally going to get an EHCP. I tried to get a statement for him nearly 2 years ago but without his primary school on board (they had not even applied for the top up funding) I failed to get an assessment. I remember 'talking' to you at the time Ouryve.

Secondary school has decided that not only is there a strong case for an EHCP, but that they cannot meet the YD's needs. (He started school refusing about three weeks before the end of term)
MAP meeting is the end of August.
So. I will be looking at specialist privision as soon as I can in September.

Breckenbrough for sure, but I will have to look at provision within authority (Leeds) too. What does anyone know about provision in Leeds for an anxious 12 year old with ASD and writing difficulties (hypermobile hands/fingers) who should be doing GCSE's some (maths/science/computing) at higher level?

There are the SILCs (looking at Allerton High and also West Oaks/Boston Spa) and the Lighthouse free school, but I know little about them.

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