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Aurora Woodlands School

Description

Aurora Woodlands School is an independent day school in Lancashire providing specialist education for boys aged 10 -19 with Social, Emotional and Mental Health difficulties.

The learning environment and facilities here allow students to access a varied curriculum in a calm and nurturing environment and the team strives to give every student the confidence and opportunities to achieve their full potential.

High levels of support - all students are provided with enhanced support throughout the school day and provision can be made for those requiring higher levels of support, either full time or periodically. This will enable them to access the curriculum and participate in school activities.  

At Aurora Woodlands we focus on:

  • Providing personalised specialist education – where students can learn and express themselves in a nurturing and safe environment that understands their needs and supports them to fulfill their potential

  • Supporting students to be part of an enriched school and community life

  • Preparing students effectively for life beyond school, by developing their abilities and supporting them to achieve their own unique level of independence as they approach adulthood.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Sarah Gregory
Contact Position
Headteacher
Telephone
01254 706600
E-mail
wds-reception@the-aurora-group.com
Website
Aurora Woodlands School website
Notes

https://www.facebook.com/AuroraGroupUK

https://twitter.com/The_AuroraGroup

https://www.linkedin.com/company/the-aurora-group-ltd

 

Where to go

Name
Woodlands School
Address
Woodlands
Holly Tree Close
Darwen
Lancashire
Postcode
BB3 2NG

Other Details

Availability

Referral required
Yes
Referral Details

Referrals are made by Local Authorities.

This service is part of the Local Offer

Local Offer

Description

Aurora Woodlands is a small specialist school providing personalised, tailored academic and therapeutic support in a calm, nurturing environment. Based within Darwen

Our team of skilled and experienced practitioners support young people with complex needs, helping them to reach their educational aspirations and prepare for a successful future.

Many of the students who arrive at Woodlands have had negative experiences of school in the past. We strive to offer them a different, more positive experience, working hard to ensure that their needs are identified and catered for; that they feel settled and quickly develop a sense of belonging within our school community.

We promote community and sharing throughout the school day. Staff and students share their meals together, and every morning we hold an assembly centered around a specific theme, which takes place in our large communal hall.

We take a proactive, evidence-based approach to changing behaviours of concern, completing functional behaviour assessments and creating appropriate behaviour support plans that employ Positive Behaviour Strategies (PBS), such as pre-correcting, prompting and nonverbal signals.

In addition to PBS, we are developing our trauma-informed practice by using the Thrive approach.

All staff receive regular Thrive training to promote positive mental health and to help them respond to behaviour in a way that helps all our students to flourish and learn.

Contact Name
Sarah Gregory
Contact Telephone
01254 706600
Contact Email
sarah.gregory@the-aurora-group.com
Links
Aurora Woodlands
Local Offer Age Bands
5-11 years
11-16 years
16-19 years
What specialist services and expertise are available at, or accessed by, the school/setting?

Aurora Woodlands is a small specialist school providing personalised, tailored academic and therapeutic support in a calm, nurturing environment. Based within Darwen

Our team of skilled and experienced practitioners support young people with complex needs, helping them to reach their educational aspirations and prepare for a successful future.

Many of the students who arrive at Woodlands have had negative experiences of school in the past. We strive to offer them a different, more positive experience, working hard to ensure that their needs are identified and catered for; that they feel settled and quickly develop a sense of belonging within our school community.

We promote community and sharing throughout the school day. Staff and students share their meals together, and every morning we hold an assembly centered around a specific theme, which takes place in our large communal hall.

We take a proactive, evidence-based approach to changing behaviours of concern, completing functional behaviour assessments and creating appropriate behaviour support plans that employ Positive Behaviour Strategies (PBS), such as pre-correcting, prompting and nonverbal signals.

What training and experience have the staff supporting children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities had, or are having?

We regularly review our training and identify areas for development. The Woodlands team continuously undertake professional development to ensure that they can meet the needs of our young people.

  • Team Teach 
  • Mental Health First Aid 
  • ELSA 
  • Lego Therapy 
  • Emotion Coaching
  • Drawing and Talking 
  • Phonics
  • Oracy
  • Nurture
  • PBS
  • THRIVE
How do you know if my child/young person needs extra help?

     During our admissions process we assess our students in variety of ways. We have access to information from previous educational settings, from parents and carers and from the young person. We get to know our new starters when completing a one page profile and positive behaviour plan which we then share with the team to ensure that we are all working in the same way to support the individual. We then complete assessments which will highlight any gaps in certain areas and this will then be shared with class teachers. Our teachers will monitor our young people and will liaise with our SENCo if they feel that any young person is not making progress. We will then liaise with parents, carers and professionals and set targets which will be reviewed termly. 

 

     We work closely with parents, carers and professionals to review our students and work together to put the right level of support in place to meet their individual needs. Woodlands provide small class sizes with in class support and interventions to enable our students to make progress and fill any gaps they may have along the way. 

What should I do if I think my child/young person may have special educational needs?

If your child attends a school you could contact the schools SENCo who will be able to provide you with support around the process of determining if your child has additional needs and what support is available. Here at Woodlands you can liaise with our SENCo to ensure that the young person’s EHCP is up to date and that we have all of the relevant information. 

 

How will staff support my child/young person?

All our teachers are teachers of SEND and differentiate for each student when planning all their lessons. This enables our class teachers to meet our young people’s individual needs whilst challenging them to ensure that they make good progress. Our classes are small and have a teaching assistant present to support 1:1 or in small group work. Our teaching assistants work closely with the class teachers to select teaching materials and resources that are appropriate  to support specific needs.

 

How will the curriculum be matched to my child's/young person's needs?

We offer a broad and balanced curriculum, which comprises the National Curriculum with a rich and varied programme of learning to help support the social and emotional development of our students.

Our teachers ensure that they plan and deliver a broad curriculum for our individual young people through quality first teaching. We take a personalised approach; each young person has a personalised timetable which is specific to their individual targets within their EHCP.

How will teaching approaches be modified to support my child/young person?

Teachers are trained to adapt their teaching to meet the young people's individual needs and cater for different learning styles. Teachers have access to different resources according to the individual's level of need. Our classes are small and include in class support who are directed by the class teacher to ensure that the young people are receiving the right level of support. 

 

We have interventions which are delivered 1:1 and in small groups which focus on literacy, numeracy, social emotional and mental health needs. The effectiveness of our interventions for SEND are evaluated through measuring progress that has been made by using entry and exit assessment data. Our young people are monitored termly and this information is shared with parents and carers. 

How will both you and I know how my child/young person is doing?

Staff liaise with parents and carers on a regular basis through the following methods:

  • Form tutor weekly phone calls 
  • Transport staff 
  • Pastoral support 
  • Educational Health Care Plan Annual Review 
  • Text/email 
  • School progress reports
How will you help me to support my child/young person's learning?

We have regular communication with parents and carers through a variety of methods. Our teachers make contact every week and our Senior Leadership Team and SENDCo are always available for a phone call or email to offer advice. We encourage reading throughout our school and for our young people to take their books home to continue reading with their parents and carers.

What support will there be for my child's/young person's overall wellbeing?

We are a supportive team at Woodlands who actively support children's emotional well-being. We have different teams across the school from safeguarding, pastoral and SEND who work together to support our young people. If we notice that a child is unhappy, we will spend some 1:1 time with them to help them to identify what is bothering them and to help them to find a solution. We understand that a negative feeling or mood can have an impact on learning which is why we start our day by having breakfast with our young people to ensure that they have the best possible start to their day, and we can identify any issues early and support them to start their day positively. Our staff continue to support our young people during all social times which allows us to observe and ensure that they are happy. 

 

We will also use strategies and recommendations from EHCP's to support our young people's wellbeing. We can also make a referral to Mental Health Support Team if we feel that it is necessary. We deliver the THRIVE approach in school which is a trauma informed practice that supports students to develop positive mental health and well-being.

What activities will be available for my child/young person?

At Woodlands we have a range of activities that students can choose from and we work together with external agencies in order to provide some of these.

 

  • Residential Duke of Edinburgh
  • Creative Arts
  • Music
  • Drama
  • THRIVE sessions
  • Outdoor Education
  • Forest School activities
  • Food technology
  • Motor Vehicle
  • Construction
How will you prepare and support my child/young person during transitions?

welcome meeting and a tour of the school. During our induction process children spend time with each of our members of the senior leadership team and our SENCO. During this time, we will complete a one page profile which we can share with our team to ensure that they are taking a personalised approach when planning and differentiating their lessons. If students are moving on from us then our careers advisor will support them on visits and we have a focused interventions available for supporting young people as they transition from education to employment. 

 

How are resources and equipment allocated and matched to my child's/young person's needs?

     We will provide resources and equipment to our young people if it is recommended in their EHCP or if we feel that it would benefit them in school. We also work closely with parents, carers and professionals to identify any resources that our young people would benefit from.

How are decisions made about what type and how much support my child/young person will receive?

We identify what level of support our young people need in a variety of ways. We use Education Health and Care Plans and specialist reports, assessments and discussions with parents, carers and professionals to determine what level of support is required.