Reading School has a close and dedicated network of support for students with special educational needs and disabilities. An SEND Passport is written for each boy with such needs following a consultation with them; this is updated on an annual basis and has input from teachers and parents. The Passport is a profile of the student giving their strengths and development areas, and provides their teachers with tips on how best to support them.
The SEND team have a regular programme of activities that go on all year round, at which all comers are welcome. Examples include:
Sensory Circuits, which take place weekly in the gym, is a good way to learn new skills and make friends. This either involves completing fun physical circuits or playing light-hearted physical games to work on being part of a team.
They are ideal for:
- Improving motor skills
- Practising working as part of team
- Making friends
Year 7 Lunch Club welcomes our newest students to come along for fun and games ranging from Uno to Penguin Pile-Up to Werewolf, and find:
- A relaxed environment
- Fun games to play
- An inclusive atmosphere
The Sherlock Holmes Foundation, is a fun puzzle and mystery solving club that helps Year 7 students make friends with like-minded peers after they join at Reading. The group work on puzzles, riddles and games, culminating in the solving of a murder in the Maths Department. The group is open to all Year 7s and they:
- Have a lot of fun
- Make friends
- Relax, have lunch, and stretch their mental horizons
A member of the Student Support Team is present in Auxilium, the Student Support Area, every break and lunch time for anyone at a loose end to come and enjoy the friendly atmosphere. They are invited to play games like chess, Uno, board games, or even just read, talk, or do homework, and are welcome to bring their lunch.
Student are also frequently invited to take part in small groups in Auxilium to help them develop in different areas like study skills, social interaction, or any other issue likely to come up in a school career; last term a year 9 group worked on personal skills and a year 11 group on study skills. These are usually formed by invitation, from boys the SEND team know through Passport meetings and clubs or through referrals from teachers. We can also refer students to our dedicated school counsellor and other specialised services where needed.
We run programmes for resilience, handling negative emotions and exam preparation for SEND students through the school year.
What do our students say about Student Support at Reading?
“Being at Reading School is like riding a wave - ideally you are ahead of the wave or you ride it. If you get lost in the wave then Auxilium is like a boat helping you move with the wave.” Year 10 student description of Auxilium, the Student Support area
“When I first started coming in Year 7 Student Support hugely improved my enjoyment of school. Over the years, it has helped me become a more confident and independent person, and given me a strong, supportive network of friends. It’s a sort of sanctuary, both away from the busy crowds of the Refectory or LRC, and from the regimented, school day and timetable. Also, just as importantly, it’s a place where having different interests and ways of looking at the world is not only respected but valued and celebrated.” Year 11 student
“I can’t count the number of times you’ve supported me or helped me with my challenges. I know I wouldn’t have made it without your support.” Year 13 student
“Thank you for being there for me and helping me through school right from the beginning; you’ve made my school life much easier and I really appreciate that.” Year 13 student
From student feedback at an external review meeting in October 2022 - “Student Support is seen as an oasis, non-judgemental and exceptional for what it does. There was a consistent view that Auxilium is approachable, is a safe place to offload / share; this was evident in the way students who didn’t know each other well, if at all, shared information about their personal lives for example risk of not remaining at the school, risk of not achieving in the classroom.”
The SEN co-ordinator (SENCO) for Reading School is Miss S Rogers and can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org