At Topcliffe we have five resource bases for pupils with a diagnosis of an Autistic Spectrum Condition, each with 1 teacher and 1 teaching assistant. Class sizes range from 5 to 8 pupils and we can accommodate 36 pupils within our setting. We recognise that each child is an individual and it is our aim to equip each child with skills and strategies to enable them to access, enjoy and succeed in school, reaching their full potential. We promote inclusion across school life at Topcliffe with children accessing a variety of learning and social activities alongside their mainstream peers.
We follow the National Curriculum, which is appropriately differentiated and personalised, tailored to meet each child’s individual needs. Children have individualised timetables, which are regularly reviewed, enabling them to access learning in the way which supports them to succeed, which may be within resource base or mainstream classes. Each resource base class has an individualised curriculum, that aligns with a mainstream group, which is weighted to address the social, communication and sensory needs of the pupils. Holistic achievement has as much significance as academic progress and is celebrated with the same enthusiasm.
Within resource base classes the environment and teaching approaches are adapted to incorporate thinking from a range of sources. Children have access to low arousal individual and group work spaces, calm corners and social areas. When establishing each classroom environment and groupings, the pupils individual sensory, learning, social and emotional needs are taken into account. Teaching approaches that are used within the Resource Bases are based upon a structured teaching approach and incorporate TEACCH methods alongside visual support.
When pupils integrate into the mainstream classes many of the strategies used with the resource bases are adapted and implemented to ensure pupils succeed and access the learning. Our mainstream environments have similar nurturing focuses which mirror resource base practice.
We endeavour to provide our children with as broad and balanced an education as possible. Our children have regular opportunities to take part in outdoor education activities and offsite visits throughout the year and residential visits which are planned in the summer term.