Arc School Napton is an independent day school in rural Warwickshire that caters for children and young people who have struggled in mainstream education environments due to their needs being unmet.
The school is registered to accept pupils between the ages of 7 and 16 however currently we cater for children until the age of 11. We offer a Key Stage two provision from Year 3 through to Year 6. We offer a broad creative curriculum designed to meet individual needs, give the best possible educational outcomes and lay the foundations to future educational success.
All students have full statements of Special Educational Needs (or Education Health and Care plans) and referrals come from a wide range of local authorities. We offer renewed opportunities for children with a wide range of needs including SEMH, ASD, ADHD and Attachment difficulties. Our offer is of a bespoke curriculum that is research based, evidence led, solution focused and highly personalised to meet the needs of each individual student.
We offer quality first teaching in small class sizes with additional support from a multi-disciplinary team of teachers and key workers alongside speech and language therapists, occupational therapist and educational psychologists.
We have a unique curriculum with five central themes common to all sites. This is formed of creative cultural learning, work readiness, 5 Keys to Success / Safeguarding, multimedia working and outdoor education. This ensures a broad and balanced curriculum is available and opportunities to succeed are routinely enjoyed by all.
All students have a designated Key Worker within the school who oversees their individual welfare and development by facilitating secure adult attachments. They liaise with home on at least a weekly basis but can be contacted with any concerns or queries as necessary. During holidays, support continues to be offered to all students and their families by keyworker
Staff work closely with parents and carers to develop very detailed knowledge of our students and families. Through continuous assessment, they are able to notice any changes in pupil learning, health or wellbeing and amend provision accordingly. Any issues or concerns raised by parents/carers or school staff are investigated thoroughly and additional support provided or signposted.
Small learning groups and a high level of adult supervision at all times create an emotionally-containing atmosphere for anxious children. We draw from the expertise of our therapists and other professionals to constantly review and improve our practice, triangulate our judgements and ensure our provision caters fully for the needs of all students. All staff have comprehensive training focussed on the specialist knowledge necessary to support the complex needs of our students.
Teachers and the multi-disciplinary team, in conjunction with the parents, develop a Personal Learning Pathways annually for their students. These plans include the students' and parents'/carers' aspirations. All students have a communication, sensory, physical and health profile. Staff teams work closely with the multi-disciplinary teams to select and develop strategies to meet individual needs.
All pupils have daily diaries which form comprehensive logs of learning, behaviour and wellbeing supported by our unique 5 Keys to Improvement framework and ongoing reflective practices. They form a daily communication tool between home and school and allow staff to monitor wellbeing on a lesson by lesson basis based on pupils' views. Diaries are completed for every session of the school day and parents are encouraged to read and comment on them daily. Diaries are additionally monitored weekly by the Head of Care to identify patterns or trends related to learning or wellbeing. Assessment of each student's progress happens every day in every lesson and is recorded in diaries. Lessons are then planned using this knowledge to meet the individual needs of each student and improve their attainment.
Arc School Napton follows the National Curriculum and maintains a rich, broad and balanced curriculum which promotes intellectual, personal, social, spiritual, moral and physical development within a controlled caring environment.
Crucially however we have a commitment to creative thinking. This centres on the belief that, in order to achieve highly, students need to know that good learning stems from making mistakes and that they are a necessary part of the learning process.
We encourage students to recognise that previous environments were not right for them and that avoiding challenge is a learned behaviour that can be changed. We teach students to accept that learning will cause anxiety, which they need to embrace and accept that failure can be the first step on the road to success in order to achieve as learners.
Many of our students conclude that they are not good at anything because they have not been good at what is measured and valued in mainstream schools. They have become paralysed through a fear of failure and often give up when faced with new situations rather than risk the inevitable failure that they perceive accompanies their school experience. We reject this idea and strive to create enabling, communication-friendly environments built around trust, respect and mutual understanding.
The school has a firm emphasis on learning outside the classroom and employs a Cultural Curator with sole responsibility for facilitating enriched learning experiences and forging partnerships with external arts, heritage, sporting and cultural organizations. All pupils have a cultural passport that helps record their enrichment activities, all of which are directly related to learning. This year we produced a training film in partnership with English Heritage and participated in a boys' dance project with Warwick Arts Centre and professional dancers.
The school employs a Forest School leader and have unlimited access to a local 40 acre farm. PE is routinely conducted at the local sports pavilion where pupils have access to all-weather pitches, grass sports fields, tennis courts and cricket nets. The school also employs a tennis coach and uses a local pool for swimming lessons.
Pupils also experience timetabled horse husbandry, individual music tuition used therapeutically, fishing, sailing and rock climbing. We have strong community links with the local mainstream school, where pupils visit on a regular basis, the local church and aim to undertake overnight residential visits in the near future.
The school is a signatory to the RSA Education Charter, acknowledging that the primary purpose of education is to awaken a love of learning in young people and give them the ability and desire to carry on learning through life.
Students' progress is recorded in their class book against National Curriculum levels. The Head or Deputy Head teacher monitors each student's progress by looking at work produced, observing lessons and listening to children. If a student is not making the progress we expect, the teaching team and multi-disciplinary team assess the situation and new strategies are
put in place and shared with parents. There are a series of meetings with parents to discuss all aspects of the student. These include but are not limited to: annual reviews of
the EHC plan or Statement, home visits, graduation ceremonies as well as ongoing phone dialogue and diary contact.
Reports to parents include: home school diaries, termly Individual Education Plans (IEP's), annual review reports, EHC Plans (or statements of SEN) including parental aspirations. An annual parents' questionnaire is sent out to all parents and guardians.
Enquiries from parents and carers about their child's progress and welfare are welcome at any time, as are visits to the school, emails and phone calls and we offer advice and support on an ongoing basis.
Students' views are voiced through assemblies, suggestion box and their pupil progress files and close working relationships with staff. They also participate in an annual survey which captures the views of all stakeholders and is used to inform school improvement.
Specialist teaching staff have been recruited and trained to deliver each of the curriculum areas. To support in-house staff, we also engage the School Nurse, LACES and the CAMHS consultants when required. Other services, such as REACH, Counselling, SIBS, CAT and Anger Management Services are also used to support students.
Each academic year the school undertakes five in-house training days. The first training day of each academic year allows for planning and preparation for the year ahead. Training programmes are delivered by either external specialists or by appropriately trained staff and can be based on the changing needs of the students, School Improvement Plans, managing
performance/appraisal reviews, etc. There is also an annual programme of training to meet statutory health and safety obligations, safeguarding requirements and other legal equirements. Staff are encouraged and supported to undertake additional qualifications such as Masters Degrees and doctorates.
All but the newest staff are trained to the Autism Education Trust Level 2 (with some trained to Level 3) as we believe that the Autism friendly approaches benefit all learners. All staff undergo Team Teach positive handling training which has a firm emphasis on de-escalation techniques inorder to manage difficult situations safely.
All pupils travel to school by taxi by arrangement with thelocal authority. The site has limited wheelchair access due to the age and design of the buildings, however toilet facilities are accessible. However the school is looking to acquire more suitable premises nearby in the near future.
Arc School Napton is committed to communicating with students and parents or carers who have English as an additional language. Appropriate training and assistance will be
sought for such cases as the need arises.
Students for whom English is an additional language are accommodated within the same schooling programmes and would be provided with intensive additional support from staff suitably qualified and experienced professionals to facilitate the acquisition of English language via first language use. All documentation would be made available to parents in alternative language(s) including Braille or audio.
Transition is a notable issue for many pupils at the school. They can find even small changes anxiety inducing, hence we work together to create bespoke admission and transition plans and give careful consideration to even the smallest of daily transitions. Many pupils transfer to our partner schools in the north of the county, which share common structures and routines to facilitate smoother transitioning. Some staff also work across sites which helps promote continuity, scaffold change and contain anxiety.
Admissions to Arc School Napton are arranged via referral from local authority children's services.
An initial visit by appointment is followed by a formal interview, home visit and an assessment period. However, in some circumstances a bespoke induction package may be preferable to help an individual young person make the transition in the most positive way possible.
Placements are offered to students whose needs can be met within the existing framework of the school and its learner group, and a Home School Agreement outlines the responsibilities of school, student and parent. Further additional support may be negotiated with the LA based on the views of all professionals involved.