Your name was passed to me at our SEN Consultation Planning Meeting in January by FW at Education Support Services and also by my colleague at St M's Primary School, JB.
We have on-going concerns about two of our pupils, both of whom have epilepsy and are on very high levels of medication. One child is in Year 1 and the other is in Year 4.
Both children are making very slow progress in all areas. They have difficulty in processing information, learning new skills and retaining the things that they have been taught. For example, the Year 1 child knows hardly any single letter sounds and cannot recognise letters of the alphabet or simple key words. She also finds number work very difficult and when counting requires support to put the correct number of dots on a butterfly etc. The Year 4 child becomes muddled very easily, has difficulty beginning a task without support and following simple instructions. Her reading comprehension and also general comprehension of many everyday situations is poor. The Year 4 child also has significant speech and language difficulties and receives speech therapy input for this. Both children appear very immature for their ages.
We are unsure with both children whether it is the condition or the high level of medication which is causing the delay.
Although we have discussed both children with the Learning, Language and Communication Advisory teacher at ESS and also our Educational Psychologist, both have said they are unsure what advice to give as our problems lie outside their field of experience. Consequently, FW suggested contacting you to request an assessment of both children and advice about the best ways to support them in school.
I look forward to hearing from you.
The input of specialist teaching has obviously been of great benefit to J, but I believe the service given by SHIPS has been invaluable to J himself and also of great value to myself, my family and many others who attend his school. Sian's calm but responsive attitude is welcomed by my son and myself and has proved to be a major factor in his progress to date. Sian is not only informed, but informative. Her contribution to J's successes are an inspiration.
SHIPS has filled a gap for my son when there was no provision from the schools. We are very pleased with what Sian is doing for him. She has also helped us by explaining things we did not understand about his injury.
Your experience and advice about ABI has been of paramount importance to us in assisting K to fulful her learning potential so far this academic year. In particular we are exceptionally grateful not only for your suppport with assisting learning but also the support you have shown us with normal everyday situations which can crop up at any time. You have always been a mere phone call away for instant practical advice. As professionals who have never encountered ABI it has been so reassuring to know that we have that support: whenever we have found ourselves in a situation that we have not encountered, with your knowlege to rely on, we have overcome all difficulties which have presented themselves. SHIPS is a fundamental resource and source of assistance to all people who have, or who are involved, in the recovery of someone with ABI.
My daughter has been very fortunate to use your charity in recent months, after an injury that was acquired 6 years ago. Prior to that we had had very little, if not any support from any services other than her immediate consultant. Your service/charity has enabled her to be assessed within her school classroom environment and has identified very specific areas of need for her. These have then been discussed and acted upon by the school with your help and support. This has been invaluable to both my daughter and to her education within mainstream school, which prior to this was proving very difficult and distressing for her.........I only wish this had been available at a much earlier point for my daughter and my family as a whole.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your help, guidance, emotional support for both my daughter and myself and my other dependants. We are very hopeful that this relationship will not end here and you will be available in the future as my daughter grows older and her needs further change. On a more personal note I add my heart felt thanks for all your charity has done up until this point, as prior to this as a Mother I felt very alone, and now feel more positive that my daughter is finally receiving the help she desperately needed and deserved in order to give her more positive opportunities in the future.
We can't believe how much J has come on since starting the Life Boat Reading programme.
His teacher sent home some magic e worksheets for J to have a go at if he wanted to over the holidays. We were amazed and extremely proud of J he is so keen & confident in doing these that he actually managed 3 of the sheets completely unaided which again before the reading programme was in place this was a definite no go. J confidently reads through them with no help & successfully got them all correct. A wonderful smile appears on his face now he knows he can achieve this. J also knows if he gets stuck on anything all he has to do is ask for help, again this is something J used to struggle with in the past.
My husband & myself would just like to say a big thank you for all your help & support in helping our family learn how to achieve these wonderful things with J that other families seem to take for granted. Once again thank you very much for the help & continued support you give us, you are our light at the end of the tunnel.
Your continued help & support is very much appreciated.
Extremely valuable advice, thought provoking, clear interesting presentation. Thank you very much.
It was helpful to have the learning linked more directly to the strategies.
Plenty of useful ideas/strategies for working with young children with ABI.
It was good to ask questions about specific pupils in our school.
As a consequence, and with good support from our staff and his secondary school next year, we feel his vulnerability of exclusion has been significantly reduced despite the on-going barriers from his disabilities and his home-setting.
Thank you and have a lovely summer,
From [School Name]
Dr Siân Rees at The SHIPS project understands the way my son learns and operates, unlike anyone else. The SHIPs project has supported my son through Primary school, with the transition to Secondary school and into KS4. SHIPS offer training and support for schools and parents in a way that is tailored to your individual child or young person allowing us to understand how best to help support our child gain the most from the education system. In addition, Sian can go into schools to observe the class scenario and produce a report based on her findings with recommendations for the school that will help the child / young person.
Sian has been an amazing support to us as a family and to our son, the prospect of not having her support and help is unthinkable. My son says “Sian explains it in a way I understand, I wish Sian was my teacher for everything”.
I am writing this email with concerns about my son who has just started year 7. He has been left with a brain injury due to an autoimmune illness which he suffered in April 2016,when he eventually went back to his primary school in Oct 2016 they were very grateful for any help and they got involved with SHIPs and took up the membership, this was the best thing ever as they hadn't had to deal with a child with a brain injury before and welcomed information and advice from Dr Siân Rees to help them help my son.
Now he has left his primary school and is in seniors I feel the school need expert advice and informative on a brain injury child. My son has a hidden disability and I feel his needs are being over-looked due to him looking normal and occasionally acting normal. While my son is happy to go into school and he is socialising with his peers, I do feel very strongly that the school need expert help on how to teach and look after my son. My son processes things differently from children with a normally working brain and so the teachers and TAs need to set up a plan with the help and guidance of The SHIPs project. I feel that if the school does not take SHIPS on board then my son will just get lost in the system.