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More school places & facilities for children & young people with special educational needs & disabilities (SEND)

Published
13.06.2016

Bettridge School and Belmont Special School are working together to offer more places

Bettridge School and Belmont Special School are working together to offer more places for 16 - 19 year old children and young people with profound and multiple learning disabilities (PMLD) and challenging behaviour associated with autism.

The council aims to deliver support in schools and the local community to enable children and young people with SEND  to enjoy the same range of experiences and opportunities as children with no additional needs.

A new building is being built for Bettridge School to broaden the existing post 16 provision the school offers. It currently provides countywide support for children and young people with PMLD and severe learning difficulties (SLD). The new facilities will allow the school to increase places to support more PMLD young people and also specialist facilities to meet the needs of those young people with challenging behaviours associated with autism. The proposals will increase the post 16 places available from 8 to 24.

Specifically for 16 - 19 year olds, the new accommodation will provide a wide range of new spaces, including classrooms, group rooms, communal dining spaces, fully equipped hygiene facilities and all weather outdoor spaces. The building will also be fully accessible and provide wide range of excellent specialist facilities to meet the needs of the students.

Bettridge School has been working in partnership with Belmont School next door The new build will be linked to the current post 16 facilities at Bettridge but located on part of the Belmont school site. 

The work will also benefit Belmont School, as it will also allow the school to make improvements to their teaching rooms and outdoor areas. 

Both schools currently work together on many projects and are committed to working together to provide their pupils with the best facilities available.

Mandy Roberts, headteacher at Bettridge School, said: "The work to Bettridge School will provide specialist facilities to enable us to work with families to provide a more tailored support package for each student, and the scheme will allow Gloucestershire County Council to offer a broader range of provision for students 16-19 within Gloucestershire schools to meet the demand for specialist placements. Belmont Special School have been fantastic to work with on this project and we are really looking forward to the work being completed."

Kevin Day, headteacher at Belmont Special School, said: "We are really pleased to be working with Bettridge School on this project, the growing links between the schools are making excellent use of each schools resources and facilities impacting positively on the learning of the children in both schools"

Ben Ramsay, operations director for Kier, said: "We are thrilled to be part of a project that will help transform the teaching facilities at both Bettridge and Belmont Schools. The collaborative approach and enthusiasm displayed by all parties involved is almost certain to make this project a great success."

Cllr Paul McLain, cabinet member for children and young people, said: "I am delighted to see that two outstanding schools are working together to help the council to support its young people"

"The work is extremely important as it will allow Bettridge School to offer more young adults the opportunities and expert support it provides."

The work will continue and is schedule to be completed before the end of the year.

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