We give educational support for children and young people whose medical needs mean that they are unable to attend school.
The key aim of the GHES Outpatient team is to provide a continuity of education, tailored to individual need, when pupils are unable to attend school due to medical needs.
We teach a broad and balanced curriculum and have a holistic, child-centred approach. We aim for a high challenge, low stress educational provision for all of our pupils and have the expectation that every pupil can achieve regardless of health barriers that they face.
All referrals to the GHES Outpatient Team are via medical professionals (mainly consultants) who outline the length of the time the pupil is likely to be unable to attend school due to physical or mental ill health and, where possible, the impact of the medical condition on their learning, engagement and energy.
Across the service there were over 30 subjects on offer to pupils last academic year. There is scope for different subjects to be offered at any time according to pupils' and their needs and what they are studying at school.
Online learning is also available to complement face-to-face teaching when appropriate. Enrichment activities are also offered and often used as a way of building pupils' confidence outside of the home when building up to return to school.
Core teaching hours for the Outpatient team are 9.00am - 4.00pm. Lessons take place within these hours either at pupils' homes or at alternative venues.
Each young person is given a bespoke and personalised curriculum. Hours of provision and the duration of lessons are agreed in consultation with the medical referrer and reviewed regularly. Up to full-time equivalent education is available.
Reintegration can only commence once the medical referrer is able to state that the young person is medically able to begin the process of returning to school.
The Outpatient team also consults with the home-school, parents/carers and any other professionals involved as appropriate in determining the curriculum and approach with each child or young person.
Partnership with home schools
The partnership with home-schools is a critical aspect to GHES provision. Pupils are dual-registered between GHES and schools. Once a referral is accepted GHES contact the school and ask them to provide guidance on the personalised programme of study.
Ongoing communication from this point is vital. Careful thought is given to constructing the provision for each pupil taking in to account future ambitions, consultant recommendations in terms of how much education should be undertaken given the pupil's medical condition and any other key factors.
Each pupil has a 'link tutor' which is a teacher or support worker from the Outpatient Team. This link tutor is the key contact with school.
Once reintegration can commence GHES works with schools to plan the reintegration process and supports schools in getting the reintegration stage up and running.
Some pupils can return to school immediately without a phased return and others need a careful reintegration package designed to meet their needs.
GHES provides a brief period of transition support where we offer teaching or support on school-sites. Schools then complete the reintegration process in-line with any advice from medical professionals or other agencies.
Contact the GHES Outpatient Team
- Elaine O'Shaughnessy (Outpatient Team Manager and key contact for referrals))
Gloucestershire Hospital Education Service Outpatient Team Base
St. Georges Road
Cheltenham. GL50 3EW