Rosehill is a maintained special school for autistic learners aged 4 to 19. Many pupils have a broad spectrum of associated communication, interaction, social, imagination, sensory and learning needs, with the very large majority, in addition to their diagnosis, experiencing co-occurring differences and/or conditions.
We are proud to introduce our Curriculum. It has been designed to be exciting, broad and balanced specifically tailored to support autistic learners. It has been created in conjunction with our School Vision:
To provide a specialist provision that enables every learner to achieve the best possible outcomes in learning, social and emotional wellbeing, in order to fulfil their true potential and participate fully in society. Children, young people and their families will have a voice, be listened to, included and empowered, and have access to the right support at the right time from the right people.
We keep at the heart of learning, that being supported towards greater independence and employability would be life transforming and at Rosehill this support starts early, with our curriculum centring on the aspirations, interests and the needs of the pupils. With high aspirations, and the right support, we believe that all of our pupils can go on to achieve successful long-term outcomes in their adult life.
Communication is a key area of learning and experience at the school, and broadly refers to the teaching and learning within the strands of ‘reading’, ‘communication’, ‘writing’, ‘phonics’ and ‘English’. We adopt a holistic and creative approach in delivering these strands, with an underlying emphasis on fostering the development of pupils communication skills.
Subjects provide the interesting and enriching vehicles through which to deliver skills and knowledge learning, thus the key learning points are threaded through all subjects, as is communication.
A Creative approach is also used to incorporate the key elements that we believe are most important for all of pupils to learn and experience during their time with us: the skills that will be most important to them in adulthood.
Academic research, evidence-based practice, our own experiences and most importantly, by listening to and valuing what the pupils have to say about their experiences, have enabled the school to maintain best practice to support attainment, to challenge our thinking and to create ongoing opportunities to review our practice.
Drawing on ongoing research by experts, such as Professor Karen Guldberg and Barry Carpenter, indicates that there is a clear need to, ‘support the development of functional communication, social and emotional understanding and regulation, attention, peer interaction and relationships. In addition, a structured and organised environment with visual cues can enable access to the learning environment and, it is crucial to take into account sensory processing needs’ (Guldberg, Bradley and Wittemeyer, 2019).
We also consider Ofsted’s focus on Curriculum. The curriculum is at the heart of the Ofsted framework. Ofsted’s working definition:
- The curriculum is a framework for setting out the aims of a programme of education, including the knowledge and understanding to be gained at each stage (intent);
- For translating that framework over time into a structure and narrative, within an institutional context (implementation);
- For evaluating what knowledge and skills children have gained against expectations (impact/achievement).
We consider the framework as part of our curriculum design.
Developing our Curriculum
At Rosehill, we understand the importance of the key areas of need of the pupils and we have established a clear understanding of the requirements of all learners; every individual will experience differences in three key areas. We adapt the curriculum to ensure that everyone has equal access to the same opportunities and that they are not disadvantaged in any way.
 Autism is a processing difference that can have an impact on many areas of a person’s life. Autistic people will experience differences in three key areas: Sensory Processing and Integration, Social Understanding and Communication and Flexibility, Information Processing and Understanding.
Subject leaders study their subject area very carefully, taking time to consider the agreed end points, and how learning should be sequenced in order to create the best chances for all pupils to learn effectively. The most important knowledge has been carefully selected and consideration has been given to how we ensure that pupils will know more and remember more.
For information regarding our Curriculum Intent, Implementation and Impact, please click on the links above.
For further information about the Whole School Curriculum design and Framework, please contact the Curriculum Lead, Jo Ritchie (Assistant Headteacher) firstname.lastname@example.org