Birtenshaw School Bolton moved into a new building in 2012 and provides a spacious, safe and adaptable environment in which children and young people can thrive and learn. Each shared space can be adapted to meet the needs of each child depending on whether sensory seeking, a place to calm or a space to run off some energy is needed. Such facilities fully support our bespoke, creative curriculum and a “Total Communication” approach to the education of children and young people. Most pupils have speech, language, communication difficulties and some have very little, if any, spoken language; often referred to as ‘non-verbal’.
We utilise various communications systems: signalong, PECS, Go Talks and so on. The Total Communication approach is led by our Speech and Language Therapists and supported by a communication assistant present across the school.
Classrooms are equipped with interactive touch screens, computers, laptops and tablets which are used to support learning, engage pupils and provide an additional communication system in lessons. Many of our specialist facilities support the sensory diet requirements of pupils which are implemented by a full time occupational therapist. Visual, auditory, touch, smell, vestibular (movement) and proprioceptive (body awareness) sensory needs are supported by the environment and facilities to develop pupils co-ordination and communication, promote interaction, concentration, calmness and confidence.
…are designed to provide a safe place for pupils to develop friendships and socially interact with their peers. The equipment was chosen by pupils alongside the occupational therapists to ensure that the space meets pupil’s physical and sensory needs.