Hello! Leopard Class are a mixture of Key Stage 2 and 3 pupils (year groups 6, 7, 8 and 9). All of our pupils have ‘profound and multiple learning disabilities’. This means their learning is affected by combined physical and sensory impairments, in addition to some severe and complex health needs. All pupils use a wheelchair to transfer from home to school; some also have specific equipment to use in school for development or maintenance of physical skills and to promote healthy posture whilst learning or feeding. This can include class chairs, standing frames, braces, splints and gaiters. Some pupils join lessons a bit late or need to leave part-way through to make sure they are getting the best use out of their specific equipment, but don’t worry, there’s always time to catch up on their work! Other ways our pupils’ physical needs are supported include activities such as swimming, Rebound, Sherborne and completion of programmes prescribed by the Physiotherapist. These activities are extremely important for the health and wellbeing of all Leopard Class pupils and are timetabled to meet the minimum requirement but we aim to complete them more often if possible.
All pupils in Leopard Class have a modified diet; some pupils receive their nutrition and fluids via a tube into their stomach which is completed by a member of the ‘complex care’ team who work very effectively in the classroom around our learning. Pupils on an oral diet are fed by members of staff familiar with their ‘Mealtime Information’ sheets provided by Speech and Language Therapist. Due to the nature of pupils’ difficulties with eating and drinking this can take a long time and may require supervision by more than one staff member. Therefore snack and mealtimes are guided by pupil need on that particular day and feeding may take place outside of timetabled slots. All of our pupils in Leopard Class also rely on adults to meet their personal care needs. We have a number of mid-day supervisors who support in the changing of pupils from 11:15-12:15 daily; outside of these hours classroom staff complete this. Some Leopard Class pupils require regular medication which is also administered by the ‘complex care’ team with an additional member of staff to formally witness this. There are some pupils with emergency health care procedures and medication; in the event of any medical emergency, lessons may have to be temporarily suspended so that as many staff as possible can assist in ensuring all pupils’ health, safety and comfort. As soon as possible usual timetable will be restored to minimise any impact on learning.
In Leopard Class we always keep busy!!! Pupils have a lot to get through each day in order to adequately meet their physical, sensory, learning and health needs. We follow an adapted National Curriculum which is supplemented by a variety of therapeutic approaches. We have IEP targets, Individual Learning Objectives for core lessons and discrete subjects, as well as snack time and dinner time targets. In addition to this we are working on targets set by SLT, Physio, Occupational Therapists and Teachers of the Visually/Hearing Impaired. We don’t spend all of our time in Leopard classroom…we like to go outside when the weather is good, including ‘Forest School’ every other week; we use the ICT suite and library for some of our computing and English lessons and also complete therapy targets in the sensory and soft play rooms.
Visitors are welcome to our classroom; we make sure they check our important signs on the door and read our pupil profiles to keep everybody safe and comfortable!