1:52 pm, Wednesday, 31st March 2021

Transition to Secondary- Tom’s story

“Every child is different and has their own unique strengths and qualities that we want to nurture in school.”

Tom has autism. Read about how his confidence grew thoughout his Secondary school transition with the help and support of the local Specialist Advisory Service.

There are a lot of positive things for children to look forward to when moving up to Secondary school.

A little support goes a long way to help children learn from new experiences.

The Specialist Advisory Service is a small team of advisory teachers who provide training, advice, support, assessment, observation and guidance to schools, academies, and families, on meeting the needs of children and young people with severe and complex difficulties, in the areas of communication & interaction, cognition & learning, and social, emotional & mental health.

One of North East Lincolnshire Council’s Specialist Advisory Teachers said: “I delivered training to school staff named ‘How to support the autistic child in the classroom’.

“This was focused on Thomas and his wants, needs and strengths.

“I also offered a detailed transition report which included details like details of his strengths and needs academically, socially, and emotionally.

“Every child is different and has their own unique strengths and qualities that we want to nurture in school.

“That’s why it helps to make sure everyone has the same understanding and knowledge about autism and the child.

“It helps the child feel more comfortable and reassured that staff will support them when required.

“It also helps staff identify attitudes and behaviours correctly.

She added: “I heard back from the school after Thomas had been there for a term.

“The staff felt they knew him and his needs better and wanted the opportunity to discuss how to  meet his needs in different situations.”

“Throughout his time at the secondary school, staff have been very quick to contact me whenever they needed help to meet his needs and to then put the support in place.

The support of the Specialist Advisory Team, their work with Thomas and ongoing work with his school has produced positive results.

“Thomas is now in Year 11. He is communcaites well and can manage his feelings in a positive way. He is looking forward to going to college.”

The Advisory Teacher also credits the ‘tremendous support’ of the school SENCo and wider team in supporting Thomas to do so well.

*Names have been changed in this article