The Middle Department
Our mission statement is “Learning Together” as we believe that our pupils and adults learn best when sharing fully with each other. We believe that together we will achieve success to “Remove Obstacles and Enable Access to Learning”
Pupils in the Middle Department follow either an ‘Informal’, ‘Semi-formal’ or ‘Formal’ Curriculum. Each of these curriculum focuses on learning through experience as well as maintaining more traditional school based learning.
Classes in the Middle Department are primarily based in one room with highly skilled class teachers and learning support workers. Some pupils in the Middle Department may be taught a few lessons by different teachers in a variety of different rooms and settings; these may include English, Maths, PE or Food Technology lessons. Lessons last for approximately one hour, broken up into a number of short activities to maintain pupils’ interests and meet their learning needs. Objectives and outcomes are based on the The Milestone School Curriculum Framework and from a variety of schemes of work that best suite individual pupil’s needs. In addition to this, different activities may be offered to support pupils, for example Mobility, A Sensory Curriculum, the Social Use of Language Programme and Hydrotherapy. Life Skills are also a focus in the Middle Department and pupils are provided with opportunities to develop these in the community. Pupils in the Middle Department spend their playtimes on the Playground and are supported by ‘Playmakers’ and members of their class staff team.
Pupils moving into the Middle Department from the Foundation Department Hub begin their transition by spending an afternoon with their new class and teacher. In the Summer Term they are invited to join the Middle Department assemblies.
When pupils are ready, they begin to prepare for transition to the Senior Department. In the Summer Term pupils visit their new Department and will be shown around by the Head of the Department.
At the Milestone School we understand transition is different for each pupil and we will arrange appropriate activities to help support the needs of individual pupils.
Extra Curricular Activities
To make learning as much fun as possible we plan a number of Department events and extra-curricular activities during the year. These may include:
- Topic Launch Days – This is an opportunity for the pupils to take part in an exciting experience related to our topic that supports their engagement and enthusiasm.
- Global Awareness Week – This is a chance for pupils to learn about other countries and/or cultures. Pupils may listen to music, cook food or learn some of the language of another country.
- Sports events – Pupils have access to sports events and tournaments off-site. Additional coaching is available at times during the year for some pupils.
- Trips and Residential trips – Classes try to incorporate at least one educational trip per half term. Some classes arrange a residential week in the summer term.
- Horse riding – Riding for the disabled (RDA) sessions are available for some pupils in the Department.
- Swimming – Swimming sessions are available with some pupils accessing the school Hydrotherapy pool and some pupils accessing GL1.
- Experience Harvest, Christmas and Easter – Pupils have the opportunity three times a year to visit a local Church and take part in a variety of Festival themed activities.
- ‘Rotary Kids Out’ – We are extremely lucky that the ‘Rotary Club’ give the whole Department the opportunity every year to access a local ‘Fun Park’ attraction. All of our pupils get unlimited access to an attraction with other Special School pupils. This gives them a stress free, fun experience and the opportunity to socialise with pupils from other schools.
The pupils and staff of the Middle Department meet together twice a week for an assembly. For one assembly the classes prepare a short presentation on a theme and for the other assembly the pupils watch an episode of ‘Middle Department Milestone TV’, our very own TV channel made by the children about daily life in the school and school events. On occasions throughout the year whole school assemblies are held, these are opportunities to celebrate achievements and special occasions such as Red Nose Day and Children in Need. Assemblies provide opportunities for pupils to learn and socialise with pupils across the Department.
Assessment and Reporting to Parents
Teachers continually assess pupils’ work and set appropriate individual targets. Where possible pupils are encouraged to help in setting their own targets.As part of EHCP meetings,annual outcomes for the pupils will be agreed by teachers in consultation with other involved professionals, parents and where appropriate the pupil.
Two Parents’ Evenings are held during the year at which teachers and parents can discuss how well pupils are getting on at school, look at curriculum reports and review targets. A ‘Transition Evening’ is held in the Summer Term at which parents can meet with the new staff their child will be working with in September.
Parents are welcome to contact staff at any time to discuss progress. Each pupil has a home/school book so that daily events and news can be shared.
Each pupil will have an EHCP meeting during the year. Where appropriate, pupils are encouraged to attend to talk about what helps them in school and talk about their outcomes for the next year.
Please do not hesitate to contact the school if you have any questions or would like any further information.