The Excel Base – Enhanced Resource Provision for Children with Autism
The Excel Centre is an Enhanced Resource Provision (ERP) for children with autism. Children who are agreed to be admitted to the provision must be in receipt of a statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) or and Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP). The Excel provision is run jointly between the school, Autism Outreach, the Special Educational Needs Assessment (SENA) service and the Leicestershire Local Authority (LA). Therefore, admission to the provision is a joint decision between those parties. The Local Authority and school will only admit children who reside in Leicestershire and there will only be two places available for any one year group.
The Excel provision is based on the campus of Wigston Academy (Site A) and Wigston College. It provides specialist support for both boys and girls aged 11 to 19 years (years 7 – 13), with significant, complex and high-functioning autism, but of mainstream ability, who require highly specialised and individual arrangements which cannot be practicably or reasonably put in place by a mainstream school and who may also have challenging behaviour as a result of their communication difficulties and a lack of social understanding. Transfer between the school and the college is expected and, having received a place, students will remain part of the Excel provision throughout secondary school, and college (if they select the college as their preferred post 16 destination).
Students are taught curriculum subjects in mainstream lessons appropriate to their age, but also access Excel for additional lessons. Here pupils take part in group and individual lessons, based on their individual needs. Each young person is viewed as an individual with, specific needs. Their individuality is encouraged, as is their independence. All students are challenged to learn, aspire and achieve alongside their mainstream peers, in order reach their full potential. Due to this, lessons in Excel have been developed to foster their independence, social interaction skills, social communication skills, life skills and emotional literacy of each student. Excel is also available for homework, coursework, examinations and assessment, and any other time when students are unable to access the mainstream school or college.
At Wigston Academy, we recognise the needs of each individual and endeavour to ensure that the learning opportunities provided for them, and the targets set, reflect and address these needs. Consequently, each student has individualised targets and plans. These are regularly reviewed to ensure their needs are being met and that they continually progress. Programmes and timetables are student centred and designed for individual students, so they have significant differences to those of a mainstream timetable. Access to mainstream lessons in school is dependent on the student’s ability to cope with the demands of the subject or environment, so we are able to adapt timetables according to student’s needs. We aim to provide a mainstream experience, with autism specific support, in order to reduce anxiety. However, we also provide firm expectations and clear boundaries for our students.
Students are expected to wear the appropriate school uniform and the target for all is to access between 60 – 80% of the mainstream curriculum. This includes most students having time in school to complete homework, as this is a specific area of difficulty for students with autism who like to have clearly defined boundaries between school and often struggle to complete school work at home.
All students are supported throughout their school day by a Teaching Assistant and consistency of staffing helps to allow continuity and security. However, all students work with at least two staff to avoid issues around dependence.
If you wish to enquire about places available, discuss admission or arrange a visit to the provision, please contact Mr Paul or Mrs Gathercole.