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Welcome Guide

ife l r o l f a g n n o i i t n a r Lea rough inspir ucation th ed


Welcome to

Beechwood College

Contents

It gives us great pleasure to welcome you to our unique College for young people.

Welcome and Useful Numbers

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Staff Team

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Life at Beechwood College

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Term Dates, Consultation Evenings, Awards Day, Review Meetings

Campus

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Visiting and Transport

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Holidays during Term Time

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Religious Requirements

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Meal Options

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Activities

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What We Provide

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What You Need To Bring

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Medical and Dental Information

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Restrictions

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Restrictive Practices and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards

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Electoral Roll

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At Beechwood College we are passionate that young people must be supported and encouraged to achieve their full potential in pursuit of their individual goals and aspirations. We devote our energy every day, to every student, to deliver an inclusive learning environment that provides a wide range of experiences, regardless of ability, to prepare them for later life. Beechwood College is a special place where the staff team provides a stimulating, proactive and structured environment and where students are supported to become equipped with the skills required to function within a complex and ever-changing world. Our culture is one of empowerment through inspirational education. There is a vibrant and creative energy here and we are proud to welcome more and more students to the college each year. Social and emotional wellbeing is high on our list of priorities. A college environment can be exciting but also daunting, especially for many students away from home for the first time. The transition period into Beechwood College is important, it is the starting point on the journey towards greater emotional maturity, stability and inclusion. We hope you find this Welcome Pack both informative and useful. Further information including our Statement of Purpose and Service User Guide can be found on our website at www.beechwoodcollege.co.uk

Useful Numbers

The main contact number for Beechwood College is 029 2053 2210, from which you may request to be connected to Home Managers, Lecturers, Clinicians, our Admin Team or any other desired department. In an emergency, Residential Homes can be contacted on:

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Holly Home

029 2053 2227

Laurel Home

029 2053 2222

Hazel Home

029 2053 2256

Rowan Home

029 2053 2223

Cedar Home

029 2053 2224

Oak Home

029 2053 2261

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Staff Team Strategic Leadership Team The entire team of professionals at Beechwood College is fully supported by our Strategic Leadership Team, who are on hand both day and night to provide advice and support to students and staff. Our Strategic Leadership Team includes our Director of Service, Principal, Clinical Lead and General Manager. Education Team Our Principal and team of lecturers offer a wide range of teaching styles so that learning potential can be maximised to achieve a level of individual success. Each student that attends the College is allocated a lecturer who will act as their link tutor. The link tutors provides specific educational support to enable students to access learning opportunities across the College day whilst also providing pastoral care and support where appropriate. The link tutors are responsible for reporting upon each student’s educational progress across the year and creating supportive Individual Learning Plans (ILPs) which set out clear objectives for attainment. The lecturers work Monday to Friday during College term times and in close partnership with the home managers and clinicians, working towards agreed improvement plans for all students. Home Managers Each of the residential homes here at Beechwood College has an allocated home manager whose primary responsibility is overseeing the day-to-day running of the home. This involves ensuring that the highest quality of service is provided for our students through implementation and development of their person-centred Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) plans, Care and Treatment plans and that staff in the home are encouraging and supporting students to achieve and exceed their full potential.

Key Worker The main role of the key worker is to understand, promote and achieve the highest possible quality of life for the student they support. A key worker will understand the needs of individuals on the autism spectrum and will have an understanding of autism and how it affects the daily routines of our students. If applicable, they will also have an understanding of the student’s other needs and disabilities, for example epilepsy. As part of the residential team, the key worker will welcome the student on admission and provide for their physical and emotional care during their stay with us. At the end of the student’s time at the College the key worker will assist in their transition back home or to another service. Working with the rest of the team at Beechwood College your key worker will promote the structure and routines developed for their student, identifying and assisting them in their personal care routines, and in the routines of the home; understanding how to communicate with them, and promoting choice, dignity and respect at all times. They will support their student in the community, accompanying them when shopping for items such as clothing, toiletries and other such necessities of life, as well as promoting social opportunities. The key worker will arrange for their student to attend all healthcare appointments, such as medical, dental and hospital, accompany them, if required, and will clearly record and bring back to the College all information gained from the healthcare specialist. The key worker will also support the student in managing their personal money accounts, supporting effective budgeting. Your key worker is your liaison point between you and the college and they will attend appropriate meetings such as reviews and MDTs. They will help you to decide on how information is communicated to you on a regular basis and in what format. It might be by a weekly phone call or email for example.

Home managers attend and oversee meetings such as reviews, transition and Multi-Disciplinary Team Meetings (MDT’s), ensuring the students’ needs are at the forefront of decision-making, whilst also ensuring the quality of the service being delivered meets and exceeds the standards of our regulatory bodies. Lead Professional Students are allocated a lead professional who is responsible for overseeing their support package and acting as their primary link person.

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Life at Beechwood College

Campus

Term Dates Please see our website for up to date term dates. Consultation Evenings Consultation evenings are held at intervals through the academic year, providing you with the opportunity to meet with the education, clinical and residential teams (where applicable) working with the student to see some of the work that they have completed and celebrate how well their academic year is going. Awards Day At the end of the academic year we host an awards day to recognise the progress and achievements of our students. We encourage families to attend and be a part of this special day. Review Meetings We recognise that the first few months can be a stressful and difficult time for both and students and their families. At the end of the first three months we hold an initial review meeting to discuss progress and achievements and agree future plans. In attendance at this meeting will be representatives from the education, clinical and residential teams who will each have prepared a detailed report. Parents and associated external parties such as social workers, careers officers or members of the Local Health Board may also be invited. Following this initial review meeting, annual reviews are held where we will discuss progress; unless more frequent meetings are considered necessary.  

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Visiting and Transport When/how often? Family and friends are encouraged to visit but, given the needs of other students, it is preferred if these visits can be offsite where possible. Arrangements for visiting students at the College can be facilitated and should be made through a student’s key worker in advance, to minimise clashes with other arranged activities. We also request that visits are arranged outside of College hours to minimise the impact on students’ education attendance. Parking at the College The College has a car park that families and friends are welcome to use when visiting. This is accessed through an intercom at the main gates. Upon arrival please use the intercom to inform reception who you are and who you are visiting. Please be mindful that the car park is centrally located within the College campus and can become extremely busy at times. It is important to note that Beechwood College does not accept liability of any kind for damage caused to vehicles parked in our car parks. Does the College provide transport to collect/return students? The College will provide transport to access local community facilities in the course of the students’ educational day and during recreational hours for those students who have a residential placement. Day Students The College day starts at 9.00am and ends at 3.30pm, therefore all day students should be present between these times unless their absence has been formally requested and agreed by the Principal. Weekly Boarding Residential Students These students reside at the college from Monday to Friday and attend all educational sessions across the week, with residential activities taking place in the evenings. Weekly boarders return home at the end of the College day on a Friday and return for the start of the College week on Monday morning.

Full Boarding Residential Students These students attend the College during all academic terms and participate in educational sessions Monday to Friday. These students reside at the College for 52 weeks of the year and are supported to participate in a wide range of activities during evenings and weekends, including the 14 weeks of holiday time. Where appropriate, home visits are always an option for these students, however an agreement must be reached between all parties prior to visits being arranged. Visiting during Educational Sessions We understand that most parents will wish to have some involvement in their son or daughter’s education and look forward to receiving information on progress made during the College year. In line with many mainstream educational establishments we welcome involvement and arrange consultation evenings when you will be invited to attend and discuss all aspects of their education, residential care and clinical input with our staff. At the same time, we often hold exhibitions of work completed by our students which can be viewed. We are unable to allow visits to observe your son or daughter within the classroom itself.

Holidays During Term Time In common with other establishments regulated by Estyn (the education and training inspectorate for Wales) we are obliged to monitor attendance and report back to the authority at set intervals. A high level of attendance enables students to progress in their learning and independence. We therefore seek the assistance of families to help keep absences to a minimum between Mondays and Fridays. At Beechwood College we appreciate that there will always be a special holiday or family event that sometimes occurs during the educational week, and ask that either the Principal or her Deputy are approached well in advance to discuss the requested period of absence and to agree arrangements due to the technicalities of the placement agreements. This is particularly applicable in relation to holidays where failure to do this may result in funding queries being raised at a later date with the agencies and/ or education body paying for the placement.

Term-time only Boarding Residential Students These students reside at the College during all academic terms (38 weeks per year) and attend educational sessions Monday to Friday, with residential activities taking place during evenings and weekends. Students return home on the last day of term and return for the start of the new College term. Bespoke Package Boarding Residential Students These students attend the college during all academic terms and participate in educational sessions Monday to Friday, with residential activities taking place during the evenings and weekends, that they are funded to be with us.

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Religious Requirements

Activities

As a College it is our aim to support every student in our care to continue to follow their preferred beliefs.

Students are given the opportunity to visit a variety of places within the local community throughout the College week. In addition to the community activities that take place within the education day, developed with their Key Worker, all students will also have an individual evening and weekend curriculum that will include a variety of leisure activities and opportunities to develop independent living skills. Places visited regularly as part of both education and residential timetables include: • Local Leisure Centres (including Barry, Penarth and Cardiff International) – for swimming, gym use and activity rental

Meal Options The College has an on-site catering department overseen by a head chef. We support the students to choose their own meals through written and/or picture menus, showing exactly what the prepared meal will consist of. Each day the students are offered a choice of lunch options that include sandwiches, bagels and salads with a variety of different fillings. We also offer hot lunch options such as jacket potatoes, and pasta dishes. For the evening meals the students are once again offered a choice of options, allowing students to know exactly what is available to them. All meals are healthy, nutritious and freshly prepared by our on-site catering team. The menu is also overseen by our dietician and catering manager to ensure it meets their needs. We are also able to meet specific dietary needs as we understand that many of our students may have intolerances, allergies, religious needs and simple preferences. Please ensure that this information is shared with us should there be any specific needs. In addition to the meals provided by our catering department, we also offer opportunities for students to prepare meals for themselves both during their education day and within their homes; supporting students to develop their independent living skills.

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• Rebounders Cardiff (trampolining) • Local supermarkets for weekly shopping tasks • Boulders Indoor Climbing Centre • Hebron Hall – for swimming and sports hall access • Pedal Power Cardiff (outdoor cycling) • Touch Trust – Wales Millennium Centre • Local parks and conservation areas – for example Porthkerry, Cosmeston, Cog Moors • Local Beaches – Sully, Penarth and Barry Island • Local Cafes • Cinemas During the College holidays and some weekends we are also able to offer larger activities and visits to places further away, recently we have facilitated trips to: • Sports venues such as Cardiff City Stadium and Sofia Gardens • Pantomimes and musicals such as ‘Shrek the Musical’ • Skiing and ice skating We always strive to find and access new activities that meet the individual interests of our students.

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What We Provide

What You Need

Homeware • Pillows • Single or double quilts • Single or double quilt covers and pillowcases (although students are welcome to bring their own bedding to make their room more personalised) • Single or double fitted sheets • Kylie sheets (mattress protector) if required • Towels - All bath towels are colour coded for each home to ensure these are not mixed up • Laundry tubs or laundry bags • Curtains

Clothing Dress at Beechwood College is relaxed and is much the same as any mainstream College so style is very much a personal preference. However, we would ask you to consider what fastenings garments have in relation to the individual’s skill in dressing as we encourage all students to be as independent as possible. Clothing should cover normal activities of education and recreation and be reasonably varied to cope with the vagaries of the UK weather. Each item, including underwear should be clearly labelled, preferably using the sewn in variety of label. If the student suffers any level of incontinence a larger quantity of underwear/ sleepwear than usual should be provided.

Laundry Service Students each have a laundry bag and each day and these bags are collected at regular intervals every day from the individual homes around the College. The clothes from one home are washed separately from another home, although we are unable to wash each student’s clothes separately from another student’s. They are then brought back to students’ rooms on the same day. Because we are unable to wash clothes separately, it is important that all items of clothing are labelled with the student’s name to ensure they can be returned promptly after washing (this also includes underwear). Unfortunately, we have discovered that laundry markers generally do not last through many washes which is why sewn in labels are preferable. Furniture The College will provide the following standard items of furniture in all bedrooms: • Single bed • A wardrobe • A chest of drawers • A bedside table (lockable if required) • A sink with hot and cold water • One or two chairs (if required) The College will also provide more individualised furniture options if required. This may include items such as lockable TV cabinets, double beds, alternative seating, a desk/work area or blinds. These options will be discussed fully during a student’s transition meeting, prior to moving into the College. We encourage all of our students to individualise and personalise their bedrooms.

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In addition, our students also participate in activities such as swimming, walking, and bike riding; so the following items are essential if they are to be involved in any of these activities: • Swimwear • Wellingtons and/or stout water resistant boots • Waterproofs and/or a good weather resistant coat We do provide a number of coat hangers, if the individual is bringing a large quantity of clothing with them we would appreciate it if they could also bring additional coat hangers as well. Money Parents provide pocket money to students for snacks and small personal care items. Our office manager liaises with our finance team who set up and manage individual personal accounts for each student. Expenditure is audited and monitored. Pocket money can be provided in the form of a cheque or cash, or a BACS transfer can be arranged. Toiletries and Items of Personal Care The College does not provide toiletries or items of personal care (except those that are essential to meet personal hygiene needs such as incontinence pads, wet wipes, etc.). The expectation is that students will bring an initial quantity with them, after which they will be supported to access the community to purchase more. Parents/carers should provide sufficient funds to cover this cost.

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TVs/DVD Players We have communal lounges in each home which are equipped with TVs and DVD Players, however, we can accommodate additional electrical goods such as personal TVs/DVD players and games consoles being installed within the student’s own room. All electrical items will need to be risk assessed and PAT tested before use by a member of our maintenance team, and there may be a delay of approximately 48 hours before this occurs if the student arrives over a weekend. If a student chooses to have a personal TV in their bedroom, then there will be a small TV licence fee of around £13 per annum. Personal Computers/iPads/Laptops Throughout the College, communal PCs with restricted internet access (see restrictions) are available for use by all students. We also have a student Wi-Fi network that personal devices can be connected to, again with restricted internet access. Connections to this Wi-Fi network are overseen by our IT department and there may be a delay of approximately 48 hours for an IT technician to connect devices to the network. Inventory Prior to admission, parents and students are required to complete a full inventory of possessions. An inventory of student belongings will also be completed at regular intervals by residential staff. Insurance of Personal Items It is important to note that Beechwood College does not accept liability for any kind for items brought into the College, particularly those of any value. We recommend therefore that you consult with your insurance provider who will be able to advise you on the type and level of cover you will need. Storage space at the College is limited to the student’s own bedroom, so please bear this is mind when considering how much to bring.

Medical and Dental Information GP Services The College has agreements with two local GP surgeries in Barry to provide us with an enhanced service to meet the healthcare needs of our students. Within this agreement, each surgery holds a monthly ‘clinic’ here at the College where students can be seen in an environment that they feel comfortable in. In addition to this, all of our students will receive an annual health check as part of this enhanced service. So that we can effectively meet the healthcare needs of our students, all residential students are required to be registered with one of the two surgeries that we use, The Practice of Health Surgery or Highlight Park Medical Practice. Homely Remedies Due to the strict legislation around the safe administration of medications that we must adhere to, we can only administer medications that have been prescribed by a GP or consultant. The only exceptions to this are the following medications, which have been agreed under our Homely Remedy Policy and their use would be agreed for each individual student during their new patient check with our GP: • Simple Linctus – for dry, irritating coughs • Maalox – antacid mixture for indigestion and heartburn • Senna – for constipation • Dioralyte – for use during diarrhoea • E45 or Sudocrem – for mild dry skin conditions • Paracetamol – for mild pain relief The use of any other medications, including over-the-counter medications, would need to be agreed in writing with a GP before we are able to administer them. Dentist If required, the College will register students with a local NHS dentist to oversee their dental care and support students to attend all appointments. If going to the dentist is particularly stressful, we can also arrange with the local NHS service for a dentist to visit the College, with a long-term goal of building confidence towards attending future appointments. Alternatively, due to the anxiety that visiting the dentist can cause, some students choose to remain with their current and familiar dentist and attend appointments during College holidays.

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Opticians There are a number of local optician services that we use both in Barry and Penarth and again, we will support students to attend all required appointments. If going to the opticians can be stressful, we can also arrange for an optician to visit the College.

Restrictions For safety reasons, we have a number of items that should not be brought into the College, these include: • Strong ropes, cords • Alcohol/illicit drugs • Weapons or potential weapons including knives/sharp instruments and tools • Any other sharp or dangerous implement • Solvents/glue/chemicals including bleaches • Glass objects • Lighter fuel/lighter gas Other items are restricted according to the age and mental capacity of the student and these include: • Computer games, particularly war games or violent games • DVDs • Pornography Cameras, iPads and other recording devices are allowed, however students are not permitted to take pictures or record any other students or staff members for reasons of privacy. All items brought into the College will be risk assessed as suitable for use on an individual basis. Internet Restrictions The College PCs and the student Wi-Fi network have strict restrictions, to ensure that students remain safe online and are only accessing appropriate content. Due to this, access to social networks and adult content are blocked.

Restrictive Practices and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards Restrictive Practices: What are they? When we talk about restrictive practices, we are referring to any type of support or practice that limits the rights or freedom of movement of a person who lacks capacity. Restrictive practices are never authorised if it is likely to lead to avoidable pain/injury or to enforce rules, punish or as a substitute for a lack of resources to support someone effectively. Examples of restrictive practices include: the use of PRN medication, locked doors/ cupboards, restricted access to areas of the College and certain food and drinks. Restrictive practices will always take into consideration the individual’s capacity and will be outlined within each student’s individually-designed PBS plan. These restrictive practices will be regularly reviewed during a student’s MDT meeting with the ongoing goal of minimising the use of restrictive practices. On an organisational level, restrictive practices are regularly monitored and reviewed through our monthly governance meetings. We have an organisationwide Restrictive Practice Reduction Strategy in place which sets targets to minimise the use of restrictive practices across the College. As part of our ongoing monitoring of restrictive practices, we may need to apply for an external authorisation for some students, this is known as Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS). Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) In April 2009, DoLS came into force. This is a process under the Mental Capacity Act where people who lack the capacity to consent to restrictions in their care are externally assessed and authorised through the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards procedures. There is no formal definition of what a deprivation of liberty is but, simply put, if we wish to put restrictions in place to keep a student safe, then we need to do so under legislation. This is effectively a safeguard to ensure that what we are doing is acceptable and the least restrictive way in which to ensure a student’s safety. Due to a 2014 Supreme Court ruling, there will be a Deprivation of Liberty if ‘a person is under continuous supervision and control and is not free to leave, and the person lacks capacity to consent to these arrangements’. Due to this ruling, we will be required to request an external authorisation, for all students that meet this criteria.

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As part of the DoLS application process, we will keep parents/guardians informed throughout the application process and you will be contacted by the Independent Assessor to ensure your input is considered as part of the process. If appropriate, an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate (IMCA) may also be allocated to help gain the views of the student. Restrictions that may affect all students Due to the varying needs of the students we support, it is necessary to have certain restrictions in place that will affect all students; wherever possible we will explore ways to minimise their impact on individuals. These restrictions include: • Electronic Fob doors – Throughout the College we have an electronic fob system to ensure the safety of all our residents. Where appropriate, we will individually risk-assess students to have their own limited access fobs to help increase independence. • Locks on communal storage areas, such as kitchen cupboards and bathroom storage areas • Restricted internet access These types of restrictions will also be included within a student’s DOLs application and will be reviewed at each MDT. Physical Restrictive Interventions As part of each student’s individually designed PBS plan, it may be necessary to include the risk-assessed use of physical restrictive interventions for use as a last resort. This type of restriction won’t be necessary for all students here at the College, but will be considered and evaluated as part of the assessment process. If the use of physical interventions are deemed appropriate, the use of these will be reviewed through incident form analysis and discussed at every multi-disciplinary meeting.

Electoral Roll The College is in dialogue with a representative from the Vale of Glamorgan Council, our Local Authority, regarding the importance of being included on the Electoral Roll for this area. Aside from being able to vote, registration offers other benefits that could be of help once students are ready for more independent living. The Council has a duty to provide every individual, who is resident within the Vale of Glamorgan, with the opportunity to register to be on the Electoral Register despite any illness or disability they may have. This includes students aged eighteen or over at Beechwood College. For our students, being on the Vale of Glamorgan Electoral Register also has the following benefits: • Proof of address and length of residence within the Vale of Glamorgan • Proof of identity • Proof of residence at an educational establishment • Building a credit record to use in future independent living. Students with capacity are encouraged to register to be on the Electoral Roll themselves, and the College will fill out the registration for all other students. Information we need from you at the Admission When your son or daughter is admitted to the College, we will need you to complete the following documents which are attached to this Welcome Guide: • Medical questionnaire • Contraindications checklist Could you please return these at your earliest convenience.

Physical restrictive interventions will only ever be carried out as a last resort, when all other non-restrictive interventions have failed, and these will only be used for the shortest time period possible.

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h g u o r h t e . f i n l o i r t o a f c g u d n i e n l r a a n o Le i t a r inspi

Beechwood College is a specialist day and residential service for young people over the age of 16 with an Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC). We believe that each young person makes a personal and valuable contribution to the college community and we make sure that students are respected for who they are and what they do.

Beechwood College Hayes Road, Sully, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, CF64 5SE t: 029 2053 2210 e: enquiries@beechwoodcollege.co.uk www.beechwoodcollege.co.uk

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Beechwood College Welcome Guide  

Everything a new student needs to know about Beechwood College in one handy guide.

Beechwood College Welcome Guide  

Everything a new student needs to know about Beechwood College in one handy guide.

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