Class sizes vary depending on the needs of the pupils within that class group and each class group is taught by a teacher supported by a regular class team of Teaching Assistants (T.A‘s). Additional T.A’s work within these regular class teams according to the needs of the pupils or the educational opportunities being offered through the timetable e.g. positioning needs, swimming / hydrotherapy, rebound therapy, intensive interaction and sensory integration work.
A team of H.L.T.A.’s and level 3 T.A.’s also provide extra support.
The classroom teams work closely with peripatetic teachers from the hearing impaired service and visual impaired service, the educational and clinical psychology services, the occupational therapy service, speech therapy service and the physiotherapy service. All these professionals are involved at Hilltop School on a varying timetable according to the needs of the pupils / school. A School Nurse supports the pupil’s medical needs most days. This team approach is vital for the successful all round development of our pupil’s. Members of the team maintain close contact with the pupil’s at school and will make contact with parents / carers regarding their child’s development.
Pupils are transported to school and home again either by taxi or mini – bus organized by the Local Authority unless parents wish to bring / take home their own children.
School meals are freshly cooked on the premises and the school cook is happy to provide meals for children on specialist diets e.g. gluten free, dairy free etc.
Individual Education Plans (I.E.P's)
All our pupils have Individual Education Plans with personalised targets set termly for each area of the Curriculum. These I.E.P. targets take steps towards yearly targets set in the annual review meeting with parents, carers and other professionals working with pupils. The targets are monitored and assessed each term.
Communication with parents / carers.
Parents / carers are invited into school for yearly / 6 monthly reviews, termly parents meetings and special events
e.g. concerts, sports day, annual medicals. Reviews are important meetings when we discuss achievements and progress made by your child over the past year, and set new targets for the coming year. Your contributions are of great value. Each pupil also has a home / school diary which goes daily between home and school for everyone to write in and for letters / information,dinner money,class fund etc. We use the diary to tell you about your child’s activities and achievements. Please read / check the diary each day. Please write back to us in the diary about what your child has been doing at home,new likes,dislikes,favourite activities etc. Sometimes it can be difficult to come to school / phone at arranged times and so we have an ‘ open house ‘ policy at Hilltop School to make parents / carers feel welcome at any time.
We also send home pupil information sheets / permission slips each year to gather in information about your child.
A regular newsletter goes out in the diaries to keep you informed of events in school. We organize fund raising events e.g. an Autumn Fayre,over the school year and any help / involvement with these events,no matter how small, is greatly appreciated. Over the years vital funds have been raised to help us improve the educational quality of provision offered to our pupils.
Just a few things to bear in mind.
If your child wears nappies we need you to supply them for use in school. You can either send a few in each day or a pack at a time [we will let you know when we need some more].
Because we encourage the children to be as independent as possible please make sure their school clothes are easy to manage e.g. jogging suits, T – shirts. Remember we encourage active learning and so clothes can get messy!
Class funds of £1-50p per week is a voluntary contribution but helps us to cover the costs of healthy snacks / baking in the classroom and any café costs on our inclusion trips out or at organised school cafés.
Most children have a weekly swimming session and we appreciate you sending in a bag containing their swimming costume, swimming nappy and towel each week.
Transition between classes, into the upper department and from other schools
These are an important time for every child. At Hilltop school we personalise transition to help our children to successfully manage these changes. Staff pass on information between classes and children visit their new class base to familiarise themselves with the new environment and new staff. The annual review and transition meeting also aids a smooth transition. Again personalised transition programmes are developed for children transferring from other schools.