Preparation for Adulthood

The areas that form Preparation for Adulthood are nationally agreed and should support all schools to plan ambitious and appropriate transition into adulthood for all learners. In our recent Ofsted (October 2023) this was commented:

“ Preparing pupils for adulthood starts from day one. Encouraging pupils’ independence and ability to make choices is deeply embedded in the school.”

This is true, and our aim is to give each and every child as much control in the world as we can. However we recognise the changes and priorities that emerge as our learners get older and families look at life options beyond school.

In the Rosewood Way Section of the website, we share how we use the Annual Review Process to support families at all stages and key transitions.  When learners move into or join the Hub, our Post 16 classes (and for those who are able to transition to ”The Avenues”, a post 19 day service with an education offer), we recognise a need for an even more bespoke and individualised approach to planning.

Throughout the whole of the school, Hub and Avenues, all our work is underpinned by fine detailed assessment using our own researched approach: ImPACTS. For younger learners we have balanced the curriculum offer into prioritising ten key objectives that are set at each Annual Review, in the ImPACTS Key Skill areas:

3 Communication
2 Cognitive
1 Environmental control
1 Gross motor
1 Fine Motor
1 Wellbeing (self-advocacy)
1 Self Help

When learners reach 16 we begin to plan under the Preparation for Adulthood (PfA) areas so we can prioritise the learning with an adult destination in mind.

For example, we may decide with a family that communication is the main priority, previous evidence may show the learner has peaked in their physical development, so instead of 3 Communication we may set 4 or 5 targets and develop more of a maintenance programme for physical health. Conversely, we also know that many of our older learners physical health can change as they move through school and we may set 3 or 4 targets in physicality and reduce communication if we already have established an effective mode of communication lower in the school.

The areas named in Preparation for Adulthood do sound a little daunting so we have added our own interpretations, supported by the work undertaken by NDTI (National Development Team for Inclusion) and their identification of Universal, Targeted and Specialist levels of PfA. The Hub and Avenues would come under the Specialist offer.

Throughout the school we use an integrated approach to education and health. We are very aware of the impact the physical and emotional health of all children and young people can have on their access to learning and the wider world.  Supporting our learners and their families to access adult health services and the changes of professionals now involved is a key area. We also want to ensure that we are teaching our learners how to make health choices wherever possible and begin to explain consequences.

To ensure this is relevant to the continued needs of our learners with PMLD we link health to the ImPACTS Key Skill: GROSS MOTOR

We do encourage our older learners to participate in activities that help others and are also routine bound. We know that for the majority of our learners, employment is not a realistic destination but we embrace all opportunities (linked with Community Inclusion) to visit, actively participate and invite in a range of people from the world of work.

To ensure this is PMLD relevant we link employment to the ImPACTS Key Skills of: Cognitive Skills and Environmental Control

This is a really important aspect of the Hub and the Avenues curriculum and provides all learners with the opportunities to apply their skills in functional settings. It is also an important way to look at accessibility as an adult and to help promote inclusion in the wider society.

To ensure this is PMLD relevant we link employment to the ImPACTS Key Skills of: Communication, Self Advocacy and RSE

We are very aware that the notion of independence is not a realistic destination due to the complex health and physical needs of our learners so we look at how we reduce dependency and learn to control other adults. We do want all our learners to be as active in the day to day living tasks and promote active participation throughout the day. We also work with families to signpost potential alternatives to living at home.

To ensure this is PMLD relevant we link employment to the ImPACTS Key Skills of: Self Help and Fine Motor