Springwell Learning Community is commissioned to provide the Borough’s Behaviour Support Service which includes EOTAS (Education Other Than At School).
EOTAS provides interim learning support (within available resources) for pupils who are unable to access learning at their registered school for longer than 15 days because they:
- Have a serious medical condition, which usually involves on-going hospital treatment;
- Are anxious, phobic, depressed, disengaged, school-refusers, and need access to 1:1 or small group emotional and/or social support;
- 1:1 support to help aid a successful reintegration back into mainstream settings;
- Are pregnant (Teenage Mums).
Tuition usually takes place in the home or other risk-assessed public buildings such as libraries. It can also take place in schools as part of a re-integration package. “Teenage Mums” are educated within Highfields PRU on site at Penistone Grammar ALC.
Pupils eligible for EOTAS support receive a minimum entitlement of 5 hours per week which, if capacity allows and is appropriate to need, should be increased to enable a pupil to keep up with their studies – in particular when a pupil is approaching public examinations.
The referral process must come through the school at which the pupil is on roll, involve the consent of parents/carers and be supported in writing by a medical practitioner, e.g. GP, Consultant, Key Worker at school (mainstream settings). Referral forms must be signed by a member of SLT. Referrals must include as much background information on pupil, current and past attainment / levels, any other agencies involved with child and family. Referrals will be returned/held in abeyance if the above is absent.
All referrals are discussed at a weekly EOTAS management meeting. When a new referral is accepted, an appropriate tutor is assigned and he/she will carry out an Initial Home VISIT (IHV) with a representative of the EOTAS management team to meet the pupil, parents/carers, risk-assess the home and arrange a suitable 5 hour timetable. This will be followed by liaison with the pupil’s school to obtain suitable learning materials and tuition commences. The pupil, parents, school and tutor review progress at regular progress review meetings. Re-integration takes place once the pupil is able to safely access learning back in the registered school.
At all times during the provision of EOTAS learning support, the pupil remains the responsibility of the referring school at which the pupil is on roll.
Existing EOTAS policy and practice is outlined in: “EOTAS: Access to education for pupils with medical needs – advice for families regarding social care and links to other services (March 2011)”
The role of schools in supporting pupils who are likely to access EOTAS provision:
All schools require:
Written policy and procedures for dealing with the education of pupils with medical needs which may stand alone or be incorporated into the schools overall Inclusion Policy;
A nominated governor responsible for reviewing the procedures that apply to educating children and young people with medical needs;
A named member of SLT required to:
- Oversee the school’s provision for its pupils who are accessing EOTAS learning support and ensure Key Workers (below) fulfill their responsibilities:
- Act as a gatekeeper by ensuring all referrals have been sanctioned and signed by SLT;
A “Key Worker” – likely to be a pastoral lead / SENCO – for each case as required, to:
- Aid communication with other parties, e.g. Hospital Teaching Services, CAMHS;
- Ensure that a Personal Educational Plan/ Care Plan is in place for pupils likely to be absent for more than 15 days;;
- Ensure that curriculum and lesson plans, learning resources, are provided to the pupil/EOTAS tutor as promptly as possible to ensure continuity in learning;
- Facilitate on-going communication between the pupil, parents/carers and the school and with peers, and ensure that pupils are kept informed about school social events and are able to participate in school activities as much as is reasonably possible;
- Arrange progress review meetings at a suitable venue (ideally referring school);
- Ensure that pupils who are unable to attend school because of medical needs have access to public examinations;
- Arrange re-integration meetings at a suitable venue (ideally referring school);
- Ensure that re-integration processes and procedures best meet the needs of the pupil.
“PGS Highfields” is a specialist and limited capacity PRU unit for anxious and phobic pupils – schools cannot refer to Highfields directly. Schools with a possible anxious and phobic pupil must refer to EOTAS in the first instance – following which our staff will assess whether the pupil meets the criteria for a Highfields place, which must be supported by a diagnosis from CAMHS.
Key underpinning legislation:
Section 19 of the Education Act 1996: “Each local education authority shall make arrangements for the provision of suitable education at school or otherwise than at school for those children of compulsory school age who, by reason of illness, exclusion from school or otherwise, may not for any period receive suitable education unless such arrangements are made for them.”
Springwell Learning Community
St Helen’s Boulevard