Newbury Manor School is proud to offer a range of on-site therapy for our students. Our highly experienced therapy team of both in-house staff and visiting professionals includes:
- Speech and Language Therapist
- Occupational Therapist (Currently actively seeking a new OT)
- Music therapist
- Literary specialist
A toolkit approach
At the core of our input Newbury Manor School uses the principle “Connect before Correct.” All therapists and staff work hard to develop a strong relationships with students. These relationships support the students through difficult periods of transition and change as they develop.
Newbury Manor School does not advocate one single type or brand of therapy. Instead, we prefer to take a ‘toolkit approach’, combining best practice from several different fields to create bespoke packages that fit the individual needs of our students. All the students at Newbury Manor School are very familiar with the Therapists so their involvement in class, running groups or individual sessions is seen as a normal part of the school day. This minimises therapy refusal or stigma. The needs of the student as outlined in their EHCP are met and there is opportunity for students with social interaction difficulties to be involved in a variety of groups run by the Speech and Language Therapist throughout the school year.
There is opportunity at school for teachers and therapists to work very closely to ensure that the students needs are met throughout the school day The types of therapeutic approaches/assessments used by the school include:
- Trauma informed practice.
- Social Interaction Interventions embedded in students preferred activities.
- Sensory Integration
- Attention Autism
- Use of Communication Aids (both Low and High Tech)
- Support with fine and gross motor skills with age-appropriate activities.
- Emotional Literacy
- Intensive Interaction
- Music Therapy
- Principles of ‘Unconditional Positive Regard’
- Social Stories
- Verbal Behaviour Analysis (VBA)
- PDA approaches to allow students with a PDA profile to manage their anxiety.
Specialist therapeutic facilities
Newbury Manor School has a range of specialist facilities which are used by the therapy team to support their work with our young people. These include:
- A sensory room where students can work on their visual, tactile and auditory stimulation
- A sensory integration room with suspended equipment
Our therapists’ specialisms
Speech and Language Therapist
Our highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist is registered with RCSLT and HCPC and specialises in supporting young people with autism. She is very skilled at engaging with pupils at all stages and using activities that they enjoy and excel at to teach skills they find difficult. The Speech and Language Therapist works closely with all the classes and teaching staff so that any communication skills that the student is focussing on is supported throughout the day.
We are currently looking for a Specialist Occupational Therapist with knowledge of Autism and additional qualifications in Sensory Integration.
We employ a literacy specialist who offers skilled assessment and intervention and has been highly effective in helping our pupils with dyslexia to increase their reading and spelling ages. With the support of our literacy specialist, one of our students increased his reading age by the equivalent of three years in six months.
Knowing when therapy is appropriate
Newbury Manor School only uses specific therapeutic techniques where:
- It is a provision on the EHCP
- There is a clear and widely accepted theoretical basis/evidence base underpinning their effectiveness
- There is the continuing agreement of the young person’s parent/carer/responsible and the individual concerned where they have sufficient understanding to make an informed decision
- The specialist professionals are professionally qualified and, where applicable, registered by the appropriate professional body
An integrated approach to therapy
Here at Newbury Manor School, we do not see therapy as an ‘add on’ but as an integral element of the learning package for each of our young people. Our therapy team works closely with the wider staff team so that their expert knowledge is integrated into practice in our education and residential provision. This occurs via regular staff training and staff being involved where appropriate in the Therapy sessions so that the techniques used can be integrated into school.
Whilst we strive to incorporate therapy into our overall approach to care and education across the school, we are still able to offer direct 1:1 and/or group therapy sessions where we feel this would be beneficial.
Our therapy, care and education teams work together to ensure that each individual pupil’s needs are met. The school’s 24 hour curriculum also allows residential pupils to work towards targets and outcomes set by the therapy team during the academic day and into the evening at the children’s home.
Using therapeutic techniques at home
When a pupil takes up a place at Newbury Manor School, we understand that we are not just welcoming the young person themselves to the school, but also their family. We recognise that supporting parents, carers and siblings can play a vital role in helping our young people to develop both academically and personally. For this reason, our therapy team welcomes parents/carers to visit the school and speak to them about techniques they can use with their child at home.