Case Studies

Learner Case Studies

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Learner Case Study:

Attendance Yr 9

Child X joined us in Oct 2022 as a severe school refuser with 0% attendance in Year 9, referred by her mainstream school for a short-term placement. Initially, X presented as a challenging Young Person to engage with and made firm statements around ‘hating school, not trusting staff or Young Person, being tortured by staff’ etc.

X was attached to a member of staff, but slowly it became evident she was bonding more with a part-time staff member. This relationship was fostered further and staff member became permanent in Jan 23. X was encouraged to build positive relations with other staff members with the support of QO.

As her placement came to an end, we had a transition meeting where it became evident that the school had failed to make the EHCP application required. Break Through School took the opportunity to offer support with this and it was agreed that X’s placement would be long term, taking into account her needs not being met (either at school or remotely) and X’s voice was heard and very clearly stated she felt traumatised by her experience at mainstream.

CAMHS involvement supported the significant progress X was making at Break Through School and proffered a letter asking Break Through School to be named on X’s EHCP.

Evidence can be seen in X’s engagement in all subjects, relationships being fostered with her year group, challenging episodes resolved with restorative justice meetings and attendance increased from 0% to 93.3% currently.

Learner Case Study:

Attendance Yr 11

X is a current Yr 11 who identifies as mis-gendered and uses a male pronoun. This contrasts with parental perspective, who don’t acknowledge this position.

X has been at Break Through School since Oct 2019, one of our longest serving members. Throughout this time, they have presented with severe anxiety, low mood and difficulties in securing relations with staff and peers, often taking offence to minor misdemeanours and harbouring grudges for months, if not, years.

X has unique and fixated interest that other Young People struggle to relate to. Furthermore, any changes to our set up, such as group and staff movements has a profound negative effect on X, resulting in reduced interaction, selective mutism and extended low mood.

Throughout KS4, X has struggled to engage in Maths, citing this is as a subject they cannot cope with and has been resistant to the strategies put in place. Charlotte, our Maths teacher in 2022-23 has been firm but fair and consistent. This consistency has had a positive impact and X has made the most significant progress of the year = 94.8% improvement. X recently achieved 84% in Entry Level 3 maths paper and is on track to move to Level 1 in Summer 1.

X has been surprised and reassured when presented with this data. X responded positively to clear evidence of progression in data form, as they find praise ambiguous and uncertain.

Staff Case Studies

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Staff Case Study:

SPR 23

GL joined Break Through school in Sept 2021 as a Teaching Assistant. Throughout his first academic year, he was enrolled onto a Foundation Degree in Education Studies, working a 4 day week with us. He completed his studies in May 2022 and after a period of reflection, felt he wished to apply his newly found understanding of education to a developed role.

GL spoke openly about his desire to move out of his partner’s parents house and to do so would need an increase in wages. He was keen to demonstrate his skill set in the hope we would acknowledge this and it would reflect in his pay. GL began working a 5 day week and has shown an intuitive understanding of our Young People’s needs, particularly where they are sensory driven. As a result, he began using pads for Young People to expend additional energy. As he sought to understand our Young People’s needs, he came to a realisation that he himself has traits in line with ADHD and has since sought for an adult diagnoses (ongoing).

In Dec 2022, a position became viable as our Operations Manager handed in his notice. We took this opportunity to restructure staffing and GL was offered the opportunity to lead on Outreach and H&S (prior to a Health & Safety champion role being established).

GL has embraced the role, developing relations with parents/carers of our persistent and significant absentees; liaising with authorities, teachers and staff to meet the needs of our remote learners and attempting to re-engage them with education.

GL now works directly under the Assitant Principal: Pastoral & Behaviour role. He has exemplified his keenness to succeed and achieve his objectives. His line manager expresses his enthusiasm and he has been vocal in hoping to increase his status and role in the near future.

Staff Case Study:

SUM 23

Harj joined us last Autumn term, 2022, having dropped in as she walked by and realised we are an independent school due to our new signage.

Harj was looking for a new, part-time opportunity to offer literacy outreach as a consultant. Her passion for improving literacy for young people was evident in our discussions and we were aware this was an area for the school to develop.

Harj was initially employed to be an English teacher and settled in quickly. Her reflective and intuitive approach to teaching meant differentiation and responsive delivery were amongst her strengths.

It was soon evident to the Senior Leadership Team that Harj has great potential in leading on the curriculum.

Upon discussion, she demonstrated a strong aptitude for researching programmes, schemes, comparative provisions and devised systems that would work best for our bespoke setting.

Through our new ownership, we were able to reform the Senior Leadership Team structure and appoint two new SLT members as Curriculum and Pastoral leads. Despite only being with us for a very short time, it was clear that Harj had a strong vision that complemented ours for the trajectory of Break Through School and needed to play a critical role in the progress of our curriculum.

In the following Spring and Summer months, Harj has proceeded to implement and devise new and improved offers that will provide learners with the best opportunity for lifelong success, which is our purpose.

Harj embodies our values, modelling respect and equity to our learners and staff alike.

She is thriving in her new role, which has been expedited by the opportunities afforded to us by us joining the Melrose Education group of schools.