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Parents praised the whole-family approach and spoke gratefully of the sibling courses their other children had attended in their mainstream schools. The courses were run discreetly, to help them meet friends with SEN siblings, and learn to express any frustrations they had. One mum described the pastoral team’s sensitive handling: ‘in a way they are not drawing attention to it, the other children don’t notice it going on’.

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What The Good Schools Guide says


Since 2011, Jon Hewitt BSc PGCE NPQH AMBDA. After taking a degree in geology at Cardiff University and a further PGCE at UEA, became interested in pastoral care during his first teaching post, at an Oxfordshire secondary school. This led to further mainstream secondary school posts and a specialist interest in learning difficulties, challenging behaviours and exclusion. A spell as EBD co-ordinator in Wiltshire and as SENCo in Swindon was followed by promotion to deputy at Rowdeford School, Devizes, before the move to The Castle School as head.

Fit and youthful in appearance, although more beard than hair, he is both a fast talker and fast walker, managing to combine efficiency with sympathetic listening. ‘The day he showed me round I was very emotional and he was virtually carrying a...

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Special Education Needs

The Castle School is a West Berkshire Education Authority Special School. It is a mixed day school which takes pupils, between the ages of two and nineteen, who have a wide range of educational needs. Our Nursery class is colocated to Victoria Park Nursery, spending time at The Castle School two afternoons per week to use the specialist facilities. The Castle School is resourced by the Local Education Authority to provide education for 15 pupils with ASD who need a higher staffing ratio and a more intensive programme than others. At the present time there are 21 pupils who have a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder recorded on their Statement of Special Educational Needs and 13 pupils are in the ‘Resourced classes‘.

Condition Provision for in school
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder Y
Aspergers Y
Aspergers Syndrome [archived]
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders Y
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders [archived]
CReSTeD registered for Dyslexia
Delicate Medical Problems [archived]
English as an additional language (EAL)
Epilepsy [archived]
Has an entry in the Autism Services Directory Y
Has SEN unit or class
HI - Hearing Impairment
Hospital School
Mental health
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulty
MSI - Multi-Sensory Impairment
Natspec Specialist Colleges
Not Applicable
OTH - Other Difficulty/Disability
Other SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
PD - Physical Disability
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulty
SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health
SLCN - Speech, Language and Communication
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty
Special facilities for Visually Impaired
SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
VI - Visual Impairment

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