The policy of the QMC Education Centre is to minimise as far as possible the disruption to the normal schooling of all our pupils, by continuing their education as normally as their incapacity allows. This policy sets out to allow pupils to continue the learning process, to keep education alive for them and where possible to maintain progress.
The Educational Base recognises additional needs that are placed on our pupils by their hospital admission and their medical conditions and we will amend the curriculum and offer support as an appropriate response to these needs.
A data sheet must be completed for any child or young person admitted to the Education Centre.
Teaching staff are available to teach either by providing work to be done independently by the pupil on the ward, in the ward classroom where available, or 1:1 tuition at the bedside.
The school is for in-patients of school age. Some pupils with SEN will have a later school leaving age than the usual statutory age.
Educational support is always offered only as is appropriate to the pupil’s condition. Treatments and therapies always take precedence.
Staff contact time with pupils is from 9.30 to 12.00 and from 1.00 to 3.00 pm.
Where the pupil is able to leave the ward, The Garden Room in the Children’s School area is available and teaching may be offered there, or in The Studio, at the discretion of the responsible teacher, and with the agreement of the medical staff.
On days when members of staff are deployed in The Studio, ward based teachers can arrange with the colleague based there, to bring pupils from the wards.
At times when The Studio is not manned, teachers may bring pupils from the ward to work and stay to work with them. Such a session can be made available to pupils from other wards as appropriate.
There is no statutory obligation for the Hospital School to admit pupils in this discretionary group and a place in school cannot be guaranteed. However where there is capacity on the ward, teachers may provide some support with work sent from the home school.
Wherever possible the Hospital School will make provision for well siblings where the family has moved into the area temporarily or is staying in the Parents Overnight Stay Unit to be close to the pupil who is in hospital far from home.
In the school area, siblings may be accommodated by arrangement with the staff deployed there.
There are a number of considerations to bear in mind when seeking an arrangement to support the education of siblings.
- We will give priority to long stay siblings, i.e. those expected to be staying in PONSU for at least two weeks.
- We recognise that siblings’ capacity for school work will be affected by the situation. They may experience a good deal of stress and disturbance due to the change in their circumstances.
- Staff in the classroom will be working primarily with pupils who are ill. Therefore the pace of work will be slow, compared to the capability of a well child.
- Pupils who are in-patients are often in receipt of treatments, and suffer from symptoms that may appear alarming, and be distressing to well children and young people.
- Siblings accompanied by a parent must work somewhere other than the classroom as it is disruptive to the work of the classroom and disturbing for pupils who benefit from being away from the ward and their parents for a time.
- Attendance at The Hospital School may not alter the absent mark given at their home school.
NB. Child care for medical colleagues’ own children is not part of the remit of the hospital school. Colleagues wishing to offer this facility may do so only between 12 noon and 12 30 on a day when there is no staff meeting, and must do so outside of the school premises.