Kestrel House School is a small independent school age 5-16, in Crouch End, North London, for learners with a primary diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and associated complex needs.
Kestrel House School is part of a nationwide group of schools and the proprietors are Options Autism.
We have a strong reputation in Haringey, and continues to strengthen its partnerships with 8 other local authorities as far as Brent, Camden, Islington, and Westminster. All pupils who attend Kestrel House School have an Education, Health and Care Plan, and we value every opportunity to work with the child on developing learning opportunities to ensure that they achieve their outcomes.
Our work with local Authorities ensures that the transition to Kestrel House is thorough and seamless as we recognise that for many of our parents and their child, this can be challenging. We work incredibly hard to develop trust with our families and so the transition becomes something that they look forward to.
Our wellbeing team consists of an Occupational Therapist, Music Therapist, Speech and Language Therapist and a Kestrel Family Nest and Thrive Practioner. Together they collaborate with the Class Community Leads and families to implement strategies and interventions to support the child. They directly feed into all planning as well as deliver training to the staff and community and families. Their holistic approach means that there is a consistent approach to underpinning the Quality of Education and provision in the school and Pupil Outcomes.
Our Learning Support Assistants are highly trained to deliver the curriculum and we are proud of how we reflect on each learner’s progress and their next steps.
We value our curriculum and see that in all experiences across the school day, that these are learning opportunities. Every tiny step that a learner makes towards their EHCP outcomes is to be celebrated. It is for this reason that our planning towards the curriculum is sequential and consistently monitored and every day.
There is a real focus on developing functional skills, communication and independence. We want our learners to become confident explorers and to celebrate who they are and what they can achieve. PSHE and Life Skills along with therapy, underpin what we deliver and together with our families we can build on each learner’s strengths and achieve positive outcomes.
We praise our learners, we capture those ‘wow’ moments and communicate these to our Kestrel Family Nests. We place emphasis on every experience throughout the day being a learning opportunity and have given careful thought to the way that activities are planned and the way that clinical therapeutic activities are inter-woven into the day. Adaptations for PMLD pupils are well designed, and children are making good progress towards their EHCP targets. There is an appropriate focus on literacy, PSHE, exploration and ‘meaningful experiences’ so that children are effectively prepared for a purposeful life after school.
Additional experiences in the community and enrichment such as Yoga enhance the curriculum and the learner’s learning include Music Therapy, Attention Autism, Intensive Interaction, Sensory Integration, conditioned relaxation.
We are committed to multi agency working to ensure that the needs of young person are met. Our Wellbeing Team work across the school and our additional work with CAHMS and the MASH is frequent, sustained and responsive to learner and family needs. For a continued collaborative approach, they devise strategies and offer training and advice whenever necessary.
All staff engage in continuous professional development (CPD) across the academic year including Safeguarding and Keeping Children Safe in Education. With the needs of our learners being a priority, it is important that we maintain a sharp focus on autism specific training, and educational practice so that our wider community are confident that we deliver our school ethos of ‘Thinking Differently’. We constantly build on our practice with 3 training sessions in school each week that are delivered by our leading practitioners. We also provide Makaton and PECs training for our parents to use at home with their children so the education can continue at home.
How will my young person be included in the activities outside the classroom including school trips?
Our off site visits are designed to enrich the curriculum and continue the focus on PSHE, Life Skills and Independence. Our calendar for trips and visits are designed to create opportunities for developing independence, communication and self- management skills, and to promote positive self-esteem. We have a rigorous in-house health and safety screening for all of our off-site education opportunities. All visits and off site activities are risk assessed to ensure they are appropriate and can be managed to suit individual needs.
We work closely with your Local Authority to ensure that every child is offered provision that can meet their needs. We work closely with our transitioning providers at KS4 in each local authority and begin the process with transition dialogues with families, taking into consideration their personal requests during the Annual Review dialogues. If a learner’s placement is agreed we will work closely with families and other agencies throughout the transition stage to create bespoke transition packages that meet individual need.
Our Kestrel family Nest is key our focus on community. We want none of our families to be marginalised and so our practice and engagement for families is fully inclusive.
Our families engage in learning which we agree is in the best interests of their child. This will include Makaton and PECS and other communication strategies. Our Class Community Leads have regular ‘Bring a Parent to School Day’ and we are privileged to see so many of our families support us with the learning for their child. Families join us on profiled days which celebrate the diversity in the school as well as focus on British values.
We believe in working in partnership with parents and carers to achieve the very best outcomes for all of our learners.
Parents are encouraged to:
- Be closely involved in the setting of targets for their children.
- Attend Parent’s Evenings and their child’s Annual Review. Our termly reports really celebrate the learning and achievement at the school.
- Contact their child’s teacher through a home & school liaison book or via the school phone and email
We always welcome contact from parents and carers and would encourage parents to contact us the home school diary or calling the school office if there are any questions or concerns.
We would love to show you around our school, so please do not hesitate to contact our admin team to arrange a visit.
We continue to support our learners and their choices here at Kestrel House School. We will be starting an annual Careers Day in March 2022 where our learners can experience various jobs that they enjoy and find stimulating. We also have visiting members of the Police and Fire Departments every year to give talks, play games and dress up with our learners so they are exposed to a variety of occupations and people who can help them and keep them safe. We encourage our learners to experiment with a variety of careers here at Kestrel. Activities such as hairdressing on dolls, washing up, litter picking and gardening are used not only for fun activities but also therapeutic purposes. Please see below some of our learners experimenting with a variety of careers that they enjoy!