Information about our support for students with a learning difficulty and/or disability

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1 Information about our support for students with a learning difficulty and/or disability 2013 / 2014 Town Centre Campus Rother Valley Campus Eastwood Lane Doe Quarry Lane, Dinnington Rotherham S65 1EG Sheffield S25 2NF Telephone Telephone Minicom: Minicom: Fax Fax or

2 Please contact us if you need this booklet in another format, such as large print, Braille, recorded or in a different language. The College Mission Statement 2

3 Welcome to Rotherham College of Arts & Technology (RCAT) Rotherham College of Arts and Technology (RCAT) welcomes students who have a learning difficulty and / or disability. RCAT offers courses from pre-entry through to Degree Level and over the years has supported excellent students with disabilities on all levels and in all vocational areas. All College courses welcome and are open to students who have a disability, providing you meet the entry criteria for the course. The purpose of this booklet is to let you know about support that can be offered and to encourage you to let us know as soon as you can so that we can offer the best support possible and make all reasonable adjustments to help you achieve your potential. In May 2013, Ofsted Inspectors praised the College for their High quality student support. Additional Learning Support RCAT has a wide range of support and facilities to enable students to access their chosen course of learning. RCAT is committed to an inclusive model of learning that aims to advance and celebrate diversity and eliminate discrimination. The college aims to respond flexibly to your needs. The college s approach is to work with you to anticipate and overcome any barriers to accessing learning and help you choose a course of study that is appropriate to your ability and future aspirations. In order to have suitable support / access plan in place, we would ask that you tell us and explain to us your support / access needs as soon as you can. We are happy to have discussions or arrange visits before you apply or enrol and help wherever possible in smoothing your pathway into College. The college will work with you, your parents, family, carers, your school or other professionals / advocates you may choose to help you settle into full College life. We will ask you if you are happy that we tell other College staff / support agencies about your support needs or disability. Students who currently have additional support or adaptations to curriculum or environment at RCAT include: Students with medical conditions such as : asthma diabetes 3

4 epilepsy arthritis mental health issues Students with physical impairments mobility impairments dexterity impairments students who use a wheelchair Sensory impairments hearing impairments visual impairments Students with specific learning difficulties : Dyslexia Dyspraxia Dyscalculia Students with special conditions such as : Autistic Spectrum conditions Aspergers Syndrome ADHD Students who need extra help with Literacy / English and/or Maths / Numeracy. Students for whom English is not their first language. (ESOL support) Students who require adapted materials, including this booklet for instance, in: Braille, on MP3, large print or other languages. Other needs: Please ask if you have any support needs not already mentioned After discussing and assessing your needs with you, we will write your individual support plan together. Below are some examples of support that may be part of your plan. We may decide on one or any combinations to suit. This list is not exhaustive. There may be support we can offer that has not been requested before. However, some of the most used services would include: Checking that a student who uses a wheelchair can access all their teaching rooms. 4

5 In class or 1-1 support for students with literacy / numeracy / dyslexia support needs. Extra time / support arrangements in exams (see further notes). Buddy or mentor support to help a student with Aspergers to become comfortable, familiar and confident with their timetable for as long as needed. Personal care and mobility support as needed. Support to develop organisational skills, confidence building, memory, managing time for students with specific needs. Communication support in class teaching, such as for English as a second language (ESOL) or signing support. Small group work to support students with similar needs, such as social or study support. Special technology or software support (We have a list of these. Please ask if you would like a copy). Specialist equipment / adaptive materials (a full list of technological and software support is available on RCAT Portal or on request). Access to specialist and specially trained / experienced staff in areas such as : Dyslexia Aspergers and ASD Counsellors Literacy / Numeracy Emotional / Behavioural Learning difficulties Physical access / dexterity Technology support Health and Safety Catering / food and drink / special diets requests Access to Braille Use of computer Scribe / dictation support Read Write Gold Text help specialists In addition, the college works with other agencies and professional partners outside college in order to provide the best possible support for its students. 5

6 Current Partners and Working Links include: Integrated Youth Support Service (Careers Info, Advice and Guidance, Disability and Specialist Officer) (16-18) National Autism Society and Rotherham Branch National Careers Service (18+) RDASH NHS Foundation : Rotherham Access Team (Mental Health) RNIB & Rotherham Visual Impaired Service RNID & Rotherham Hearing Impaired Service Rotherham Adult Services Rotherham Early Intervention Team (Mental Health) Rotherham Educational Psychologists (Learning, Developmental, Mental Health, Special Issues, Emotional / Behavioural Difficulties) Rotherham Housing Support Rotherham Parents Forum Rotherham Schools Rotherham Youth Offending Support Team Yorkshire Mentoring Forum Any other professionals who specially support you and you would like us to know about We want you to become the best you can be... To this end, we will regularly review with you the progress you are making and the support you are receiving. This may need to change from time to time, for instance as you gain confidence you may need less or as you meet new academic challenges, you may need more or different support. Please tell us how your support is working as you go along. We will make a support plan with you and work alongside you to help you achieve your goals. 6

7 Many students achieve above national benchmarks and in 2012/13 some of our support students achieved Student of the Year Awards. Building Access The College aims to continue to improve access to buildings to remove barriers to your employment / educational opportunities. Please check on any special access requirements you may have via Student Services at the time of your initial discussions or interview with College. Please note the College may still be undergoing new building works during 2013/2014. This should not affect facilities, access or movement around sites. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. However please let us know if you experience any difficulties or need any further support as a result of any building works. In 2011/12 Prince Andrew opened our new building at the Town Centre called the Wentworth Building. This has been planned to be very accessible for students, staff and visitors with disabilities. The Wentworth Building is shown on the Town Centre map. Reception areas are fitted with a loop system. The building has talking lifts, accessible toilets on all floors, level entrances, special changing facilities on the 3 rd floor. New Facilities in 2012/2013 At the Town Centre Eastwood Building: ground and first floors to provide the College with excellent new specialist facilities to extend the support and teaching we can offer to students with learning difficulties and disabilities. The unique space has been named The Gateway and offers areas for independent living skills, technology support, sensory room, homework clubs, breakfast and lunch clubs. It has become a thriving and supportive community for students. Eastwood New Build for September 2012 This will include a new specialist area for Foundation students on the first floor (moving down a level) and a major new services and facilities on the ground floor, providing a welcoming area for families, other agency support and groups, plus specialist rooms for personal care, sensory assessments and discussions for medical care, planning, additional or technical support, teaching (e.g. for dyslexia), quiet room, base room and social skills area for students, particularly useful for instance for students on the Autistic Spectrum. In addition we are planning some very exciting group work to develop social 7

8 skills, confidence, employability, plus homework and breakfast clubs, and links with other partners. The whole of the area now provides top class facilities to welcome you, help to assess your needs and plan your support and future learning or employment. We are very excited. Thank you to all parents and students who continue to give us ideas to improve our services. Clifton New Build for September 2012 The Additional Learning Support Base in Clifton will have major improvements through a move to the 3 rd floor and will help us more effectively support 1-1 and small groups who need, for instance support for Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Dyscalculia, ESOL, Literacy/Numeracy, plus the use of Technology support. At the time of writing, these features are being built, so new information will be incorporated into the next update. In the meantime, we apologise for any inconvenience: Please make contact if you need extra support as a result of any building works 8

9 RVC TCC Physical access and facilities at a glance... Car Parking Toilets Ramped Entrance Level Entrance Lifts Changing Facility Eastwood Building Clifton Building Wentworth Building Main Building Level 3 Radar Key All floors Level 1 No Key Needed Front Entrance Ground level toilet Level 3 Toilet Radar 3 rd floor toilet Hoist Hair & Beauty Learning Centre / Library Radar Keys are available from: The Information Desk TCC : Wentworth Reception Ext : 664 The Gateway TCC : Eastwood Room 101 Ext : 728 Tony Gibbs/ALS TCC : Eastwood Ext : 830 Clifton Admin Office TCC : Clifton C111 Ext : 647 Caretakers TCC : Clifton Ext : 731 Student Services RVC : Reception Ext : 100 Additional Support Team RVC : A026 Ext : 502 9

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12 Exam Arrangements If you think you may need access arrangements during your examinations and assessments, please ask as soon as possible. Please do not wait until exams are looming! In order to allow any access arrangements in tests or examinations which are part of your College course, all examination boards require evidence of your specific needs. If you feel that you need support or access arrangements, you will need to inform your tutor of your requirements as soon as possible. The college will help you to present evidence to the examining body to demonstrate that you need access arrangements to enable you to demonstrate your knowledge and skills under examination conditions. This might involve attending an assessment by an educational psychologist of a specialist teacher. This assessment can be easily arranged by the College as part of your support programme. Once the assessment has been carried out, and the level of support in class and tests and examinations has been identified, this will be formally reported. If you are entered for a test or examination, evidence will be sent to the awarding body, with a request asking that you be allowed whatever arrangement is suitable. If you have a physical difficulty, then the College will often require medical evidence indicating the specific disability and the effect this has on your ability to complete tests or examinations. If you need more time: Additional time can be given where there is sufficient evidence that you need this arrangement and that you will benefit from it Supervised rest breaks can be allowed Providing the College holds current evidence of your specific needs, you may have assistance with reading and / or writing (scribe) if required providing they are agreed by the exam board. If you have difficulty reading the questions, depending on your needs we might provide: Enlarged print papers, modified print layouts A reader A screen reader 12

13 Braille versions with personal support Low vision aids Oral language modification Modified papers Hard of hearing enhancement (lip speaker) Signing Coloured backgrounds If you have difficulty writing, depending on your needs and the requirements of the examination we might arrange for you to: Use Braille Use a word processor Dictate Use a scribe Have rest breaks Use extra time Use alternative assessment methods If you cannot attend an exam, we can make a personal arrangement for accommodation. Remember: If you do not access Additional Learning Support early in your course, the Awarding Body might not approve exam support. All of your tutors need to know that you need examination arrangements so that they can request them for you The information above is a guideline, other examination arrangements can be agreed with the examining body when necessary Some arrangements might not be allowed if they are considered to compromise the integrity of the examination e.g. you would not be allowed a reader when your own reading skills are being examined If you have any questions please ask the ALS team Student Services Telephone : Town Centre Campus Rother Valley Campus or you can ring the freephone number Student Liaison Officers provide Information, Advice and Guidance on a wide range of topics such as personal support, student finance, childcare and career 13

14 information. There is a designated Student Liaison Officer attached to your department and there is always someone available in the Student Services office, just pop to reception if you need any support or have any questions. Information Officers can give you directions around College or make you an appointment to see a Student Liaison Officer or Counsellor if you have something more personal you would like to talk about. Student Services is located in the Wentworth Building at our Town Centre Campus and in the main entrance at our Rother Valley Campus. Money Information is available about: Any financial assistance we can offer to help you access your course Awards and grants Studying on benefit Referral to other appropriate outside agencies Health The College ensures a trained first aider is available at the main site during the day when the College is open. College also has a Specialist Support Practitioner to help plan any support needs. In relation to medical issues: Contact Helen Hardwick on , All College Staff All staff are here to help you to be able to concentrate on your studies and do your very best to succeed in your chosen area. Any queries just ask! 14

15 To apply or contact College for an early discussion: STEP 1: Either: Telephone: Student Services Town Centre Campus Telephone No: Freephone: Minicom: Student Services Rother Valley Campus Telephone No: Minicom: Freephone: (press 1 for RVC) Write to: Student Services Town Centre Campus Eastwood Lane Rotherham S65 1EG Student Services Rother Valley Campus Doe Quarry Lane Dinnington Sheffield S25 2NF Drop in to: Student Services Town Centre Campus Eastwood Lane Rotherham S65 1EG Student Services Rother Valley Campus Doe Quarry Lane Dinnington Sheffield S25 2NF STEP 2: We will arrange a Guidance Interview for you in friendly surroundings. You can bring a parent, carer, friend, support worker ask for College support if you wish. The interview will be an opportunity for us to initially discuss your support needs STEP 3: Discuss your future with us. Career and progression guidance is available to every student at Rotherham College. You and your representative (if required) are invited to discuss progression routes with College staff and external specialists during your programme. We are in touch with additional learning support teams, specialist Careers and Employment Services staff who are available to discuss your possible support and progression routes. Or contact Inclusive Learning Services directly : Inclusive Learning/Additional Support Administration Team: Eastwood Building Kate Atkinson Manager: Inclusive Learning Central Additional Learning Support enquiries: or We can initially meet you in College, at home, school, place of work or community base. 15

16 What do I do if I am unhappy about my course or my treatment at College? We hope that you will enjoy your studies at College. However, if you are not satisfied with the way things are organised or the way you are treated, you should: Tell your Course Tutor, Personal Tutor, Student Liaison Officer, Support tutor or another member of staff. If they cannot sort out the problem, they will help you fill in the appropriate section of the Tell us what you think form, available from Student Services. This will be passed on to a senior member of staff. Complaints can also be made in writing to the: Head of Quality and Learning Your help is needed please... RCAT not only wishes to comply with all Equality & Diversity legal obligations and regulations, in particular the Single Equality Act 2010, we strive to exceed requirements and constantly improve our services to you. If you would like to make any suggestions as to how we can improve our services or indeed this booklet! Please or use the contact details on the front of this booklet We also want to continually improve our services and information. Please let us know any suggestions or let your views be heard through the above or let your voice be heard at one of our Student Voice meetings which are held termly on each campus. 16

17 Equality and Diversity Consultation This document was reviewed and amended in July/August 2013 with opportunity for comment and consultation with staff, students and other agencies: Additional Learning Support Team Integrated Youth Support Service Educational Psychology Team Exams Support Heads of Department Heads of Unit Multi-agency Transitions Group NHS Early Intervention Team (Swallownest) RMBC Rotherham Parents Group School SENCOs Senior Management Team Students (via HODS) Student Services Please contact us if you need this booklet in another format, such as large print, Braille, recorded or in a different language. 17

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