In recent years the school has seen an increasing number of children with sensory impairments as well as a physical disability. Around half the pupils at the school are visually impaired and a proportion of these children are also hearing impaired (dual sensory impairment).
Sensory Impairment Specialist Teacher, Liz Platt, takes a holistic approach and believes movement is a vital way of gaining knowledge about the world. Her philosophy is: if you can’t take Mohammed to the mountain, bring the mountain to Mohammed. Give the children an experience they would not otherwise have and bring the world to them.
Pupils need to use their vestibular and proprioceptive senses by having opportunities to balance, move and use their muscles. As well as intensive physiotherapy programmes, pupils are encouraged to come out of their chairs and balance over physio balls, roll on mats, feel their bodies being swayed and rocked with an adult and feel how a trampoline and a water bed responds to their smallest movements.
Giant resonating beanbags and an invisible keyboard in space (sound beam) are just some of the specialist equipment used by the multisensory department to help pupils with a sensory impairment interact with the world around them.