Learning Support – Age 13 – 18

The Learning Support Department is here to support pupils to fulfil their academic potential.

Whether or not a pupil has a formally identified special educational need, the Department can offer support when it’s needed, for example after an absence caused by illness or for some study skills guidance in the run up to summer exams.

Many pupils simply use the weekly drop in Study Skills Clinic, run by the Learning Support Department, where they can arrive for advice without a prior appointment.

For those pupils with formally identified Specific Learning Difficulties [SpLD] e.g. dyslexia, developmental coordination disorder [DCD/dyspraxia], ADHD, Autistic Spectrum Condition [ASC], where time management and organisational skills might need to be developed over a longer period of time, the Learning Support Department can offer the guidance that pupils need in regularly scheduled one-to-one support lessons. In addition, the Department can offer support to pupils whose first language is not English, should they need it.

Our one-to-one sessions allow pupils to gain a clearer understanding of their particular needs and help them to identify solutions. We want pupils to be able to overcome future potential challenges with confidence. The strategy is that they learn how to use their strengths to compensate for any weaknesses; this self-knowledge means that they can achieve to the best of their underlying abilities and talents. We equip them and encourage them to become independent learners.

The Department comprises two specialist teachers and a part-time administrator. The specialist teachers have post-graduate qualifications in specialist teaching of pupils with dyslexia and other specific learning difficulties. They keep in regular contact with both tutors and subject teachers, as appropriate. The specialist teachers also offer advice to colleagues on how best to support a pupil within academic subject lessons. They also ensure that one-to-one support sessions complement the mainstream lessons. One to one support provides the more specialist teaching that is required to help the pupil to move forwards.

We welcome input from parents, as they are able to shed valuable light on the way that their son behaves at home and the difficulties that their son faces in his academic studies. This joined up approach between the pupils themselves, the Learning Support Department, teachers, tutors and parents allows the pupils to flourish.



Self Help section in the Kayton Library

In hindsight, being diagnosed with a form of dyslexia was the pinnacle of understanding myself. Simply reading about the traits of other dyslexics led me to realise much about myself. The diagnosis has been invaluable in that it has explained so many of my own characteristics and quirks.
Old Pauline
The LS Department really started to help me to figure out the best ways for me to learn effectively. It was outstanding the difference that the half hour each week made. From being quite nervous at the start of the sessions, it became the thing I most looked forward to in the week!
Old Pauline
The learning support lessons have pushed me to do more than I ever thought I could and, although I still cannot spell or punctuate, I have found methods to cope with it. I still cannot do mental maths, so I use a calculator. I still don’t read books, but I read plays instead. I still can’t write fast, so I type instead. Dyslexia has also given me creativity that others do not have: the ability to “think outside the box” and I think that is even more valuable than being able to do mental maths. So if you feel like you are being put on an un-level playing field, then you’re not alone; I am often there but learning support helps me to level it.
Old Pauline