The Croft School

‘Positive change for young people and their families through education’

The Croft School is a small school setting with one teacher and two teaching assistants. Children attend every Monday to Friday morning. The high adult to child ratio helps us to provide children with more individual support not only with their schoolwork, but also their behaviour. Many of our young people have not had access to regular full time schooling for a significant period of time and present on admission with significant mental health difficulties which often manifest themselves in highly disruptive behaviours and a complete rejection of any form of academic tasks.

At the Croft school, we take a holistic view of the child’s physical, emotional and educational needs and a range of evidence from multiple stakeholders to inform our assessment for learning in order to maximize (re)-engagement with education and facilitate the greatest academic progress during their inpatient admissions.

This enables us to develop a highly individualized learning pathway, where gaps in knowledge are rapidly identified and individualised targets are set for Key English and Maths curriculum skills. These individualized targets form the basis of our teaching, and we incorporate, where possible and appropriate, a cross curricular approach scaffolded around these.

Due to the school experience of many of our young people (very interrupted schooling pattern, disengagement when in school) and the nature of the science curriculum (thematic knowledge based teaching, which are revisited with long intervals in between (e.g. KS1 to KS2)  alongside the investigative elements of the science curriculum) we engage with our young people in an initial conversation around science to ascertain their prior knowledge, their areas of particular interest their aspirations for the learning of the subject and any particular areas of difficulty. If any areas of either particular interest or of particular difficulty are highlighted, we will devise some 1:1 teaching opportunities to address these. Otherwise, the children take place in weekly, small group investigative science with a different weekly focus on an aspect of the investigation write-up process.

Children in KS3 receive weekly small group teaching from the PRU specialized Science teacher.

Children receive daily stickers for effort, attendance, behaviour and good language. When appropriate individual behaviour management strategies will be put into place to facilitate a child’s progress, both academically and behaviourally.

The process of transitioning out of the croft into an educational setting is considered from the point of referral. For a child not accessing regular education at the point of admission, where possible the teacher in charge will contact the relevant community professionals at the soonest opportunity in order to support the transition into an educational provision. However, a successful transition into an educational setting is dependent on many factors: whether external educational agencies are involved or not, LEA and school processes and resources, whether the adequate paperwork (e.g. EHCPs) are in place at the point of admission, school’s admission criteria and capacity, amongst other factors and some young people may leave our service without a suitable educational provision.

For children who regularly access education, the teacher in charge will work with other members of the team to support the child through the re-integration process back into school. This will sometimes include weekly visits to their home school, increased as required by the individual needs of the child.

The Croft School has received lots of positive feedback. Below are just a few of the comments made by parents of the Croft:

“We think it is amazing what you have managed to achieve in such a short space of time. Our child was given the tie and space to feel comfortable, secure and confident enough within the classroom setting to begin learning how to tolerate and accept challenges and adult decisions about their learning. As a consequence, my child has been able to access education at the appropriate levels with increasing confidence and acceptance of vulnerabilities. We will be forever indebted to Nadine and her team for steering my child back on to their path of learning where they may now be able to function at and reach their full potential.” 

“I think the Croft school is excellent for the children. It provides a really good education. When my child went back to their previous school for some days, they were fully up to date with what was happening in their maths, English and science classes. Nadine is a great teacher.”

“Nadine and her teaching team have been able to engage my child in learning and they have been able to successfully complete all assessments which will provide them  with the best opportunity going into their next educational setting. Nadine has always been warm and approachable; we have always felt in good hands. Our family thank you all and all be it this been a very difficult time for our family we will always be proud that my child has been here and there will always be a warm place in our hearts for this amazing team."

The page was last updated on 03 June 2020 by bdale.


Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust
Elizabeth House, Fulbourn Hospital
Cambridge, CB21 5EF

T 01223 219400 (open 8:30am to 5pm)
F 01480 398501

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