At the start of June, Manchester produced a “back to school” pack that staff from Educational Psychology, Speech and Language Therapy and the Clinical Service for Children with Disabilities have put together as a multi-agency project. It includes a pack for parents, booklets for younger and older students, and advice for schools. This resource was written specifically for Manchester’s autistic students, though it will be relevant for many other children/young people with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) and their families.
As part of our strategy for supporting young people and their families throughout the COVID-19 crisis, we anticipate a large number of children and young people who may struggle with the return to school following this long period of absence. In addition to our usual psychological support, we have been proactive in producing a number of resources which can be used by parents, schools and young people to support this transition. The project has been created with children with ASD in mind, although it is easily accessible for all children.
This project represents a multi-agency collaboration between the Clinical Service for Children with Disabilities, Speech and Language Therapy Service, and Educational Psychology at OneEducation. The hope is that this will allow us to extend our reach in supporting children and young people via their pre-existing support networks, and tap into the ‘getting advice’ section of I-THRIVE. The resources are split into four information packs:
* Younger children (primary age)
* Young people (secondary school age)
* Parents/ carers
* Schools/ teachers (this pack contains all the above resources as appendices for ease of use by schools).
The resources can be shared with all of our CAMHS colleagues, and will also be disseminated to schools and parent groups. I hope these will be helpful to your teams and to the young people they support.
Guide for Parents
This pack was produced to help parents and carers manage their child’s emotions, provide strategies and tips to support their transition back into school life, and to explore how to maintain one’s own wellbeing.
There are also separate booklets available for primary school children and young people aged 11-18.
Below are some sample pages from the “Back to School” parents’ pack:
Guide for Younger Children
This booklet was produced to help younger children get ready for going back to school.
Through using the pack, children can think about all the things they are looking forward to and anything that might be worrying them about going back to school.
Below are some sample pages from the “Back to School” young children’s pack:
Guide for Older Children / Young People
This pack was made to help young people think about returning to school and to give strategies & tips to help them to cope with change.
The hope is that the booklet will make them feel more confident about returning to school and reduce any feelings of anxiety.
Below are some sample pages from the “Back to School” older children’s pack: