The Mulberry is designated as a key stage 3 and 4 centre for students with cognition and learning needs that is set in the grounds of SHS (Stowupland High School) within the John Milton Academy Trust.
We currently support the learning of students aged 11 – 16. All students follow a personalised curriculum and are taught by experienced teachers with support from trained teaching assistants within the Mulberry Centre.
Some students that join us may be able to transition to a full mainstream place if their needs change, if progress is being made, and if they are able to do so. Other students will remain in the Mulberry Centre throughout Key Stage 3 and 4, but accessing some mainstream provision appropriate to need.
The Mulberry curriculum is broad and balanced and is also tailored to the needs and interests of each student. Our high quality adaptive teaching and pastoral provision encourages curiosity and confidence in our students, preparing them to accomplish and enjoy learning as they journey towards adulthood.
Mulberry students receive targeted provision in line with their EHCP outcomes; they are encouraged to be involved in all aspects of school life at Stowupland and many Mulberry students engage in extra-curricular activities alongside their peers in the main school, enjoying breaks, lunchtimes, whole year group assemblies and sporting/cultural school events. The Mulberry Centre expectations for behaviour and uniform are streamlined with the main school and promotion of our inclusive culture and ethos is embedded within every aspect of our whole school community.
Please find our Mulberry Centre Admissions Statement for Stowupland High School and our Mulberry Prospectus attached below. You can also access the Mulberry Prospectus through the following link: Suffolk Info Link.
How do I gain a place for my child in the Mulberry?
- If there is local authority agreement that a mainstream school is no longer able to fully meet your child's needs, a specialist unit, like the Mulberry, attached to a mainstream school may be considered within the EHCP or needs assessment process – parent/carers will liaise directly with the local authority to consider the most appropriate and available placements;
- Any admission request for your child to have a place in the Mulberry will be made by the local authority and not directly by parent/carers;
- Parent/carers should contact the Local Authority as places are accessed through the specialist decision making panels:
SENDIASS in Suffolk offer advice and guidance for children, young people, parents and carers to understand their rights about SEND:
How do Mulberry students integrate into Stowupland High?
- The students, parents/carers and school team work together to decide when and how integration will develop. Students may wish to join one or several subjects and the team around each student will develop an ambitious Pathway Plan to reflect their interests and promote outstanding progress;
- Each Pathway Plan, that is co-produced with parent/carer/professional input, will include details of the student’s areas of need and how best to support them – this will be shared with each Mulberry and main school teacher by the member of Mulberry staff who knows the student well;
- The School Mulberry lead will work closely with each identified subject area and the school SENCo to identify the most appropriate teaching group for the student to join;
- High quality teaching is crucial to the progress of students with SEND and our teachers are vital orchestrators of ‘assess, plan, do, review’ – the graduated response process detailed within the SEND Code of Practice. Our teachers and support staff will:
- Adapt their planning prior to the lesson and adjust practice during the lesson according to the identified needs of each student;
- Focus on supporting each student to progress towards and achieve the learning outcome identified in their Pathway Plan.
SEND Code of Practice (2015) – particularly chapter 6.
Will my child be included in all Stowupland High School activities?
- All Mulberry students have full access to the curriculum – including enrichment activities, school events and school trips;
- Technology supports students in lessons – individual laptops and tablets for students with visual/physical disabilities plus a range of software programs are made available according to need;
- The SHS Options booklet, providing information about all subjects offered at KS4 are shared with Mulberry students and parent/carers. It is recommended that Pathway Plans do not restrict Mulberry students in the number of options they can take and a minimum of 2 option subjects is recommended;
- Additional curriculum options are available for students who might benefit from this, e.g. Functional Skills, starting from entry level in Literacy, numeracy and IT, leading up to level 1 and 2.
How can I actively support my child with their learning?
- Parents/carers are invited to parents’ evenings at the Mulberry and also with their teacher in main school. This is an opportunity to discuss progress and reflect on any areas where you or the School feel further support could be put in place;
- School reports will be provided to parent/carers, in line with published SHS dates and will provide valuable information on how well your child is progressing;
- Parents/carers are always involved in reviews relating to their child and we actively promote co-production. All decisions regarding students accessing main school or additional support requirements will only be made after consultation and agreement with parents/carers;
- Parents/carers should encourage their children to read at home as extensively as possible, including reading out loud;
- Supporting your child to come to school every day will encourage them to engage in learning, with fewer catch-up requirements. This will enable them to maintain a highly positive sense of belonging and achievement.
How will my child be supported to reach their maximum potential and move successfully into adulthood?
- Each student will be supported through the co- production of a personalised Pathway Plan;
- Life skills are developed through the PHSE and personal development curriculum for all students in SHS, including Mulberry;
- Specialist career advisors support the most vulnerable students at SHS. Independent advice and guidance regarding careers education is offered to all SEND students;
- SHS works closely with the Suffolk Early Help Team to support post 16 transitions;
- Moving Into Adulthood discussions are an essential aspect of the annual review process for all SEND students.