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Ground breaking centre aids children

PUBLISHED: 17:56 08 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:30 03 March 2010

PUPILS, parents and schools are set to benefit from a ground breaking resource centre in Ipswich for autistic children.

The £275,000 inclusive resource at Beacon Hill School – which specialises in autistic spectrum disorder – works pupils, parents and staff in mainstream schools to share their expertise.

PUPILS, parents and schools are set to benefit from a ground breaking resource centre in Ipswich for autistic children.

The £275,000 inclusive resource at Beacon Hill School – which specialises in autistic spectrum disorder – works with pupils, parents and staff in mainstream schools to share their expertise.

It has been operating since September and has already achieved startling results.

David Stewart, headteacher of Beacon Hill School in Ipswich, was delighted with the centre which will be unveiled in an official opening ceremony on March 18.

The centre is a new service developed by specialist school Beacon Hill with the support of the local authority.

Based at Stone Lodge Lane West it promotes high expectations for pupils with autistic spectrum disorders to maximise opportunities for communication and independent learning.

By working with parents, staff and other agencies together they create an environment to help pupils complete their education in mainstream provision.

Mr Stewart is rightly proud of the centre. "Any child who could be, should be educated in their local community school.

"In partnership with the Local Education Authority local mainstream schools, we identify children who can successfully complete their education at high school.

"Everybody must work to a common purpose so the child succeeds academically and socially.

"What we have is the tools to help them overcome their language and communication difficulties. We do this by working with teachers, headteachers and the whole family."

Tina Harris, leader of the resource with outreach teacher Penny Seymour, works at the Beacon Hill for part of the week and brings the service outside the school for the remainder to help increase skills and confidence.

In the next two years the centre hopes to extend this to work with every pyramid of schools in southern area of Suffolk.


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