Communication Overview

Communication is essential for everyone, and it needs to be clear and understandable. For those with learning difficulties it can be a considerable challenge. To support our pupils/students, we use a ‘total communication’ approach where all forms of communication are valued and encouraged. Communication takes many forms and is supported verbally when appropriate and through sign, gesture, written and pictorial means and through specific approaches such as switches, symbols, aided communication boards and PECS which may also include the use of symbol-based apps such as Proloquo2Go.

We employ our own full time Speech and Language Therapist (SaLT) who works alongside staff supporting class groups and some individual students. We are establishing a specific ‘communication team’ involving staff from each area of the school in order to further develop language opportunities and to strive towards consistency and to promote learning. We strive to ensure that students understand their surroundings and have a ‘voice’ in all that they do.

We have dedicated Signalong Tutors as part of the staff team who work to share knowledge and expertise in signing across the school.

Whilst most pupils have their needs met through our communication rich environment some require additional support through specific intervention and planning. Many students will have specific language targets that they will be working on in addition to teaching and learning throughout the day which are delivered by class teams.

We are always looking to extend and further develop our Total Communication approach to meet the needs of our students. We believe that the best practice is that all staff have a good understanding of both verbal and non-verbal communication and that they further their understanding and skills through training and support of the Speech and Language Therapist, enabling them to deliver and extend students’ communication skills throughout the day in everything the students are doing rather than students being taken out of class for individual sessions with a speech therapist.

Our aim is that pupils will THRIVE and, in order to do this, we strive for them to have a functional, meaningful and social means of communication which will assist them in being …

Thoughtful and Caring

Happy and safe





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