33. Aberdeenshire Good News Story

Background Bob Smith, 17 years of age who is on the autistic spectrum, has moderate learning disabilities, Tourettes Syndrome and ADHT, attended a mainstream rural academy with a BASE unit in Aberdeenshire.  One of two siblings from a well-supported family and the school he attended was proactive in meeting Bob’s needs. At times Bob’s support networks were over protective thus resulting in creating transitional barriers. These become apparent when partners were looking to support his future needs. Solution Focused Approaches Regular IAF meetings were held at the school to begin the 16+ transition process to explore options. This brought together employability agencies and the college to meet with the school, Bob’s parents and his social worker. These were agencies such as Skills Development Scotland, Aberdeenshire Council Employability Service, JCP, LEAD Scotland, YPD, educational psychologist and consultant psychiatrist. Bob’s needs and abilities were discussed giving options to both him and his family to explore. Strategies • Workplace experience placements were set up both in his local community and neighbouring surrounds to determine work readiness. • Outcomes were mixed and it wasn’t possible at that stage to determine any particular employment route. • Input was provided from the Children and Families team to support Bob on a one­ to-one basis outside of the family unit. This was to look at independence skills and socialising as he had no peer group to identify with. This was a successful piece of work. • It was agreed that Bob would have a trial period attending college to determine his ability to cope in that environment. This was during 4th year. • Bob proved that he could cope although it was identified that he worked best in smaller groups alongside young people with similar needs and abilities. Overall this was a positive outcome. Transport was provided by the school door to door with SFL support .
Key Success Factors • Gave the family transitional support whilst Bob was still at school by having the regular IAF meetings. They were considered to be a success. • Gave Bob the chance to fry things whilst still at school such as work experience. • Bob and family became more aware of the support networks and agencies that could be accessed in the future to support him. For example:

•LEAD Scotland could assist with travel training/understanding how to use the bus or the train/read timetables etc/what to do if he missed a travel connection; •SDS along with the college could aid smooth transition from school to college; •JCP were there for the future should Bob need benefit assessments; •Aberdeenshire Council Employability Service could support Bob in the future when he leaves College to look for a job; •CLD could offer Bob an interim activity agreement whilst still at school to be supported in voluntary work or some skills development activity whilst still at school.

Range of Strategies to Promote Positive Behaviour and Improve Learning • In his final years at school if was felt that Bob was not being challenged sufficiently for the world ahead. The school took steps to ensure that Bob’s timetable was changed to reflect this. This kept Bob engaged with attending school and met with parental support. • Steps were put in place to facilitate future independence through a variety of measures, eg work was done with Bob and family to enable him to learn how to use public transport. This took a year to implement. Individualised Planning and a Flexible Curriculum The school were very supportive and mindful of Bob’s individual educational needs and these were reflected in a co-ordinated support plan which became his timetable. At times Bob attended the BASE unit for educational support and at other times he attended mainstream classes with one-to-one support. Partnership Working As a result of this solution focused partnership-working Bob went on to successfully attend college.
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