Informal Consultation on two proposals :
(1) To change the designation of the existing George Green’s specialist resource from Complex Needs to Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC)
(2) To increase the total number of places from 15 to 20.
1 George Green’s School currently has more than 1200 students on roll.
2 Of these, around 15 students in total across Years 7-13 are funded for places in the school’s specialist resource.
3 The resource is currently designated as being for students with Complex Needs.
4 The school proposes to :
- Change the designation to Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC)
- Increase the total number of places from 15 to 20.
2 What are the school’s reasons?
1 Complex Needs is a very imprecise description, which can be interpreted to cover almost any combination of SEND (Special Educational Need or Disability).
2 Partly because of this, a number of the students currently enrolled in the resource come from out of borough, ie they are not Tower Hamlets residents.
3 Whilst we care about all our students and do our 100% best to meet the needs of every single one of them, we are first and foremost a community school.
4 There is a growing need for specialist provision in Tower Hamlets for students on the autistic spectrum. The Local Authority has recently expanded provision for primary age children and these children will soon be coming through to secondary level.
5 Redesignating our specialist provision for ASC will greatly assist the LA in meeting this growing need and also assist us in delivering our overarching aim of meeting the needs of our most immediate community.
6 Increasing the capacity of our specialist provision from 15 places to 20 will also assist the LA in meeting its responsibility to provide as fully as possible for Tower Hamlets students on the autism spectrum
3 When will the re-designation take effect?
1 Should the re-designation be agreed, the school will begin taking students with ASC from September 2022.
2 It may be that some of these students will have other special needs or disabilities in addition to autism, but autism will be the key determining factor whether a student is placed at George Green’s or not.
4 What will be the impact on SEND students already enrolled at George Green’s?
1 The small number of students with Complex Needs who are already enrolled at the school will be wholly unaffected.
2 The school will continue to meet their needs right through to the end of their schooling, just as if the re-designation had not occurred.
3 Neither they nor their parents/carers should notice any difference at all in the quality of provision available to them.
5 What will be the impact on other students already enrolled at George Green’s?
1 Almost all the students currently enrolled in our specialist resource are members of a tutor group of students in their year, covering the whole range of need and ability present in George Green’s, and routinely participate in tutor time activities with the rest of their group.
2 The vast majority of these students follow a very similar timetable to the rest of their tutor group, attending almost exactly the same classes as the rest of their tutor group.
3 So, students of all ages at George Green’s are already completely used to learning alongside students with additional needs, including students with needs considerably more challenging in some cases than will be the case when the school’s move to its new specialism will have fully worked through to include all year groups.
4 Many classes at George Green’s already have additional staff assigned to them in support of the class teacher and these arrangements will continue.
6 Would there be any significant changes to the existing school buildings?
1 No. The school already has a small suite of rooms, which are used solely for delivering lessons to students enrolled in the specialist resource who, for what whatever reason, are not able to be taught for a particular lesson with the rest of their tutor group.
2 Additionally, bespoke provision for students with ASC will be designed into George Green’s new building, which is currently in the planning stage but expected to be complete for September 2024.
7 Why are we consulting you?
1 The Governing Body and the Local Authority have a statutory responsibility to consult all members of the school community before making any significant change to a school.
2 This consultation by the Governing Body is the first of two stages and will last for 6 weeks.
3 At the end of the consultation, if the Governing Body decides to go ahead with the proposal, there will be a further period of consultation by the Local Authority, lasting 4 weeks.
4 But, even if that were not the case, we would still want to consult, because your views are important to us. We want as many members of our school community to have their say before we make any final decision.
5 As well as parents/carers and members of our wider school community, students also will be given ample opportunity to share their opinions and ask questions.
8 What should I do if I want to comment on the proposal or ask questions?
1 You can respond to our consultation by completing the online form, which can be found here https://forms.office.com/r/Pzc8MbRaNf
2 You can collect a hard copy of the form from reception and return it to us
3 If responding by post, please mark your envelope ‘Community Consultation’.
4 Or you can email your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
5 Or, if you would like to hear what other people have to say about the proposal, you can attend a community consultation evening, to be chaired by the headteacher at 5pm on Wednesday 17th November 2021.
6 NB this meeting will be held on Microsoft Teams. To book your place, please email email@example.com
7 NB the community consultation period will last for 6 weeks, ending on Friday 10th December, so please make sure any response you decide to make is received by the deadline.
9 If the school decides to go ahead with the proposal, what will happen next?
1 If the school decides to go ahead, a formal request to change the designation of the specialist resource will go to the LA.
2 The LA will then publish a formal notice of intent to change the designation of the George Green’s specialist resource.
3 There will then be a further period of formal consultation, lasting 4 weeks.
4 At the end of the 4 weeks, having considered any further feedback received, the council will take a final decision regarding the school’s designation.