10. Some Case Studies
All of these case studies show the support we have provided for students from Ashton Sixth Form College. They are real students who are still at the college or who have left recently. For this reason, to protect confidentiality, we have changed their names. Please note: Additional Learning Support is now known as Inclusive Learning
During Year 10 at school Nafisa lost most of her eyesight. When she applied to Ashton Sixth Form College the Additional Learning Support team worked closely with Tameside Sensory Support Services to plan the best course for her and to make sure she got the support she needed.
She enrolled on a Level 2 vocational Health and Social Care course and before she started we provided training for all staff who would be working with her to make sure they knew how to support her in class. We lent her a laptop to do all her work on, and made sure all her materials were enlarged and printed on purple paper so she could read them. She had support in all her classes from Tameside Sensory Support Services learning support assistants.
While she was at college, Nafisa passed Level 2 qualifications in Maths and English, and in her first year achieved a Merit in her Health and Social Care course. This meant she could progress to Level 3, and two years later she achieved a Merit on this course as well.
Nafisa now works full time in a Primary School, supporting young children with their learning. This was what she wanted to do, even before her eyesight started to fail.
Todd was diagnosed with very serious dyslexia when he was at primary school. Despite this, he did well at high school, which meant he was able to enrol on a Level 3 vocational Forensic Science course as well as resitting English.
Before he started college, we provided training on working with students who have dyslexia for staff who would be working with Todd. We agreed with his teachers that he would have learning support assistants to support him in most of his classes. We also arranged for him to have a reader, a writer and extra time for his exams, and for the exams to be printed on lilac coloured paper. By the end of his first year he had achieved his Level 1 qualification in Functional Skills in English.
Because of his successes in the first year, and to promote his independence, we reduced his support so that learning support assistants only went into a third of his lessons. Out of class we provided guidance on applying to university and on getting the Disabled Students’ Allowance.
Todd is now predicted to gain Merits and Passes on his Forensic Science course and is hoping to gain his Level 2 in Functional Skills in English. When he leaves college he plans to study Forensic Chemistry at university in Manchester.
Stacey was born with a moderate hearing impairment and has used hearing aids for most of her life. When she enrolled on the Level 3 vocational Health and Social Care course we arranged training from Tameside Sensory Support Services for all staff who would be working with her. We also leased a radio hearing aid so that she could hear what the teachers were saying in class.
Stacey was a very independent student, and needed no extra support from the Additional Learning Support team. She was extremely successful on her course and achieved a Merit. She is now coming to the end of her course at university where she is studying to become a midwife.
Adam finds it very difficult to speak with people and feels very uncomfortable in crowds. He also struggles to organise his time as he likes to concentrate on his passion for art which means that his other subjects can suffer.
Adam enrolled on an A level programme and before he started we arranged with the Communication, Language and Autistic Spectrum Support Service for him to visit the college. He met his future teachers, found his way around, and saw the Additional Learning Support rooms and met the staff.
Once he started college, Adam spent a lot of his time working independently in the Additional Learning Support department. He also received one to one support with time management and he was encouraged to meet with a small group of students to improve his social skills. In his exams he had 50% extra time, a prompter to ensure he did not spend too much time on any one question, and a separate room.
In his exams he gained grade B in two of his subjects and D in the other. He was also won two awards at the college prize giving evening. He is now at the Manchester College studying a Foundation Degree in Art.
Lee has Duchene Muscular Dystrophy. This is a muscle wasting condition which means that Lee has to use an electronic wheelchair. His limbs are very weak and he gets tired very easily.
Before he came to Ashton Sixth Form College we visited him at school to find out how they supported him, and he came into college to meet his teachers and to make sure he could get around. Because of his condition it was impossible for him to travel round college without help, so at the start of his course we made sure he had a support worker who would meet him at the start of the day, and take him to each of his classes. Once he had started to make friends, we reduced support as much as possible so that his classmates could help him get to his lessons.
We lent Lee a college laptop, and arranged 100% extra time, use of a writer or word processor, and rest breaks for all his exams. We also helped him with his application for university, arranged for him to visit the university of his choice and made sure he got the Disabled Students’ Allowance.
In his exams Lee got grade C in two of his subjects and grade E in the other and he is now at Bolton University studying English Language.
Aaron has serious mental health issues including depression and anxiety which meant that on two occasions he was unable to complete his sixth form studies at school. When he came to Ashton Sixth Form College we spent a lot of time with him ensuring he was on the right course, and introducing him to his teachers so that he would feel more comfortable once his course started.
During his time at college Aaron has had regular sessions with the college counsellor and has attended weekly support with the Additional Learning Support team. We advised teachers to allow him to leave classes whenever he became anxious which greatly reassured him.
For his exams, Aaron is allowed to use a separate room and he also has rest breaks. In his first year exams he gained grade A in all of his subjects and is now planning to move away from home and go to university in the autumn.
Anna has M.E. or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome which means she has very little energy. She was unable to attend school because of this and for this reason her GCSE results did not reflect her ability. She enrolled on a Level 2 vocational ICT course on which she gained a merit, and GCSE Science resit on which she got two 2A*s. She then progressed to A levels and left college with grade A in one of her subjects and C in the other two.
During her time at college, she was allowed to take time out of her classes, and she worked in the Additional Learning Support area when she felt tired. She was also allowed extra time and rest breaks for her exams.
When she left college she gained a place at university studying Mathematics.
Simon was diagnosed with dyspraxia when he was at Primary School. This meant that he finds organisation very hard and he struggles to manage his time. He also has great difficulty writing legibly.
He enrolled on A levels and during his time at college he attended weekly support sessions to ensure his work was kept in good order and to help him timetable his independent study time. We also lent him a laptop which he took to all his classes so that he could take legible notes.
For his exams he used a word processor and had extra time. He gained grade C in each of his A levels and went on to work full time as a teaching assistant, working with young children who have learning difficulties. Since taking up employment he has also completed a Foundation Degree in Education at Ashton Sixth Form College. While studying on this course he received out of class study sessions which were paid for by the Disabled Students’ Allowance.