First full year for the Albert Einstein Preston Centre
Wednesday, July 21, 2021
The Albert Einstein Preston Centre (AEPC) is Preston School Academy's onsite autism resource base. Students who attend the AEPC have additional support, allowing them to access and thrive within a mainstream teaching environment at the Yeovil school. Students are supported by teaching assistants who may accompany them to lessons or facilitate learning activities at the AEPC, and also take part in additional provision such as using the school's onsite forest school, taking part in life skills lessons in which students cook at the AEPC kitchen or take walks in the local area to practise road safety skills and interacting with Preston's therapy dog Dylan.
The end of this academic year marks the end of the first full year in which the AEPC's extension has been up and running, marking a new chapter in the history of the provision. Originally owned and run by Somerset County Council for just a handful of students, Preston School Academy took over the running of the AEPC in 2020 at a time when the provision was extended to allow for a greater number of students.
A local monitoring OFSTED visit to the school included a note about the provision, stating that students were well supported within the AEPC. To mark Autism Awareness Week this year, staff and students at the AEPC created a video to share more about what this provision looks like, as well as showing off rooms inside as part of a virtual tour.
Glenn Hampson, the Autism Base Leader, expressed his pride at leading the provision: "The students and staff do amazing things every day and, as is the beauty of working with young people with autism, every one of these days is different. Our staff know and support our students so well, providing an individualised, creative and flexible curriculum to enable them to flourish and make progress in all areas of their academic, social and emotional profiles".
Capacity at the AEPC continues to go, with 20 young people across years 7-11 set to start or continue their learning in September. There are currently teaching assistant vacancies both within the Albert Einstein Preston Centre and also in the mainstream SEND department, for which job adverts are available on the school website at https://www.prestonschool.co.uk/vacancies/associate-staff