Our Flexible Education provision is led by Owen Matthews.
Peterhouse School offers Flexible Education support for young people who would find a school environment too challenging, or whose level of anxiety prevents them from coming into school.
Flexible Education is a highly bespoke package that meets the needs and addresses barriers to learning for each individual young person, with support delivered by experienced school staff at the family home or in the community. Staff take a flexible and creative approach and can often address learning targets via ‘under the radar’ learning, framing a particular curriculum around individual interests and motivations of each student.
The sessions focus on preparing young people for their next steps, which might be attendance at Peterhouse or at another educational provision, or transition into adult life. This alternative approach has supported students to achieve fantastic outcomes, helping them to grow into successful autistic adults.
This is what the parent of one of our Flexible Education students has told us:
"The starting point for all of the services we have received from Peterhouse is assessing what support we need and working with my family to meet our needs for support and finding ways to make this happen which seems to be the opposite of many of our experiences of even specialist community services which seem to try to make us fit into what they know and can provide already, which has very frequently made things significantly worse for all of us. I have noticed that where Peterhouse feels an adaptation to normal working practices is needed to best support our family they will strive to make those adaptations to their services in a way that I have not experienced before.
An example of this is Peterhouse providing a team to fill gaps in support that they are proactively looking for and motivated to close. Sue was directed to help support our family with an unmet need for support for me with dealing with practical issues. Peterhouse and Sue herself have recognised that in order to do this an holistic understanding of the whole family as well as my daughter’s needs is necessary, not just an understanding of various support systems that are available or just of myself as an individual.
It has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated by me that where there is felt to be a knowledge gap Peterhouse staff will proactively seek to support learning.
All of this work has a huge and significant cumulative effect and I really consider Sue, her attitude, her knowledge and her skills to be absolutely invaluable to our whole family now. She has given me the gift of a little bit of breathing room to be able to make sure that I can take care of myself and function better in regards to meeting my primary responsibilities towards my daughter and her siblings.
This has made a real difference to us all in just the relatively small amount of time Peterhouse has been working with me. This is how all services should work for every child with unconventional and complex needs, and it is a really essential and path-finding project that Peterhouse is developing that I expect to make a very large impact on our outcomes as a whole family, and other families like ours."