The ARC at Churchfields
At Churchfields we are incredibly proud of our Additionally Resourced Classes (ARC). We have provision for 18 children, split across 2 class groups and can offer places to children with an EHCP from Reception – Year 6.
The ARC is an integral part of the school and the children have access to the same opportunities as those in the mainstream. The children receive specialist art, computing and PE lessons and where appropriate, specialist Spanish lessons too. Children in The ARC classes also benefit from an afternoon of Forest School every week led by our qualified Forest School Leader.
The ARC classes are each staffed with qualified teachers and Learning Support Assistants. In order to encourage the children to become independent learners, they do not have full time 1-1 support. Our curriculum and timetable is designed to encourage and nurture this growing independence.
The curriculum in The ARC is planned alongside that of mainstream classes. Phonics is taught following the same systematic format as the mainstream but at a much slower pace and is more integrated through the day and built into routine.
ARC teachers work closely alongside mainstream colleagues when planning for English. The specific focus is then adapted to suit the individual children’s needs, keeping their EHCP targets in the forefront of planning.
Maths teaching is bespoke to the needs of the individual, with some children working completely practically and focusing on the basic skills of counting and ordering numbers whilst others follow the Maths No Problem scheme, like the mainstream school – when they are ready to do so.
Life skills are a regular part of the curriculum and cooking is taught fortnightly across both classes.
There are a number of adaptations made to the mainstream curriculum in order to allow the children in The ARC to achieve and succeed.
Sensory circuits, the Zone of Regulation, clear use of visual resources, Makaton, Widgit symbols and sensory breaks are all built in to be a regular feature of the daily timetable.
Social interaction time and life skills lessons are also included as part of the regular day in the ARC classes.
Both ARC classes cook fortnightly, another building block in developing independence and life skills for the children.
There is a dedicated Sensory Room for The ARC to use both in timetabled sessions and throughout the day whenever children need to use it. There is also a dedicated hygiene suite, which is used for those children requiring intimate care throughout the school day.
Integration in to the mainstream classes takes place for each individual child within The ARC as is appropriate for their own needs. Some children have their playtimes with mainstream friends, others join classes for PE, art, maths or English. Mainstream and specialist teachers know the ARC children very well and work hard to ensure they are able to meet all children’s needs when in their classes.
We have regular visits from our Speech and Language Therapist who works closely alongside ARC staff, ensuring they are trained to support children with their SaLT needs throughout the week. There are also visits from our Music Therapist and we have great links with The Bromley Complex Needs team, Educational Psychologist and other professionals who visit the school regularly.
Assessment in The ARC
Assessment is a continual process as staff are always making informal assessments progress towards EHCP outcomes and these are formally reviewed once a year through the Annual Review process. Academic progress is also tracked throughout the year using Target Tracker, the online assessment tool used throughout the school.
The ARC use the Seesaw app to share regular updates and photographs with families, enabling them to have a greater understanding of the learning and fun that happens during the school day and also as an easy communication method.