About

About Our School
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Our Purpose

What We Can Offer

Social Arts for Education is a small Independent Special School catering for children with social, emotional and mental health difficulties, particularly those who are recovering from bullying or those on the autism spectrum.

SAFE is much smaller than most schools with fewer than 25 students on roll.  We offer a curriculum that can be individualised and options to study remotely. We can tailor learning so that each student’s educational experience remains holistic and offers students the chance to develop both academically and socially.

Our MISSION AND VISION

We Are Providing an Environment for Our Students to Grow & Excel

At SAFE, we believe that every child should have the chance to learn in a safe and understanding environment.  We strive to help children who have been unable to cope in school due to bullying and social communication difficulties.  We are extremely proud of how our students develop into happy and successful adults.  We believe every young person has the right to an education and should be able to have the opportunity to feel part of a community.  Although our main objective is to teach and develop knowledge and skills, we understand that we are not able to do this without first creating an environment in which children can learn to trust again.

The art of social interaction remains at the forefront of our curriculum and extra-curricular activities because we know that school can be an extremely lonely place to be without a friend.  We endeavour to provide a holistic education for all our students so that psychological needs are met in order to develop skills such as learning, socialising, communication, managing anxiety and low self-esteem.  Our overall goal for each child at SAFE is for them to look back with fond memories of school and look forward with excitement about the opportunities that stand before them.

Our Vision

Teaching the Adults of tomorrow

We offer a safe and nurturing learning environment with specialised, highly individualised transitions for new students.

 

SPELL framework | Class schedule | Extra Curricular Activities

The KS3 programme is designed to be inclusive and engaging, and to help younger learners to transition effectively to a secondary setting.

SPELL framework | Class schedule | Curricular Activities

Our KS4 programmes are designed to provide our students with both the necessary qualifications for further study, and the independent life skills they will need as adults.

SPELL framework | Class schedule | Curricular Activities

Working with local colleges, we create transitional programmes for our KS4+ learners to help to ensure their success in moving on to further education and adult life.

SPELL framework | Class schedule | Curricular Activities

In addition to receiving targeted support in class where necessary, students at SAFE can be offered additional 1:1 sessions for various different reasons, be it academic, social or emotional need.
SPELL framework | Class schedule | Curricular Activities
Lessons at SAFE are taught according to the National Autistic Society’s SPELL framework, which is designed to best understand and respond to the needs of children and adults on the autism spectrum. It focuses on five principles that have been identified as vital elements of best practice in autism, and emphasises ways to change the environment and our approaches to meet the specific needs of each person.

SPELL framework | Class schedule | Curricular Activities

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the questions we get asked most frequently. If you’d like to know something else, please get in touch using the contact form above. 

What is SAFE?

SAFE is an independent special school, catering for children with mainly social, anxiety and mental health difficulties, mainly those due to bullying or autism and related conditions.

What is the difference between SAFE and a mainstream school?

SAFE is much smaller than most schools – we only have three classrooms. As a result, our student roll is very low, which makes each child’s experience at SAFE more individualised and holistic than at most provisions . SAFE’s teaching methods and environment reflect the SPELL framework (constructed by the National Autistic Society). The framework, which stands for Structure, Positive Expectations and Attitudes, Empathy, Low Arousal and Links, encourages a low-stimuli environment where children are at ease, accepted by others and are open to a variation of life opportunities. SAFE’s main goal is to allow children to learn in a safe and understanding environment so children’s confidence becomes strong enough to take the life opportunities they deserve.

What's it like to study at SAFE?

Although SAFE offers a broad, balanced curriculum, the number of subjects on offer is lower than at a mainstream secondary. This makes the timetable much less busy – students might have three different subjects in one day, rather than five or six. There are only a few teachers and teaching assistants too, all of whom build close trusting relationships with their pupils. Although students are expected to behave with respect towards staff, they are allowed to call staff by their first names, and staff might dress in a more relaxed and casual manner than in a mainstream school. This all helps the atmosphere of the centre to be a calm, happy one.

Do SAFE students have to wear a uniform?

SAFE does not have a uniform or a dress code – our students come in wearing whatever they feel comfortable in.

How do I get a place for my child at SAFE?

To apply for a place at SAFE, first fill in the contact form above, selecting ‘I want to enquire about a place for my child at SAFE’ as your reason for contact. Our admissions coordinator, Lisa, will then get in touch to guide you through the process. Please fill in the suitability form as comprehensively as you can – it’s designed to give us a full picture of  your child’s needs, in order that we can be certain we are the right place for you and your child. 

An outline of all the steps we take during admission can be found here (page opens in new window)

Does my child have to have an EHCP to study at SAFE?

No, SAFE is open to children with or without EHCPs, providing they meet our criteria and we can meet their needs.

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Testimonials

What Parents are Saying

“Amazing set up and provision that has filled a gap in the Education system for children who need this and we feel lucky and privileged to have our son accepted and starting to make progress and continue his education in such a supportive and wonderful environment.

“Someone was definitely looking down on us the day we stumbled on this amazing place which completely turned my son’s life around. I presented you with a depressed, unmotivated and frustrated 12 year old and you gave me back a bright, lovable, spirited teenager with a mischievous sense of humour and faith fully restored in teachers!”

Thank you for being amazing with my daughter. She said she read out in class today which is something she never would have done, she wouldn’t even put her hand up in case she got something wrong and people laughed.”

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