253 Eltham High Street
London SE9 1TY
Phone & Email
079 7367 3447
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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 social, emotional and mental health difficulties (SEMH), 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, 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 suitability form. 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.
What do I do if I’m not happy with something?
If you are unhappy with anything, please do get in touch with us. It is of paramount importance to us that our families are satisfied with our school and the service we provide for your children, and we take all complaints seriously. Details of how to make a formal complaint and the procedures we follow can be found in our Complaints Policy and a complaints form can be found here.