At Odyssey House School, the curriculum has been developed specifically to remove any barriers to learning that pupils may have as a result of having had poor education experiences in a previous setting or having high levels of anxiety or in line with other needs that are included in their Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP). Our offering at the school includes small classes sizes – with a maximum of 6 pupils in a class, supportive and, as necessary, provision of interventions, careful planning, and flexibility. We emphasise mindfulness and resilience in each individual. We do not fit the pupils to our curriculum and provision; we tailor our curriculum and provision to fit the pupils. At times, this will require a flexible approach to the timetable, for example, for those pupils who might previously have refused to attend school may be offered a transition programme with a graduated increased attendance into full-time education. This will reflect in the pupil’s personalised learning and support plan.
However, the overriding objective is for young people to leave Odyssey House School with a high level of self-esteem, confidence in their ability to learn and develop further and to be able to engage positively and productively in their next educational setting or in employment.
Each student’s personalised programme of study will include areas of learning that meet their particular needs. These might include, for example, subjects for GCSE such as English, Maths, Science & Humanities, the full primary curriculum, personal, social and health education, and/or extra help with literacy, numeracy or anxiety.
However, in addition, each year whatever the age, pupils will embark upon an academic journey organised around themes such as ‘Animal Rights’, ‘Value of Friendships’, ‘Culture, Identity and Place’, or ‘Global Understanding and Environmental Ethics’. Instead of simply being told facts, figures, and concepts, their time and energy will be focused much more on asking questions, probing, examining, reflecting and linking ideas together to come up with their own hypotheses and solutions. This learning process is creative, alive and engaging because they are an essential and active participant.
With the guidance of the staff team, pupils will learn to analyse complicated problems, develop workable solutions and effectively communicate their learning to others. This may be enhanced by visits to enrich their learning in a subject or topic. After each visit, they will return to Odyssey House to reflect on, document and present what they have learned. Gradually, the complex issues they have been studying are brought to life while their understanding becomes deeper and more connected.
Odyssey House School recognises that each pupil is a unique individual with their own particular strengths. We provide a challenging curriculum for each one, but do not try to provide a ‘one size fits all’ educational experience. Our curriculum is flexible and fluid providing our learners with the freedom to choose in pursuing their passions, goals, and talents. With this in mind, we have three main pathways which help inspire and guide our students to do the very best they can, academically and personally, during their time with us.
These pathways are as follows:
Pupils explore learning and what they enjoy. Explorers restore their love of learning, fill in gaps and resume making progress. This motivates pupils to engaging with the content and discover it further. There is a strong focus on promoting pupils’ personal development, interaction and life skills.
This approach is prevalent for pupils in Key Stage 2 but can continue through Key Stage 3 and on to the end of Key Stage 4 if appropriate.
Pupils refine their choices, skills and passions in learning. Teaching in subjects and thematic learning deepens and widens preparing pupils for the next steps in their statutory education. The focus on promoting pupils’ personal development, interaction and life skills is maintained.
This approach is prevalent in Key Stage 3 but exists to some extent for some pupils in Key Stage 2. It can continue to the end of Key Stage 4 where students study a combination of academic, vocational and thematic areas of learning.
This is prevalent at Key Stage 4. Pupils have a clear vision of their next steps in education or employment and how to achieve it. Teaching focuses on academic and vocational learning, employability and life skills.
We are also a registered exam centre and offer a range of GCSE’s, Entry Level Course, Project based accredited learning and ASDAN qualifications.
We are currently in the process of increasing our age range to 18 so that pupils may stay at the school longer if necessary to take exams or gain more qualifications that they did not achieve at Key Stage 4 due to any learning barriers they may have faced.