At Odyssey, we understand that sometimes just the thought of returning to a school environment can be daunting for some children. Hence, we keep our approach to learning quite flexible. When children are offered a full-time place at the school, we offer them an opportunity to re-engage in full time education in a phased way. We offer a flexible timetable with gradual and increased attendance in line with the needs of the child. Each pupil has a keyworker allocated to them and we work closely with the child and their family to allow for a successful transition into full-time education.
In our experience, we find that it could take up to a term for children who have some issues around school attendance. However, for children with high levels of anxieties and / or significant early childhood trauma, re-engagement and transition can take much longer.
To aid successful education re-engagement, we have created a unique transition programme for pupils coming into Odyssey House School, called ‘Nostos’
‘Nostos’ is a recurring theme in Ancient Greek literature – after undertaking many challenges, the hero finally returns home by sea. However, it’s rarely if ever straightforward. Usually, it’s an epic journey in of itself, involving shipwrecks, being stranded in unknown lands, and facing trials that test both their physical and inner strength. But those who successfully returned were seen as the greatest heroes of all. For many children, getting back to the classroom requires a heroic effort, too. It requires them to overcome painful and possibly traumatic experiences, deal with the fear of the unknown, and adapt to being part of a community after long periods of isolation. The Nostos transition programme is designed to support them as they take on their own epic quest. Our Nostos programme is designed to support children on their heroic journey and its name is a recognition of their resilience.