What is the Formal Curriculum
The formal curriculum is a tool which enables the learner to become an active, engaged and contributor to our society. For some learners the best path to this goal is via accreditations, for some it is not. We celebrate our learner’s individuality and put their needs and wants at the forefront of all curricula decision.
The pathway follows a Secondary approach offering a broad and balanced curriculum, involving form teachers and personalised timetables delivered by specialist teachers. Although in some cases we are teaching adapted national curriculum content, it is being delivered in a highly specialist and nuanced way, ensuring the learners time on this pathway is as meaningful and impactful as possible. Some learners will need approach which is not aligned to the national curriculum to best further their education and preparation for adulthood.
Our holistic well being approach enables our learners to access the national curriculum fully in an adapted and inclusive way. Utilising the EHCP and aspirational goals which are set outside these curriculum aims results in our offer being beyond that of just qualifications, we offer an education which champions access, develops cultural capital and supports mental well being. As a school we are uniquely placed to do this with our highly skilled specialist subject teachers and provision we are able to offer a secondary school approach. This contributes to the sequential nature of our school, ensuring learners are transferring knowledge and skills into new and exciting subject areas.
The Minerva Centre
Linden Lodge School is a regional school for pupils with vision and multi-sensory impairment. We currently have 146 pupils on roll. We offer a wide range of curriculum and accreditation pathways tailored to meet the needs of our diverse population.
Pupils who follow the National Curriculum with the specialist support and access arrangements provided by qualified teachers of the visually-impaired are placed in the Minerva Centre, a specialist Centre for higher ability learners.
Our aim is to prepare pupils for adulthood and to prepare them for as fully independent lives as possible and also to enjoy learning whilst they are here with us. We provide an expanded curriculum and enhanced opportunities for pupils to experience a range of learning, work experience and leisure learning activities.
Programmes are holistic and tailored to meet pupils’ individual needs. The timetable reflects the curriculum at KS 3, 4 and 5 but is expanded to include habilitation, Music therapy and specialist PSHE programmes. Teaching is by specialist subject teachers and in sixth form pupils have the opportunity to choose from a broad range of courses including GCSE, BTEC.
We also offer the option of a Waking Day curriculum through our residential department. Minerva students have access to an Independent Living flat which enables residential students to develop the independence skills and ability to share accommodation with others in preparation for adult lives and college.
Our 3 acre campus is fully accessible for visually impaired students. We have on site paediatric nursing. The school directly employs a large team of therapists including Speech and Language therapists, Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists. The Minerva Centre has a dedicated team of therapists who know the students well and have a daily presence in the department providing both individual and group therapy integrated into each pupil’s curriculum.
We have a Learning resources Department on-site. Pupils are individually assessed and have access to a range of Information technology and Braille equipment depending on individual needs. These include:
Each pupil has weekly access to our team of Habilitationists directly employed by the school who provide individual programmes including independent travel and independent living skills to prepare pupils for adulthood..
The approach of the Minerva Centre is to provide an ambitious holistic programme individually tailored to meet a pupil’s strengths and needs. We provide in addition to academic courses the opportunity through specialist teams and expertise to develop a sense of self-worth and also to develop the ability to use leisure and recreation opportunities. We have a wealth of Art and sporting facilities which enable pupils to develop an enjoyment of Sport at different levels and also to develop their creativity.
In summary, our ethos is to enable students to develop confidence, independence and academic success and to partner with parents in doing so.