Gemma is a 14 year old teenager who likes to be busy and help others. Gemma started at St Rose’s in Nursery. She has a genetic condition and cerebral palsy, which affects her mobility, learning and communication. She really enjoys being at school, learning and developing her independence in many ways. Gemma has attended ‘Driving School’ to help her develop her wheelchair skills and she can often be seen running errands around school on her own, as well as her regular job of collecting the registers at lunchtime.
With support from our occupational therapists and physiotherapists Gemma’s individual programme includes weekly hydrotherapy sessions and using a standing frame every day which has many benefits, including helping to prevent problems developing with her hip joints and muscles shortening. She wears hand splits to support her wrists in a better position, which help her use her hands in a more functional way. Gemma also has her wheelchair adapted to enable her legs to be raised. Staff support her to follow a daily programme, in order to improve her circulation.
Gemma uses an Accent 800 loaded with Grid 3. This is a symbol-based communication device which has a voice output to support her communication and learning. She is encouraged to make full sentences, and is challenged to both speak and listen, making questions for other students and answering questions asked of her by her peers. She is making progress following the St Rose’s Phonics program and is learning to blend sounds to make short words. Gemma loves learning, particularly mathematics, cooking and singing, and can regularly be heard in singing assemblies on Friday afternoon. Gemma has also joined the school orchestra this year to further develop her love of music.
Gemma enjoys extra-curricular and social activities and is a member of the St Rose’s Scout group. She is a very active member of the St Rose’s school community and can always be relied on to join in, whether it is carol singing, raising money for charities, participating in sports day, or representing the school in local inter school competitions.
Gemma enjoys her overnight and weekend stays at St Rose’s. These have helped to develop her independence and provide her with regular opportunities to spend time with her friends.
St Rose’s aims to provide a broad and balanced curriculum that offers stimulating opportunities appropriate to the needs of our students.
A team of experienced therapists are employed directly by the school to work alongside education and care staff. Collaborative therapy and sharing that knowledge is integral to the work of our school.
When a child or young person is happy, they have the best chance of progressing and achieving their goals. Ensuring that your child’s emotional needs are met is as important as their physical requirements.