Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapists at St Rose’s aim to maximise the functional ability and occupational performance of the individual, helping students to develop and achieve.

Occupational Therapy is a person-centred profession, ‘Occupation’ refers to everything people do within daily life, these may be self-care activities (for example getting ready to go out, washing, bathing, dressing, eating and drinking) work and productivity (for example, playing, accessing the curriculum) and leisure (for example, socialising, sports, hobbies and clubs)

Students at St Rose’s have complex and varying needs, Occupational Therapy aims to enable students the opportunity to live to their full potential, to explore and achieve throughout their own unique lives.

In order for Occupational Therapists to assess students’ needs they use a variety of both standard and non-standardised assessments and observation, as well as using a person centred approach to achieve relevant goals on a regular basis.

Students are recognised as individuals, having specific needs. Functional and meaningful activity is used as part of individual programmes aiming to promote motivation, health and optimum independence.

Due to varying student need within the organisation Occupational Therapists work on a variety of areas for example,

  • Sensory Processing Disorders,

  • Behaviour management,

  • Independent living skills,

  • Self-help skills,

  • Job/Work coaching,

  • Motor Skills Development,

  • Upper Limb Splinting,

  • Travel Training,

  • Equipment Provision,

  • Moving and Handling Assessment and guidance,

  • Risk Management,

  • Independent Mobility Skills

  • Assessment of Perceptual Skills.

Having onsite Occupational therapy allows therapists to take a responsive approach to need lead therapy spanning the entire waking day curriculum. Therapy can be delivered within class rooms, residential settings, and in the therapy department.

St Roses has always had pride in its close ‘family’ feel; Occupational Therapists are a part of this, working with staff, families and the transdisciplinary team within the school and beyond ensuring a consistent approach across every aspect of the students’ life.

Occupational Therapists at St Roses are HCPC registered, fully insured with British Association of Occupational Therapists, members of the Sensory Integration network, specialist sections of British Association of Occupational Therapists and peer review groups for Occupational Therapists working within Specialist provision.

Sensory integration

Sensory Integration is the foundation for function within all aspects of daily life.

The sensory system involves vision, auditory, tactile, olfactory, proprioception (pressure and positioning) and vestibular (positioning and balance) input.

Sensory integration refers to the way that we take in sensory information, sort, organise and put together sensory information, we then produce an adaptive behavioural response.

Sometimes people find it difficult to process sensory information, this can be called Sensory Integration Difficulties or Sensory Processing Disorder. Often this manifests itself in adapted behaviours and difficulties.
Often young people seek activities that provide them with enhanced sensory experiences. By helping young people to recognise sensory need, positive and constructive sensory activities enable people to develop a more mature and efficient way of organising their sensory input.

Occupational Therapist’s (OTs) play a fundamental role in assessing and providing treatment or input for people with sensory difficulties.

Occupational Therapists help to design programmes, often make environmental adaptations and assist with strategies and equipment to help the young person to learn, move, develop appropriate behaviours and be as independent as possible.

Some of the ways that St Roses helps young people to manage sensory processing is to provide regular access to sensory experiences for example;

  • Sensory Obstacle course

  • Sensory diets

  • Room adaptation

  • Equipment provision

  • Flexible classroom sessions to meet sensory requirements

  • Sensory diary to record sensory experiences

  • Coping strategies to students, staff and families.

  • Dual purpose activities, hydrotherapy, rebound therapy, horse riding with RDA.

St Roses takes a whole school approach to sensory processing; it is a part of lessons, break times and leisure times within the school. Professionals within the school and outside agencies liaise in the assessment and provision of sensory integration. Our current Occupational Therapist is working towards Sensory Integration Practitioner status.




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.