We are lucky to learn and play in a beautiful setting.
The Oaklands Centre is accommodated in one wing of the mainstream school. Each Centre class has its own self-contained suite of light, airy classrooms and they share a safe, enclosed outdoor play area.
The classrooms are very structured spaces with clearly demarcated areas for group work, individual work and relaxation. Each class has its own toilets and they share a kitchenette and cloakroom. Each classroom also has a safe de-escalation space to support any pupil who becomes overloaded and may want some personal space.
The Centre is a deliberately ‘low arousal’ environment. We do not have any visually distracting displays inside the classrooms and décor has been carefully chosen with sensory processing in mind. All of our spaces are clearly structured so that pupils can easily understand their function. Across the whole school, clutter and visual distraction are kept to an absolute minimum.
We are passionate about the outdoors and the benefits of outdoor play and learning. We have a beautiful school site and make use of the outdoor spaces across the school grounds in all seasons. Research suggests that Forest School environments are particularly beneficial to autistic children and we are fortunate to have daily access. We encourage our pupils to spend time engaging in natural creativity and ‘heavy work’ by building and creating with logs, pallets, tyres and crates.