Therapeutic Support

What is therapy?

Therapy is the process of meeting with a trained specialist to resolve problematic behaviours, beliefs, feelings (including emotional disturbance), relationship issues, and/or somatic responses (sensations in the body). Therapy targets specific issues that impact on education and the ability to function in society or as an individual. Therefore this kind of support is essential for long term benefits in life; we want to ensure that our students are able to contribute to both themselves and their families and society in a meaningful way when they leave us.

Information

CPD will be delivered on a regular basis to ensure that staffs understand the therapeutic work that is being implemented. Staff will also receive group supervision lead by one of the onsite therapists. This can also be extended to individual sessions where there is a need and some staff voluntary ask for support. Staff wellbeing is key since this feeds directly back into the healthy running of the school.

Initially during the first month the onsite therapists will not engage while students build trusting relationships, therapists will integrate with the general life of the school whilst maintaining professional distance. During this time staff will also start delivering emotional literacy programs and begin implementing the humanistic approach across the school. If students can understand their own emotions it speeds up the process of any type of therapy.

Therapy based on CBT will last for a period of 6 – 12 weeks. The on-site therapist will also work alongside behaviour managers, SLT and Staff so that effective and consistent SEN / SEMH targets are set and monitored in students. The therapist will have access to the strengths and difficulties questionnaire in a spreadsheet format so that this can be used to measure progress a two set points during the year. The therapist will also do an assessment of SEMH using the Star System and this will also form a baseline for therapeutic progress and again this is kept on a spreadsheet. Therapists are also required to keep ongoing detailed clinical notes, and therapeutic progress is discussed in fortnightly meetings with the head of therapy and an end of term therapeutic report is completed for SLT and the head of therapy. After CBT had ended the therapist will move onto Psychotherapy and more long term goals are set depending on the individual needs of the students.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy – Tier 2

Initially students will receive CBT, since this effectively softens barriers; this type of therapy is solution focused therapy and is well documented and evidenced for quick results. It is mainly used to deal with unhealthy believes, strong emotional reactions and their subsequent resultant behaviours. CBT does not require the student to discuss any past history and this becomes an ideal platform for beginning therapy and gaining parental support. Eventually by targeting negative emotions it allows students to open up to the benefits of Psychotherapy and this type of therapy deals with the root cause of behavioural and emotional difficulty, it does not just prevent emotional disturbances it removes them and the subsequent symptoms. CBT also filters well into boundary setting within the school. It enables professionals to set targets for groups or individual students encouraging the whole school approach to therapy. REBT can also be used to work with groups and is particularly useful for developing self-esteem.

 Psychotherapy – Tier 2 – 3

Psychotherapy is more of a long term therapeutic technique; it is very powerful in identifying and helping to remove the roots of emotional and behavioural disturbances as opposed to just identifying negative thoughts and beliefs and changing them. This type of therapy also opens up the possibility of systemic work with student families to help improve relationships and dynamics at home. Psychotherapy can help students become more authentic especially those with identity issues, this can help us tackle exploitation, addictions, and gang / anti-social affiliations.

Staff support – Tier 1

Teachers will also be expected to set a strong boundaries which is a goal in individual therapy, help deliver emotional literacy, promote the humanistic approach, and avoid using negative emotions as forms of behavioural control. Staff development and knowledge is key in promoting the therapeutic approach. It is important that we do not undo the good work that is already being implemented.

We use a variety of different types of therapy, utilising on site fully trained accredited professionals who are registered with the health and care professionals’ council HCPC.

  1. Cognitive Behaviour Therapists, CBT or Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy REBT. (SHORT TERM).
  2. Psychotherapy – Drama Psychotherapy (BADTH) or Talk Psychotherapy following the Humanistic framework. (LONG TERM).
  3. Staff training; a whole school therapeutic framework is implemented to facilitate the ongoing work. This includes CPD for SEMH awareness and key indicators, emotional literacy, and how different types of therapy work and what affect it will have on students. Although not trained, staffs still play a vital role in facilitating the work of other key professionals.

All therapists and staff will receive regular supervision.

  1. Individual therapeutic support in the form of a specific type of therapy or life coaching if a young person cannot get pass the stigma attached to term therapy.
  2. Group work.
  3. Whole school therapeutic interventions via staff training and CPDL.

We have faith that therapy leads to positive life long lasting benefits so this really forms part of the Socio-Educational model.