Admissions / Referral Procedure
"My (boy) went to 3 other schools that couldn't manage his behaviour. But here they can. He’s learnt more in two years here than in all the others. Cressey isn't negative towards pupils, it’s all positive. It's a brilliant school, I'd recommend it to any child with behaviour problems."
Parent, July 2020
"(Cressey) transforms pupils’ education and ultimately their life chances ... (Students) make huge strides in their social and emotional development.”
Ofsted, March 2018
Admissions / Referral Procedure
All Cressey’s students have ECHPs and complex needs, many have been excluded from other schools in the past, and many have been out of school for extended periods before they come to Cressey. We therefore need to be careful to get our assessment correct, to ensure we can meet the identified needs before offering a place. All admissions will be considered individually, and the needs of each young person will be taken into account, including existing, new and potential pupils.
To do this, and to help the LA / Parent / Carer / Student to decide their preference, Cressey College follows the following process. We do not charge any fees for this process.
- Assessment of the Papers. The first step is that we assess the student's EHCP, and any other reports that the LA has provided, to check that we can meet the identified needs. Please note that if the Papers have not been provided by the LA, and initial contact has been made direct by a Parent / Carer, then we can still proceed with most of the process below; but we would not be able to make a placement offer to the LA.
- Home Visit by the Headteacher. The second step is that the Headteacher will then visit the potential student and parent / carer, at home. This is so that she can talk personally with both the potential student and the parent(s) / carer(s), so she can better understand the child’s true needs and difficulties. She will also talk about what the school day is like at Cressey, and explain the different site options. In the process she will discuss and assess which of Cressey's five sites (or two off-site programmes) would best meet the student's needs. She will also be happy to answer any and all questions the student and parent / carer may have at this stage.
- Visit to Cressey by the Potential Student and their Parent(s) / Carer(s).Assuming that we still feel that Cressey can meet the identified needs, potential students and their parent(s) / carer(s) will then be invited to visit the most appropriate one of Cressey’s sites. This will be to have a look round, to get a feel for what it's really like, and to have a talk with some of the staff and perhaps some of the students too, if appropriate. The visit is likely to take 40-60 minutes, depending on how many questions there are.
- Potential Student attends a Taster Session / Morning. Potential students will then be invited to attend one or more Taster sessions / mornings. These are for us to confirm that the student's needs can be fully met, and to assess which peer group / class would be the most appropriate for him / her. Equally importantly, the student will experience what being at Cressey will be like, and whether he / she feels likely to be happy here. For Primary students, each Taster session is normally two hours long, while secondary Tasters are normally a full morning; but this can be varied according to the needs of each individual.
- Cressey’s Decision, and Placement Offer. If further information is still required then the Headteacher (or other staff) may also seek the views and advice of the student's current educational placement, the LA, therapy services and previous schools as appropriate, to help to determine the correct support that would be required for each individual. The views of the parent / carer will also be particularly important. Once we are satisfied we can meet the potential student's needs, we will then send a formal Placement Offer to the LA, and inform the parent / carer.
- The LA’s Decision. The LA will then make their funding decision, and will inform the parent / carer accordingly.
- Starting Arrangements. Once a placement is confirmed then we would agree the start date with the LA and the parent / carer. Would then write to the parent / carer to answer all the questions they will naturally now have.
- Consent Forms and Home-School Agreement. The letter will also include the Consent forms that need to be completed by the parent / carer before the student starts. Our Home-School Agreement will also be enclosed, which we will be asking both the Parent / Carer and the student to agree to, to help the student to succeed at Cressey. To see this Agreement in advance, please click here. The letter will also invite the parent / carer to attend an initial meeting with the staff team, which would ideally be either before the student starts, or on the first day.
This process will be coordinated by John Herring, who is contactable on 07474 145445. Please note that where a formal placement consultation has been made by an LA, Cressey will not proceed with the above process unless we have been given their authorisation to do so. This is to avoid raising what might be premature or unrealistic expectations, which may well be the case if the LA is consulting with a number of schools.