Specialist Education

Before Hereford School


Tamsin had previously spent time at a mainstream school where she struggled to deal with social interactions and maintain relationships. She had been unwilling to interact during lessons, had trouble concentrating and refused to attend many of her classes. When Tamsin did attend she demonstrated a high risk of becoming verbally abusive to staff and her peers as well as absconding from site, where she sadly fell victim to exploitation. Since 2009 she had attended five placements which unfortunately proved to be unsuccessful due to the risks she presented. Tamsin experienced a high level of school exclusions due to the complexity of her needs and was also subject to a Care Order being granted in 2010.


In 2016, Tamsin was assessed by an Educational Psychologist. She agreed to engage in a majority of tests, where results showed that her reading and spelling scores were at the lower end of the average range. However, her literacy scores were above average showing a particular area of strength. Her handwriting was printed and neat and her highest individual score was found to be on the visual memory test.


It was suggested that Tamsin would benefit from small nurturing environments in order for her to reach her full academic potential. It was also recognised that her ability to function was significantly affected by early experiences, damaging her confidence and self-efficacy related to learning, meaning that curriculums would need to be created around this.


How Hereford has supported Tamsin


Tamsin came to Cambian Hereford School in April 2020 where she was initially placed on a part-time timetable.  However, she was able to engage full-time after just a few days of settling in.


After her educational needs had ben assessed by the school, a bespoke curriculum was created for Tamsin so that gaps in her skills and knowledge could be addressed. An Educational Psychologist continued to work with Tamsin where her performance on assessment tasks suggested that she had a mild to moderate level of general learning difficulty. 


During Tamsin’s time at Cambian Hereford School, the following plans were put in place to ensure she had the best opportunity to engage with life and learning:


  • Personalised learning styles, practical learning opportunities where available to allow for a range of learning styles to be incorporated, along with a personalised timetable
  • Clear boundaries, rewards and consequences
  • Summative assessments and close tracking of progress in order to identify gaps in learning
  • Highly skilled staff with a clear understanding of SEMH, working on a one to one basis
  • EHCP outcomes embedded in planning for education.


Tamsin has learnt to be more accepting of her peers and has shown an empathetic side, helping others who were also finding things difficult and demonstrating patience with them. Tamsin has also represented the school twice in football matches, showing that she can work well in a team. She has truly grown in confidence since starting at Hereford and came to respond to the pastoral support more positively over time.


What Tamsin’s future looks like and what she is doing now


Since attending Hereford, Tamsin has achieved her GCSE English & Mathematics qualifications, completed her BTEC Level 1 Award in Sport and Active Leisure with a Pass and achieved 13 AQA Unit Awards.


Tamsin has a clear goal of achieving a Health & Social Care qualification and successfully completed an application for a College placement to study in this field.


Since leaving Hereford School, Tamsin has moved into a semi-independent facility, having completed independent living skills during lockdown and is looking forward to the next phase of her life as a confident, young individual.