Ysgol Maes Hyfryd opened in September 2009 following the amalgamation of the special school provision in Flintshire. From three all-age special schools, two of which supported SLD and PMLD learners and one MLD provision, the authority developed one primary special school and one secondary special school both located in Flint. YMH has been purpose built and co-located with Flint High School. Ysgol Maes Hyfryd is a school that caters for pupils with severe learning difficulties and for pupils with complex medical needs.
Ysgol Maes Hyfryd provides secondary specialist education for learners that have been educated at the primary feeder school, Ysgol Pen Coch. Admissions are through the local authority and the moderation panel allocate places at our school. The moderation panel consists of a number of professionals who are chosen because of their expert knowledge of children with additional needs. The panel is made up of Additional Learning Needs Advisors, Educational Psychologists and representatives of the LA Inclusion Service.
The sensory department caters for pupils with severe and profound learning difficulties (SLD / PMLD) who have additional associated difficulties, including autism, challenging behaviour, sensory impairment, complex health needs and communication difficulties. Placement in the sensory department is decided during the transition process. Pupils in the sensory department follow a personalised skill based curriculum which strives to be responsive to each learner, building on their individual strengths and interests. Our curriculum is skill and context based and encourages active engagement in learning. The curriculum focuses on developing the key skills of communication, cognition, independence, physical development and self-care, all transferrable skills that equip children and young people for life beyond the school. The curriculum is delivered through a thematic approach to provide a range of stimulating learning experiences and generalisation of skills. There are two core curricular pathways which pupils undertake, depending on their learning needs. Pupils with profound learning difficulties follow an ‘informal’ curriculum pathway and those with severe learning difficulties follow a ‘semi formal’ pathway.
Classes provide discrete provision based on the needs of the pupils and broadly caters for pupils with profound intellectual and multiple difficulties (PMLD), including those with autism. There is an Autism class which caters for pupils with severe learning difficulties, complex communication and autism and have a class for pupils with PMLD. Historically, when school first opened and due to the amalgamation, there was a large cohort of pupils with moderate learning difficulties. However, due to a changing population of pupils in the school and increase in those with SLD and PMLD, we have additional classes which also follow the sensory curriculum. One of these classes is based in the Key Stage 3 department, catering for pupils with SLD and autism and there is another based in the Post 16 department
Key Stage 3
Key Stage 3 classes have SLD and Austism provision and generally pupils fit into the category of Severe Learning Difficulties (SLD).
English, Maths, R.E, Science and Personal and Social Education are taught in the mornings and National Curriculum subjects have been combined to create new thematic schemes of work, these are: Culture, Humanities, Technology and are taught to each of the classes and the curriculum content is used as the vehicle to develop the pupils skills in literacy, numeracy and ICT as outlined in pupils Individual Education Plans.
Key stage 4 Department
In KS4 the pupils follow a differentiated curriculum. KS4 pupils have access to one Option afternoon a week. The afternoon is PE/Sports and Arts based. The department used to be primarily made up of pupils with more moderate learning difficulties and Behavioural and Emotional Social Difficulties (BESD) but as school has evolved classes are now predominantly learners with severe learning difficulties.
Post 16 – 6th Form
There are two sixth form classes and the focus is on developing independence and promoting functional literacy and numeracy skills. The pupils follow a varied programme which aims to prepare the young people for life beyond school. As part of the transition process, classes access local college provision 1 day a week. College link courses are planned on an individualised basis. We have a post 16 sensory class which are following a semi formal curriculum in line with our Sensory Department.
PSE and careers planning is an integral part of the curriculum and pupils follow individualised work experience, volunteering, and transport training programmes. Curriculum enrichment is provided through a range of termly options. Pupils can develop their own learning pathway by making choices of options 3 afternoons a week. The options change termly to cover the 6 areas of learning from the Curriculum for Wales.