Individual Stories

‘Jeremy’ is 5 years old. He is attending his local pre-school. He is having difficulty following instructions, listening to stories and playing appropriately. The kindergarten teacher feels that he is not ready for a formal school program, but Jeremy has already repeated his kindergarten year and has made little progress. Jeremy may be eligible to enrol at Ashwood where the small classes of 6 to 7 students will be able to cater for his individual learning needs.

‘Ellen’ is 7 years old. She attends her local primary school and has some classroom support with an integration aide. Ellen is having learning difficulties and is being left behind. She is losing confidence and is anxious about attending school. Ellen would benefit from the smaller classes and specialist programs at Ashwood School. A good option for Ellen could be a dual enrolment with her local primary school and Ashwood School. This would allow her to maintain her neighbourhood friends and benefit from the small group individual learning structure of Ashwood.

‘Brett’ is 12 years old. He has attended the same primary school since prep. While he was happy in the early years and had friends who would play with him and visit at home, he is now becoming increasingly isolated and rejected at school. Although the other students understand Brett has learning difficulties, he is unable to take part in many of the class lessons and relies on his aide for answers and support. Brett is lonely and frustrated and feels inadequate amongst his peers. His parents are worried about his ability to cope at secondary school. At Ashwood School Brett would start to realise that he is good at some things in the small group setting. His self-esteem would improve as he participates in all class activities, has an opportunity to play in the variety of sporting teams and outdoor education, and to perform in the school production.

‘Zali’ is 15 years old. She was failing miserably at secondary school and felt stressed and angry that she could not keep up with her peers and resented being withdrawn from maths and science classes to work with the teacher aide. This made her feel different. She did not have a chance to do work experience or be chosen for drama which she really likes. Zali arrived at Ashwood and surprised herself by really liking it. She made friends immediately with a girl in her class. The school will set goals for her, which will build on strengths and emphasise independence and vocational skills. She can handle money and loves cooking so she will become a top performer in the canteen program when she turns 17. The vocational pathways teacher will organise a placement at a nearby function room working in the food preparation area. Zali thinks she might do a TAFE course when she turns 18.