SEND & Admissions

SEND & Admissions

Vocational Training Centre (VTC) Independent School caters for boys and girls aged 14 to 18 with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP) identified with:

▪ Social, Emotional & Mental Health Needs (SEMH)

but could also have co-morbid needs including:

▪ Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

▪ Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)

▪ Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD)

▪ Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD)

▪ Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD)


The students need to match the following criteria:

  • Must have an EHCP or are in the process of applying an EHCP, with supporting documentation.
  • VTC must be the named school on the EHCP, if your young person is being referred to us and in the process of having VTC as a named school on the EHCP.

As well as having an EHCP, the students may fall within the following categories:

  • Permanently excluded from mainstream school
  • At risk of permanent exclusion
  • Students new to the authority who were previously educated in an alternative setting
  • Students new to the authority who have a history of disrupted education
  • Students referred for alternative provision on either a full-time or part-time basis

Also, as a specialised vocational school, students must have a motivation towards a vocational offer delivered at VTC.

All referrals will need to go through the local SEND department within the relevant Local Authority who will examine the fit between needs and provision before making a referral. Once the referral is made the admissions procedure is followed (link).

Once a place has been agreed the SEND process will be followed throughout and this will be overseen by the SENCO. (link to policy)

A major component of meeting the EHCP needs for each student is developed through 1:1 mentoring with a named key worker at VTC. The principles that are embedded in this include:


• Mentoring will support the student with weekly sessions with their specified mentor (so they form trusting and positive working relationships) and will focus on the development of culture capital through spiritual, moral, social, and cultural themes.
• Mentors will oversee the development of the student by using their profile as a template to highlight success, confidence, responsibility, contribution
• Students will be encouraged to voice their opinions, lead learning, and set their own targets
• To provide new pathways on completion of goals to achieve their destinations and transfer to meaningful provision


• Each student will have a designated mentor and will be given a timetabled session each week as well as developing a focal point for the student to work with.
• The focus of each session will follow the weekly refection of their success and challenges and to discuss the way to develop new scenarios week by week
• Each session will be captured on a simple template based on reference points within their profiles
• Sessions will be informal and encourage open and honest dialogue to challenge and develop their SMSC and PSHE requirements
• Sessions are encouraged to be outside of the school environment, and to create a partnership with the mentor and student which enhances their profiles and allows them to voice their views and be confident in themselves
• Mentors will encourage personal responsibility, positive decision-making, and accountability (within the context of school values).
• The sessions will use termly themes, cross curricular activities, and personalised learning in key areas of PSHE
• Mentors can act as ‘authorised adult’ for the students and be a contact for parents and other professionals


• Will be measured by the relationship formed with the mentor and students and in relation to development within the profile
• Students take ownership of their profiles and the targets and can show access, progress, success, contribution and through a range of measures.
• Improvement in social, emotional, wellbeing and behavioural outputs
• Progress, annual reviews, and transition outputs


All of our students may benefit from having some form of intervention. At The VTC School, we tailor each student’s therapeutic programme so that it meets their individual needs.

The support can be accessed as and when it is required: on a day-to-day basis or through more regular one-to-one or group sessions. Our range of interventions are not entirely dependent on spoken language.

The range of therapies we offer, include:

  • Speech & language therapy (SALT)
  • Occupational therapy (OT)
  • Mental Health support through MIND
  • Counselling and talking therapy
  • Art 
  • Lego therapy
  • Sensory environments
  • Mentoring
  • Emotional regulation

The range of other interventions we offer, include:

  • Horse-riding
  • Community projects
  • Art projects including graffiti art
  • Boxing and fitness

How can interventions help?

Students who have endured (and continue to endure) adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), toxic stress and/or associated mental health difficulties will likely have high cortisol (stress) levels and low self-esteem.

Interventions work to:

  • provide students with an opportunity to express and reflect on their thoughts, feelings, and experiences in a safe environment
  • build a positive therapeutic relationship with the therapist, which raises self-esteem and can alter negative attachment strategies
  • enhance a student’s emotional well-being and encourages creative problem solving
  • improve self-esteem, confidence, and self-worth
  • help to develop student’s emotional vocabulary, encouraging and enabling them to identify and name their emotions
  • develop effective strategies to manage their behaviour and their ability to self-regulate their emotions
  • help to remove barriers to learning and facilitate better engagement with the curriculum.

Who can benefit from interventions?

Students who may benefit, include those:

  • who have experienced Behaviour and Emotional abuse/or high levels of stress and unpredictability
  • who have social, emotional and mental health difficulties
  • with social communication difficulties
  • who experience low self-esteem and fear of failure
  • who struggling with life events, such as grief and loss, changes within the family or home, illness?
  • who have suffered abuse, bullying or other trauma
  • with learning difficulties

Supporting families

The VTC School helps families in a targeted and supportive way. Senior staff meet parents/ carers when their child joins our school to gain a picture of family life, the needs of the student and how we can best support them. We are able to offer parents emotional and practical advice to support their child’s journey at The VTC School. We are also able to act as a strong link between the family and social care, mental health practitioners and paediatric care, and facilitate regular meetings and/or conversations in which we can suggest strategies in the home.