AS A HOLDER of the Investors in People Award, we give high priority to the training and development of all staff. All new staff undertake at least two weeks of essential induction training prior to commencing work with the children and young people. Following this dedicated induction all our staff receive a full days training every three weeks (17 training days a year) in our in-house, accredited training facility.
All staff undergo an enhanced disclosure check (includes checking against the POVA list, for our adult service) with the Criminal Records Bureau to ensure their suitability to work with our children and young people.
"The agency employs a full time training officer and all staff complete a training needs analysis. In addition to mandatory training, staff can access more specialist courses covering specific user groups or different medical or social needs, ensuring an appropriate skill mix to support the service user."(CSCI Inspection Report. 2006)
Induction programmes can vary in length from one to six weeks depending on the department and the complexity of the position. School staff and Residential Support Workers receive a six-week induction covering all aspects of the role.
At Kisimul Lower and Upper Schools in Lincolnshire, child protection training is conducted by in-house care managers all of whom have attended the Lincolnshire Area Child Protection Committee four day course. At Woodstock House, our Surrey site, the registered manager and head teacher have attended their equivalent local course and are responsible for staff training on site.
Training in dealing with epilepsy is for all staff working directly with the pupils. It is delivered by nurse practitioners from Lincolnshire United Healthcare Trust and staff have regular refresher training.
Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Both children and adults with autism typically show difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities.
We have many senior staff experienced in working with pupils and residents with autism and they are often called upon to lead training sessions about the specifics of autism.
At Kisimul we have five Timian-trained trainers who deliver the full three-day course to all staff working directly with the pupils and residents. Staff also receive refresher training of at least one full day per year.
TIMIAN is the Greek word for beloved and is concerned with:
TIMIAN is accredited by BILD (The British Institute of Learning Disabilities) Physical Interventions Accreditation Scheme developed by the Department of Health and Department for Education and Skills, supported by Section 7 Local Authority Guidance.
Staff are made aware that they should set the example to pupils by abiding by equal opportunities principles and by firmly encouraging respect for all in the school. The school ethos reflects this to ensure that every pupil and member of staff feels equally valued and safe.
Our in-house Risk Assessment training covers the basic principles behind risk assessment, explains the requirements of the law - along with how to achieve compliance, and uses case studies to show how the different elements of risk assessment can be brought together to achieve real health and safety improvements.
Imagine not being able to communicate is as if you were in a foreign country and couldn\'t speak or understand the language. You would probably begin to gesture to explain what you wanted, and hope that others would understand your gestures and would gesture back. You might also start to draw pictures and diagrams to help get your messages across.
Makaton combines all these elements in a highly successful teaching approach.
A research project identified the words that we all use most frequently and need in everyday conversation. Then signs from British Sign Language, used by the deaf community in this country, were matched to these words, so that as you speak you sign and speak at the same time. Signs are often pictorial and convey the meaning more easily than words, which are more abstract.
Makaton users are first encouraged to communicate using signs, then gradually, as a link is made between the word and the sign, the signs are dropped and speech takes over.
You might think that signing would prevent speech developing. But research suggests very strongly that this is not the case. In fact the opposite occurs, as signing seems to positively encourage speech development. Many hundreds of thousands of children and adults have been helped significantly in this manner.
Makaton symbols support the written word, in the same way that signs support speech. Makaton Symbols have been specially designed. Most of them are black and white pictures illustrating the important meaning of the words we use. Children and adults who cannot read or write can now have, for example, stories, instructions to carry out tasks, timetable events, shopping lists, letters and messages, all written in symbols.
Furthermore for some children and adults, combining symbols, signs and speech together is proving to be an effective way of developing literacy skills. Makaton is an internationally recognised communication programme, used in more than 40 countries worldwide.
Most Makaton users are children and adults who need it as their main means of communication. But everyone else who shares their lives will also use Makaton. These include the families, carers, friends and professionals such as teachers, speech and language therapists, social workers, playgroup staff, college lecturers, instructors, nurses, and psychiatrists.
The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) when introduced correctly and practised rigorously is very useful for developing communication, particularly in children with autistic spectrum disorders.
When a child reaches for something they want, a picture is introduced in between the child and their reached-for, desired object or activity. When the child then gives the adult the picture, the adult immediately gives the child the object (or activity) they want. This exchange can take place very quickly, particularly when a child is not physically disabled. The process works with all kinds of communication, from a simple request to the use of complex sentences (in pictures and/or words) and is always based on the exchange principle.
"Staff use PECS and other devices very effectively to help pupils understand, communicate and learn."(Ofsted Inspection. 2006)
All of our pupils and residents have a written care plan which is developed and reviewed on a regular basis. The process is monitored by our Educational Psychology Assistants and the care and education teams all have input during training sessions.
ASDAN creates the opportunity for learners to achieve personal and social development through the attainment of ASDAN Awards and Qualifications; enhancing self-esteem, aspirations and individual contribution to local, national and global communities.
There are a wide range of ASDAN awards, and for young people of all abilities. The awards recognise and reward skills as young people complete \'Personal Challenges\' in such areas as sports, healthy living, community involvement, work experience, expressive arts, relationships, citizenship, personal finance and enterprise.
Kisimul is an ASDAN accredited centre and staff are given comprehensive training on the programmes we offer.
All staff are required to complete certain statutory training and full records are kept. Refreshers and updates are also given where necessary.
Statutory training is in the areas listed below.
The CIS are worked through in the first twelve weeks of employment and run alongside the in-house induction.
It is a requirement for all team leaders and deputy team leaders to complete this award. It is delivered by external training providers.
Kisimul is an accredited centre, registered with Edexcel to deliver NVQ awards to staff.
There is a dedicated team of in-house Assessors and Internal Verifiers who ensure the awards are delivered to meet all of the requirements of the QCA (Qualifications and Curriculum Authority) Code of Practice.
The awards offered are:
The centre is monitored twice a year by an Edexcel EV to check the quality of the system in operation.
"The centre is proactive in developing their delivery and assessment strategies ñ they are committed to continuous improvement. Sound support for candidates by all members of the team."(Quote from our EV report.)
The training team delivers the majority of Kisimul\'s in-house courses. We have skilled and accredited trainers able to deliver a full range of courses suited to the specific needs of the staff. We also have links with local training providers and colleges to meet more individualised training needs.
We keep complete records of all training achievements to ensure high standards are maintained, and all staff undertake regular refresher training courses.
Training has always been a vital element to the success of Kisimul and as the organisation has developed further the training department has grown and flourished to the benefit of staff and pupils alike.
If you would like to know more about our training department please contact Russell Brown, Training Manager, on 01522 507201 or use our contact form.