11 Dec

Well, we’ve made it through the penultimate week of this term! We are definitely on countdown to Christmas in style. This has been very evident today as everyone at the Learning Centre supported Save the Children’s Christmas jumper day. Here are some wonderful pictures of our efforts!!

‘Can anyone see the flaw in our initial donation system?!’

I’m pleased to announce that the Learning Centre staff and students raised a grand total of £77.50 – well done guys!

No blog is complete without our weekly update from Year 12, over to Mrs Keane!

Due to the recent drop in temperature and a lot more rain, Year 12 have been trying out a new indoor team game – New Age Kurling. New Age Kurling is a form of the original game, but adapted so that it can be played indoors on any smooth, flat surface, such as a hall, rather than on ice.

Here’s an explanation of the game from The Great British Kurling Association:

For those of you not familiar with New Age Kurling, it was while watching an Ice Curling World Championships that John Bennett was asked by his son to think of a sport that disabled people could all enjoy that John came up with the idea of New Age Kurling.

The game is played by pushing stones comprising of bearings along the ground towards a target with the idea being to get as many of your stones closer to the centre of the target than your opponents’ stones.

This is a sport that can be played by both able-bodied and disabled people of all ages and all abilities. It has quickly become a popular Sport and for the first time disabled people can play with or against able-bodied people on an equal level. The sport is now played all over the world, with regional, national and international competitions taking place on a regular basis.

Year 12 have fallen in love with the game and are getting increasingly better, and more competitive, the more we play..

Unfortunately, due to Covid restrictions we have not been able to hold our regular parent support group meetings, however we’re delighted to announce that these will be starting up in the new year, albeit virtually! Mr Barker explains more:

A few years ago, we set up half-termly ‘Parents Group’ meetings at the Learning Centre to enable parents to have a forum within which they could come and chat to other families. As this evolved it became clear that there were common worries, questions and concerns shared by families. To give families more information and to answer their questions, we invited a number of professionals to come in and talk to the group about pertinent issues. These have run alongside parent/carer group meetings. Professionals invited have included:

  • Trusha Velji (Touch solicitors) re wills, trust funds, lasting power of attorney
  • Katie Morgan (Miocare) re respite care and support for young adults
  • POINT (Parents of Oldham In Touch) /SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs Advice Support Service)
  • Adult Social Services re support for families and young people
  • Michelle Lane re social care issues and transitions
  • Toyoba Khanam (Senior Social Worker with the Children with Additional and Complex Needs Team) re assessments and short breaks

We feel that especially during these difficult and unprecedented times restarting the Parents Group would be a really good idea and provide much needed support to our families. These would of course, need to be virtual meetings at present and will be set up using ‘Teams’. Shamin Akhtar our bilingual family liaison officer will be in attendance to help with any translating that may be required.

Meetings will be held on Monday afternoons and we would like to gauge interest as to those families who would like to be involved. If you are interested in attending our Parents Group or would like further information, please could you email Mr Barker at jkbarker@newbridgegroup.org or you can contact the Learning Centre directly.

Here is some previous feedback from families on how they felt about the group.

  • “The leaders are very helpful.” (Year 14 parent)
  • “The parents group is very important to support parents at this transition time in young people’s lives” Year 13 parent
  • “It was a great experience to meet parents and share our experiences and services to support our children.” Year 12 parent
  • “I have found the group helpful.” Year 12 parent
  • “Ability to discuss similar issues and discuss other parents’ experiences.” Year 12 parent
  • “Brilliant group, thank you for organising.” Year 13 parent.
  • “So lovely to get together with other parents/professionals to brainstorm etc.” Year 13 parent

Have a lovely weekend all, and thanks for another great week everyone!

Take care and stay safe


Click here for this week’s news from Graham

You can find Gavin’s blog for the school site here

For news on our Key Stage 5 pathway groups at Medtia Square please click here

You can find my previous blog posts here