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Preston’s College SEND Students Benefit From Trust’s NCS Programme

3 December 2020

Preston North End Community and Education Trust has been delivering the National Citizen Service programme to special educational needs and disabilities students at Preston’s College, which has included raising students’ awareness of their own disabilities.

The NCS programme is a government-funded programme that supports the development of young people with activities that build their confidence, independence and life skills.

More than 200 young people from Preston’s College have completed phase one of the NCS programme in Autumn, including those SEND groups, with workshops being centred around subjects such as knife crime and mental health, as well as disability awareness.

Curriculum Leader for Performing and Production Arts at Preston’s College, Sara Hartigan, felt that the inclusion of the NCS programme on students’ curriculum has boosted their teamwork skills and seen the students come closer together as a group.

“It’s been brilliant that NCS has been able to come into college and give them the opportunity to work as a group, particularly this year,” Sara said.

“With Covid-19, because of the limited timetables and students not being in college as much, the groups weren’t blending as a group or making those friendships as easily, which typically those learners struggle with anyway.

“For NCS to come in and really build our teamwork skills, that’s massively helped them, and you can see a complete difference in them. They’re a really close-knit group and socialise with each other outside as well as in college, it’s had a massively beneficial impact.”

Bradley North, NCS Officer for the Trust, is an above-knee amputee himself, and with the experience of living with a disability himself, has helped to inspire the SEND students.

He said: “We’ve been delivering all kinds of workshops, and the one for me that is close to home is the disability awareness workshop.

“I’ve found that working with the SEND group, it’s been a fantastic opportunity to speak to them about my personal disability. It also gives them the chance to open up about their disabilities.”

Trainee teacher at Preston’s College Sally Eccles added: “Giving this class as many opportunities as possible is really important.

“Working with Preston North End and working with the NCS members of staff has been amazing for them, they’ve had the best time and learnt so much.”

For more information about the NCS programme please email jessica@pne.com.


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