Camphill School Aberdeen has received a 100% satisfaction rating from parents as part of its re-assessment for the internationally-recognised Autism Accreditation. The long-established Aberdeen school, which inspired the worldwide Camphill movement, is one of only 14 schools in Scotland and the only one in Aberdeen to have achieved this standard.
Examining the school’s specialist services for pupils with autism and Aspergers Syndrome, the expert review panel found Camphill School Aberdeen had met all of its 16 review standards and exceeded the requirements in four.
The assessors noted the way the school works with and supports parents as one of its particular strengths. Against this background 84% of parents reported that they were “very happy”, with the remainder being “happy” or “satisfied”.
The assessors also praised the way Camphill School Aberdeen combines education, therapy and care in a “seamless” manner, recognising “the importance of addressing physical and mental wellbeing and happiness”.
Dr Robert Moffat, National Director of the National Autistic Society (NAS) Scotland commented:
“The National Autistic Society Scotland welcomes news of the high quality standards achieved by Camphill School Aberdeen.
“Autism is a lifelong disability that can be expressed in a variety of complex ways. At its heart, Autism Accreditation ensures that rigorous standards of quality are met by professionals who support children and adults with autism.
“Although there are many good examples of support for people with autism, this is not the case throughout Scotland. Autism Accreditation helps ensure a standard of care and support that NAS Scotland would like to see made more readily available, enabling people affected by autism and their families to access the same educational, health and social opportunities many others take for granted.”
For Camphill School Aberdeen, school co-ordinator Laurence Alfred, commented:
“Camphill School Aberdeen’s strategy for supporting and teaching children who have a range of support needs, including autism and Aspergers Syndrome, has been developed over the 70 years since the school first opened its doors to children with special needs, here in Aberdeen.
“The fact that we have achieved such a strong endorsement of our services demonstrates that the Camphill approach is very relevant in meeting the needs of today’s young people who have additional support needs.
“We are constantly striving to improve our services and, to that end, we put a strong emphasis on raising the standards of care. We have a long-standing partnership with the University of Aberdeen to deliver the BA honours course in Social Pedagogy and we have recently partnered with Target Training to deliver a specialist course in autism.
“In addition we organise a series of academic conferences, like Dr Olga Bogdashina, one of the world’s leading experts in autism, who will be back as speaker at a Camphill School Aberdeen conference next month.”
Karen Johnston, a parent, comments about her son Lawrence’s experience of Camphill School Aberdeen:
“He is just treated with dignity and is a very happy boy with no inner angst – just calm and very happy. We have Camphill to thank for that.
“What Camphill is doing here is cutting edge. They are sector leaders. They may have been around for 70 years but their ideas hold very true in this modern day.”