Apprenticeship opportunities have enabled students to have a transitional route from the school environment at Heathermount. The framework of the apprenticeship offers a great opportunity for students to have a variety of options in the future.
We have created two apprenticeships in catering and one in horticulture. We are looking at business administration and teaching assistant roles too and are considering how we can offer apprenticeships in other areas of the country.
Steven, 23, has enrolled as an apprentice chef at Heathermount.
The Experience of the Senior Leadership
Why did you decide to offer this apprenticeship?
Apprenticeship opportunities have enabled Steven to have a transitional route from the school environment at Heathermount. Steven has been the trailblazer for us and as a result of the support mechanisms we have developed for him and seeing how successful Steven has been in his journey to mainstream work, we have created another two apprenticeships in catering and in horticulture.
How is the apprenticeship benefiting your learner as opposed to traditional education methods?
The local college courses would not have provided the structure and support that he needs, while we can. The apprenticeship is part of a package to support Steven move to a position where he is able to make choices instead of others making choices for him.
Since the start of the apprenticeships we have seen a development in Steven's independent living and communication skills. He has adapted very well to the transition from student to employee and the way that the apprenticeship is structured, with on-going assessment and feedback, has really benefited his development.
What skills are your apprentice learning that he will use in the future?
Steven has developed a range of vocational skills through the apprenticeship, but the biggest achievement is what he has identified as the development of his social skills.