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Kate has made considerable progress during the past academic year in many areas. Prior to January 2019 Kate had been withdrawn and often refused to engage with sessions other than music or ICT. She had refused to engage with Maths sessions for over 18 months. In developing positive trusting relationships, Sutherland House School staff focused on her area of special interest, which is History, and organised the opportunity to:

  • Work with The Holocaust Education Trust and complete the Lessons from Auschwitz programme including a visit to Auschwitz
  • Work with the Battlefield Centenary Tours to include a 4 days visit to France and Belgium visiting sites from WW1

Kate has been able to work in a comfortable environment which has enabled her to engage with important qualifications at Sutherland House School. She has been able to now engage with Maths and has taken her Maths functional skills level 1 qualification with results expected this summer. Kate has also taken on an AQA Higher Project qualification, which is equivalent to a GCSE related to her special interest. As well as this she has already passed her ASDAN Award which is a qualification she undertook in connection with the work she has done with the Holocaust Education Trust.

As part of Sutherland House School focusing on integrating Kate’s special interest into her school routine Dan, our Independent Careers advisor, sourced a work experience placement for Kate at The National Justice Museum. For the remaining weeks of the summer term Kate will be working 10.30am until 2pm three days per week.

“I have been volunteering at the National Justice Museum (Galleries of Justice) while there I’ve met some lovely people and had an amazing experience.

While there I have been doing some research on Women in prison predominantly in Britain; I’ve helped with an exhibit that will be interactive for people that visit the museum, my ideas helped to influence the direction of the exhibit. I was present in a meeting with a woman from Streetwise Opera which was really interesting and great to learn about it. I was given a camera and asked to take photos of what best embodies the museum I took these photos as I think the use of modern lighting mixed with old textures and stairs mix really well.”

 The current project that Kate has been assigned by The National Justice Museum is to research activities that women in prisons were offered to improve their skills & employability over the years. This will include looking at prison reformers such as Elizabeth Fry. This links with a Woman in Prisons exhibition that is being created for the end of the year.

Andrea Hadley-Johnson, Artistic Programme Manager at The National Justice Museum, allowed Kate to explore and learn about her project freely before reporting back to the team her findings,

“I asked Kate to explore the building and find things that appealed to her ‘The Justice Museum through Kates eyes’ and create a PowerPoint presentation.

I suggested she add text. I asked her to either describe the components of the photograph or how it feels, list words that came into her mind or write free flow. The words she wrote are evocate, we’d like to use these around the building.”

During Kate’s placement she will be working with The Prince’s Trust to gain relevant work based accreditation. The National Justice Museum has kindly agreed to extend the offer of a voluntary work placement when she leaves Sutherland House School in September.

Andrea added that

“Kate has been an absolute inspiration. I’ve spent 6 days working with her and have witnessed a very creative young woman with a talent for poetic observation.”

Moving forward Kate would like to continue in education and receive 1:1 tuition so that she can build on her qualifications and complete Level 2 qualifications including History.

Kate has also been signposted to the new project that Autism East Midlands are involved with, the D2N2 digital skills sessions that aim to give attendees digital skills that will help them to gain employment in the digital sector.

Sutherland House School will also with Autism East Midlands’ Employment Services so that Kate applies for the correct benefits and can continue to access her voluntary work experience placement with the necessary support, with a view to one day gaining paid employment.

When Kate leaves Sutherland House School she has requested a leaving party of pizza with key individuals. All at Sutherland House School want to thank Kate, for being a wonderful student who has progressed massively during her time at the School. We will be sad to see Kate leave, but we wish her all the best in her future and hope she continues to excel focusing on her specialist interest of History.