Monday, 9 July 2012

A School for Autism

The Mobile Phone Recycling Campaign is just one part of the Hearts and Minds Challenge that is raising funds to build an Education Centre for Autism in Greater Manchester. 
The mission

To raise the quality of life of individuals and their families affected by autism by ensuring the highest standards in education, care and support leading to employment and equality of living opportunities.

The Aim

The Education Centre will provide help and support for academically capable children with autism so that they can progress to mainstream school and thrive there.

The Plan

Early intervention, a structured education program and tailored support services, so that pupils can succeed at key stages 1, 2 and 3 in mainstream school. To train teaching staff to work with these children, to run a transition program to prepare the children to join mainstream schools, and to give them tools to help them to cope both socially and academically in their new school.

The Education Centre

Will cater for 25 pupils, from age 3 to 11.   Each classroom will have five pupils with one teacher experienced in working with autistic children, and 2 teaching assistants.  There will also be an occupational therapist and 2 speech and language therapists on site to work closely with the children.

The Transition Programme

Pupils will be introduced to a mainstream school in a controlled way over a period of time.  The teaching assistant that has been supporting the child will accompany them. The first visit to the new school will be purely to look around.  Pupils will be slowly introduced to their new classmates and teacher starting with a short 1 hour lesson and increasing gradually over a period of time until they are ready to attend full time.  The teaching assistant will stay with the pupil at their new school, but will still get the support they need from Hearts and Minds.  This will help the pupil with their transition by ensuring continuity, and will also help the mainstream school as they will have a member of staff that knows the needs of the pupil, and has gained valuable experience working with autistic children that can be passed onto other staff at the school.

The fundraising target for the new school campaign is £1 Million.

Fundraising: As well as the mobile phone recycling campaign, the Hearts and Minds Challenge team are holding a number of charity fundraising events throughout 2012:

Manchester Marathon in April
Big Red Bike Ride in June
Trek to Macchu Picchu in August
An Evening with Mrs Brown in September

Donate on-line here:

More about the Hearts and Minds charity here:

Twitter: @handmchallenge 


  1. Fantastic - wish more counties would do this x

  2. @The Rambling Pages - Thank you so much for the comment, and hopefully this is just the start x