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Posted on: 05/07/2019

Celebrating 4 years of EHCP students at St Charles

On Tuesday 25th June 2019, the Learning Support Department team at St Charles held a very successful informal social gathering for their EHCP (Education and health Care Plan students) and other key students. The purpose of the event was multi-faceted with students; current, alumni and prospective; parents, professionals and staff all in attendance to celebrate 4 years (2015-19) of EHCP students at St Charles Sixth Form College.

Firstly, the evening was to bid farewell to a number of these students who have been with us between 2-4 years. The gathering provided a further opportunity to congratulate them on their academic and personal successes during their time with us and to wish them well with their next steps as young adults. The evening also served as a thank you to them for their full and active involvement in the department and college community but equally important, it was also a thank you to their parents/guardians and professionals who thoroughly supported them and us on their sixth form journeys.

In addition, the event provided a useful networking opportunity for students and parents, especially prospective new students for 2019-20. The evening was not an awards ceremony as this had all been covered at college level in the past few weeks with celebrating success assemblies, department awards and exhibition events etc but was more a celebration of students’ extraordinary accomplishments; students who faced a myriad of challenges with determination and resilience to not only achieve their qualifications but who also immersed themselves fully in the life of the College community. The highlight of the evening was a presentation summarising their varied contributions which enhanced their personal development, helping them grow in confidence, responsibility and maturity. Mary McHugh, Head of Learning Support, stated: “What was truly remarkable was that you not only contributed to your own subject department e.g. trips, visits etc and cross-college activities e.g. tutor groups, liturgies, cabaret shows, Kintbury; but your sheer and utter enthusiasm and commitment to the Learning Support suite of activities which saw something on offer monthly was commendable!” These activities included fundraising, celebrating diversity, Christmas and Easter celebrations, thought provoking events for Holocaust Memorial Day and the Lessons from Auschwitz programme run by the Learning Support Department and International Women’s Day, in addition to some powerful and inspirational Student Voice student led activity. All of these activities ran parallel with Learning Support’s own enrichment programme e.g. Japanese, boards games, reading and social interaction clubs etc. The Department are also very proud to run the Jack Petchey award for the College community celebrating those who go above and beyond.

Mary McHugh said: “You have all been extraordinary in so many ways” and a special note of thanks was extended to the College Principal, Elaine Taylor, for her fantastic support of all our EHCP students since our first cohort came through the door in September 2015. Andrew Carvalho O'Dell, our longest serving EHCP student, proudly presented her with a bunch of flowers. It was lovely to see so many gathered together for this celebration and everyone remarked on what a lovely atmosphere there was. Janet Lucitt-Canavan, Interim Head of Send at RB of Kensington & Chelsea, said: “It was wonderful to meet the students and parents and I really enjoyed the video and listening to all the events and awards at St Charles Sixth Form. I also met teachers from the Learning Support Department and was very impressed by the commitment and hard work of all the staff as well as the achievement of the students. Ms McHugh rounded off the evening by reiterating how proud everyone present was of the students. She asked them to continue to achieve their ambitions and especially to remember the laughter, the fun and the friends they’d made here.

Thanks to all the Learning Support team and all the student helpers and performers who helped the event run smoothly.