Autism review panel call Aberdeen school a “centre of excellence”.

Camphill School Aberdeen has received a glowing report from the expert review panel who were re-assessing the school for the internationally recognised Autism Accreditation as the only school in Aberdeen to hold the international standard.

Examining the school’s specialist services for pupils with autism and Asperger’s Syndrome, the expert review panel found Camphill School Aberdeen achieved 96% in its observation scores, exceeding the standard in 18% of the observations.

Referring to these results, the review team added:

“The overall feeling of the review team is that Camphill deserves recognition for going above and beyond in their care for pupils with autism. They are truly a centre of excellence.”

Camphill School Aberdeen also received a 100% satisfaction rating from parents as part of the re-assessment. More than two-thirds of the parents (68%) said they were “very happy” with the school.

Camphill School Aberdeen, which inspired the worldwide Camphill movement, is one of only 13 schools in Scotland and the only one in Aberdeen to have achieved Autism Accreditation.

Janine Hunt, National Director of the National Autistic Society (NAS) Scotland said:
“The National Autistic Society Scotland welcomes news of the high quality standards achieved by Camphill School.

“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.”

Callum Turner copy
Camphill student Callum Turner carries the Queen’s Baton during its relay to the Commonwealth Games

“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, executive director Laurence Alfred, commented:

“Our approach for supporting and teaching children who have a range of support needs, including autism and Asperger’s Syndrome, has been developed over the 70 years since the school first opened its doors to children with special needs, here in Aberdeen.

“We are now developing the school’s services on that base to meet current needs. In addition to day and residential schooling, Camphill School Aberdeen’s now provides home and school outreach services, transition support and year-round care.

“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.”

Julie Turner, a parent from Newtonhill, commented on the parents’ perspective:

“The incredible support that Callum has had and also that we have had as a family is what makes the difference. Camphill’s support extends to the whole family, if you want it – it isn’t forced upon you. For me as a mum and us as a family that very much helped us. You feel fully involved.

“The other thing is that Camphill people have a understanding of autism but they also get to know the person. It’s not enough just to know Callum and it’s not enough just know autism, but bring the two together and you get the best ultimate care and support.”

Julie Turner’s son Callum added:
“Living in the semi-independent unit in Camphill helped me learn independent skills like cooking, cleaning and looking after my money and doing the Gold Duke of Edinburgh award helped me learn to be together in a team and gain more independence.

“Making friends in Camphill gave me more confidence to make new friends outside of Camphill.”
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