National Star in Wales
National Star in Wales
National Star in Wales is a day college for 16 to 25-year-olds with complex physical disabilities, learning disabilities, autism spectrum condition and acquired brain injury. Based near Pontypool, we provide personalised education and therapeutic programmes. Promoting independence, autonomy and participation is at the heart of all that we do.
Our curriculum is personalised to each student, focusing on developing skills for a more independent and active life after college. Each student is supported to develop life skills and communication skills, as well as literacy and numeracy. Students have access to a range of therapies, including speech and language therapy, occupational therapy and physiotherapy. This results in students becoming more independent and less reliant on others in later life.
Programmes include creative arts (art, music, IT, photography and multimedia), cooking and sensory learning, alongside accredited qualifications. Students also take part in work-related activities within college and at external work placements. Recent placements have include Goytre Wharf, Mamhilad Park Estate, Aneurin Bevan Health Board and the National Museum Cardiff. Welsh language and culture form an essential part of the curriculum, culminating in the students planning and participating in a yearly Eisteddfod.
National Star recognises that everyone has different abilities and needs. That’s why every student receives individualised support to meet their health and care needs. For example, students with profound and multiple learning difficulties take part in a sensory-based curriculum and activities in our specially equipped classroom.
We take time to get to know our prospective students and their families before they join us. This means that from day one we are working towards the student’s long-term goals and aspirations for when they leave college.
Our multi-disciplinary team approach
We are experts in working as part of multi-disciplinary teams to enable students to make measurable progress and achieve outcomes. For example, a learner who aspired to work within the media industry was supported to gain work experience and ultimately a long-term voluntary role with a local community radio station.
Another student had a goal of using his AAC device more consistently to communicate with others. After two years with National Star, he left college with increased verbal communication and less reliance on his communication device.
Our team includes personalised tutors, teaching assistants, support workers, a behaviour practitioner and therapists. We are proud that one of our team was named Support Worker of the Year in the National Learning Disabilities & Autism Awards in Wales.
Learning in the community
We have strong community links and use these to ensure that students experience different learning environments and experiences. For example, students use a local gym for fitness, and a hydrotherapy pool for aqua therapy. In addition, students have set up their own social enterprise tuck shop for local businesses. Partnerships have also been made with other local colleges to increase learning opportunities.
National Star in Wales Virtual Open Day
You may not be able to visit National Star in Wales right now, but we recently held our first-ever Virtual Open Day on Facebook. If you were unable to attend, please watch our two videos showcasing our college and student life and students’ parents talking about their experience of National Star in Wales.
If you want to find out more, get in touch with Jon Haile by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or telephoning 01495 367023 or 07866 118001.