Pupils come to St John’s from all over the United Kingdom. During the week, St John’s is their home from home, and so it is important that our residential pupils receive care that is consistently outstanding.
Our care setting is welcoming and homely, an extension of pupils’ own family homes. Each group has a kitchen diner, sitting room, recreation area and study space. Students live in small groups of between five and eight young people and each group is staffed by a small team of carestaff, each of whom mentors one or two pupils in their care. We aim to develop high levels of self-esteem and confidence in our young people, teaching them the skills they will need for independent adult life. Living in small groups with supportive staff helps our young people to form positive relationships and the ability to negotiate and cooperate with each other.
The evening routine varies, depending on what activities are planned but, after each school day, pupils always have support in homework club and, afterwards, pupils choose their own activities. On most days, they help to prepare their evening meal, and they learn self-care skills, including how to wash and iron their own clothes and tidy their own rooms.
Boston Spa is a large village on the banks of the River Wharfe, a safe environment in a lovely setting. Our pupils feel very much part of the community and regularly visit cafes, shops and restaurants. Both our pupils and staff are well known to local businesses, who are very willing to help the School by providing work experience placements and helping us in our fund-raising events.
There are five schools within walking distance so we can attend after school clubs with local children. These include school arts clubs, sports clubs and pamper evenings at the nearby children’s centre. St John’s pupils are members of the local Brownies, Cubs, Guides and Scouts groups, and have enjoyed weekend and holiday camps both locally and further afield.
Knowing Boston Spa village well is a very good starting point for our pupils who are ready to develop independence. For our older pupils, a programme of independent travel training builds on their experience of walking into the village. By the time they are ready to leave us, our pupils have a good grounding in using public transport and are ready to explore the wider world.