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Mum opens independent school at her home to teach children with special needs

By This is Lincolnshire  |  Posted: July 15, 2010

Mum opens independent school at her home to teach children with special needs

Therese Lord, whose school will specialise in teaching children with difficulties including the autism spectrum and Asperger's Syndrome.

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A CAMPAINING mum who has battled for years in support of Lincolnshire children with special needs is setting up her own school.

The Therese Lord Independent School will start its life at Mrs Lord's home in Waddington with just four pupils.

It will specialise in provision for children with high functioning neurodevelopmental difficulties including the autism spectrum, Asperger's Syndrome, dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD and others.

She said: "When I had my children I knew nothing about autism and when they were having difficulties I realised the teachers seemed to know very little and as life unfolded I realised there was a huge gap in knowledge.

"I was always keen to become a teacher and that's when I went from banking to teaching."

While doing her training Mrs Lord took part in numerous courses specialising in autism and other learning difficulties.

And she has been the driver behind the Lincolnshire Parent Carer Partnership, a support group which now has thousands of members.

Through this she has also been appointed as a taskforce member of the National Network of Parent Carer Forums, a Government commissioned group.

"In the beginning I was running a support group and I met a number of parents who were in the same situation with children struggling through school. All these experiences have made me want to do this," said Mrs Lord.

Mrs Lord has converted her home for the first set of students, who it is hoped will be referred by Lincolnshire County Council's children's services.

But the free schools initiative announced by the ConLib coalition government is something she will also consider.

The school will focus on small class sizes and the curriculum, which includes five GCSEs, has been written by Mrs Lord.

Mrs Lord said: "Children with these difficulties can learn, they just need to learn differently."

To this end the school, which will eventually be housed in a larger building in the Lincoln area, will have space, quiet, lessons tailored to each child's needs and therapy and exercise sessions.

All aspects of learning will be covered including sex and relationships, business and after school clubs.

Mrs Lord has also rented a room at Bishop Grossesteste University College in Lincoln so children can take part in practical science lessons.

Thirteen people have registered their interest in the school already.

Lincolnshire County Council will be integral in whether children will be referred to the school. It is unknown whether the council supports the school.

Councillor Patricia Bradwell, executive councillor for children's Services, said: "Lincolnshire County Council supports choice and diversity within the school sector. However, we can't comment further on this plan for a new school until we have seen the full proposals."

To find out more and to register your interest, call Mrs Lord on 01522 722303 or e-mail tlord@tiscali.co.uk

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  • Unknown1748  |  December 10 2013, 9:41PM

    Wow. I'm inspired. I'm a 62 year old lady and I haven't done a thing in my life when I die I will be proud to say. But you ... You have this. You may not have succeeded but rotten things/people get in the way sometimes. These things/people I like to call the devil when he's corrupted something/someone. I'm sorry if that thought makes you uncomfortable I am a very strong Catholic. I believe that a God sent you to this earth not to succeed but to just make a start for a better future. If other people read this which I'm sure they will as it's on the internet and all young kids are now (which is the only reason I am on the internet is because of my grandson) so people will hear about you and they will be inspired too. You gave it your all and I understand that I don't know but I couldn't be prouder of you. Just for me to be able to say "I'm in the same as that extraordinary person" is a great honour. If in the future it is better and more tolerable of children with disabilities you can look either out your window or down from the skies and you can be smug because that was all thanks to you inspiring other people to do something with their lives. My time is running out fast and reading this and learning of how a 30 year old woman has done probably quadruple everything I will ever achieve in my life has given me the urge to do something with the remainder of my life so that when my time ends I can have something to be pride of too. Good on you lassy, good on you. And from our future generations - thank you.

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    Mary, Bassingham  |  April 02 2011, 12:42PM

    Correction, Therese!

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    Mary, Bassingham  |  April 02 2011, 12:07PM

    In education as in life, self esteem is all. Countless studies show that young people with special needs have significantly higher self esteem in special school settings than in mainstream, Inclusion is of course a worthy ideal but, inadequately funded, it becomes little more than an empty slogan that turns the crudest non-specialist provision into some kind of virtue. Reading between the lines, Teresa had her fill of this when attempting to get Jacob's needs met within the mainstream and I wish her every success in this important venture.

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