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An Alternative Provision For Your Child 

Yew Tree Farm School (YTFS) was founded in 2019 by our Farm Director Edwina Grix. A passion for animals and previously teaching in specialist education birthed the idea of an alternative to the classroom.

"I had been working within a specialist autistic school and had seen first hand the benefit that experiential learning could have on a student's confidence, independence and behaviour. I wanted to create an inclusive setting that focused on kindness above all else. 

The farm environment is perfect for teaching the importance of kindness and empathy. It offers students responsibility and an opportunity to be part of a team. Caring for the animals is a task students can understand the importance of and therefore have the motivation to complete and to a high standard that they can be proud of".

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Yew Tree Farm School offer individual or group sessions for students that are home educated, currently out of education or that need some time outside of the classroom. 

Our staff all have experience working with children with additional needs and many are qualified teachers; but they are also kind and caring and go above and beyond to provide our students with a bespoke and engaging experience. YTFS pride ourselves on educating children and young people on the 'Field to Fork' process. As a working farm we rear some of our animals for meat and grow produce on our allotment.

Introduction

One-to-One Sessions

Our sessions are bespoke and planned entirely for the individual, we do not run generic sessions. Each session is planned with clear, measurable objectives for the student. Targets are based on the child's reason for attending the farm, such as confidence building, improving social skills, improving impulse control etc. Some students need to build confidence in themselves before tackling the social anxieties of being around others, and for those students we provide a bespoke plan based on their individual needs.

Our students run and maintain the farm; this creates a lot of pride in the child and a real sense that they are a vital cog in maintaining it (which they absolutely are). Our sessions will focus on an element of animal care, farm work, forest skills, craft and a variety of research based outdoor learning. The daily tasks of feeding and maintaining the farm provide a reliable routine, however no two days are the same with livestock, and students are encouraged to recognise and treat unwell animals.

After every session we provide a report via Tapestry for parents/carers and schools to show how the students have progressed with their personal targets.

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School Nurture Groups

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Weekly sessions at the farm are hugely beneficial for all students, especially if they are struggling to engage in the classroom. Each week the group will build confidence and develop their skills in animal care, forest skills, and a variety of researched based outdoor learning. The sessions are highly rewarding and increase learner wellbeing and enthusiasm both whilst at the farm and within the school environment.

We currently have students funded by both Kent County Council and Medway Council and are a registered provider with both local authorities. In addition, we have students visiting us weekly funded by their schools to help support them with their learning. Students can also be privately funded by parents and carers. 

Information for Parents and Carers

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Student Kit List:

Please make sure students have all of the following for their sessions on the farm. We will be outside in ALL weathers and for the entire day.

 

Everyday:

Snack / Packed Lunch (depending on timings of session) – farming is hard work so they may need more lunch than normal!

Drink / water bottle – these can easily be refilled on site.  

Wellies or covered shoes

Spare socks and a full change of clothes

Water proofs – jacket and trousers

Gloves 

Winter

Thick gloves – and a spare pair!

Winter hat

Warm waterproof winter coat

Plenty of layers

Warm waterproof boots and thick socks

Summer

Sun hat

Sun screen

Covered shoulders – no vest tops – we don’t want anyone getting sunburnt!

Covered shoes must be worn at all times – if too hot for wellies – must be trainers.  Students will not be allowed on site in flipflops.  

Alternative Provision Behaviour Policy:

Please read the following behaviour policy with your child/ young person before their first session on the farm. You can download a printable version here

As a student of Yew Tree Farm School it is important that you understand and agree to the following:

 

1. I will listen to instructions and do what I have been asked, straight away.

The farm can be dangerous sometimes, with animals and machinery. You have to follow instructions when asked so that you can stay safe.

 

2. I will be kind to others with my words and actions

Kindness is really important at the farm! We are kind to students, staff, visitors and animals.

 

3. I will allow others to learn and not disturb them.

Other students are busy learning onsite too, everyone needs the opportunity to enjoy the farm.

 

4. I will always try my best.

Sometimes there are jobs we don’t want to do, or feel like we aren’t very good at, but at the farm everyone tries their best and supports each other. 

 

5. I will be respectful of other people’s belongings

I will look after equipment on the farm and not touch things that belong to other people.

 

Sometimes we can all struggle with our feelings though! When you are feeling angry, frustrated, worried or not able to follow instructions then you can take a TIME OUT. 

This is not a punishment! 

When you need it, you can take time to calm down and relax on one of our picnic benches. Here you will be safe and given some space. You can then join back in when you are ready.

A member of staff might suggest you take a TIME OUT if you are struggling to follow the rules. Remember this is NOT a punishment, but is a chance for you to refocus. 

What happens if I continue to not follow the rules?

If you are still struggling then another member of staff will join your session. Try to talk to them about how you are feeling. Remember we are here to help!

 

If your behaviour means that you or others are no longer safe then staff will remove you from the situation. You will be asked to move to a safe space, if you do not do so then staff will guide you somewhere safe. 

 

If we are unable to keep you safe on site, or you continually endanger others, then your parent or carer will be called to collect you. We will then decide whether we can safely allow you to come back another day. 

 

All the staff at Yew Tree Farm School are here to help you, and want you to succeed! Talk to us when you are struggling and we can work together. 

Meet the Staff

Edwina Grix 
Headteacher

Amy Grix 
Education Coordinator

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Bec Grix 
Farm Teacher

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Millie Clarke 
One-to-One Staff

Kelli Gardner 
One-to-One Staff

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Naomi Hopper
One-to-One Staff

Becky Wayte
One-to-One Staff

Olivia Williams 
Office Administrator

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Charley Kitney 
Farm Teaching Assistant

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Tina Woolmer 
One-to-One Staff

Lisa Jordan 
One-to-One Staff

Beth Taylor
One-to-One Staff

Lisa Williams 
One-to-One Staff

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Term Dates

Academic Year 2023-2024

Term 1
   Mo
nday 4th September - Friday 20th October 2023

Term 2
        Monday 30th October - Friday 15th December 2023

      Term 3
             Monday 8th January - Friday 9th February 2024

Term 4  
   Monday 19th February - Thursday 28th March 2024

                                    Term 5

         Monday 15th April - Friday 24th May 2024

  Term 6
      Monday 3rd J
une - Friday 19th July 2024

Academic Year 2024-2025

Term 1
   Tuesday 3rd
 September - Friday 25th October 2024

Term 2
   Mo
nday 4th November - Wednesday 18th December 2024

Term 3
   Mo
nday 6th January - Friday 14th February 2025

Term 4
   Mo
nday 24th February - Friday 4th April 2025

Term 5
   Tuesday 22nd April
 - Friday 23rd May 2025

Term 6
   Monday 2nd June
 - Wednesday 20th July 2025

Prices

Our one-to-one sessions are available in term blocks and must be paid before the term starts.

Full day sessions 9.30 - 14.30                                                              £250.00

Half day sessions 9.30 - 12.00/ 12.00 - 14.30                                £150.00

1 hour taster session                                                                              £50.00

Please contact our Education Coordinator at amy@yewtreefarmschool.co.uk to book in for a taster session and check availablity for the term, we will be happy to discuss extra requirements when booking. Schools/parents will need to arrange transport to site themselves. 

Referral Form

To refer a student for the Alternative Provision please download and complete the following form. Return the form to us via email to office@yewtreefarmschool.co.uk

Students cannot begin sessions before the form is completed and returned.

Site Visits

Book a private session to come and look around Yew Tree Farm School's alternative provision. This informative visit is for referring agencies, such as schools, social workers and the local authority.
Look around the site, talk to staff and discuss how we can meet your students' needs.

For settings already using our alternative provision services, book a slot to do your annual site visit in line with Ofsted's requirements. 

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