Danny’s Move into Mainstream Education

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19 year old Danny started a mainstream Level 2 Computer Science course at Gateshead College in September 2022, after leaving the independent special school he had attended since he was a child. This is his story:

I was at Percy Hedley School since I was four. I’m enjoying my new college but it’s been quite difficult. If you’re thinking of moving to a mainstream college I’d say start extremely early with transition (I started in June 2020)! I’m still trying to get things better but I’m managing really well. In some areas I’d say I’m managing better than some of the other students in my class who’ve been in mainstream. I’ve gained a lot more independence via my education I’ve had my own drive to get into college.

I have found it a challenge, but I’ve found it tiring – as soon as I get home I just want to relax! But college has been really flexible – mostly I’m only in for half days. The Learning Support Officers help me out; we come up with new ways of working so it’s kind of trial and error until you find what works best. I’d say that if you feel that you need to make changes or you’re not happy with something, let a member of staff know. I’ve had to adapt and to be honest I’ve found it alright. I’m pleased I’ve done it. I feel my needs are being met.