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Specialist staff

Educational Psychologist

Mike Beswetherick

Mr Mike Beswetherick is a chartered educational and occupational psychologist who has spent more than 30 years working with local authorities in both mainstream and special schools.

Mike is in school for one day a week and he works with all pupils by assessing them and providing strategies to staff on how to help a young person successfully engage in education. Mike assesses pupils once a year in preparation for their annual review which helps register their progress and areas where additional work is needed.

Speech and Language Therapist

Marilyn Shah

Mrs Marilyn Shah is a qualified speech and language therapist. She is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and has many years experience.

Marilyn is in school for one and a half days each week and works with every pupil on roll. Her work at High Close centres around social skills; understanding social situations; reading body language and facial expressions, and helping young people learn how to interact appropriately with those around them. Pupils see Marilyn on a one-to-one basis or in small groups depending on the area being targeted. She has also introduced a senior mentor scheme whereby older pupils assist younger students in their sessions with Marilyn and around school, as appropriate, which has proved beneficial to all. Marilyn also works on interview skills with older pupils and provides staff training so that work can continue throughout the week in her absence.

Occupational Therapist

Catherine Elsey

Mrs Catherine Elsey is a qualified occupational therapist and is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council. She has worked in many different settings, including the NHS as well as independent practice.

Catherine is at High Close for one day a week and works with various pupils who are referred by staff or have a need established on their statement. Catherine’s interventions help provide pupils with the strategies and techniques as well as the adaptive equipment to make academic learning, daily living and leisure activities both physically and mentally more comfortable. She also provides staff training to raise awareness and understanding of the problems pupils face and provide possible solutions.