Parent Café

Parent Cafés

You might not have thought of yourself as your child's life-long teacher, but that's what you are. It's an incredibly important role and one which is rewarding and challenging and will last long after Glyne Gap Schooling finishes.The school recognizes this and believes we have a moral duty to support you where we can with your child's learning, at school and in life. 

Following a year's trial of 'Parent Cafés' (termly meet-ups with a specific learning focus relevant to you and your children/young adults) your feedback has been overwhelmingly positive to continue this opportunity. I am delighted to let you know that we will be offering the following Cafés over the coming school year:

Term 1: 16th October, 2019 - Total Communication - Communication Team
Term 2: 11th December, 2019  - Guest Spot - Jo Manly (Community Nurse)
Term 3: 5th February, 2020 - Behaviour - Melanie Juckes
Term 4:  25th March, 2020 - Glyne Gap Signs and Symbols - Communication Team
Term 5:  13th May, 2020 - 'Systems' - Expressive Language - Communication Team
Term 6:  Benefits Health Check (Yr. 1 - 8) - Teresa from HARC

This next section is information giving and summarises issues raised and discussed at previous Parent Cafés with useful links and follow-up suggestions..

Year 2017/18 Parent Café 1 (30/1/18)- 'Benefits Health Check' with HARC

Teresa Andrews from HARC (Hastings Advice and Representation Centre) updated Parents/Carers on Universal Credit (UC), Personal Independence Payments (PIP), Council Tax, Welfare Benefits, Carer's Support and how HARC can help families with appealing benefit decisions or filling in paperwork. She circulated a variety of prompt sheets and application forms which you can access by emailing her at We also held a follow-up workshop at the Faculty focusing on benefit changes once children become adults in their own right at 18. If you missed either of these opportunities and would like to find out more do contact Teresa directly or email Mel Juckes, Parent Café Co-ordinator on

Year 2017/18 Parent Café 2 (21/3/18)- 'Learning and Life Year 11 and Beyond'

This Café was specifically targeted at families of Senior children. Kirsty Prawanna (Head of Glyne Gap) and Jayne Dallaway (Lead at Glyne Gap Faculty) helped Parents and Carers to think about what makes their lives happy and fulfilled and what they believe will make their children's lives happy and fulfilled as they move into adulthood. 2 current students spoke about the lives they want to live after the Faculty finishes and how their current learning is preparing them for this. Jo Adams, our link social worker, spoke about how the 'Transitions Team' will help families and young people to think about their futures and how to unlock funding that can help with this.
If you missed this Café and would like to learn more we are planning to run it every year or you can contact Mel Juckes, Kirsty Prawanna or Jayne Dallaway via the school 01424 217720 or Faculty 01424 221215. Find out more about the Transitions Team via the East Sussex County Council website.

Year 2017/18 Parent Café 3 (16/5/18)- 'A Total Communication Approach'

Julie Davey, our Communication Team Lead, spoke to parents and carers about what 'Total Communication' means and taught us about 'receptive' and 'expressive' language. With her fellow team members Jinny and Pippa to help, the whole group played a game and shared experiences of their own children's communication and why sometimes their children might be using their behaviour to get their point across (expressive language) or show their lack of understanding of what is being expected of them (receptive language). A variety of communication techniques and tools were discussed, such as signing and picture exchange (PECS), visual timetables and objects of reference. Parents spoke about how approaches may need to adapt over time. Please have a look at the new section of our 'Home Learning' part of the website 'Supporting Your Child's Communication Needs' to find out more.
Alternatively speak to your child's class teacher or contact Julie directly at school 01424 217720

Year 2017/18 Parent Café  4- 'Glyne Gap Signing'

Julie Davey and her fellow team members Jinny and Pippa led a practical and theory based session focusing on the Glyne Gap signs and symbols 'core' vocabulary. These are the most commonly needed and used words such as 'mum' dad' 'eat' 'toilet' and so on. In parallel with this the Communication Team trialled using video clips on the website to remind pupils and families of the 'signs and symbols of the term'. Both the session and videos were popular with parents/carers and will be repeated and developed. Do check out the 'Supporting Your Child's Communication Needs' section of the Home Learning part of Glyne Gap website.

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  1- 'Parents and Carers Leavers Group'

Mel Juckes (Parent Café Co-ordinator) and Jayne Dallaway (Head of Faculty) ran an information giving session specific to Year 14 Parents and Carers. It focused on the process of supporting their sons and daughters to prepare for adult lives and leaving Glyne Gap. Parents/Carers were given a checklist of actions and some relevant links regarding possible Post 19 providers, healthcare links and info about how to find out more about wills and trusts.  
Please contact Mel Juckes, Kirsty Prawanna or Jayne Dallaway via the school 01424 217720 or Faculty 01424 221215 if more info is needed. Find out more about the Transitions Team via the East Sussex County Council website.

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  2- 'Essential Physical Skills'

Unfortunately, due to parent and carer illness and other commitments this Café could not run. However, the powerpoint with useful information can be found in the 'Supporting your Child's Physical Needs' section of the Home Learning part of this website.

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  3- 'Learning and Life Year 9 and Beyond- Introducing our new 'Transition' support for Families'

This Café was aimed at families of children in Year 9 and up. The focus was on thinking about what a happy and fulfilled adult life might look like for pupils at Glyne Gap and how parents and pupils can prepare for that. We also introduced our new support for families. Mel Juckes will be offering a bespoke service to every family and pupil from year 9 and up. This will involve a yearly meeting to plan for and review possible aspirational futures, signposting to relevant agencies and support with visits and paperwork as relevant. This work will link with each pupil's EHCP review and will provide families and pupils with a clear plan of how the process works and responsibilities within that.

If you have any queries about this work please contact Mel on 07934092492.

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  4- 'Systems that Enable and Develop Receptive Language Skills'

The Communication Team ran this very well attended cafe which focused on what 'receptive' language is (the ways we take in information), systems that we use in school to enable and develop these skills and how these might be helpful at home. There was useful discussion between families suggesting ideas and offering advice and also the very important opportunity to offer each other emotional support around the challenging issues that our children and we as parents/carers face. 

There will be a follow up resource-making workshop in Term 5/6, contact the Communication Team if you are interested. 

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  5- 'Glyne Gap Signing and Symbols - Core Vocabulary'

The Communication Team taught families why and how we sign and use symbols at Glyne Gap School and how this might be a useful tool to use at home. This will be a yearly opportunity, so don't worry if you missed the session, we will run it again next year.
If you would like any further information, do call the team on the school number.

Year 2018/19 Parent Café  6- 'Benefits Health Check (Yr9-Adulthood)'

Teresa Andrews from HARC will be running her popular benefits advice session for us. This time we particularly look at how benefits change as you child turns 14 and how they will change again as education finishes/adulthood begins.
Details will be circulated at the beginning of Term 6.

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