In 2015 Discovery alongside partners from Affinity TSA established EPIC – a specialist support service for schools to commission to help promote emotional well-being and remove barriers to learning. One of the increasingly difficult challenges faced by school leaders is the access to highly trained specialists who are able to assess and provide effective support and interventions for our pupils who present with SEND. Discovery believes strongly that we need to invest appropriately in this support and as such has developed a significant strategy to support these pupils as well all pupils at a universal level.
Each school in Discovery commissions support from this team each year to meet their pupil needs but the benefits of having EPIC as a core part of the trust are far wider than this. The EPIC team plan their work strategically to ensure that all schools in the partnership access high quality, research informed CPDL and specialist support. This emphasis on learning is core to Discovery and helps upskill our workforce to meet the needs of our pupils rather than having to always rely upon third party support.
In addition to the case work, assessments and CPDL delivered by EPIC we are also committed to undertaking research to create new interventions for our schools and therapeutic work. We have a range of information about the work we have undertaken since 2015 on our website. EPIC is made up of two teams which both serve to meet the needs of pupils and families in our schools:
Our teams are led by:
Paula Hopkins – Senior EP
Mel Carte – Senior SALT
More specific details about their teams can be found by visiting their pages below and by visiting their website http://epicleics.com
Schools who interested in commissioning EPIC Services should contact the team in the first instance by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Psychology & wellbeing services is a school led partnership established to meet the needs of local children, families and schools. Our partnership of schools works closely together to develop a high-quality service that best supports the need of our schools.
The service is made up of educational psychologists, assistant psychologists and psychology undergraduates on placement from University. EPIC firmly believe in sustaining the amount of high quality, experienced graduates seeking future doctoral training and providing opportunities for undergraduates to explore educational psychology as a possible career. As such, we have developed strong links with Loughborough University and more recently De Montfort University.
We have an effective working relationship with should we just say neighbouring LAs and deliver a range of wellbeing support for schools which includes working with families and staff teams.
Our service provides high need support for children and families and there is a strong therapeutic focus held and practiced by all in the team. A key role is to safeguard children’s mental health and offer training for all people working with our children.
Using applied psychology, we adopt proactive/preventative, systemic and targeted approaches in consultation with schools to identify and assess areas of emotional health and well-being where educational psychology support can make a positive difference. We aim to build capacity in school communities and families by helping the members to understand complexity and plan interventions with clarity in order to nurture children’s well-being and learning. To make sure all systems and communications with stakeholders are clear so that the EP service is transparent and schools feel supported.
What we can offer schools
Our service provides high need support for children and families but also aims to develop an effective wellbeing provision systemically to support families, safeguard children’s mental health and offer training for all people working with our children. We currently offer:
We are always looking to develop our service offer according to the needs of our partner schools and evidence based practices. Therefore, the menu of support is a dynamic one.
Training and Support for School & Inset Days
The EPIC team has a number of programmes and specialisms which can be procured by schools to support whole staff training, including in service training days. Some of the training opportunities for schools includes:
Centrally Led Training
Each year EPIC will be offering a range of wellbeing specific training opportunities for schools to access. These include:
As a fully qualified Team EPIC is able to offer supervision for those in roles within school that require this support such as ELSAs. We would encourage schools to take this further and offer supervision to class teachers and other roles too.