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The Sheiling Special Education Trust Good


Inspection carried out on 26 March 2019

During a routine inspection

About the service:

The Sheiling Special Education Trust provides accommodation and personal care for up to 21 people who attend the college of further education on site. Accommodation for these people is provided in two homes, Westmount House and Watchmoor House. At the time of the inspection 16 people were living across the two houses.

The Sheiling Special Education Trust provides a therapeutic environment inspired by Rudolf Steiner for children and young adults with severe, complex and moderate learning difficulties and disabilities.

The Sheiling Special Education Trust also comprises a college and children's home which are not regulated by the Care Quality Commission.

Rating at last inspection:

Good (published 28 October 2016).

Why we inspected:

This inspection was a scheduled inspection based on the previous rating.

People’s experience of using this service:

People and relatives told us they were happy, felt safe and that staff had a good understanding of people’s needs and preferences. Staff listened to what people wanted and acted quickly to support them to achieve their goals and aspirations. Staff were innovative and looked to offer people solutions to aid their independence and develop their skills.

People had good community networks which were personal to them. This included college opportunities, therapeutic activities and supporting people to use technology to connect with family and friends. People had been supported to develop and maintain positive relationships with friends and family. Equality, Diversity and Human Rights (EDHR) were promoted and understood by staff.

Staff were well trained and skilled. They worked with people to overcome challenges and promote their independence. The emphasis of support was towards enabling people to learn essential life skills. Staff encouraged positive risk taking so people could experience new things and develop. This had led to people feeling fulfilled and living an active life.

People and their families described the staff as caring, kind, compassionate and friendly and the atmosphere of the houses as relaxed and engaging. People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice.

Leadership was visible and promoted good teamwork. People, professionals and staff spoke highly about the management and staff had a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities. The registered manager, management and staff teams worked together in a positive way to support people to achieve their own goals and to be safe. Checks of safety and quality were made to ensure people were protected. Work to continuously improve was noted and the management team was keen to make changes that would impact positively on people's lives.

The service met the values that underpin the 'Registering the Right Support' and other best practice guidance such as 'Building the Right Support'. These values include choice, promotion of independence and inclusion. Also, how people with learning disabilities and autism using the service can live as ordinary a life as any citizen.

A full description of our findings can be found in the sections below.

Follow up:

We will continue to monitor intelligence we receive about the service until we return to visit as per our re-inspection programme. If any concerning information is received we may inspect sooner.

Inspection carried out on 3 October 2016

During a routine inspection

The inspection took place on 3 and 6 October 2016.

The Sheiling Special Education Trust is registered to provide accommodation and personal care for up to 21 people whilst they attend the college on the same site. At the time of our inspection there were 17 people living in two houses called Westmount and Watchmoor. The people living in these houses had complex support needs. This meant they needed intensive support related to many aspects of daily living such as their health, communication, their ability to relate to others and how they managed their emotions and experience of their environment.

There was a registered manager in post at the time of our inspection. A registered manager is a person who has registered with the Care Quality Commission to manage the service. Like registered providers, they are ‘registered persons’. Registered persons have legal responsibility for meeting the requirements in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

People had support and care when they needed it from staff who had been safely recruited and understood their needs. Staff were consistent in their knowledge of people’s care needs and spoke confidently about the support people needed to meet these needs. They told us they felt supported in their roles and had received training that provided them with the necessary knowledge and skills.

People were protected from harm because staff understood how to reduce the risks people faced. They also knew how to identify and respond to abuse and said they would be confident to do so.

People saw health care professionals when necessary. Support was provided to reduce people’s anxiety around health appointments and this resulted in more effective access for individuals. Records and feedback from a healthcare professional reflected that staff responded appropriately to both ongoing healthcare needs and health emergencies. People received their medicines as they were prescribed.

Staff understood how people consented to the care they provided and encouraged people to make decisions about their lives. Care plans and practice reflected the framework of the Mental Capacity Act 2005. Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards had been applied for when people needed to live in one of the houses to be cared for safely but did not have the mental capacity to consent to this.

People were engaged with activities that reflected their assessed needs, preferences and strengths. This included individual and group activities both in the houses, grounds and the local area. Where people were working to achieve goals through these activities this was recorded in a way that supported people’s understanding of these goals.

Mealtimes were communal, social events. They had a clear beginning and end; people understood this routine and were encouraged to take part. Everyone described the food as good and there were systems in place to ensure people had enough to eat and drink. When people needed particular diets or support to eat and drink safely this was in place.

Quality assurance had led to improvements being made and people, relatives and staff were invited to contribute their views to this process. Staff, relatives and people spoke positively about the management and staff team as a whole.

People, relatives and staff were positive about the care and kindness they experienced within the Sheiling Special Education Trust. Staff were cheerful and treated people and visitors with respect and kindness throughout our inspection.

Inspection carried out on 23, 26, 28 January 2014

During a routine inspection

The Sheiling Ringwood had arrangements in place to provide care that met students' needs. Students had care plans and staff were able to tell us about students' needs and how they managed risks to their welfare. Students were supported to lead an ordinary life, participate in a range of activities and access facilities in their local community on a regular basis. They were also supported to maintain contact with important people in their lives. Some aspects of care planning, however, were not robust enough to ensure that, at all times, staff knew how to deliver students' care in a consistent and appropriate way.

There were procedures in place to protect students from abuse. Staff were aware of the procedures in place to keep students safe and the action they should take if they had concerns about students' welfare. Where there were concerns about students' vulnerability, we saw that the provider had taken appropriate action and informed relevant agencies. This promoted a multi-agency approach to safeguarding people and ensured appropriate action was taken.

There were suitable arrangements in place to manage medicines. Medicines were stored securely and some procedures were in place to help ensure they were administered in a safe way.

There were enough staff available to support students with their day to day needs. However, staffing arrangements did not always ensure that there were staff with appropriate skills and qualifications to be able to meet students' needs in an emergency.

The provider had an effective system to regularly assess and monitor the quality of the service. Checks were carried out on the service and, where areas for improvement had been identified, action was being taken. The provider ensured that people had opportunities to comment on the service and they took note of people's views.