Transition/Moving on

In the FE Department, all Transitions are personalised to individual students and their families or carers.

A Transition is seen as any change from one situation to the next for a young person, and our aim is for each Transition to be well prepared for, and to ensure that the student and their voice is central to every transitional decision made.


Transition from KS4 to FE Department

Families and carers of Year 11 students are invited to a Transition meeting to explain and discuss the Transition into the FE Department and the various transitions which will take place whilst there, (eg transition to Adult Services, Transition from school). This will take place at the end of Key Stage 4.

Transition from Children’s to Adult Services at 18:

Children’s and Adult Services and the school work collaboratively with families to ensure a smooth transition between services.

  • Families who are unable to identify a member of Adult Services to lead this transition have individual support from the Transition Lead and Careers South West Advisor, in order to address this.
  • All agencies involved have an open invitation to visit the students in Transition at school and to share school based information which may help with assessment (with parental permission).
  • The Transition Lead, school advocate and class teams ensure that the student is central to the process and that their voice is heard, in order that what is important to them, and for them, drives the process. Work takes place to decide whether students are able to make their own decisions or whether decisions will be led by a Best Interests decision.

Transition From Residential Settings/Care Provisions: 

Some students will be required to move from full time Residential Provisions whilst in the Department. Where this is the case, Transition planning takes place to ensure that the student is central to the process, and that the process is not led by limited choices of ‘what’s available’.

    • The Transition Lead, school advocate and student, (whenever appropriate) attend multi agency meetings. If it is not appropriate for the student to attend, their voice is represented.
    • The school work closely alongside the Adult Service worker to ensure that Mental Capacity assessments are led by those who know the student well.
    • When provisions are identified, they are invited into school in order to meet and find out more about the young person and share information.
    • Students are supported by the school to visit their new providers and plan their transition.

Transition from School to Post School Provision:

Students in the FE Department have the option of spending up to 3 years in the Department (up to Year 14).

  • Transition planning begins when students enter the Department. This involves transition related target setting on their Medium Term planning related to the Preparing for Adulthood framework, as well as Transition objectives included into their personalised learning programmes and regular transition planning and advocacy sessions. As the process evolves, the Transition lead will work with families/carers individually on a personalised transition plan for their child.
  • Students build their own personalised communication packages which will leave school with them. For some this could be their profiles and communication charts which they can continually evaluate and revise. For others this could be a bank of communication resources such as symbolised communication packages or switch adapted equipment. The FE team work with the school’s Communication & Decision Making team to achieve this.
  • Students will have opportunities to visit post school provisions and services available to them, supported by their core team and advocate. For some students, they will be able to directly make choices and decisions regarding their future provision. For other students, their reactions to places will be observed and fed back at Transition planning meetings (Best Interest Meetings).
  • Students, wherever possible, are encouraged to be proactive within the process.
  • Families are supported in a personalised way throughout the transition process, depending on their individual needs. For some families this may, for example, be support to complete application forms, transport to visit Post School provisions and support at meetings. It is our aim to ensure that all students have equal access to opportunities and choices and support to achieve their aspirations, and that families are also empowered in this process.
  • When students have definite Transition plans in place and funding confirmed, the FE Department support a positive personalised transition programme for them. This can include supported visits to placements to take part in Taster sessions, supporting students to choose and appoint personal enablers, providing post school provisions with information and provide any relevant training specific to a young persons needs. This may be supported by the Transition Learning Budget.


The Transition Learning budget is an innovative commitment made by the Senior Leadership Team to support outstanding Transition for students in the FE Department. Each student has a personal budget available to them to support their Transition. Examples of the way this budget has been used are to:

  • Purchase Taster sessions
  • Employ staff to enable students to access Transition visits out of school hours.
  • Pay new enablers to access Taster sessions alongside the student who they will be working with when they leave school.
  • Provide training for staff at post school provisions.   Meetings have covered a wide range of issues led by speakers from a wide variety of different agencies. Topics discussed have included:
  • Alongside the individual personalised Transition Meetings which take place, the Transition Lead organises Transition Support Group Meetings. This provides families with an opportunity to hear about, and discuss, information relevant to transition, as well as an opportunity to meet with other parents/carers and offer support to each other. All meetings are informal in order to encourage as many parents as possible to attend and to ensure that all parents can access the information, despite any additional needs of their own which they may have.

The Transition Budget has also proved to be an efficient tool to help negotiate costings, and to support students to become aware of personal budgets. Outside agencies working with Ellen Tinkham students are now familiar with the Transition Learning budget and how it increases access and opportunity to ensure positive outcomes for our students.


A Transition Support Group runs at the college. This provides an opportunity for parents and carers of students who are Post 16 to find out about and discuss a variety of issues which may be relevant to transition and Preparing for Adulthood. These support groups are organised by the Transition Lead and parents will be notified. These groups also provide an informal opportunity for families and carers to get together and chat. Examples of Transition Support Group topics have included:

  • Transition from Children’s to Adult Services
  • The Mental Capacity Act and related issues (such as Power of Attorney)
  • Talks from Post School Providers
  • Talks from parents of ex Ellen Tinkham students and ‘what they wish they’d known’.
  • Healthcare Transition at 18 (including Transition from the Children’s Ward to Adult Wards and what support is available from the Learning Disability Team in local healthcare.)
  • Benefits advice from ‘Quids for Kids’ scheme.

Everyone will be the best they can be; Everyone has a voice; No-one is excluded.