Information for Schools and Colleges

The Beacon CAMHS Unit is part of the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and is a 15 bedded ward providing care for young people aged 12 – 18 years. Most of the young people who are admitted to the ward are voluntary patients. It is not a secure unit; and planned leave, whether in the locality or at home, is encouraged as soon as possible. Young people are admitted to the Beacon either in a state of crisis, or when their circumstances and presentation becomes complex and an assessment is needed.

Education at The Beacon CAMHS Unit is provided by The Children’s Hospital School. The education staff aim to marry academic and therapeutic progress by working closely with the clinical team.

We aim to liaise with schools as often as possible and we will contact you to request further information about the student. This may include information about any concerns you may have with regards to the student, what levels they are working at and details of any work that you would like them to be completing while they are with us on the ward and you will also be asked to share the students safeguarding file with us.

Currently, we offer up to 17.5 hours of education/contact time a week. The rest of the time is spent in therapeutic sessions or individual meetings.

Education is available to students as soon as they are well enough. We may start with alternative curriculum work, but we aim to move on to academic work as soon as possible.  We are also able to offer short courses through AQA Unit Awards.

Towards the end of a young person’s stay, we discuss reintegration with all concerned and can offer support from our Inclusion Support Worker.

Progress and clinical decisions are reviewed on a formal basis at weekly meetings with parents/carers and the young person. In addition, in preparation for discharge, a CPA (Care Programme Approach) meeting is held. This is aimed at making sure all involved are aware of the plans and agencies involved. It is helpful if schools can attend these meetings.

After discharge, if appropriate, we send questionnaires to schools/colleges, parents/carers and the young person themselves asking for feedback on the work we have done.

We are delighted with the feedback from our most recent Ofsted inspection:

Students receive an outstanding education and make excellent progress. Leaders have a precise understanding of the needs of each student. All learning is personalised to provide individual programmes which support students to regain confidence and self-belief as they overcome their mental health issues and engage in their studies.”