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ITS College



Inspirational tutors who work hard to reach pupils have been nominated for a Children’s Champion award after going above and beyond to help students succeed.

Becky Macleod, 26, of Monk Bretton, and Angela Lacey, 56, from Thurnscoe, use inspirational and flexible teaching methods to deliver Independent Training College’s schools programme which re-engages non-attenders or pupils with poor attendance and challenging behaviour. Angie and Becky give up much of their own time to work with Social Services and parents, ensuring pupils have attendance in the region of 90 per cent and achieve qualifications in English and maths.

Many of the pupils are looked after children, who have complex emotional needs and have found mainstream school isn’t right for them.

Angie says the young people she works with are intelligent and have a great deal of potential, but often have anxiety and fear of failure due to missing substantial chunks of their education.

“You have to show them that you won’t give up on them,” said Angie. “They sometimes feel stupid when they’re in mainstream school and so they are looking to get kicked out of lessons as they have missed so much.“

“Everyday is a new day and you start again. It’s a clean slate for them and that’s something they haven’t had before. We managed to get two pupils to sit their GCSEs. No-one thought they would do it, not even their social workers.”

“We had another pupil who wasn’t attending at all and has gone to 99.1 per cent attendance. They didn’t want to go home over the summer holidays so we’re still going out and keeping in contact. Even when they move on we stay in touch to give them that consistency.”

“We don’t go home at half past four, we go out if we need to. It’s that wrap around holistic approach.”

Angie added: “We don’t go home at half past four, we go out if we need to. It’s that wrap around holistic approach.”

The pair go out into homes and tutor pupils in their own time, ensuring they don’t miss any of their education.

They say the secret to their success is provide a flexible and unconventional curriculum, so that pupils are unaware they are learning. In the past they have used interests in Cinderella and Al Pacino to teach lessons on emotional abuse and neglect, and the prohibition era.

Although they are often on the receiving end of pupils’ challenging behaviour, which can be anything from abusive language to destructive acts, Angie says they are aware that students on the programme are just testing boundaries.

“They don’t like authority and they’ve been let down by a number of adults in the past,” she said.

If I were doing this for the money I just wouldn’t because it is challenging work. We both want to help and it is definitely a vocation.”

Becky said: “We understand that children aren’t bad. They might make bad choices, but its our job to help them make better ones. We always say that they can be whatever they want to be with our support.”

“We see so many people in society who could have done with a helping hand.”

“I think me and Ange work well as a team because we learn from each other. We couldn’t do it without each other.”

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