If you are the parent or carer of a child who is struggling to cope in education and needs extra support, it can be hard to know where to turn. Switch has developed a range of programmes and resources aimed at nurturing and supporting children and young people, to power their potential.
Our approach encourages self-motivation and aims to develop confidence, improve attendance, and increase wellbeing.
Some young people need access to a higher level of social and emotional support, that’s why our in-school programmes and part-time placements at our Wolverhampton centre can be extremely beneficial. We encourage your son or daughter to reflect on the situations that they have encountered and then support them in identifying ways to positively manage challenges, and build a bright and successful future.
Our qualified and experienced staff spend time talking to individuals and engage them through activities that spark their interest.
• We can build positive relationships between young people and staff, encouraging them to develop their communication skills with adults and peers.
• Our consistent approach to behaviour and boundary setting allows us to pick up on issues much quicker than in a school setting.
• We will do our utmost to prepare your son or daughter to transition quickly and smoothly back into school.
• While we’re incredibly happy to have them, we are here to ensure your child leaves us as soon as they are ready, and that their time with us is beneficial without any negative impact on their formal education or future progression and achievement.
By working together with parents and carers, schools, and local authorities, we can help your child get the support they need. We encourage you to remain fully involved during their time with us and hope to build a strong and positive relationship with you.
• You can contact us at any time of the day, and we will give you regular updates on their progress.
• We welcome open and honest discussion and provide a safe environment to talk about anything that is impacting their life or any problems you may see at home.
• We also work closely with teachers, schools, local authorities, and other referring organisations to provide support and guidance in every environment.
• Switch targets the social and emotional well-being of a young person and does not offer significant core curriculum learning outcomes (English, Maths, Science etc.). This is made clear to the school or Local Authority when the young person is referred.
• Referrals are part-time and they must also be accessing education via school/training provider so that we ensure all the needs of the pupil are being met.
We are based within Dovecotes Primary School in Pendeford, Wolverhampton.
• We have a separate area within the school site, but benefit from the security and safeguarding systems that are now standard within all schools.
• We have an intercom on the gate at the back of the school accessed through the staff car park.
• Unfortunately, the car park is too small to allow parents/guardians to use it, but there is parking on the road outside.
• For initial meetings, please follow signs to the school reception and we will come and meet you. We will show you around and explain how you find the day-to-day entrance.
Our address is: Switch Midlands, Dovecotes Primary School, Ryefield, Pendeford, Wolverhampton, WV8 1TXGet in touch
We provide a safe, supportive, and positive environment with enough space to accommodate most activities.
• We have a large, bright room with modern facilities, including Apple iMac computer suite and an interactive whiteboard.
• We have a kitchen for cooking activities, with a cooker and hob, plus a fridge to keep packed lunches in.
• They are welcome to get themselves water at any time of the day and there is a supervised lunch break.
• We also have a small garden, staff office, the Calm Room for 1-2-1 work, and separate toilets.
Unless the school has stated otherwise, young people are free to wear their own clothes.
• Clothes should be appropriate for the weather, environment, and planned activities.
• Please avoid wearing anything valuable in case of damage during activities such as sport, art, or cooking.
• Hats and hoods must be removed on the school site.
If your son or daughter is attending a full day, they will need a packed lunch. We have learnt that diet can have a significant impact on children and young people’s behaviour and concentration, so we ask that their lunch is as healthy as possible.
• We encourage young people to eat breakfast before they arrive – it’s the most important meal of the day!
• We do not allow energy drinks at any time.
• We do not tolerate alcohol on the premises.
• We promote a healthy diet and usually discuss nutrition and diet whilst they are with us
Mobile phones are an integral part of life and we understand that young people need them to communicate, but also to stay safe. They are welcome to bring them and can use them at lunchtimes only.
• Phones must be put away during sessions, or handed to staff in the office for safekeeping.
• Persistent use of phones at inappropriate times may mean that young people are required to leave their phones at home.
• We provide padlocked lockers for young people to keep personal belongings and items safe during the day.
There is no need to bring any stationery or equipment unless the school have set particular work that requires it. Please discourage your son or daughter from bringing any personal items, especially anything of value. If they use a bicycle to travel to us, there is a bike rack within the school grounds. This is within the school’s locked boundaries, but students should bring locks to secure their bikes.
If your son or daughter needs to take prescribed medicine during the day, please contact us in advance so we can ensure that we have all the information we need. Medication is always logged, kept securely and students are supervised when taking it.
Our start and finish times are designed to allow flexibility for drop-off and pick-up, as we realise that our children and young people may be travelling further than they do for school.
Our sessions run 3 days per week: Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 9:30 am-12:00 pm and 12:30 pm-2.30 pm during term-time only. We are closed during bank holidays and school holidays, plus occasional staff training days.
If you need further flexibility to accommodate dropping off other siblings at school or to fit with community transport, then please contact us.
Your child’s safety is our top priority. As with all organisations that work with young people, we have to ensure that we have the correct insurance, policies and protocols that adhere to current legislation. Our policies are available on our website to download, or we can supply them on request.
We encourage parents/guardians to remain fully involved during their time with us and hope to build a strong and positive relationship with you. You are welcome to ring or email us at any time during the day if you would like an update on your son or daughter’s progress. We would also encourage you to let us know of anything that’s impacting on their life at the moment and keep us updated of any progress or problems that you may see at home.
Wolverhampton Information, Advice & Support Service
Wolverhampton Information Network
Wolverhampton Safeguarding Board
KOOTH – Free, safe and anonymous support online