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Is the school an Enhanced Resource School and if so, what is this?

Is the school an Enhanced Resource School and if so, what is this?


Yes, Dunston Primary and Nursery School is an Enhanced Resource School for children with physical disabilities.


Who is the ERS for?

Derbyshire enhanced resource (ER) schools are mainstream schools with additional funding to build up expertise and resources to work with pupils with high level needs, who may live outside the area normally served by the school. It is for physically impaired pupils with severe and complex special educational needs, who require a level of specialist support which may not normally be available in other mainstream schools.


The Descriptors

The Local Authority have drawn up descriptors which outline the provision expected in ER schools and assist Local Authority officers in deciding which pupils should be placed in ER provision.


Up to eight children from ages 3 – 11 can be supported by the purpose built enhanced resource facility. Each pupil receives highly tailored individual support to provide full access to the mainstream curriculum, from the Foundation Stage through to the end of Key Stage 2 of the National Curriculum.


Children are supported within the main body of the school and become integrated with their peers in existing classes, as well as taking part in whole school activities. In addition individualised programmes may be offered to develop skills in:

  • Self help
  • Gross motor
  • Fine motor
  • Communication
  • Assistive technology
  • Structured literacy/numeracy programmes
  • Independent work skills
  • Social skills
  • Life skills




Our ERS Ethos

At Dunston we believe learning occurs in an integrated way, encompassing the sensory, motor, cognitive, communication and socio-emotional aspects of development. Therefore learning is personal centred, holistic and recognises the child as a whole.


A multidisciplinary team along with the child and parents, work together to ensure learning takes place all day and helps pupils to develop intellectual, emotional, social and physical abilities. Pupils are encouraged to be active and discover their own solutions to the many problems of daily living.


Access to mainstream lessons

ER pupils may access to one or more of the following depending on their individual needs:

  • ER pupils access mainstream lessons with appropriate support.
  • Core subject teaching may be in mainstream with support or in ER base.
  • ER pupils may access other teaching/therapy sessions in their classroom or in ER base.
  • Differentiation by class/subject teachers supported by ER staff.



Both the ER facility and the main school are adapted throughout so that the school and grounds are fully accessible to pupils with physical disabilities, their individual equipment and support staff.


Examples include:

  • Height adjustable interactive whiteboards in each classroom.
  • A specialist enhanced resource classroom.
  • A dedicated therapy room.
  • Accessible paths which link outdoor areas including both playgrounds and learning environments.
  • A wildlife area with a wheelchair accessible pond dipping platform.
  • Three dedicated disabled toileting facilities across the school.
  • Large classrooms and wide corridors to promote independence for disabled pupils moving around school.



Additional, highly trained staff are employed to run the enhanced resource facility.

Pupils have access across the week to a specialist teacher, experienced in working with those with major physical disabilities, and a small team of teaching assistants. Typical staff/pupil ratio 1:2



The ER teacher is a qualified teacher with additional training to work with pupils who have a range of physical disabilities. This includes an understanding of implementing the use of augmentative and alternative communication aids and physical management.


All staff are trained in moving and handling techniques and other aspects of care. Teaching assistants are skilled in supporting curriculum access, personal care, mobility, communication and life skills activities.


In addition specific training for meeting individual pupils’ health care needs is also arranged through NHS providers e.g. physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy.