The ability to get around our campus, and the wider world, with confidence is central to the future success of our students.
After an initial assessment, students are supported by qualified mobility officers to develop their own mobility programme that will give them the skills to travel safely and independently. We encourage our students to use a range of mobility aids from hand held satellite navigation systems and phone apps, to the traditional long cane.
Students follow our Steps to Independence programme. This covers the following modules;
- Body awareness
- Spatial awareness
- Sensory skills
- Residual Vision
- Body Movement / Physical capacity
- Sighted Guide
- Protective techniques
- Orientation and Mapping Skills
- Independent travel – campus indoor orientation
- Symbol Cane
- Long cane
- Travel safely around campus
- Use of vehicles
- Road Crossings
- Social Skills
- Money Handling
- Shops and services
- Inner City travel
- Taxi Travel
- Safe Bus travel
- Safe Train travel
- Safe air travle
- Night Travel
- Transition-Life beyond NCW
- Preparing for Higher Education
Lessons begin on campus where there are hundreds of subtle cues such as bold colours and different textures on the floors and walls. Students are encouraged to explore the campus and identify these clues and landmarks to orientate their environment and develop their mapping skills.
Students will then develop their mobility and orientation skills in the wider community. This will include a variety of settings, beginning with quiet local residential areas and progressing to complex city centres.
In addition to mobility skills, students are taught personal safety, social skills and resilience. Money handling skills are also covered so that our students are able to manage their purchases with cash, card and Apps. Older students learn how to manage their finances through banking Apps and audio cash machines.
Confidence on public transport is vital. So, for example, we make it easier to learn the layout of a bus by bringing one on campus to give our students the chance to explore it in a safe, encouraging environment.
Worcester has three stations nearby. The short journey between them is ideal for older students to get to grips with the challenges of train travel. We are lucky to be able to have the opportunity to explore stationary trains to learn their layout and practice boarding and alighting safely.
In addition, we travel to Birmingham so that students can develop skills at a busier station and have the opportunity to practice using rail assistance.
In lessons, the emphasis is on developing transferable skills for life beyond New College Worcester. All of the skills taught are fundamental to enable our students to become confident and competent travellers who can participate in their communities and have a fulfilled lifestyle.