New College Worcester (NCW), Whittington Road, Worcester, WR5 2JX
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News > NCW Shares Expertise in Norway

New College Worcester is involved in an exciting European Erasmus+ funded project with partners from Norway, Germany, England, Finland and the BDFA (Batten Disease Family Association). The aim of the project is to establish a knowledge base in approaches to learning for young people with the rare genetic disorder JNCL (Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis) – also known as Batten Disease, to ensure the highest quality of education and educational practice across Europe.

Siân Shaw, Vice Principal Student Support and Tracey Smith, Learning Support Co-Ordinator, were invited to attend a Kick-off Workshop in September. The 2 day event held in Melhus, Norway, comprised workshops and seminars to share good practice in educating young people living with the disorder, and to work towards developing an Educational Toolkit.

NCW has worked with various students with the condition over the years and has developed specific expertise for students accessing the National Curriculum. Visual impairment is one of the symptoms of the disorder and often one of the first signs that alerts professionals to screen for the condition. The visual impairment adds a complexity to learning alongside the other symptoms of the condition, but NCW has the specialist teaching, equipment and resources for this element already in place.

The attendees from Germany, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and the UK shared experiences and offered advice, and tried out tools in development and shared information, which will feed into the project. NCW will contribute a section of the resulting toolkit, focussing on effective and successful transition from mainstream school into a specialist educational environment.

Siân Shaw said “It is privilege to be asked to be involved in this European project sharing good practice and developing an educational resource. We are grateful to the BDFA for initiating the contact and facilitating our involvement. It is so good to be able to share our experience and expertise, and learn what we can from others”

For the NCW delegates the conference was enlightening – learning about different techniques and tools used in the other countries represented, and other settings in the UK – as well as rewarding being able to share their own experience in the area.

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