Last Friday Rix Research were in attendance at the annual RNLC (Redbridge Networked Learning Communities) Inclusion Conference, where delegates saw an fantastic showcase of multimedia wikis being used as a powerful tool for self-advocacy and effective EHC planning. Kathryn Stowell, Head of ICT & Communication at Charlton Park Academy, was presenting at the conference along with some of the students she works with. Kathryn shared the innovative ways in which Person-Centred Planning has been developed at Charlton Park.
The Rix Research Team has been working with Charlton Park Academy to pilot and evaluate the use of Klikin multimedia wikis for Person-Centred Planning. Kathryn explained to an audience of Redbridge Borough’s school senior management, SENCOs and other borough staff how working with the Rix Centre’s Klikin wiki software they have been able to embed multimedia Person-Centred Planning activities within the school curriculum. It was, however, Kathryn’s student co-presenters Osio and Harry who made the real impact of this work clear to the delegates.
Harry has complex needs and communicates with specific signs and sounds and using a Dynavox. It is important to Harry that people around him understand his communication. This makes a big difference to his life. Presenting the communication section of his wiki Harry was in just a few short minutes able to teach all the delegates in the room how to understand his key communication, a really effective demonstration of how his wiki helps everyone who works with Harry to understand him better. With his wiki displayed behind him on the big screen Osio, who has complex communication difficulties and is usually quite shy, felt confident enough to stand in front of a packed auditorium of strangers and not only give them a tour of his wiki but also a spontaneous live dance performance that brought the house down.
The conference was titled ‘SEN 2014 – What It Means For Your School And Community’ and focused on the wide reaching changes that will impact special education professionals when the new SEN Code of Practice comes into force later this year and the implications for their planning and practice. Kathryn’s presentation illustrated how multimedia tools and Multimedia Advocacy approaches can improve the lives of young people and help educators rise to the challenges of the new SEN Code of Practice.