Achievement Statements
Sommerville Special School is committed to providing a positive learning environment where students are encouraged to develop their individual potential.

Our programmes are based on:
  1.  Individual “cross curricular goals” which are established in consultation with teachers, therapists and families to form the I.E.P. Extensive data is collected on the student’s progress through the goals and reported on to parents in a formal manner in Term 4. Therapists and teachers meet on a regular basis to discuss I.E.P. goal development and teachers report each term to Senior Management on student progress 
  2. Therapy programmes established following assessment and staff training to implement plans.
  3. New Zealand Curriculum Coverage requirements. These programmes are planned with clusters but assessed at an individual class level.
  4. Specialist Programmes e.g.: Multi Sensory Programmes, MOVE programmes, Motor Perceptual Programmes, Work experience, SPEC, independent living, community participation.
  5. The Key Competencies are incorporated and embedded in class programmes through all of the above.
  6. Where possible achievement objectives from each learning area are identified and covered throughout the programme.
Across the school environment a range of assessment tools are used to suit the different needs of the students in different parts of the school. The data gathered from these assessments are used to develop further goals in every students programme.
AEPS data is collected annually for all students up to the age of 16. This assessment charts developmental progress in many areas.  
P-Level assessments in Literacy and Numeracy are also collected across the school.
The Senior School uses a new NZ based programme called 'SPEC'. This is a recognised programme that is externally moderated and all students can access this. The Senior School are also developing their own functional assessments that match the needs of these young adults. 

English and Other Languages
  • All students are to have a recent (no more than 12 months old) assessment by the Speech & Language Therapist to determine an appropriate communication programme for the individual student e.g.: PECS, Signed English (Australasian Sign) Board Maker Symbols, Augmentative Communication.
  • Where appropriate students will experience recording in a variety of contexts – handwriting, concept keyboard, or computer.
  • All students will experience oral, written, visual language in a range of contexts.
  •  Visual strategies will be used in all classrooms to assist students to make sense of their day at school, or world.
  • Where appropriate, parents will be trained in all of the above to assist students in their attempts to communicate.


Science will be promoted as an activity that is carried out by all students as part of their everyday life.

All students will experience an environment in which they will learn strategies for active exploration, thinking and reasoning.

Coverage of the curriculum will be linked to and focus on the Strands “making Sense of the Living, Physical and Material Worlds” and where appropriate “Planet Earth and Beyond”


Students will be encouraged to explore and risk take.

Programmes will be linked to self-care and independent living programmes e.g.: taps, toilets, etc.

Using Technology will be provided for and practised on a daily basis as part of the general class programme e.g.: cooking programmes, multi-sensory programmes.

Social Studies

Active participation by all students in the local community through EOTC programmes.

Practise social and co-operative skills to develop positive relationships.

Awareness and respect for all other cultures.

The Arts

  • To participate and develop skills in the art process.
  • To provide opportunities of enjoyment and appreciation of art works and performances in a variety of contexts.
  • To express ideas through a variety of media.
  • To provide opportunities to perform for peers and family.
  • To expose students to a range of music and instruments. Music and Drama specialist programmes will provide opportunities to participate, perform, practise skills of listening, turn-taking etc.


· Where possible be linked to functional experiences i.e.: as an integral part of everyday life.

· Where possible provide opportunities to problem solve, and reason logically.

· Will provide students with tools, skills, understanding and attitudes, which will enable them to interact with their environment at highest possible individual level.


* Focus on physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being.

· Focus on activity, fitness.

· Recreation and leisure activities to be developed.

· Enhance life skills – self care, hygiene, nutrition and safety procedures in the home, school and community.

· Provide opportunities for participation in regular activities including those, which involve integration with mainstream options wherever possible.

· Promotion of self-esteem and skills to enable students to successfully interact with people in their environments.


MOVE – All students who cannot SIT, STAND or WALK independently, will be assessed by our physiotherapist for the MOVE programme.

SENSORY – Students with sensory needs will be assessed by our Occupational Therapist and provided with a sensory programme which may include:

1. The Sensory Room

2. Tactile Stimulation

3. A Sensory diet.

TRANSITIONAL PROGRAMMES - At the age of 16, students will enter at least one phase of our Transition Programme (established Term 3).

Each student will have the opportunity to participate in extra curricular activities which may include:




Leisure and Play

Developmental Programmes



Work Experience