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Pupils at Sheiling School are grouped in classes according to age rather than ability, and receive a broad and balanced holistic education based on the Steiner Waldorf Curriculum.

Holistic Education

At Sheiling School, we provide children and young people with a holistic education. In addition to giving our pupils a strong academic education, we also give them access to exceptional care and a wide range of therapies, so that they can reach their full potential.
Each Sheiling School pupil has a personalised curriculum and is well-supported by teachers and Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) so that he or she can progress with confidence. Our holistic education programme is delivered using “total communication” and we also offer a highly successful Outdoor Curriculum.

Holistic Education at Sheiling School, Thornbury

Sheiling School follows the Steiner Waldorf Curriculum, which has been carefully designed to provide a holistic education. The Steiner Waldorf Curriculum includes all areas of the National Curriculum, but all academic topics are taught in 3 – 5 week blocks during our Main Lesson, which is delivered between 9.10 and 10.30 a.m. each day.

The Steiner Waldorf Curriculum strongly supports educational achievement while also providing therapeutic elements and encouraging pupils to develop independence skills.

Support for Holistic Education at the Sheiling School

Sheiling School’s structure is designed to support pupils in all areas of their education. Our education, care and therapy departments work together and meet regularly to ensure that pupils can reach their academic potential, whilst also taking advantage of the therapeutic and developmental benefits provided by our holistic programme of education.

Sheiling School pupils also benefit from a high staff to pupil ratio and small class sizes. The overall structure of each day remains the same and each pupil receives their own visual timetable to provide them with added security. The class teacher and LSAs stay with each group for most lessons throughout the day, so that pupils can feel comfortable and confident when exploring new learning experiences.

Why Choose Sheiling School?

  • Curriculum focused on holistic education
  • Individual programmes
  • Small classes
  • High staffing ratio
  • Therapeutic learning environment
  • Incredible range of activities
  • Find out more

    Individual Holistic Education

    Each pupil at Sheiling School has an individual programme carefully designed to meet his or her needs. This balanced, holistic programme includes independence and life skills, as well as communication and sensory aspects. A wide range of professionals review the individual programmes to evaluate all outcomes and their effectiveness.

    Total Communication

    At Sheiling School, we use total communication as part of our teaching methods. Total communication is a system using a variety of communication methods, including verbal communication, sign language and symbols. This enables staff and pupil to communicate effectively in ways which suit each young person’s individual needs.

    Outdoor Curriculum

    Sheiling School’s Outdoor Curriculum offers a holistic therapeutic and educational programme to children and young people who are hard to reach, and who may have experienced difficulties with more formal approaches to education or rigid timetables. This approach has been very successful with children and young people who have been out of school for long periods of time.
    Read more about our Outdoor Curriculum →

    At Sheiling School, our priority is to provide a flexible and creative learning environment where children can find joy in learning. The curriculum, founded on Rudolf Steiner’s principles of holistic education, gives equal attention to the physical, emotional, intellectual, cultural and spiritual needs of each pupil and is designed to work in harmony with the different phases of the child’s development. The core subjects of this holistic curriculum are taught in thematic blocks and all lessons include a balance of artistic, practical and intellectual content.

    Latest Ofsted report here

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