‘I couldn’t do as well as I do at school without the things that help me. I have enjoyed learning to touch type as whilst I can write it’s hard for me to read back my own writing. I’m already on level 4 and I like typing up my longer pieces of writing. My teacher has her whiteboard connected to my iPad and this helps me see what work we are doing. I am lucky to have the help I do at school.’
Emily (verbally said to mother, March, 2017)
‘CENMAC has helped me over the years with my writing and spelling as before I was not able to write much by hand. Now my typing skills have developed and I can write longer pieces of work on my laptop. First Key Three has helped me with my spelling and typing.’
Mohammed, Year 4 (March, 2017)
Extract from an email from the mother of a pupil following a CENMAC assessment:
‘Dear Imogen. I just got your report today and wanted to thank you for doing Ethan’s assessment and writing such a comprehensive report. I’m really grateful that CENMAC will be able to provide Ethan with the ICT that he needs to be able to follow the curriculum. Thanks again for a great service.’
Maria Larrain, Ethan’s mum.
Extract from email from LEA officials following LEA information day:
‘Dear Trish, It was a pleasure to meet with you and all of the team and get an insight into the breadth of what CENMAC does.’
‘Dear Trish. It was very useful to keep up to date with developments and news. Thanks for the lunch and excellent venue. Neil’
Extract from email from pupil’s mother returning equipment: ‘I hope that computer does as many good things for the next person to use it as it did for us.’
Extract from email following training in ‘Clicker 4’: ‘Everyone was very positive about your input and learned more about Clicker. People feel more confident and are looking to establish some working groups to develop resources. Thanks for all your help and we may call on you again during next year dependent on how far we get. Multimedia through Clicker is likely to be next big step’.
‘I cannot emphasise enough how remarkable and dramatic an effect learning to type and using an alphasmart from CENMAC has had on Sean and us. I was really surprised that he was motivated to learn to type, but having experienced praise and success from his first attempts he has tried really hard and is now using it for all written work. He has changed from a child who was bored, frustrated, extremely challenging and alienated from his peers into a much more conforming and well behaved boy. Now that he can produce work that he can be praised for, he is much keener to behave well and work alongside his peers. In addition, he has started a fantastic correspondence with his Grandmother and started writing poetry’.
What would we do without CENMAC?
For over 20 years Greenmead children, staff and parents have had access to advice from CENMAC. We are fortunate that our LEA buy into this service as we find it an invaluable support for our work with physically disabled and PMLD pupils. The equipment that CENMAC is able to loan is just a small part of the service. The most valuable aspect of their work is that they have an in depth knowledge of working with children with special needs and an up to date knowledge of the available ICT equipment and software for supporting these children. It would be impossible for our staff to keep as up to date with the rapidly developing world of ICT. Also, although we have considerable expertise within our school, CENMAC staff give us ideas of good practice gathered from their work with other professionals in the field of SEN. Their objective views give us alternative ways of supporting our pupils in the curriculum and help to maintain our enthusiasm!
“After 9 years working in Hackney and Camden I have returned home to teach. … I worked with many pupils who were supported by yourselves. I am struggling to get equipment for a … child in my class. It has made me realise the value of your organisation. Thank you.”
“I have just logged onto your site and have been looking at your ideas for using Step by Steps. Found some great new ideas, thank you. … It’s great to find sites that support AAC users and facilitators so effectively. Thanks again and keep up the good work.”