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Kingfisher Learning Centre

The Kingfisher Learning Centre seeks to minimise the interruption and disruption to children and young people’s education so that academic progress and an interest in learning will continue, as far as their health permits. 

In order to fulfil the above we aim to: 

  • Provide personalised, challenging, enjoyable and innovative learning opportunities 

  • Make learning an integral part of children and young people’s stay in hospital 

  • Foster the values of friendship and determination 

  • Prepare and empower pupils in the present and for the future 

  • Support, nurture and value families 

Kingfisher Learning Centre is the hospital school, providing education for children and young people on the wards in Dorchester Hospital.

Reflecting Kingfisher Learning Centre Visions and Values

Helping children with complex health needs fulfil their potential 

At the Kingfisher Learning Centre ‘the Child first and always’ 


  • Always be welcoming 

  • Always be helpful 

  • Always be one team 

  • Put safety and well-being above everything 

  • To offer kindness we would want for a loved one 

  • To achieve through teamwork 

  • To strive to keep improving 

The Kingfisher Learning Centre is open to our pupils from 9.00am – 2.30pm (Monday to Thursday during term time) with a break for pupil’s lunch between 12.00-12.30pm. Friday opening times are: 9.00am – 12.0’clock. Covid Guidelines have determined a change in our working practice which is detailed in the Kingfisher Ward Risk Assessment (August 2020/21) 


Patients/Pupils admitted on the Ward aged between 4 years (Reception) to Aged 18 years, may attend the Kingfisher Learning Centre with the medical staff’s prior approval which will include the following of Covid Guidelines. 

Patients who are unable to access the Kingfisher Learning Centre may be invited to work on a laptop at their bedside or other appropriate activities. 

The Kingfisher Learning Centre staff work closely with the medical team and other professionals and are aware of each patient’s condition.   This is taken into account when allocating activities. 

It is a cheerful place where we offer each patient a wide range of personalised work. 

The Kingfisher Learning Centre staff offer teaching at the bedside as well as in the classroom.  When appropriate we also lend educational activities and resources to pupils if required. 

Teaching and Subjects  

  • Maths/Numeracy 

  • English/Literacy 

  • ICT 

  • History 

  • Geography 

  • R.E. 

  • Science 

  • Art/Therapy 

  • PSHE 

  • Nutrition and Food 

  • Crafts 

  • Additional subjects can be on offer on a 1:1 basis according to pupils’ needs and requirements. 

  • Outreach / Home Tutoring 


  • Although we are not an official exam centre and so cannot invigilate the exams ourselves. Examinations can be sat in the Kingfisher Learning Centre or an allocated controlled environment on the Ward if the child/patient is an inpatient over the examination period.  We will liaise with the main school who will send test/exam papers together with a member of staff to administer the process.   

Tree of Reflection

As part of our self-evaluation, feedback from pupils and reflection on their own learning is recorded by way of a ‘Tree of Reflection’ when Pupils, Parents/Carers can add a comment onto a tree leaf and be placed on to our tree.    The idea of a tree is to symbolise growth and the well-being of the child and the positivity of the Pupil’s attending the Kingfisher Learning Centre.  A feedback survey sheet is also used for recording pupil thoughts about their learning during their stay in the Kingfisher Learning Centre. 

‘such amazing people, brought joy into a very hard time in my life.  I always look forward to coming into the KLC in the morning and being greeted by a contagious smile and warmth’. – ‘Thank you so much for the positivity and encouragement you have given my daughter’ – ‘My son has been able to keep up with his education during his hospital stay’ – ‘The liaison between the hospital school and my daughter’s main school has been fantastic!’

The impact of our self-evaluation method works well for both short/medium/long term patients.  We also work well with ‘Virtual School’ having a good rapport with the team.  More recently, a letter from the team head, recognises our input with long term pupil/s that we work with during their stay. 

Self-Evaluation - liaising with a mainstream setting 


Should a child be with us for a medium/long term stay we will liaise with their mainstream setting ensuring that we support all of our children with their main school education so that when they leave us, we have supported our pupils in aiding to fill any educational gaps.   Although, our support is not subject specific (as we offer all subjects support), we will follow the curriculum plans as directed by their main school and working closely with the school team.  The impact of this with the pupil’s main school is that we are all working in the same direction. This not only supports the education of the child; it also supports their emotional well-being in coping with a hospital stay and any concerns which may arise over school work.  We work closely with the parent/carers too.  This support will continue up to the age of 18.  We have on occasions worked closely with colleges and Ansbury career advisors for our post 16 students whilst they are in hospital.   

In short, any support we can offer whether this be emotional/academic support has proved to smooth the transition back in to a mainstream setting. 

We are making good progress against our planned priorities for this academic year: 

Consistent reflection upon our own working practice and looking at ways to improve our service for the best outcomes/well-being of our pupils is an on-going process. 


We work closely with the Medical Team and regularly receive positive feedback. 

To develop a shared vision and ethos which prioritises high expectations and standards across the Kingfisher Learning Centre 

  • Staff are promoting the Kingfisher Learning Centre expectations and values well.  Staff are supporting curriculum delivery. 

To develop a shared vision and ethos which prioritises high expectations and standards across the Kingfisher Learning Centre 

Staff are promoting the Kingfisher Learning Centre expectations and values well.  Staff are supporting curriculum delivery. 

Relationships with other settings is good.  Ofsted feedback required the Kingfisher Learning Centre Teachers to become more cohesive with mainstream settings. A rapport with other settings has been developed with awareness of the Kingfisher Learning Centre existence which has resulted in schools in the DASP area being welcomed to visit the schoolroom (Prior Covid).    Any visits are temporarily restricted.  

To develop a collaborative, cooperative and supportive relationship with medical staff and other mainstream/special schools and alternative provision providers 

"Lovely environment, passionate, dynamic with a pupil centred approach – Good reading – records of learning are in place – Pupils at the Kingfisher Learning Centre also have variable amounts of time working with the education staff.  Staff ensure they know pupils well.  As a result, pupils in hospital are taught in a safe and well-resourced environment.  Their medical and learning needs are supported well." Ofsted Inspection May 2022

Supporting Pupils with mental health challenges 

We continue to have a good relationship with the CAMHS team at the Hospital. A major part of our role is within the SEMH umbrella.  We link very closely with CAMHS support on the Ward, plus discussions with the consultants.  We also work closely with the Oncology team. We hope to explore any further mental health training opportunities available to the Kingfisher Learning Centre Team in the future. We follow training through Dorchester Learning Centre.  Safeguarding is always a priority.  Our morning meeting/handover at the Hospital each morning has a main focus on safeguarding.


Supporting Pupils – managed moves to provision at Dorchester Learning Centre 

Individual students will be encouraged when applicable to attend the Kingfisher Learning Centre on a short-term basis with an emphasis to be placed on to a ‘stepping stone’ programme working towards provision at Dorchester Learning  


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