What is PACE?
PACE refers to the approach we use when working with students who have experienced trauma, or are dysregulated. Rather than a confrontational approach to behaviour, PACE requires that we are:
- Playful (in our interactions when appropriate)
- Accepting (of where the student is at and how they are feeling)
- Curious (about why they may be feeling in a certain way or displaying inappropriate behaviour)
- Empathetic (demonstrating real compassion for the student)
Through this approach we are able to develop trusting relationships with pupils, where they feel safe to accept guidance and challenge, resulting in improved outcomes.
Our PACE Team
Our PACE team consists of five practitioners who lead on supporting the regulation and engagement of students (four practitioners assigned to Linwood/ Woodford and one at Springwood).
The team works in different ways to support the needs of students. A significant part of their role is to support students proactively through planned interventions. These may be individual or small group interventions. We believe that by meeting students’ needs through proactive carefully targeted and planned support, we will reduce the need for reactive responses to dysregulation.
Sometimes the team may work closely with class teams to support individual students who are experiencing a period of challenge, and develop strategies collaboratively with the team. Their remit is to support, model and develop skills with the teams who work with the students so that good practice is shared and students develop trusting relationships with the adults who support them in classes too, rather than working in isolation. They don’t have all the answers but are skilled at problem-solving and brain-storming approaches collaboratively with class team staff. The team are available to support class teams with the development of PREPS (Personalised Regulation and Engagement Plans) for individual students as needed.
The team are also on call to support incidents of dysregulation when a class team need additional support in keeping students safe. In incidents of dysregulation the team will support the class staff to safely support and calm a dysregulated student. It is not expected that they take over and are left to deal with a challenging situation, but rather that they work alongside class staff. It is often during and after such incidents that we learn and develop our skills in positive approaches to dysregulation. Together we discover what works best for a student and through debrief afterwards we can support the staff members involved to understand what happened, what possible triggers may have occurred, and what strategies and adaptations could be put in place to reduce the likelihood of the incident reoccurring. The team are an important part of this process and can support with staff debrief and incident recording.
More information is available in this PDF: PACE-School