LEARN WITH THE
DOWN SYNDROME TRAINING & SUPPORT SERVICE
Our training courses, workshops and consultations
We are passionate about the inclusion, development and education of children and young people with Down syndrome. All of our training courses and support sessions are aimed at improving the lives of people with Down syndrome and working towards a more inclusive society
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Many of our courses are now pre recorded. To purchase please visit our Buy Resources page
UNDERSTANDING DOWN SYNDROME
A guide to help you learn about the learning profile of a person with Down syndrome and methods to help with development
WHAT IS DOWN SYNDROME?
Down syndrome is a condition found in approximately 1 in every 700 to 900 births.
Children with Down syndrome are found across all social, economic and racial backgrounds. Down syndrome is caused by the presence of an extra (third) copy of chromosome 21 at the time of conception. Although the risk increases with maternal age, babies with Down syndrome are born to parents of all ages. Indeed, the majority of babies with Down syndrome are born to women younger than 35. Down syndrome is connected with a range of developmental difficulties which may include: delays in motor development; and specific difficulties with speech, language, numeracy, memory and cognitive development. Children and young people with Down syndrome achieve at a wide range of levels with some achieving well at GCSE. Down syndrome is connected with a range of medical problems including increased risk of hearing and vision defects, heart abnormalities, infections and thyroid disorders. However, with appropriate education, therapy, health care and social support, the majority of people with Down syndrome can lead long, independent and fulfilling lives in our communities and expect to live to between 50-60 years of age.
Children with Down syndrome are children first. Please always refer to them as “children with Down syndrome” not “Down’s children” or “Down’s kids”.
THE IMPORTANCE OF TRAINING
The importance of training for all involved in the education and development of a child with Down syndrome
Equality Act 2010:
‘...it requires thought to be given in advance to what disabled children and young people might require and what adjustments might need to be made to prevent that disadvantage.’
Our charity was formed in September 2000 with the objective of providing training and support to all adults living and working with children and young people who have Down syndrome. This means that whether you are a parent of professional you have a role to play in their education, development and inclusion.
Over the years we have developed over ten different training courses covering many areas of learning and delivered them not only in Bradford but across the country and beyond; including Denmark and India. Our training has been applauded many, many times and we know it makes a big difference to the inclusion, education and development of any child who needs additional input and understanding; not just children with Down syndrome.
We invite everyone to attend our training and often deliver to a mix of both parents and professionals.
Our most popular course, Introduction to Down syndrome was developed by Wendy Uttley in 2005 and now has CPD accreditation. Last year it was delivered 18 times to a total of 400 people.
We believe that ALL schools should undertake this training to enable them to fully understand and meet the needs of a child with Down syndrome in their setting. Without a good understanding of how best to communicate with, instruct and successfully teach a child with Down syndrome, and why such inclusion is so important and vital to the child’s future life, there is a chance that school staff will begin to flounder, the child’s needs will not be met and the placement will begin to deteriorate.
Wendy Uttley and Isabel Ashman
Wendy Uttley, BSc (Hons), DPhil.
Wendy is currently the Group Coordinator and Trainer for the Down Syndrome Training & Support Service Ltd, based at The Pamela Sunter Centre.
She is a Doctor of Mathematics with 15 years teaching experience, mainly in Further Education, but also in Secondary School.
Since the birth of her son Sam, who is now 22 and has Down syndrome, she has devoted her life to the development and education of children with Down syndrome.
In September 2000 she initiated the formation of the Down Syndrome Training & Support Service Ltd and in 2005 she left her teaching position and became employed by the charity. Her role as Group Coordinator and Trainer is a full time position and includes delivering training and delivering Early Development Groups to children with Down syndrome aged ten months to five years and their parents and school staff.
Wendy has considerable understanding about the development, education and inclusion of children with Down syndrome. Over the last eleven years she has developed the above training courses aimed at both professionals and parents covering many areas of educational development of children with Down syndrome.
Isabel Ashman has worked at Down Syndrome Training & Support Service Ltd since November 2012. She delivers six of our early development groups to children aged birth to 6 years and has gained considerable experience over the last 8 years. This experience is shared via her delivery of our introduction to Down Syndrome course aimed at early settings and primary schools. She also delivers the course ‘Signing and children with Down Syndrome’.
Before working at Down Syndrome Training & Support Service Isabel was SENCO at a pre-school in Ilkley and prior to that worked at a boys Primary School in London. Her background is in music business management in London.