Team testimonials

Leah Frisby - team lead

"I had been working in London in mainstream and special schools before moving to the Island in June 2017 to take up the Team Lead Role in The Schools Speech and Language Support Team.

I was attracted to the role by the strong focus on education and partnership working with schools and the potential for close multi-agency working offered by the island context. I also found myself blown away by the spectacular natural beauty of the island and the warm welcome I received in both my work and personal life.

I am passionate about communication and learning and in this role have been given both the freedom and support to develop a versatile and collaborative model of service delivery that is valued by schools and settings. I feel confident this makes a difference for children, young people and school communities.

The team are incredibly talented and hard working and believe in the work that they do. The team provide great support for each other and always maintain a positive and pro-active approach to work. I am really proud of all that the team has achieved and love the reward and challenge of all that the job brings."

Jen Mew - specialist speech and language therapy assistant

"I really enjoy dynamic assessment really trying to get to the bottom of where a child or young persons difficulties come from. Once we know that we know how to help. I love how creative I can be in my role particularly around planning therapy sessions and making things that our children/young people find challenging, really fun and accessible.

I love supporting settings to support children and young people with SLCN, its is amazing to see a strategy feeling embedded into a classroom and see the difference that makes to our learners. I absolutely love love love training. I find training so valuable myself, so to have to opportunity to train others is amazing. I love trying to make training interesting and interactive.

I enjoy the range of students I get to work with I might go from working with a 4.5 year old to working with a 22 year old adult at the college.

I enjoy that my role pushes me to do things out of my comfort zone. I enjoy the opportunities I have to learn from specialist colleagues, and soaking up all their knowledge to better my practice. I enjoy working in collaboration with our STA and teaching colleagues to delve into the curriculum and how to break down our learners barriers to accessing classroom learning.

I enjoy the flexible working that the council offers and working in such a supportive team. I just love how rewarding the job is. Communication is so vital for everyone."

Mags Berryman - specialist speech and language therapy assistant

"The specialist role within the CAL team allows for a high level of flexibility in the types of support that can be offered. This is very satisfying as I feel the support can be closely tailored to the student’s and the school’s needs. The ability to help schools to implement whole environment changes feels very productive as it benefits many other pupils as well as those on the CAL caseload. I am able, and encouraged, to work independently but know that advice is always easily available should I need it! School, parent and SSLST member feedback lets me know that my opinion, skills and experience are valued and are making a difference. Best job in the world!"

Vanessa O’Dea - specialist teacher advisor

"Working in the SSLST has offered me the chance to develop skills quickly – through supervision from more specialist colleagues to broad and rewarding opportunities to collaborate with a range of professionals. The flexibility and degree of autonomy that the role allows has meant that I’ve been able to work alongside occupational therapists, specialist sensory support teachers and early years professionals to really make a difference in the outcomes for pupils with SLCN.

The SSLST team is a fantastic supportive group of professionals. In joining the team 4 years ago it was quickly evident that there is always a ‘can-do attitude’ and offers of support which has made working for the team a joy! There is strong leadership within the team and I have benefited from ongoing professional development opportunities throughout.

I love that in my role as a specialist teacher advisor, I am able to support teaching staff to recognise the impact of SLCN on classroom learning and the potential associated difficulties around curriculum access. The real reward comes from watching the growing confidence and developing skill set in the many school staff that I work with, and their willingness to share good practice with others, across the island. Clinically, helping children and young people to recognise their own strengths and needs, and enabling them to be the communicators they wish to be, makes my job very worthwhile."

Jenny Dewing - specialist speech and language therapist

"I love working for the Schools Speech and Language Support Team because it is a fabulous group of individuals who work really well individually and as a team to support each other and all the children, young people, families and staff that we work with. The job is really interesting with lots of different elements to it and no two days are ever the same. I love working for the team because of the opportunities to carry out day to day clinical work, but also to expand your knowledge and skills in areas of interest. There are also lots of opportunities for creativity, project work and expanding the support we can offer in a variety of universal, targeted and specialist ways. I think that collaborative team working is an important element of our work and this results in fantastic partnerships with families, school staff and other professionals involved."