The Young Mothers Provision

The Young Mothers’ Provision (YMP) is housed within Baldragon Academy. Pupils attending the provision have a dedicated learning base within the school. The Principal Teacher of Guidance (YMP) and Young Mothers’ Support Worker (YMSW), both fulltime members of Baldragon staff, look after the educational, pastoral and support needs of the girls and their babies. Girls in the YMP are enrolled as pupils in Baldragon Academy and as a result come off the roll of their previous schools.

The YMP aims to address a situation which exists whereby a young person still in education becomes pregnant. Not all schoolgirls will choose to transfer to the YMP and have the option of remaining in their existing school, or, if they are of school leaving age may choose to leave school. However, what the YMP offers is an opportunity for a pregnant schoolgirl to continue with her education in a specifically designed environment with hopefully all the supports she will need in place to allow this.

 

YMP pupils follow a slightly reduced timetable which enables them to focus more on specific subjects and extracurricular lessons and activities relating to pregnancy and parenthood.  This usually means doing one less subject. This can allow pupils to catch up on missed work, homework and revision.  The specific extra-curricular activities are arranged wherever possible around these times. We work with various partner agencies and offer activities and workshops including, Baby Sensory, Sexual Health and Relationships, Ante-Natal information, Baby Massage and Infant Care sessions, cooking and nutrition, safety in the home, etc

 

We also link with different departments within school where we offer practical classes in cooking, weaning and nutrition within Home Economics. Rhyme time is accommodated both in the school library and the baby room in Jessie Porter Nursey.  The school librarian runs these sessions.  Our mums and babies also enjoy swimming sessions within the PE department.

 

In general, the YMP aims to offer a service which allows a pregnant school girl to continue her education with as little disruption as possible whilst delivering the extra support required in this type of situation. The ideal scenario being where a girl leaves school with as many qualifications as possible, a future career pathway in place and the knowledge that her child has benefited enormously from excellent childcare provision.

 

The Nursery and childcare provision is part of the nearby Jessie Porter Nursery where a specific baby room is staffed by two experienced Early Years Practitioners.  Flexibility is built into the school day to allow pupils to have time with their babies some of which come back to school when their babies are only 6 weeks old.