Anita Hempenius is our new Inclusion Manager (a SENDCo plus) who has joined us from Wales, and who has extensive experience in a range of SEND roles, including having worked at Michael Hall Steiner Waldorf School in Forest Row.
Anita has hit the ground running as we have all been immersed in the basics of British Sign Language this past week, raising our awareness of the use of signing to develop inclusive communication throughout the school. She is also busy profiling and developing the sensory landscape of the site and the curriculum. Anita is also beginning to hold induction meetings for parents who have enrolled for this coming September.
Anita has a strong commitment to and extensive experience in supporting children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. As SENDCo at Michael Hall Steiner Waldorf School (in Forest Row) between 2015 and 2019 she championed and upheld inclusivity in the school’s provision as well as teaching on the Heart of Teaching and the Align for Learning teacher training courses.
More recently Anita has designed and piloted an outdoors Other than School provision in Pembrokeshire and helped clarify the vision and future aims of a small intentional community that is working towards becoming a therapeutic educational centre.
Her educational background includes a BSc (Hons) Environmental Science from Sussex University in which she researched the effect of encroaching housing and coastal gardens on vegetated shingle (an internationally rare habitat).
In addition Anita has a Teaching as an Art award from Emerson College, Align for Learning from SWASEND, Postgraduate Achievement in Assessment for Access Arrangements from Communicate-Ed, Simply ADHD and Personal Transformations from the ADD Coach Academy. She is also a Welsh Mental Health First Aider, and is currently working on a double certificate programme in Permaculture Design and Social Permaculture.
Anita says: “I am super excited to be part of Wynstones. I believe that true equality in education comes by changing the environment to suit the child, rather than trying to change the child to suit the environment. This allows the child to flourish and removes artificial obstacles to their learning. I don’t believe in limits. I believe in growth.”
She loves modern jive and salsa. Her other hobbies cycle around and variously include writing, rollerblading, photography, art and handwork, as well as occasional outliers like wolf tracking for a biodiversity study.
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