Children & Young People Real Lives

A flying success – Care leaver starts apprenticeship at  Wings School   

David* came to Wings School Cumbria when he was 10 years old. He had no aspirations, was stubborn and didn’t care about anything at all. He certainly had no belief in himself or his abilities.

The team at Wings stuck with him, providing him with a stable framework of boundaries, enthusiastic and unwavering support and positivity and instilling in him that he could achieve whatever he wanted to.

In Year 8, David read an article about children in care which said, statistically, they were more likely to end up in prison than go to university. He knew, after years of support, that this was not what he wanted his leaving care journey to look like.

With his staff team by his side every step of the way, David started to explore which colleges he could go to and what job he might like to have when he left care. With that support, he has worked hard to develop positive and appropriate relationships with adults and his peers. He achieved his GCSEs and has been supported through his first year studying health and social care, and is now in his second year.

David is about to leave Wings, but not for long. He will return in September this year as an apprentice as he has decided he wants to work as a learning support assistant and, in a demonstration of Wings’ commitment to its young people and offering them as positive a leaving care experience as they can, he will work on site three days a week, while continuing his studies in Level 2 ‘Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools’. 

“When he arrived with us he was a young man struggling to manage his emotions and unsure of the pathway he had to follow. From day one, he fully engaged in all aspects of school life during his time at Wings School Cumbria. It has been a pleasure to watch him grow into a polite, funny and committed young man who has a clear plan of what he wants to do. He has completed his GCSE’s, two years at college, has his own home and best of all, we now have him as part of the team at Wings School Cumbria – how lucky are we! He started his career in September this year and provides help as a Learning Supporting Assistant in Physical Education. He is a great asset to our team, well done.” – Wings School Cumbria Team

The staff team are supporting him to find his own flat and helping him gain all the skills he will need for his adult life.

The staff team at Wings Cumbria regard David with immense pride; he is an amazing young man – mature, good humoured, loyal and absolutely committed to his future. He’s confident, pleasant and likeable, and the team can’t wait to have him on board – they know he will be an outstanding role model for other young people at Wings Cumbria.

Wings School Cumbria, part of the Kedleston Group, is a nurturing independent specialist residential and day school for children who are aged 9 – 17 and have social, emotional and mental health needs (SEMH).

*Name has been changed


Edel Harris





Dementia Ad

Email Newsletter