How many days per week can a participant attend? And what are the times?
The minimum is 1 day and the maximum is 3. The days start at 10.00am and finish at 3.00pm, although there can be some flexibility if needed.
What happens in school holidays?
If they have progressed to working with light supervision, participants can come to us during school holidays. This gives them valuable experience dealing with customers as we tend to be very busy during school holidays.
How much does it cost and how is the scheme funded?
The cost is £45 per day. This is payable in advance per half term.
Usually, funding is from the referral school, however, we can accept funding directly from the LEA, related charities or private individuals. There is some funding available from the BHS for participants who have tried to get funding elsewhere but have been unsuccessful.
Is there a refund if a participant misses a day?
There is no refund for missing days, or partial attendance. If the participant is struggling to attend all the days agreed per week, the number of days can be reduced provided at least a month's notice is given.
Do you take people with Special Needs?
Yes, depending on the nature of the Special Needs. This is something we are happy to discuss in confidence prior to applying. If the nature of the Special Needs requires a higher level of supervision, we might have to charge a little more per day to cover our additional staffing levels. Or agree a shorter day.
Do you take Young Offenders?
Yes, depending on the individual. As with Special Needs, this something we are happy to discuss in confidence prior to applying.
How do I apply to join the scheme?
The first step is to get in touch and arrange a visit. We then arrange a trial day where we can more accurately asses the young person's needs. After that, we agree which days they will attend and formally enroll them on the scheme.
For the last decade, Courses for Horses has welcomed youngsters who have disengaged from formal education or are struggling to maintain full time attendance at school. They may have been excluded, disruptive or simply not interested in learning in a formal school environment, however, when surrounded by horses and in an outdoor environment, we found that they soon became eager to learn new skills, develop personally and interact with people and horses.
This new initiative from the British Horse Society formalises what many riding centres, such as ourselves, have been doing and provides a national framework which is recognised by government as a suitable alternative provision.
On enrollment, participants receive a pack which details the course and the Achievement Awards. These cover a variety of task ranging from how to handle a horse safely, care for it on a day to day basis and riding. There is also scope for additional awards which the participant decides for themselves. Examples of these might be dealing with customers, IT work, field care or any other related subject that they find interesting.
For participants who already have experience with horses, there is the possibility of higher level awards, including the British Horse Society Examinations.
The awards are primarily practical in nature but we incorporate written work as appropriate. However, the nature of that work is entirely up to the participant and there is no pressure to do any written work whatsoever. We do however, encourage participants to develop their presentation skills and, if they struggle with the written word, use pictures instead. Our whole ethos is to get the participants achieving the awards and thereby starting to believe in themselves more. It is often the case that they soon feel confident enough to have a go at written work.
Our successes speak for themselves. If you would like to see two of our recent case studies, click here: