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TCES Create in the Community

Following an extensive consultation with the Department for Education (DfE) we have remodeled our Create in the Community service in line with their advice. We now provide an EOTAS Assessment for some extremely complex children and young people who cannot manage in small group education due to presenting as a high-risk or being at high-risk due to vulnerabilities. Following this EOTAS Assessment, our students are moved through a Step-down process from EOTAS to DfE registered schools either at TCES or within the Local Authorities own provision.

TCES Create in the Community students often have high and complex levels of vulnerability, risk or need. Our support is tailored to the requirements of each young person. 

Create in the Community uniquely provides therapeutic education, clinical, social work and family support services for some of the most complex, high-risk and vulnerable children and young people in and around London, unable to attend mainstream school and alternative education settings. 

Students with significant non-attendance or who present high risks or vulnerabilities may be supported within their home initially, progressing to increased levels of independence on their Create in the Community programme. 

Our step-down model 

Students will start at different stages along a stepped process and progress at different speeds depending on their needs to get them to re-engage with education. These stages are expressed through a series of step-downs - a reduction in the intensity of the support and resources required, to reduce dependency and move from isolation to independence. Below is an exemplar of a standard process that may work for the vast majority of students; however, it is important to note that each student may be able to move forward at different pace or indeed skip a stage completely.

  1. Start virtually in the family home with *additional support due to risk or vulnerabilities  
  2. Step-down to face-to-facesupport in the family homewith *additional support due to risk or vulnerabilities 
  3. Step-down into the community with additional support 
  4. Begin an inductioninto TCES' main schools or into Local Authorityalternative provision 
  5. Step-down to the main site of TCES East London, TCES North West London or to TCES Sixth Form or a mainstream college

N.B: * Additional support is a term that describes a wide-range of interventions ranging from additional staffing support to relationship mentoring, to a therapeutic soft-start or end to the day, to therapeutic resources or to individual or group therapy. This is not an exhaustive list.

Create in the Community Curriculum 

Following our two term EOTAS Assessment students receive a differentiated academic, vocational or engagement curriculum to meet individual needs. We offer a therapeutic approach to teaching across 25 hours education from Monday to Thursday, in line with DfE requirements, and run a rigorous Friday training and development programme for staff teams to meet the needs of a complex student cohort. 

Our Approach 

Create stands for ‘Community Recovery, Empowerment, Assessment and Therapeutic Education’ and provides education, clinical, therapeutic and family work services to students who, because of their complexities, cannot yet be educated in either TCES’ DfE registered Independent Special school or Local Authority Education provision. These students are identified by Local Authority Commissioning departments as High Needs - Low Incidence. 

Our Create in the Community package is outlined below: 

  • Create in the Community package - Students who cannot yet manage small group education due to high needs, high risks or high vulnerabilities and whose needs will be assessed to determine if they start off in the family home or in the community. These student’s’ pathway plans indicate that they will be stepped down into Local Authority provision following a EOTAS assessment or into our TCES Schools or into mainstream colleges or TCES Post-16 services.

Building on the strengths, talents and interests of every student, we develop student leadership, independence and social/group skills, supporting them to gain the confidence they need to take the next steps into education and society. We do not exclude – we never give up on a single student. 

Our aims are to:  

  • Improve education and wellbeing outcomes for young people with the most complex needs.  
  • Provide a local alternative to out of area placements and keep families together.  
  • Stabilise and integrate students back into small groups learning.  
  • Prepare our students for the next stage in education, training or employment.  

Create in the Community student profiles 

Young people referred to Create in the Community present with highly complex and varied needs, which can include: 

  1. Complex presentations of clinically-based anxieties or depression linked to school phobias or persistent non-attendance 
  2. Children who present with harmful sexual behaviour 
  3. Children who regularly display violent or aggressive behaviour
  4. Child abuse and neglect, including children who are at witnessing or who have experienced the impact of domestic violence, parental substance misuse or parental mental health problems 
  5. Children Looked After (CLA) with multiple losses of relationships, and placements 
  6. Children at risk of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) 
  7. Children at risk of Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE)
  8. Eating disorders in children and teens 
  9. Children who are young offenders or at risk of offending.
  10. Children or Young People at risk of gang involvement or gang initiation through County Lines or similar exploitative processes.  

We provide bespoke education, health and care programmes covering academic and vocational programmes and LIFE skills building, clinical and therapeutic support, as well as our Families and Schools working Together (FAST) services, which encompass family support, early help and safeguarding.  

N.B: It should be noted that students referred to our Create in the Community services have been out of full-time group education for an average of 15 months. They also have an average of three permanent exclusions or managed moves. 

Benefits of the approach - stepping down 

We work towards stepping down as many students as possible to our TCES Independent Special schools and other settings. We do this through continuous monitoring and reporting using a combination of professional assessments and tools, including Rising Stars, Boxall Profile (developed by Nurtureuk) and BKSB. 

An independent research report by Goldsmiths' University of London called 'A Journey of Change: From Social Isolation to Inclusion' reports that after leaving TCES, 90% of Create students step down into mainstream college, vocational training courses or employment. They are there three to five years later. 

Understanding and removing the barriers to a student’s learning and supporting their ability to achieve their full potential brings many benefits, including: 

  • Improved attendance and reduced absence 
  • Stabilising and integrating students back into small group learning 
  • Effective strategies to support positive relationships 
  • Leadership and LIFE skills 
  • Academic and vocational qualifications 
  • Improved education and well-being outcomes 
  • Social skills and independence 
  • Step-down opportunities to less intensive educational settings 
Our specialism

TCES specialises in Leadership and the Arts

Leadership is a key focus of the TCES curriculum - find out more by visiting our Leadership and Careers page.


To make a referral for any of our schools and services click here

Key contacts




Katrina Medley Executive Headteacher
Krishna Purbhoo Interim Executive Headteacher
Emma Gregory Co-Head 

Corinne Hyman


Thomas Keaney CEO & School Proprietor

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