Brislington Centre students at their graduation
| Categories: News, announcements and key updates, Students

End of an era: Brislington Centre students graduate and head for independent living

Supported learning students from City of Bristol College’s purpose-built residential facility, The Brislington Centre, enjoyed celebrating their graduation with family and staff last Friday. 

The students have all been at the College’s supportive learning Centre for four years and are now able to progress to independent living and learning.

The Brislington Centre, which is managed in partnership with Bristol City Council, and offers weekday accommodation for up to 13 students with special educational needs. It provides students with learning difficulties support to enable them to increase their confidence and develop the necessary skill to live independently.

Brislington Centre students at their graduation
Residential Training Manager Adam Metcalfe and Deputy Principal Richard Harris with the students.

The student, who stayed at the Centre for an additional year due to the pandemic, gain important life skills such as cleaning, cooking and washing as well as learning how to budget and use public transport – all while attending a course at the College.

Families of the graduating students were delighted to see their child be awarded with their certificate, presented by Deputy Principal and Chief Executive, Richard Harris.

He said: “It was a wonderful event and a privilege to be a part of the celebrations. The students have progressed so well and they now are able to continue onto the next stage of their journey, which is very exciting. This is inclusion at its very best and an essential offer to those who need it.” 

Brislington Centre students at their graduation

The Brislington Centre was extended last year when the new eco-apartments were opened on the Brislington Centre site. The apartments, which are made up of two bedrooms, a living space with cooking and washing facilities and a bathroom, allows a progression step for students to move from the main house to semi-independent accommodation.

The homes are a joint project between the College and the city council, with the council financing the venture to better support SEN students in Bristol.

The three new eco-apartments were first installed in October 2019 and the graduating students include the first tenants of the new buildings.

Brislington Centre students at their graduation
Students and staff from the Brislington Centre.
(Please note all staff and students are in the same household bubble)

Residential Training Manager, Adam Metcalfe, said: “I am so proud of each and everyone one of these amazing young people, the progress which they have made since they first started with us has been exceptional. They never let any challenge set them back and it has been an absolute pleasure to be part of their journey of independence.  We are going to miss them all.”

Staff at the Centre created a video highlighting the special events over the past four years while sharing their good luck messages to the students.

To find out more about the Brislington Centre, in School Road, and take a virtual tour of the centre and eco-apartments, visit the College’s website.

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