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Special Educational Needs/Alternative Provision Programmes

Bristol Bears Community Foundation has a number of Special Educational Needs (SEN) and alternative provision programmes. Find out more below.

Spectrum Project

The Spectrum Project targets service users with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) across Bristol and South Gloucestershire.

Spectrum aims to increase and develop SEND provision in the areas of sport and leisure, personal development and work experience opportunities through tailored programs, within special schools and other specialist providers.  

The Spectrum Project also provides truly inclusive community sports programmes - including wheelchair and all-abilities rugby, basketball and football - for young people aged 7-19 years.

The project was shortlisted for the BREAKTHRU Award at this year’s Premiership Rugby Parliamentary Awards at the House of Commons.

Spectrum Project

Spectrum sports programmes target learners with a wide range of special educational needs and disabilities, including severe learning difficulties (SLD), autism (ASD), profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) and social emotional and mental health needs (SEMH).

Projects are tailored into bespoke packages across Key Stages 2, 3, 4 and 5 (aged 7-19 years), with embedded cross-curricular links, evidenced in a full lesson planning structure, as well as making progress towards national and local projects (i.e. Healthy Schools).

Personal targets, learning and behaviour plans can also be incorporated seamlessly into delivery to provide a consistent and holistic approach to learners.

Spectrum offers a range of sports within its delivery, negotiated with schools on a case-by-case basis.

Programmes run from 6-12 week blocks (1-2 terms) through to full year PE curriculum provision, with sessions ranging from 60-120 minutes.

Disability Journalism Programme (DJP)

The Disability Journalism Programme is a five-week programme based at Ashton Gate Stadium and run in partnership with Bristol Bears, for secondary students from special schools and specialist education providers.

The DJP provides students with the opportunity to develop game analysis and report writing skills, before participating in an access-all-areas Bristol Bears match day experience - observing pre-match build-up, interviewing players and posting match updates online through official social-media channels.

Sessions are prepared and delivered by experienced and qualified specialist teachers, providing appropriate differentiation and support at an individual level.

Five Star You

Five Star You is a 36-week long sports and personal development programme based on the Rugby Football Union's five core values of teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship.

Each session consists of an academic element related to the core values and a practical aspect that encourages the learners to show, use and apply those values into their physical participation.

Over the course of the academic year, learners are encouraged to look, listen, think, share, read and write in more constructive and functional ways - both to aid their own developments and to contribute more fully to the team.

All progress is tracked through formative assessment, relating to session objectives, recorded on a weekly basis, and summative assessment of personal targets collated and shared termly.

Work Experience Programme (WEX)

Spectrum’s WEX programme is set within curriculum time, offering meaningful and contextual work experience opportunities for 14-19 year olds.

Grounded within ASDAN short courses and accredited qualifications, WEX encompasses opportunities in sports coaching, sports journalism, retail, catering and administrative support as the young people prepare for transition from school into life-long learning.

The WEX programme extends also to Bristol Bears match days at Ashton Gate Stadium, embedding WEX candidates within the Community Foundation within the fanzone and half time parades, including face-painting, flag giving and other fan interaction activities.

For more information, contact Kris Tavender at

RugbyWorks (PRU)

The aim of the RugbyWorks programme is to identify and support marginalised/disadvantaged young people in Years 10/11 and equip them with the life-skills necessary for a healthy and successful future. 

Delivery is based on a ‘reward in return for commitment’ basis. Pupils who commit have the opportunity to achieve and progress through the six tiers of the RugbyWorks programme. 

The six tiers are delivered through a variety of practical sessions, education inputs, employability days, work experience and Advanced Apprenticeships, which will potentially lead to employment.

If you are interested in the RugbyWorks Programme, please contact Geraint Lewis at