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Outreach Support Service in Mainstream Education (OSSME)

Outreach Support Service in Mainstream Education (OSSME) is part of Autism Initiatives and is a specialist outreach education support service commissioned by mainstream and specialist schools, colleges, universities, families, the Local Authority and other professionals. We have a sound knowledge of SEND Code of Practice and adhere to the principles underpinning it;

3 areas to look at Education, Home Environment and Training:


  • OSSME has person centered service models to support children and young people (CYP) with SEND, aged  3 and 25 years;  working in partnership and consultation with families,  professionals and the CYP to ensure high aspirations and improve outcomes for the CYP. Families and the CYP are involved in each stage of support from planning, monitoring progress to evaluations and next steps, whether they are in school or in specific circumstances outlined in the SEND Code of Practice. E.g. social care, excluded or at risk of exclusion from education, alternative education.
  • OSSME’s personalised support, within the 5 Point Star Framework (AI’s strength based support model.), ensures that information about the CYP’s learning and cognition, communication and interaction, social, emotional and mental health and sensory and/or physical needs are supported correctly (SEND CoP).
  • School SENCos are expected to make sure that CYP learn and make progress. They are expected to explore information from families, CYP, teacher/formalised assessment, and advice from external support services if a CYP isn’t making progress or achieving their academic potential. LA’s expect schools to look at quality first teaching and include strategies / programmes/ interventions to break down barriers to learning. OSSME work with schools, families, the CYP and other professionals to ensure that assessments are formative and approaches are graduated (assess, plan, do and review) and targeted with clear outcomes that are evidenced in every day practice. The outcomes of assessments inform possible changes in teaching practices, specific interventions, programmes, and personalised targets. OSSME, school staff, the CYP and family regularly review targets; termly or preferably 6 weekly to ensure positive outcomes.
  • OSSME facilitates activities between the CYP and their peers and will direct them to, and support them in, external activities within AI and the Local Offer. OSSME support families with personal budgets.
  • OSSME’s ‘Therapy in Play’ is used to have some impact to ease a mild, moderate or more severe emotional or psychological and social difficulty, developmental delay or behaviour issue that is preventing a child or young person from reaching their full potential. OSSME use the 5 Point Star to assess and understand each child and their situation as unique. The assessment criteria is: Communication, Understanding, Expectation, Motivation and Sensory.  
  • Lego Therapy is also part of the package of therapy is used for social interaction and emotional needs.
  • If a child is out of school, OSSME educate a young person in Maths and English whilst staying on role at the current school an doffer bespoke alternative educational packages that includes Open Awards to motivate interests and engagement.

 Home Environment

OSSME empowers CYP and families with appropriate knowledge and skills through personalised training and modelling of good practice in the home environment. Personalised programmes (e.g. social anxiety, puberty), interventions (e.g. transitions, social competence groups, sibling groups, life skills) and strategies (e.g. for organisation, choice making) would be selected after assessing the child and young person’s prime need. The assessment includes what is motivating the child/young person, how they understand the world around them and how they communicate, relevant to their SEND, age, ability, thinking, cognitive ability, preferred learning styles and aspirations. Assessments include observations of the child/young person’s in their home environment. Information is also gathered at meetings with school, family and other professionals and a meeting with the child/young person.


OSSME will use a combination of some of the programmes, interventions and strategies which they have been highly trained and experienced in delivering and provide resources to supplement them;

  • Whole school Approach to Autism
  • Autism and the Science behind the condition
  • Social Enterprise
  • Social Stories and Comic Strip Conversations
  • Draw and write
  • 5 Point Star
  • Social Scripting
  • Socially Speaking 
  • Role play
  • Mind maps
  • Visualisation
  • Play and interaction
  • Socialisation in Practice sessions – with school staff
  • Sensory menus
  • Personalised support packages such as puberty/sexuality, stress and anxiety, Diagnosis explanation, friendships, personal hygiene
  • Peers support – assemblies, tutor and small groups
  • Girls on the spectrum
  • Exams/revision
  • Curriculum differentiation
  • Communication aids
  • Lego Therapy
  • Anxiety
  • Transition packages – holidays, year group, class, school, college, university, work, adult services.
  • Complimentary education support
    • Positive behaviour support
      • Therapeutic support involving a combination of known interventions such as CBT, solution focus, mindfulness and transactional analysis. 






Who to contact

Contact Name
Sharon Williams
Contact Position

Other Information

Risk of exclusion

Out of school

Family support

School support

Alternative education

Therapeutic service


Parent Group

Where to go

The Cedars
Sefton House
Liverpool, Merseyside
L30 4XR

Time / Date Details

When is it on
Monday to Friday 9 to 5pm (We can work outside of these hours when required)
Time of day

Other Details


Please contact provider for cost details.


Referral required
Referral Details

Children and young people with autism or showing signs of autism (social and emotional needs), aged with 3years to 25 years, and their families can contact us. Please see referral form that you can download.


Other notes

OSSME work with children and young people with additional social and emotional needs. We cover the Merseyside/North West area.  

Local Offer


OSSME supports children and young people with social and communication needs, autism or on the pathway who have educational/social and emotional needs.  OSSME provide staff and family training, offer 1-1 therapy in school for children and young people and will visit the home of children who are non attenders or at risk of exclusion.    

Contact Name
Sharon Williams
Contact Email
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