Seashell Trust's 10 out of 10: Lynne Thompson

Lynne Thompsonn with her quote about Seashell Trust

To celebrate our decade as Seashell Trust, we are sharing ten top people who have been at the heart of our family during the last ten years – staff, volunteers, supporters and most importantly our extraordinary students and their families.

Let us know who else you think is 10 out of 10!

There are very few people who can claim to have a stronger connection to Seashell Trust than Lynne Thompson.

Our behaviour management coordinator has worked here for 33 years and even before then her sister attended our school, then known as Royal School for the Deaf, from the age of two until she was seven years old.

Lynne said: “It is a special place, like no other. The children and young people and the small steps they make, it still gives me goose bumps.”

She added: “I always wanted to work here from being young. I guess it comes from my sister going to the school and I am passionate about communication and signing. I applied straight from college, interviewed but then had to wait to get my qualification before I could start.

“I can remember my very first day, coming in and meeting everyone. I started in residence as a house mother, this then changed to an ESSA (education, social support assistance), I then went on to be a house manager, then over to school where I was a senior support assistant.

“I progressed to the family link worker where I developed the role that included working with families, visiting all new students and arranging assessments and support staff to develop strategies regarding behaviour that challenges. I then moved into the area of behaviour management across the whole site.”

Over the three decades Lynne has been with us, she has seen a lot of students come and go and plenty of extraordinary moments.

“There are so many memorable occasions from individual students’ achievements to Royalty visiting many times. My biggest personal achievement is graduating with a BSc (Hons) in behaviour intervention and analysis last year.

“The biggest change over the last ten years has been the development of the trust and the residential houses. Staff have moved with the times and we have so many skilled professionals that implement the best practice.”

The ongoing improvements since 2008 has seen Seashell Trust becoming a national centre of excellence in care and special education and has had a great effect on all those connected with us.

Lynne explained: “The impact Seashell Trust has on the children and young people is massive, from the small achievements we see that are huge to the person, being able to grow into an independent young person – that is taken for granted by others.”

And Seashell’s influence extends far beyond its campus and students: “The impact on the families is huge. As the family link worker, I worked with many families to support them through their time at Seashell Trust. Many fight for their child to come, and within weeks of them being here families say they can see a difference to their child or young person, and that makes a difference to the whole family life.”