A learner at Cheshire’s largest Further Education College has featured on national television and regional radio to discuss the impact having a guide dog has made since losing his sight. Part-time learner at Cheshire College, Scott Bailey, featured on ITV’s This Morning and BBC Radio Stoke to talk about how his life has transformed since being matched with his guide dog, including going back into education to retrain.
Scott started to lose his sight five years ago after being diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy, a complication of diabetes, and was registered blind just three years later in 2019. Scott matched with his guide dog Milo in 2020 and, despite a delay in being partnered due to COVID-19, Milo has made all the difference to Scott and his family’s life, supporting him to get his independence back.
Previously a dairy farmer, Scott wanted to get back into work and joined Cheshire College’s Crewe Campus earlier this year to gain new skills that will help him achieve his dream of becoming a Counsellor and helping others who are experiencing sight loss due to diabetes.
Scott, 32-years-old, from Crewe said: “I knew I wanted to get back into education to retrain and having spoken to Cheshire College’s support team, who helped me choose the right course to get started, I’m really looking forward to this next chapter in my life. I’m currently completing an ECDL IT Bridging Course which has eased me back into education and have saved a space on the Level 2 Counselling course for next September.
“The College has gone above and beyond for me since I joined in March. I really didn’t expect them to do so much for me, they’ve been really accommodating and have gone the extra mile to make sure both me and Milo are comfortable – Milo even has his own bed in the IT suite!”
As part of the additional learner support offered by Cheshire College, Scott has regular contact with the College’s Inclusive Learning Advisor for Sensory who is his first port-of-call for any questions or queries and is also partnered with a Learner Mentor who provides in-class support.
Chris Baggs, Director of Learning & Learner Services at Cheshire College, commented: “Inclusivity and making education accessible to all is hugely important to us here at Cheshire College and I’m extremely proud of the high-quality support we have in place to help learners succeed, develop and progress. Our Learner Services team are all specialist co-ordinators and have a vast amount of experience in providing personalised and tailored additional learner support.
“Scott is a great example of how the team is able to support learners at all levels, whether school leavers or adults, to achieve their potential and succeed in their goals, and I’m delighted he is having such a positive experience with us.”
To ensure learners enjoy their time and have the best possible experience, Cheshire College has a range of support areas to offer them help, advice and guidance before, during and after successful completion of their course. From the Learning Support Team and Personal Development Tutors to the Bursary & Transport and Careers Teams, Cheshire College ensures all young people and adults are able to make the most out of learner life.
To find out more visit www.ccsw.ac.uk – there’s never been a better time to #GetInStandOut.