Options for school leavers with special needs

USP College – Palmer's and Seevic campuses

USP College offers a wide range of courses at its Palmer's Campus in Grays and its Seevic Campus in Benfleet. These include the examples below.

For full details of all courses, go to USP College: all courses.


USP College: Pathways programme is for young people who would benefit from learning within a supported environment. Students on the programme receive help to develop their independent living skills to prepare for adulthood, whilst studying functional skills or GCSEs in English and Maths, depending on entry qualifications.

Skills to employment progression (STEP)

USP College: STEP is a full-time work-based study programme. Young people can improve their functional maths and English alongside NCFE Employability skills, and learn teamwork. They may be able to re-sit maths or English GCSEs, depending on previous results.

Supported internship

USP College: Supported internship is a 1-year course for students up to the age of 25 who have an education, health and care (EHC) plan. It makes the first steps into employment and learning new skills less daunting for individuals with learning difficulties and/or disabilities.

This course will benefit young people who would like to develop their functional skills and carry out practical voluntary work with an employer. It will further develop their maths and English skills by gaining a qualification in functional skills alongside an Employability Award or Personal Social Development.

Working with an employer will further develop their independence and social skills and prepare them for adulthood. Students are supported by an experienced job coach who specialises in guiding those with learning difficulties within the work place.

Each week, students will spend 2 days at college and up to 3 days in the workplace.