The Mulberry Bush School

The Mulberry Bush School
Friday, August 31, 2018

The Mulberry Bush is a national charity providing specialist services to meet the needs of traumatised children and their families.

The Mulberry Bush consists of:

The Mulberry Bush School is a non-maintained residential special school and a specialist resource based in rural Oxfordshire, where we look after vulnerable primary aged children from all over the UK, and work with their families. The School comprises five residential homes, a school, a therapies and networks team and a training team all based on one outstanding spacious and well-resourced site.

Our Provision: The school provides 38- and 52-week specialist residential therapeutic care, treatment and education for primary aged children made vulnerable by their severe Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties.

We work closely with the children's families to support them with the changes they need to enable them to live together as a family. We carry out a needs assessment of each child and their family during the first 12 weeks of each child's placement. This provides base line assessment information from which we develop our education, care and treatment plans and ensures we can closely monitor progress in all areas. We work with families to support their understanding, the difficulties they face and enable adaptation and change where appropriate. We are committed to being flexible in tailoring our provision to meet the needs of each child and family. We are keen to think and work with you to achieve agreed goals.

Our Services: Individualised care, treatment and education plans, overseen by a multidisciplinary Treatment Team of highly trained professional staff, including a team of therapists. Therapeutic Group Living in residential households. Our 52 week ‘step down' service opened in the Summer term 2018. National Curriculum education in our on-site school. Psychotherapy, drama and music therapy, group work, family therapy and Video Interaction Guidance.

We continue to guarantee a 0% fee increase for children once placed, for the duration of their placement. Age Range: 5-13

The Mulberry Bush Learning and Research Centre

The Mulberry Bush is committed to research in therapeutic residential and foster care. Through research and its application, we aim to develop and shape a research culture to influence practice across our services and with other schools, agencies and providers of care to vulnerable, traumatised children and their families.

See our research papers on our website: research-and-development:

Gutman et al. (2018) longitudinal outcomes - Improvement in children's ability to play - Statistically significant increases in English, Maths and Science - Children's progress within expected range for mainstream students.

Price et al. (2018) a qualitative study "The Mulberry Bush School's therapeutic approach is distinctive because it trains and supports its staff to stay close to the children's feelings."

Onions (2017) experiences of parents and carers - Participants said their child was less violent and aggressive - Birth parents benefitted personally from the help - Shared parenting can be difficult.

The Mulberry Bush Outreach:
Through training and consultation our outreach team exports our expertise and core principles. The team offers a range of training, consultation, reflective practice and models of collaborative working to professionals in schools, children's homes, local authorities and other child centred organisations working to meet the needs of emotionally troubled children, young people and their families. Each year we take external students to study on our Level-5 Foundation Degree in 'Therapeutic Work with Children and Young People' which is accredited by the University of the West of England.

The International Centre for Therapeutic Care:
Is our free alliance of academics, residential and fostering service providers, with a mission to share, promote and disseminate therapeutic and trauma-informed practice, training and research across our UK and international networks.

For Referrals: Angus Burnett -
For Research enquiries: Caryn Onions -
For Outreach: Dave Roberts -
For International Centre: John Diamond -

"Outstanding" Ofsted

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