Lightyear Foundation: Exploring physics in special schools

Lightyear Foundation is a small but mighty national charity committed to breaking barriers to disabled children participating in STEM. Disabled children face multiple disadvantages in education, careers and life skills and are all too often excluded from STEM. We exist to ensure that no disabled child is denied the opportunity to love and learn from these subjects or to go on to contribute to society in these fields. We work directly with disabled children in special schools, inclusion pods and community groups to inspire a love of STEM through these programmes:

1. Immersive Sensory Science (one full day): Children can take a deep dive into a STEM topic in an interactive pop-up planetarium or virtual reality adventure!

2. Lightyear Labs (one hour a week for four weeks): Small groups of young scientists don their own lab coat and test out a hypothesis in a series of fully accessible and tactile experiments.

3. Work Inspiration Trips (half a day): We love inspiring young STEM-ists by taking groups of post-16 disabled students to show them STEM in action!

4. Disabled Role Models: We augment children’s learning by introducing them to disabled professionals doing awesome things within the STEM industry.

We also work directly with STEM organisations:

1. SEN in STEM Network: A unique national network bringing the sector together to break down barriers to inclusion by sharing best practice and practical solutions.

2. Training and special projects: We help STEM organisations improve access to their materials, venues, processes and activities for disabled children.