What is 'Special Educational Needs'?
A child or young person has a special educational need if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them. A child or young person is considered to have a learning difficulty or disability if they:
Who is in charge of SEND in your school?
Teachers are responsible for the progress that all children make in their class. All members of staff contribute to identifying SEND and supporting those with SEND. The SENCo, Mrs Sue Lenihan, has the responsibility of the day to day management of SEND. The SENCo assists class teachers and parents in developing inclusive practice, designing further adaptations and accessing specialist resources if they are needed. The school also has a Link Governor, Mrs Anne Hunsley, who has responsibility for SEND.
How do I know if my child has SEND, how is it identified?
Identifying SEND needs early is crucial and parents know their children best so we have regular meetings with parents and rely on the information they provide us in helping us to identify if a child or young person has SEND. In our school we believe that inclusive teaching is the first step in responding to any possible special educational need and we carry out checks on teaching to make sure that practice is inclusive. The SENCo, as part of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT), meets with the Head Teacher and each class teacher on a termly basis to review learning progress data for all children in the class (Class Review). During these reviews the possibility of a child having SEND is discussed and further checks are carried out, for example, detailed lesson observations by the SENCo and a review of interventions the child has been part of so far. We will also consider whether a further, more specialist, assessment for SEND is needed for example from another service provider, eg from Health.
What happens if my child is not making the same progress as other children?
If a child is falling behind, or not responding to inclusive teaching, we will bring together all the information we have about the child’s needs and difficulties and share this with parents. The school uses Oxfordshire County Council’s ‘Identifying and Supporting Educational Needs’ handbook (2014) is a way of identifying if there is a SEND and what levels of support should be offered. The handbook helps us to make sure we are offering the provision expected from all schools in Oxfordshire. There are four broad areas of SEND:
Following further consultation with parents, and if a child meets the descriptor in the handbook, and after all the checks on teaching and learning have been carried out, then the child will be placed on the schools SEND register. This is shared with the local authority.
My child has SEND, what provision do you offer?
For pupils with SEND the school offers a ‘graduated’ approach; from a little support to a lot. Once a child is placed on the register then appropriate plans are put in place to support them. All children are unique, regardless of the category of SEND they have, so it is important that we respond to their individual need. Some children will respond well to seemingly minor adaptations to our inclusive teaching offer, others will need more specialist support and input. We work closely with outside agencies to help us to design the most appropriate package of support for children on our register. Adaptations can include;
What specific resources does your school offer?
A range of support is available, here are some examples:
Cognition and Learning
Social, Emotional and Mental health
SEAL-small group support
Communication and Interaction
Sensory and Physical
What specialist support do you offer?
A qualified SENCo who is also a certified Reading Recovery Teacher and has particular experience with Autistic Spectrum Disorders and Dyslexia.
A team of teachers and teaching assistants, many have specific areas of expertise and with further qualifications. A number of staff with direct specialist experience of SEND. The school also has access to external specialist support services;
Further services can be accessed through Oxfordshire County Council’s Local Offer, accessible to parents via the website.
How do you make sure your provision is as good as it can be?
We monitor our provision through reviews with parents, data analysis, work scrutiny and lesson observations. We often buy in consultants and outside agencies to help us do this. We monitor pupil progress through Class Reviews and review the success of interventions and provision maps. The school is committed to providing high quality professional development for staff and this is the best way of making sure our teachers can offer inclusive practice. We access a lot of our training through the Inclusion Development Programmes and through The Warriner Partnership Training Programme.
How can I support my Child?
There are lots of ways you can help. The best way to help is to talk to the teachers and ask questions if you have them. Don’t be afraid to share information that might be useful to the school, for example, share any worries your child may have. If you need to, ask your child’s teacher for their advice and support, they can arm you with lots of ideas and tips. It helps if your child comes to school ready to face the day, and if you have concerns be quick to bring them to the schools attention, that way they can be dealt with more swiftly.
Who can support me with my child's SEND?
Having a child with SEND can be worrying and exhausting and the school recognises this and we want to help parents by working closely together. We have a Home School Link Worker, who can offer further support. We also access to other specialists. There are also lots of local and national support groups listed under ‘Useful Contacts’ who have parent groups and networks and lots of useful tips. The SENCo is always happy to talk to you to help you identify which direction to go in to access more help.
Who do I talk to if I am worried about my child or the provision offered?
A parents first point of contact is always the class teacher, most concerns are easily addressed this way. If you would prefer to you can talk to the SENCo or the Head Teacher. The school encourages parents to share their concerns quickly. If you need more support in meetings at school we can put you in touch with the Parent Partnership who are happy to help.
What happens when my child moves year group or leaves your school?
We offer extra transition visits to help children cope with changes like moving class or school. Children spend time in new classes before the end of the year and we can provide photo books to help them get to know new staff or new rooms. We have strong links with The Warriner and have well established transfer arrangements for secondary. Where parents choose a different secondary school we can still arrange additional visits for pupils.
What is an ‘Education, Health and Care Plan’?
Statements of Special Educational Needs are being replaced by Education, Health and Care plans (EHC) for children and young people with the most complex needs from September 2014. The creation and delivery of these plans will be led by the local authority with schools developing and reviewing these with parents. Children with existing statements will transfer to the new system within three years through a ‘transition review’ such as at the end of Year 6 ready for secondary school. Any child with a statement in year 6 in September 2014 will transfer to an EHC plan in that year.