Special Educational Needs Information Report
Our Local Offer for Children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
How do we identify individual special educational learning needs?
- When pupils have an identified special educational need or disability before they join our school, we work very closely with the people who already know them. We use the information already available to identify what the possible barriers to learning may be within our school setting and to help us to plan appropriate support strategies.
- If you tell us you think your child has a special educational need we will discuss this with you and assess your child accordingly. Often these assessments will be carried out by the school. Sometimes school will seek advice from more specialised services such as Educational Psychology or Speech Therapy – we will always share our findings with you and the next steps we need to take.
- If teachers feel that your child has a special educational need this may be because they are not making the same progress as other pupils. The earlier we take action and modify our provision, the sooner we can resolve concerns and help your child towards success. We will observe your child’s learning characteristics and how they cope within our learning environments, we will assess their understanding of what we are doing in school and where appropriate use tests to pinpoint what is causing difficulty. This will help us to decide what is happening and why. If school becomes concerned about your child you will be contacted immediately by their class teacher or the school’s Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO).
How do we involve pupils and their parents/carers in identifying special educational needs and planning to meet them?
- We are child and family centred so you can expect “no decision about me, without me”.
- When we assess special educational needs we will discuss with you if your child’s understanding and behaviour are the same at school and home; we take this into account and work with you so that we are all helping your child in the same way and helping them make progress.
- Where appropriate we will write and review individual targets with pupils and parents/carers, a copy will always be available for you.
- We hold regular meetings that allow all school staff and family or carers involved with a child, to share information, celebrate progress and achievement and plan next steps.
- Our staff are available at the beginning and end of every school day to discuss any concerns you may have about your child, or to share information that either party feels would be useful to the other.
- Children with communication difficulties can be provided with a home-link book. This tells you about the sort of activities your child has been undertaking at school, so that you can discuss these at home.
How do we use other adults in school to support pupils with special educational needs or disabilities?
- Our teachers are all trained to support pupils with a wide range of educational, social and emotional needs. They are supported by teaching assistants, who are able to undertake small group work or one-to-one support as appropriate to meet the needs of pupils with special educational needs or disabilities.
- From September 2014 we have had a Speech and Language Therapist working in school once a week.
- Our Parent/Pupil/Teacher Support Manager is a very supportive member of the team with an excellent knowledge of how to support our children and their families. No problem is too big or too small.
- Our leaders for learning, curriculum and attainment analyse pupil performance data half-termly to ensure every child is making the best possible progress.
- We have a dedicated Educational Psychologist, who visits our school regularly to observe and assess pupils, and offer advice and support to both home and school.
How do we use specialist resources to support pupils with special educational needs or disabilities?
- We have a wide range of specialist speech and language equipment that is available for supporting groups of children or individuals to develop social, language and communication skills.
- We make individual resources for pupils with special educational needs that support their specific learning targets and needs.
- We have a wide range of reading material to appeal to both aural and visual learners, and specialist ‘catch-up’ schemes to revise lost learning.
- We have a wide range of ICT equipment available to help motivate pupils and access learning. These include laptops, iPads, microphones, programmable toys, talking postcards, talking buttons, talking books and wii devices.
- We use workstations, picture and symbol timetables and equipment such as countdown timers for pupils who need it.
- We seek advice and equipment from outside agencies as and when the need arises, such as specialist seating or writing slopes.
- We use a range of software on our school learning platform/website to help pupils engage with subjects they find difficult, to practice basic skills and work towards becoming independent learners.
- We use key rings containing Makaton signs on small cards and individual timelines to aid children with communication difficulties for pupils who need it.
How do we modify teaching approaches for individual pupils?
- Key members of staff are trained in a variety of approaches which means that we are able to adapt to a range of SEN: - specific learning difficulties; Autistic Spectrum Disorder; speech, language and communication needs (including Makaton); and behavioural, social and emotional difficulties.
- We can adapt reading material by increasing the size of font for children with visual impairment.
- We use a number of teaching methods that are adapted to the needs of both groups and individual pupils, including picture exchange cards, objects of reference, intensive interaction and individual workstation tasks.
- We are a very inclusive school. Wherever possible children are taught alongside their peers in clear differentiated groups. Teachers adapt their teaching constantly in order to cater for their pupils’ needs, and plan individual timetables where necessary. When appropriate, staff are deployed to give children additional support in small groups outside the classroom, or to provide one-to-one support.
- All our staff are trained to adapt resources to either offer a greater level of support or to make learning more challenging so that every child is able to achieve their very best.
- We run a number of ‘catch-up’ groups for children who are in danger of falling behind their peers. These usually consist of phonics ‘catch-up’ groups and groups to develop children's understanding of mathematical language/skills.
- We use personal visual timelines to help children understand what activity or part of the day is coming next.
How do we assess pupil progress towards the outcomes we have targeted for pupils?
How do we review this progress so that pupils stay on track to make at least good progress?
- In the Foundation Stage we track progress against the Early Years Foundation Stage ages and stages of child development.
- In Key Stage One we assess, track children's attainment and progress to ensure they achieve outcomes appropriate to their age.
- We gather views of parents and carers at our termly parent consultation meetings and make notes of important points so that they can be revisited at each successive meeting to review progress.
- Parents of children with special educational needs are consulted to discuss progress and set individual education targets. These may include other professionals involved in the care and education of the child.
- Our leaders for learning, curriculum and attainment analyse the progress of every child each half-term, and these results are discussed with class teachers. Teachers plan targeted interventions for all children whose progress is causing concern, and set individual targets for children whose needs fall outside normal classroom differentiation. We adapt our teaching to suit the needs of individuals wherever possible. Teachers attend termly progress meetings with our Senior Leadership Team, to discuss individual children’s progress and any difficulties they may be experiencing.
- We regularly use staff meetings to get all teachers to assess anonymous pieces of work to check our judgements are correct (moderating).
- We set challenging targets that are based on nationally agreed guidelines on progress.
- We check how well a pupil makes progress in each lesson. Targets in books help the children to understand what is expected of them if they are to succeed.
- Teachers mark each child’s individual pieces of work. They comment verbally on their successes and give suggestions for improvement.
What extra support do we bring in to help us meet SEND?
How do we work together collaboratively?
- We can access support from specialist teachers and support staff for advice about accessing the curriculum and SEND related needs such as speech, language and communication; hearing impairment; visual impairment; behaviour related needs; severe learning difficulties and autism.
- We get support from local authority services on training, policy and funding.
- Our local authority provides educational psychologist support for assessment, advice and training.
- We have a Parent/Pupil/Teacher Support Manager who works closely with the Education Welfare Officer, staff, pupils and families in raising attendance and punctuality.
- We get support from speech and language therapy (SALT) through our own speech therapist to train our staff and advise on strategies and programmes. We refer pupils for assessment if we believe they need a period of therapy.
- We liaise with the School’s Health Advisor termly.
- We get support from occupational therapy and physiotherapy for pupils who need assessment for issues such as special seating or advice about exercise programmes. They guide school staff in meeting the needs of pupils with disabilities.
- We get specialist support from the Visual and Hearing Impairment Teams, CAMHS and Behaviour Support as necessary.
- Some children may need a care plan to ensure that their medical and health needs are identified and met.
- Together we review your child’s progress and agree what everyone will do to make teaching more effective and learning easier. We include your child in these discussions when appropriate.
What other activities are available for pupils with SEND in addition to the curriculum?
- We have a breakfast club with trained staff capable of looking after pupils with both special educational needs and disabilities.
- We have a number of after school clubs. Pupils with SEND are included, and can be offered one-to-one support where needed to support access.
- Each year we have a variety of educational visits, and many other visitors to school bring our curriculum to life. A risk assessment is completed prior to all visits and invited visitors. Where possible, pupils with special educational needs and disabilities are included and we provide staff to support their full involvement if needed.
How do we support pupils in their transition into our school and when they leave us?
- Children who join our school in nursery are welcomed into our school community with a personal home visit by their key worker, and a meeting in school.
- During the summer holidays before children start nursery, parents/carers are asked to complete an ‘All About Me’ booklet with their child/ren to share with staff when they start school.
- Our local authority provides an early years advisory teacher who supports children with SEN when they make the transition to our nursery or reception class from other pre-school settings.
- Transition to Reception, and then into each successive year-group, is supported by meetings, information leaflets and taster sessions in each new class.
- We liaise very closely with our partner junior school to ensure that the transition from the infant school to the junior school is as smooth as possible.
- Parents and children who are joining our school mid-term are encouraged to visit the school before they start.
- When we are aware that pupils joining us from other settings have identified special educational needs, we routinely arrange a visit to observe them in their familiar environment.
- We write individual transition plans in collaboration with staff from the previous school and the key professionals who are already familiar with the needs of the child. This ensures a smooth and supportive start to life in our school.
How does additional funding work?
- Schools receive funding for pupils with special educational needs and we are able to provide what pupils need from this (including equipment). The local authority will top-up funding for pupils with a high level of need.
- If a pupil’s education, health and care plan identifies something that is significantly different to what is usually available, there will be additional funding allocated. Parents will have a say in how this is used. You will be told if this means you are eligible for a personal budget. This must be used to fund any agreed plan formulated by professional advisors, parents and school.
Where can pupils get extra support?
- We listen to what children tell us about how they like to learn. Their views and feelings are important to us and have an impact on our practice.
- Our children are made aware of the support that surrounds them in school. They know who to talk to if they are worried or have any concerns that they want to share.
- We have a high level of lunchtime staff to ensure children are well supervised and well supported.
- The school always welcomes parents into school and encourages them to discuss any issues however small they feel they are.
- Parents are also welcomed into school to celebrate in special assemblies and events. They are invited to workshops and to work alongside their child collaboratively.
- Our Parent/Pupil/Teacher Support Manager is available every morning.
Where can parents/carers get extra support?
- Our inclusive philosophy aims to support parents of children with special educational needs or disabilities so that their child’s journey through our school is smooth, successful and anxiety free. Our practice is enhanced by your views, it is important that people listen to them and that you are satisfied with what happens as a result of our collaboration.
- The Walsall Information, Advice and Support Service (SEND) can offer advice and support to parents of pupils with special educational needs or disabilities. Their telephone number is 01922 650330.
- Our SENCO and our Parent/Pupil/Teacher Support Manager can put parents in touch with a wide range of support groups as appropriate to the specific needs of your child. Please come into school and discuss your needs.
What can parents/carers do if they are not satisfied with a decision or what is happening?
- Our school operates an open door policy. Your first point of contact is your child’s class teacher, who is always available at the beginning and end of every school day. In addition, our Parent/Pupil/Teacher Support Manager or our SENCO are here to listen to your concerns. If you are not satisfied that your concern has been addressed then you may speak to the headteacher at any time. If she cannot solve your issues, then you may speak to any of our school governors. We have a governor responsible for SEND who may be contacted through the school office.
- If your concern is with the local authority, follow a similar path. The person who will log and track your complaint is the headteacher.
- The local authority has a multi-agency panel who consider unresolved issues. You are entitled to appeal against any decision made about your child that you are not in agreement with. They will offer you an independent mediator if you are still not satisfied. The mediator will try to help you to agree a resolution with the local authority that you are happy with. Telephone 01922 686200. Alternatively, the Information, Advice and Support Service (01922 650330) provide independent information and advice.