Special Educational Needs

At Bodsham Church of England Primary School and Saltwoood Church of England Primary School we strive to support all children to enable them to achieve. In order to do this, many steps are taken to support them on their learning journeys.

Quality first teaching is vital. However, for some children there are occasions when further additional support may be needed to help them achieve their targets.

  • The SENCo at Bodsham Church of England Primary School is Mrs Pauline Hann.
  • The SENCo at Saltwood Church of England Primary School is Mrs Hannah Keep.

Roles and Responsibilities of a SENCo

The SENCo is responsible for the co-ordination of specific provision made to support individual children. She liaises with staff to monitor pupil progress and plan further interventions where progress is slower than expected. The SENCo meets regularly with a wide range of external agencies including Speech and Language therapists, Specialist teaching and learning service, Educational Psychology, School Nurses, and Early Help. These are all able to offer help, support and specialist advice. If you have any concerns regarding SEN matters, please do not hesitate to make an appointment to speak to Mrs Hann or Mrs Keep.

The areas of Special Educational Needs (SEN) that are supported are;

  • Literacy skills (Reading, Writing, Handwriting)
  • Maths skills
  • Speech, Language and Communication skills
  • Gross (large body movements) motor control
  • Fine (small body movements) motor control
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health (making friendships, understanding boundaries, anxiety, managing their own behaviour, coming to terms with attachment and trauma issues)
  • Autism (ASD, Asperger’s) – Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with, and relates to, other people. It also affects how they make sense of the world around them.
  • Specific Learning Difficulties (dyslexia)
  • Medical and health issues (Hypermobility, Hearing impairment, vision impairment).

However, this is not an exhaustive list.

Although each child may have a variety of different learning needs, key areas of need are identified to assist with planning and provision. These areas are:

  1. Cognition and Learning – covering academic aspects of learning.
  2. Communication and Interaction – covering Speech, Language and Communication disorders.
  3. Social, Emotional and Mental Health.
  4. Sensory and/or Physical needs.

How your child’s needs are identified and what you should do if you are concerned about your child’s needs

All children are valued, respected and welcomed to the school, whatever their additional educational needs. We will support their learning and ensure they are fully included in all school activities, making full use of externally provided facilities where appropriate. Any concerns you may have about your child can be shared with your child’s class teacher in the first instance or the SENCo at any point during the school year. Additionally, should a member of staff become concerned about your child’s additional needs or rate of progress, you will be contacted as soon as possible to discuss these concerns.

Children can be identified at any time, by either parents or staff members. Assessment periods often highlight children that require further support. Those children who are receiving support ‘additional to or different from’ that of the rest of the class, will be supported through the school’s SEN register. In addition to this, we also keep a register for pupils who do not qualify to be on the SEN register, but who the school are monitoring closely so ensure that their needs are met.’ This is to ensure that all children receiving extra support can be monitored closely. Previously, children were recorded on the SEN Census as either School/Early Action, School Action /Early Action Plus or as Statemented. The updated Code of Practice 2015 removes these categories and now uses single category of ‘SEN Support’. If your child has severe and complex long term needs, they may have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC). Some complex needs can now be accommodated through a Personalised Plan and High Needs Funding granted by the Local Authority.

How we help your child

High quality teaching that is differentiated and personalised meets the individual needs of the majority of children. However, some children need educational provision that is additional to or different from this in order to narrow the gaps in learning. Classes have a Teaching Assistant (TA) which improves the adult ratio in the classroom so every child receives more help. Specific interventions and support take place throughout the day to meet the personal needs of the children.

How we promote your child’s social and emotional well-being

We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our pupils so they can learn in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Well-being and involvement of every child is an integral part of our school life.

In addition to the SENCo, Mrs Marwood at Bodsham and Mrs Boakes and Mrs Marwood at Saltwood school school work alongside the class teachers to offer pastoral support to children. Examples of pastoral work include help with: difficulty with work, friendship issues, poor attendance, family break up, bereavement etc. One to One or small group sessions aim to encourage the child to feel safe and to communicate with a key member of staff. A range of strategies can also be suggested such as reward charts, visual timetables and feelings charts to support the child in their home environment.

How we will work with you to monitor your child’s needs

At both schools we have an open door policy and try to encourage family involvement at all stages of identifying and supporting children’s needs. Currently we hold parents’ evenings three times each academic year. Where there is a high level of support or assessment for a child, Mrs Keep and Mrs Hann will meet with parents at least three times a year at our SEN reviews to discuss progress and review targets. We work together during these meetings to provide practical support and strategies for the child and/or their family.

In cases where there are multiple outside agencies involved, the Kent Local Offer will be consulted. http://www.kent.gov.uk/education-and-children/special-educational-needs  Agencies such as: Speech and Language, School Nursing, Specialist Teaching Service (STS), Educational Psychologists (EPs) and Early Help may become involved in formal meetings throughout the year where necessary/appropriate. For more details please see the Early Help and preventative services using the following link. http://www.kelsi.org.uk/earlyhelp

The ‘Graduated Approach’

Quality first teaching and additional interventions are the first steps to addressing children’s additional needs. We use provision mapping each term (Four times a year at Bodsham) to review and record what we offer EVERY child or young person in our care and what we offer additionally. We discuss aspirations with our learners to ensure that their wishes are taken into account.

In line with the updated Code of Practice (2015) and underpinning ALL our provision in school is the graduated approach cycle of:

  • All teachers are responsible for each child in their care, including those with Special Educational Needs. Assessment tools enable teachers to set small step targets in reading, writing and mathematics which can be easily monitored and reviewed by teachers and teaching assistants. Teachers are responsible for planning and reviewing their Provision Map.
  • During a review period, children will be highlighted if they do not appear to be making progress despite high quality teaching. Once highlighted, the SENCO will suggest and provide support for a range of assessments to determine your child’s strengths and weaknesses.
  • These assessments support the teaching within a child’s year group and are additional to the Class Teacher’s assessments that happen on a regular basis within the classroom.

 

How we assess learning needs

The assessments below are an example of what can be administered after concerns have been raised via teachers and/or parents. Results are shared with parents and class teachers/TAs to inform the next steps in support.

  • Speech Link, Infant Language Link (Reception and KS1) and Junior Language Link (KS2) – this assessment investigates whether there are any speech sound difficulties, or any areas of language that need development. This assessment can lead to a referral to the NHS Speech and Language department.
  • Fizzy/Clever hands programme screener – this looks at body awareness, balance and ball skills and fine motor skills.
  • Dyslexia screening – using the online GLS screening tool an indication of whether a child may have dyslexia and to what extent is obtained.
  • Babtie and Emerson dyscalculia and numeracy assessment – this assessment is able to pinpoint which area of maths a child is finding difficult.
  • PIRA (progress in reading assessment) and PUMA (Progress in understanding mathematics) – these assessments are used to look at how well pupils are progress in maths and reading.
  • The Boxall Profile – this assessment is used to accurately gain an understanding a child’s emotional and behavioural difficulties.

 

How do we work with outside agencies to support children

The recently updated SEND Code of Practice 2015 reflects many changes introduced in the Children and Families Act 2014. There is more of a focus on multi-agency working to ensure the best possible care and support for children’s needs. This was formally known as the Common Assessment Framework (CAF), used when it was thought that a child or family required multi-agency support. Now an Early Notification form is completed. This form is screened by the Early Help Team who suggest the best possible agencies to support the child/ family. Following this, outcomes are set and regular meetings are held throughout the process to review the targets and progress. Additionally, further advice and support can be gained through the termly Local Inclusion Forum Team (LIFT) meetings.
Some of agencies we may work with include:

  • Speech and Language
  • Occupational therapists
  • Specialist Teaching Service (STS)
  • Educational Psychologist (EP)
  • Hospital/GP
  • Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS)
  • Social Services
  • Counselling services

 

How do we ensure the provision for children is effective?

Ongoing assessment and monitoring of all children takes place throughout the school year, and includes whole class, small group and individual provision such as:

  • Assessment
  • Transference of skills taught into independent learning
  • Helping a child to feel more confident in the given area of learning/ increase of speed and/or understanding
  • Pupil Progress Meetings
  • SENCO monitoring in class
  • Lesson observations
  • Data analysis
  • Pupil voice
  • Book scrutiny
  • Tracking of progress/interventions
  • Termly review of provision maps
  • Learning walks and reviews
  • Feedback from parents and pupils

What support do we provide for staff to support all children’s needs?

We are committed to developing the ongoing expertise of all our staff. This training includes: Quality First Teaching, dyslexia friendly classrooms, developing communication and interaction skills, Well-being and Involvement, Safeguarding and First Aid. All teachers are responsible for the children within their class.

Considerable thought, planning and preparation go into utilising our support staff to ensure children achieve the best outcomes, gain independence and are prepared for adulthood from the earliest possible age. Teaching Assistants are matched to classes through experience, training and level of need. Teaching throughout the year is kept consistent by using familiar teachers to cover staff absences.

 

 

How we prepare children for their changing needs such as transition

Children experience several transitions throughout their school life; each stage is slightly different and affects each child in a different way. The majority of children adjust to these changes naturally over time, others may need more support. For this reason, individual transition programmes are set up for children who have SEN to try and make this process as smooth as possible. When a child leaves we work closely with their destination school to provide support to make the transition easier.

Some of the ways we support children in times of transition are described in the table below.

 

Phase of transition Method
Into the Foundation Stage Open Days, new Parents’ Meetings, visits in the Summer term before entry, Home visits, starting school booklet, regular home contact whilst settling in for the child and parents
Moving into a new year group Move up day, regular contact with all teachers in our school
Year 2 into key stage 2 Transition parent meetings, transition weekly workshops for the whole of class 2 and in small groups for more vulnerable pupils.
Year 6 to secondary schools Visits to and from secondary school staff, transitions days/weeks arranged by secondary schools, transition parent meetings, transition weekly workshops for the whole of class 6 and in small groups for more vulnerable pupils.
Late admission or transfer to our school Visit to class to meet children and new teacher, buddy system, circle time, regular home contact whilst settling in for the child and parents.

 

What is an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC)?

The purpose of an EHC Plan is to make special education provision to meet the special educational needs (severe and complex long term needs) of a child or young person, to secure improved outcomes for them across education, health and social care and as they get older and prepare for adulthood. An EHC Plan will contain:

  • The views and aspirations of the child and their parents
  • A full description of a child’s special educational needs and any health and social care needs
  • Outcomes for your child’s progress,
  • The provision required and how education, health and social care will work together to meet a child’s needs and support the achievement of the agreed outcomes

 

Parents and/or the school, usually the SENCo or Headteacher, can request that the local authority conduct an assessment of your child’s needs. This may lead to an EHC Plan.

 

How we arrange the SEN budget

 

We receive funding through the local authority. These funds include money to support the learning of children with SEN and/or disabilities via support staff appointments, access to external services, additional teaching resources and staff training. Our notional SEN Budget for Saltwood school this year was £17,881 (2015/16). The Headteacher, in consultation with the School Governing Body, decides the budget for SEN provision on the basis of the needs of the children. The Head teacher and the SENCO discuss the effectiveness of the school’s current interventions and provisions and prioritise an action plan, which may include additional or alternative interventions, staff training and equipment needs. This process is reviewed regularly to ensure that the best possible support is provided to those children who have additional needs and/or disabilities.

 

How to raise concerns about the provision your child is receiving

If you have concerns regarding the SEN support for your child, please contact your child’s class teacher by making an appointment through the school office, or speak to Mrs Keep or Mrs Hann.

 

Our SEN Governor

We are fortunate to have Morag Hards as our School SEN Governor. Mrs Hards works for the Specialist teaching service and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise in this area. The SEN Governor meets regularly with both Mrs Keep and Mrs Hann to discuss the current SEN needs of the school.

Policies

The SEND policy and information report can be accessed here (link to policy on website) and can be viewed to gain additional information.