Learning Support SEND Policy 2017

This policy complies with the statutory requirement laid out in the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Code of Practice 0-25 years (June 2014) and has been written with reference to the following guidance and documents:

  • Equality Act 2010: advice for schools DfE Feb 2013
  • SEND Code of Practice 0 – 25 (July 2014)
  • Schools SEN Information Report Regulations (2014)
  • Children and Families Act 2014

This policy has been created by the school’s SENCO (Special Educational Needs Coordinator) in collaboration with the SEN Governor in liaison with the Senior Leadership Team (SLT). The SENCO takes responsibility for the operation of the SEN policy and co-ordination of special needs provision, working closely with staff, parents and carers, and other agencies. The SENCO also provides professional guidance to colleagues to secure high quality teaching for pupils with SEND.

SENCO – Mr C O’Connor (c.oconnor@stb.coop or 01782 729406)

SEN Governor – Mrs T Robbins (Assistant head)

Our Aims:

In this school we aim to support our pupils with Special Educational Needs by offering an inclusive curriculum which allows them to achieve their full potential. Within the Learning Support Department we work to identify areas of need, create a plan of action which supports the child and the teachers and we follow this with a review to establish progress made. We have a team of Teaching Assistants (TAs) with a wealth of experience who are used to support our pupils with SEN and who collaborate with pupils, teachers, parents and outside agencies (where appropriate) to ensure that our pupils are supported during their time at Sir Thomas Boughey.

We aim to raise the aspirations and attainment of our pupils with SEND. We also aim to support the child through their time with us ensuring that they leave us with the skills needed to achieve their potential when they move onto their next setting.

Terms:

We define a special educational need or disability in accordance with the 2014 SEND Code of Practice:

“A person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her. At compulsory school age this means he or she has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others the same age, or, has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools.”(Taken from 2014 SEND Code of Practice: 0 to 25 Years – Introduction xiii and xiv)

The aims of our SEND policy and practice in this school are:

  • To identify and provide for pupils who have special educational needs.
  • To support identified pupils across the curriculum, and advise subject areas on the creation of schemes of work and individual lessons which meet the needs of these pupils.
  • To provide support and advice for all staff working with special educational needs pupils within our school.
  • To maintain appropriate provision for pupils with an existing Statement of Special Educational Needs and pupils with Education, Health and Care Plans.
  • To work within the guidance provided in the SEND Code of Practice, 2014.

Facilities for Pupils with Special Educational Needs

The main school building has several different levels with many steps and stairs. Over the last few years the Governing Body have taken deliberate actions to improve the accessibility of the school for pupils with SEND. The following are currently in place to improve accessibility for all:

  • A number of sloped access points.
  • Disabled toilets accessible on the ground floor.
  • Modifications aimed at improving access for the visually impaired such as clearer delineation of stairways and obstacles.
  • Our medical room is on the ground floor.

The Governing Body is committed to making the ‘reasonable adjustments’ referred to in the SEND Code of Practice 2014 including the provision of auxiliary aids and services for disabled children, to prevent them from being put at a substantial disadvantage.

Identification, assessment, provision and review:

  • The early identification, assessment and provision for any child with SEN is extremely important. In order for this to happen, we liaise with our feeder Primary schools to ensure that information is shared and taken into account when identifying need and to maintain provision and support for SEND pupils through the transition phase.
  • We identify the needs of SEND pupils through a range of means including diagnostic testing or reading and spelling assessment. We take into account progress at KS2 and all staff track pupils academic progress throughout their time at Sir Thomas Boughey.
  • The SENCO attends annual/final review meetings at our feeder Primary schools for both Year 5 and Year 6 Statemented pupils.
  • All teachers are teachers of SEND in the first instance.
  • The SENCO will be responsible for identifying pupils with SEND, sometimes following a request from parents or acting on referral from a member of the teaching staff and following further investigation and assessment. This is then followed by the creation of a Personal Provision Map and the start of a first cycle of “Assess, Plan, Do, Review”.
  • Pupil progress is regularly tracked and reviewed in order to inform SEND provision. We keep a monitoring document to ensure that pupils who are no longer requiring SEND support are still closely monitored and are still able to access support as required. Parents are informed and consulted on pupil progress and provision.

There are 4 broad areas of need which are catered for in our school as laid out in the SEND Code of Practice 2014:

  • Communication and interaction. This includes pupils with speech, language and communication needs. Within our Learning Support Department, we have a wealth of experience in working with pupils with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
  • Cognition and learning. Learning difficulties within this area cover a wide range of needs and include moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD) and specific learning difficulties (SpLD) such as dyslexia, dyspraxia and dyscalculia.
  • Social, emotional and mental health difficulties. This area of need can include attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) or attachment disorder. This also covers other mental health difficulties such as depression, anxiety, self-harming, substance misuse or eating disorders.
  • Sensory and/or physical needs. Visual impairment, (VI) hearing impairment (HI), or multi-sensory impairment (MSI) will require specialist support and, in some cases, support from outside agencies.

It is important to recognise that ‘slow progress and low attainment do not necessarily mean that a child has SEN and should not automatically lead to a pupil being recorded as having SEN. However they may be an indicator of a range of learning difficulties or disabilities. Equally, it should not be assumed that attainment in line with chronological age means that there is no learning difficulty or disability. ‘(SEND Code of Practice 2014 6.23)

It is also important to remember that identifying behaviour as a need is no longer deemed to be an acceptable way of describing SEN. Any concerns relating to child or young person’s behaviour should be described as an underlying response to a need which should be recognised, planned and provided for.

Provision for pupils with SEN follows a three wave approach.

All teachers are teachers of pupils with SEND and teachers are responsible and accountable for the progress and development of all the pupils in their class, including those pupils who access support from teaching assistants and support staff. Our first wave of intervention is based on high quality first teaching, differentiated for individual pupils. Additional intervention and support cannot compensate for a lack of good quality teaching.

Teaching is frequently reviewed through regular learning walks conducted by SLT, Heads of Department and the SENCO. We follow the performance management structure of formal observations of teaching staff throughout the year. We also conduct book trawls and track and review the progress of all pupils (including those with SEND).
We are a training school and are committed to improving the practice and delivery of support for pupils with SEND.

Where appropriate, and following the creation of a pupil’s provision map, pupils may need a second wave of intervention involving small group work to improve areas of numeracy or literacy. Our final wave of intervention involves one to one precision teaching, allowing pupils to meet specific short term goals set out following an assessment of need.

The Graduated Approach

The planning and delivery of our SEND support follows a four part, ‘graduated approach’ of assess, plan, do and review.
Following the identification of a pupil with SEND, we assess specific areas of need, working with staff and our department link TAs. In some cases this may also involve working with appropriate outside professionals.

Where appropriate, a personalised provision map will be developed in collaboration with relevant staff assigned to the child, the SENCO, teaching staff, the pupil and parents/carers. This will involve establishing outcomes, strategies and a timescale for review purposes. Teaching staff are made aware of strategies which can be used to support the learning and progress of the pupil.
Ultimately the classroom teacher remains responsible for working with the child on a daily basis.
“High quality teaching, differentiated for individual pupils, is the first step in responding to pupils who have or may have SEN.” SEND Code of Practice 0 – 25 (July 2014 – 6.37)

Teachers work closely with any teaching assistants who support in the planning and differentiation of the curriculum being delivered. Where 2nd and 3rd waves of support are necessary these are planned for and progress is monitored.

Following an agreed timescale, progress is reviewed, provision maps are adjusted and further progress is planned for to ensure a continuation of support.

Statements and EHC plans

Where a pupil has a Statement of Educational Need or an Education, Health and Care plan this is reviewed every 12 months. As a school we work with the local authority on the timescale of these review meetings. These review meetings are attended by the pupil, parents, SENCO and any other relevant professionals in accordance with statutory requirements.

Access arrangements

Within our assessment of the needs of pupils with SEND, we also take into account their needs during exams. We use outside agencies to assess pupils’ entitlement to exam dispensation and apply through the necessary exam boards in accordance with their requirements.

The Local Offer and SEN Information Report.

SEN Information Report

The purpose of the Local Offer is to enable parents and young people to see more clearly which services are available in their area and how to access them. It includes provision from birth to 25, across education, health and social care. Staffordshire’s Local Offer can be found on: Local Offer Web Page.

Our school provides a School Information Report covering the provision which you can expect from our school, which can be found on our website.

Medical

Where a pupil has a medical need a care plan is created which is communicated to the whole staff whose responsibility it is to act on the guidance laid out in the plan. Pupils needing support in this area can access support through the School Nurse or other members of staff as defined by their care plan. We aim to ensure that pupils with medical difficulties continue to have access to a broad and challenging curriculum including offsite activities where appropriate.

Training and resources

The training needs of staff are identified initially through the performance management structure. We are a training school and are committed to promoting the continued development of all staff including our support staff.

All teachers and support staff undertake induction on taking up a post and this includes a meeting with the SENCO to explain the systems and structures in place around the school’s SEND provision and practice and to discuss the needs of individual pupils.

Roles and responsibilities

The SENCO (Mr C O’Connor) is responsible for the deployment of teaching assistants and for the day to day management of the school’s SEND Policy. The SENCO is the line manager for all of the teaching assistants and is responsible for their performance management and training.
The SEN Governor (Mrs T Robbins) is also an Assistant Head, our Safeguarding Officer and is responsible for managing PPG/CLA funding.

Dealing with complaints

In the event of any complaints concerning SEN provision at the school, parents should initially contact the SENCO who should be able to resolve the majority of issues. However, if an agreement is not reached, parents should write to the Headteacher detailing the nature of their concerns. If parents do not feel that the action taken by the Headteacher resolves their complaint, they should write to the Clerk to the Governors who will arrange a meeting between the parents, the Headteacher and three members of the Partnership committee within 20 working days. Parents should contact the LEA if they feel that the outcome of this meeting fails to address their concerns.

Reviewing the policy

This policy will be reviewed annually or sooner in light of policy changes.
Last reviewed January 2017
The next review is scheduled for September 2017.