23-24 Information report and local offer
1. What kinds of Special Educational Needs can be met at our school?
If any pupil in our school has a barrier to learning, we will make sure that there are the best opportunities for them to take part in every aspect of school life.
Barriers to learning include:
• Communication and Interaction needs (i.e. speech and language difficulties, autism)
• General learning difficulties, both moderate and severe (i.e. dyslexia, dyscalculia, global developmental delay)
• Social, emotional and mental health difficulties (i.e. ADHD, attachment disorder)
• Problems with sight or hearing or other physical disabilities (i.e. Downs Syndrome)
Alternatively, your child may have a different less common disability or medical condition that causes a barrier to learning.
2. How do we identify and assess the needs of children?
Where a need is already identified, we will aim to gather information from you, the parents/carers, other professionals and previous settings before a child starts their time with us. We regularly review progress, talk to parents/carers and children and make observations on how your child is doing in class. These all help us to see any difficulties your child might have and would generally lead to informal chats with all involved staff first before a more formal process is started where needed.
More details can be found in the school SEND policy, Identification and Assessment of SEND
3. How do we assess and provide for children with SEND in our school?
Within the whole class:
The class teacher is the first, most important person in making sure each pupil has the right levels of work and support. Careful checking of progress leads to different approaches, supported work, and use of practical equipment where needed.
All children in school should receive this provision as a part of excellent classroom practice.
Within a smaller group
We want all our children to learn how to be independent learners, but sometimes the teacher will find a specific or general gap in learning that needs some extra teaching in a small group in or outside the classroom. This will be with a Teaching Assistant or the teacher.
Sometimes, a pupil’s disability means that we need to provide a Teaching Assistant more often to help them to access what is happening in school. If a pupil needs significant 1:1 support, additional funding may be sought from the family of schools (AFN funding) or, more rarely, from the Local Authority (HLN funding).
Support from outside school
In some cases, we need to work with professionals from outside the school. These may be from the Local Authority or from Health services. We would always talk to you first before talking to any of these professionals.
More details can be found in the school SEND policy, Identification and Assessment of SEND
What if your child has a more complex long term need or disability?
For a very small number of children, assessment and provision may be provided through an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). The following steps will lead to this:
• The school or the parent asks the Local Authority to consider whether it is necessary to formally assess your child’s needs
• Information is gathered by the Local Authority from parents/carers, school and any other agencies involved
• A decision is made by the Local Authority about whether an EHCP is needed or not
• Either an EHCP is written with support and long or short-term targets agreed or the Local Authority decide that the support already provided by school is sufficient to meet the needs of your child
How do we know if we are doing the best we can for your child?
• We review and track your child’s progress regularly
• We implement quality first teaching strategies for all children
• We talk to you and your child and listen to your views
• We take advice from and work with any professionals involved
4. How will we support a child with special educational needs with their emotional and social development?
We want each child to make progress socially, emotionally and academically. We will always talk to parents/carers and children if extra activities or interventions are needed in the long term. This may lead to giving some extra 1:1 support or group work provided through one of the following possibilities:
• Blossom provision
• Learning Mentors
• Social stories
• Zones of Regulation support
• Interventions such as ‘Lego Therapy’, ‘Precision Teaching’ and ‘Lightning Squad’
More details about the interventions we offer at school can be found on our school website – ‘School’- ‘SEND Offer’
5. Who are the best people to talk to in our school about your child’s difficulties with learning/SEND or disability?
As parents/carers know their child best, we want you to share any information and concerns you may have with us.
The first person to chat to is your child’s class teacher, as they are responsible for day-to-day provision and for making sure that the school’s SEND policy is being followed in their classroom.
Sometimes the class teacher will want to take your concerns to the school’s SEND Coordinator. This is currently Paul Lowther as part of the SEND team with Heidi Hollis and Trudi McWilliams.
The SENCO is responsible for making sure that your child’s special educational needs are met, and that you are involved in supporting your child’s learning and in reviewing progress on a termly basis. Contact with the SENCO can be made through the school office.
Headteacher If your child has a specific learning or physical disability and you would like your child to come to our school, the best person to talk to initially is the Head Teacher. The Head Teacher will work with you to make sure that we can meet your child’s needs.
6. How are our staff supported and trained to meet the needs of your child?
Within our family of schools, SENCOs meet once each term to discuss our training needs. The Family SENCO organises training events across the schools, either in-house or using external providers.
The SENCO supports all staff within school and will organise whole staff and individual training or support where necessary. Sometimes this may involve seeking the advice from external agencies or professionals.
We always welcome parental help in identifying the most appropriate external support.
More information can be found in the SEND policy, Effectiveness of SEND Provision.
7. How do we make sure your child with SEND can access our building and equipment?
Our school is committed to making reasonable adjustments wherever possible. This may include:
• Contacting the local authority to see if adaptations to the building are required
• Ensuring that the right equipment is available to meet every child’s needs
• Where specialist equipment is needed, contacting the Local Authority Physical Disability Support Service team to assess needs and provide advice and/or equipment.
Please see our school Accessibility Policy for more information.
8. How will we involve you in your child’s progress and provision in school and how can you help at home?
We want parents to feel fully involved at every stage. Sharing information is vital and will be done through:
• Regular informal and termly formal contact to discuss progress, including parent’s evenings, additional review meetings and written school reports
• Informal chats or phone contact if needed if something arises between more formal meetings
• Annual parent questionnaires
• Sharing ideas about how you can help your child at home
9. Who will listen to your child and make sure their views are considered?
All children are given opportunities to talk about how they feel they are doing and what would help them most. For your child with SEND, there will be additional time for them to chat with a member of staff. Informally this will happen before, during, or at the end of supported work with a teacher or TA, or at other times when the child feels they need to talk.
More formally it will happen during termly review meetings where there will be an opportunity for your child to share their views and feelings.
Children with SEND are also asked to share their views twice per year via a questionnaire. For younger children, this is completed 1:1 using a scribe so that their true views are recorded accurately.
10. What should you do if you have concerns about how your child is supported?
Where appropriate, the first person to speak to is the class teacher. Occasionally you may need to speak to the SENCO directly. We always try to resolve any concerns as soon as they are raised, so please make sure you talk to us.
Should it be difficult to resolve concerns, the more formal process outlined in our school’s Complaints Policy should be followed.
11. What support is available for you as a parent of child with SEND?
We want to work as closely as possible with you and to support you where we can. Sometimes you may want signposting to other organisations or support networks outside school. The SENCO will give you information we have available in school but in addition, the LA Local Offer Website provides links to organisations across the authority.
12. How are parents/carers and children with SEND supported during transition times?
We understand that special preparations may be needed when children with SEND will be starting at a new setting, moving between classes or schools, or when they move into adult life. We aim to make this as smooth and reassuring as possible through:
• Careful planning with the next setting or teacher
• Sharing of information with parents/carers, including the opportunity to meet new staff before the move
• Additional visits to the new setting
• Additional visits prior to starting school
• Transition booklets prepared in school with your child, providing information for the next setting (where appropriate)
13. What else is available locally for your child with SEND?
You can find what is available in our Local Authority area on the LA Local Offer website: https://www.asklion.co.uk/kb5/nottingham/directory/localoffer.page?directorychannel=7
The Local Offer brings together helpful and useful information for children and young people with SEND, from birth to 25 years, and their families. The information is contained within this website, which will enable you to search for services and provision within your own community and Nottinghamshire as a whole. This will cover public services that are available within:
• Education: e.g. nurseries, playgroups, schools and colleges as well as support services like educational psychologists, early years and early intervention workers.
• Health: e.g. GPs, school nurses, therapists and mental health support.
• Social care: e.g. respite services (short breaks) and children’s disability services.
It will also enable you to find out what support and services are available in the voluntary and private sectors, for example from charities and disability groups.
As well as containing many records of different services, the Local Offer is a really useful source of information, advice and guidance.
14. Who can I contact at school for help with SEND?
The SENCo is Mr Paul Lowther. Trudi McWilliams is also a part of the SEN team. The named responsible person on the Governing Body is Mrs Maria Artingstoll. All can be contacted via the school office on 0115 915 3273.