SEND

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

All Bexley maintained schools have a similar approach to meeting the needs of pupils with Special Educational Needs/ and or disabilities and are supported by the Local Authority to ensure that all pupils, regardless of their specific needs, make the best possible progress in school. All schools are supported to be as inclusive as possible, with the needs of pupils with a Special Educational Need/s and or disabilities being met in a mainstream setting wherever possible, where families want this to happen. This should be looked at together with:

The government has listened to what parents say their experience of services is like and have put in place a number of things to bring about improvements. One of these is the ‘Local Offer’.  In 2012 the former Children’s Minister Sarah Teather explained that: “The current system is outdated and not fit for purpose. Thousands of families have had to battle for months, even years, with different agencies to get the specialist care their children need. It is unacceptable they are forced to go from pillar to post, facing agonising delays and bureaucracy to get support, therapy and equipment”. 

“It is a huge step forward to require health, education and care services work together. The reforms will give parents better information and a comprehensive package of support that meets their needs”.

Local authorities and other services will set out a local offer of all services available to support children who are disabled or who have SEN and their families. The local offer will enable families to understand what services they can access and what support they can expect from a range of local agencies, including from the local authority, health services, schools, leisure services and the voluntary sector. The offer will include provision from birth to 25, across education, health and social care.

The potential outcomes of the Local Offer are:

  • To provide clarity and confidence for parents.
  • To support earlier intervention.
  • To reduce the need for assessment.
  • To identify need and gaps in provision.
  • To provide an evidence base for improving progress & securing better outcomes, at school & local level.

Responsibilities

Class/subject teacher:

  • Checking on the progress of your child and identifying planning and delivering any additional help your child may need (this could be things like targeted work, additional support) and letting the Inclusion Manager and SENCO know as necessary.
  • Writing a Personalised Learning Plan (PLP), and sharing and reviewing these with parents at least once each team and planning for the next term.
  • Ensuring that all staff working with your child in school are able to deliver the planned work/programme for your child, so they can achieve the best possible progress. This may involve the use of additional adults, outside specialist help and specially planned work and resources.
  • Ensuring that the school’s SEND Policy is followed in their classroom and for all the pupils they teach with any SEND

The SENCO (Mrs Clark):

  • Coordinating all the support for children with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) and developing the school’s SEND Policy to make sure all children get a consistent, high-quality response to meeting their needs in school.
  • Updating the school’s SEND register (a system for ensuring all the SEND needs of pupils in this school are known) and making sure that there are excellent records of your child’s progress and needs.
  • Providing specialist support for teachers and support staff in the school so they can help children with SEND in the school achieve the best progress possible.

Ensuring that you are:

  • Involved in supporting your child’s learning.
  • Kept informed about the support your child is getting.
  • Involved in reviewing how they are doing.

Head Teacher (Mr Pepperrell):

  • The day to day management of all aspects of the school, this includes the support for children with SEND.
  • The Head Teacher will give responsibility to the SENCO and the class teachers but is still responsible for ensuring that your child’s needs are met.
  • The Head Teacher must make sure that the Governing Body is kept up to date about any issues in the school relating to SEND.

SEND Governor:

  • Making sure that the necessary support is made for any child who attends the school who has SEND.

Support available for children with SEN

Class teacher input via excellently targeted classroom teaching also known as Quality First Teaching

  • That the teacher had the highest possible expectations for your child and all pupils in their class.
  • That all teaching is based on building on what your child already knows, can do and can understand.
  • At times the teacher may direct the class-based Teaching Assistant to work with your child as part of normal working practice.
  • Different ways of teaching are in place so that your child is fully involved in learning in class. This may involve things like using more practical learning.
  • Specific strategies (which may be suggested by the SENCO or outside staff) are in place to support your child to learn.
  • Your child’s teacher will have carefully checked on your child’s progress and will have decided that your child has gaps in their understanding/learning and needs some extra support to help them make the best possible progress.
  • All children in school should be getting this as part of the excellent classroom, practice when needed.
  • Specific group work within a smaller group of children.

This group, often called intervention groups by schools, may be:

  • Run in the classroom or outside.
  • Run by a teacher or most often a Teaching Assistant who has had the training to run these groups.
  • Stage of SEN Code of Practice: School Action

This means they have been identified by the class teacher as needing some extra support in school.

For your child this would mean:

  • He/she will engage in group sessions with specific targets to help him/her to make progress.
  • A Learning Support Assistant/teacher or outside professional (like a Speech and Language Therapist) will run these small group sessions using the teacher’s plan.
  • This type of support is available for any child who has specific gaps in their understanding of a subject/area of learning.

Specialist groups run by outside agencies e.g. Speech and Language Therapy or Occupational therapy groups

Stage of SEN Code of Practice: School Action Plus

This means they have been identified by the SENCO as needing some extra specialist support in school from a professional outside the school. This may be from:

  • Local Authority central services such as ASD Outreach or Sensory Service (for pupils with a hearing or visual need).
  • Outside agencies such as the Speech and Language therapy (SALT) Service.

For your child this would mean:

  • Your child will have been identified by the class teacher or SENCO (or you will have raised your own concerns) as needing more specialist input instead of or in addition to quality first teaching and intervention groups.
  • You will be asked to come to a meeting to discuss your child’s progress and help plan possible ways forward.
  • You may be asked to give your permission for the school to refer your child to a specialist professional e.g. a Speech and Language Therapist or Educational Psychologist This will help the school and yourself understand your child’s particular needs betters and be able to support them better in school.

The specialist professional will work with your child to understand their needs and make recommendations, which may include:

  • Making changes to the way your child is supported in class e.g. some individual support or changing some aspects of teaching to support them better.
  • Support to set better targets which will include their specific expertise.
  • A group run by school staff under the guidance of the outside professional e.g. a social skills group.
  • A group or individual work with outside professional.

The school may suggest that your child needs some individual support in school.  They will tell you how the support will be used and what strategies will be put in place.  This type of support is available for children with specific barriers to learning that cannot be overcome through Quality First Teaching and intervention groups.

Specified Individual support

This is usually provided via a Statement of Special Educational Needs or an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). This means your child will have been identified by the class teacher or SENCO as needing a particularly high level of support or small group teaching (the number of hours will be specified by a Statement of Special Educational Needs), which cannot be provided from the budget available to the school.

Usually, your child will also need support from professional outside the school. This may be from:

  • Local Authority central services such as the ASD Outreach Team or Sensory Service (for students with a hearing or visual need).
  • Outside agencies such as the Speech and Language therapy (SALT) Service.

For your child, this would mean: The school (or you) can request that the Local Authority carry out a statutory assessment of your child’s needs. This is a legal process which sets out the amount of support that will be provided for your child.

After the school have sent in the request to the Local Authority (with a lot of information about your child, including some from you), they will decide whether they think your child’s needs (as described in the paperwork provided), seem complex enough to need a statutory assessment. If this is the case they will ask you and all the professionals involved with your child to write a report outlining your child’s needs. If they do not think your child needs this, they will ask the school to continue with the support at School Action Plus

After the reports have all been sent to the Local Authority (L.A). The L.A will then decide if your child’s needs are severe, complex and lifelong and that they need more specified extra support in school to make good progress. If this is the case they will write a Statement of Special Educational Needs or Education health Care Plan (EHCP). If this is not the case they will ask the school to continue with the support at School Action Plus and also set up a meeting in school to ensure a plan is in place to ensure your child makes as much progress as possible.

The Statement or ECHP will outline the number of hours of individual/small group support your child will receive from the LA and how the support should be used and what strategies must be put in place. It will also have long and short term goals for your child.  The additional adult may be used to support your child with whole class learning, run individual programmers or run small groups including your child.

This type of support is available for children whose learning needs are:

  • Severe, complex and lifelong
  • Need more than a specified number of hours support in school

How can I let the school know I am concerned about my child’s progress in school?

  • If you have concerns about your child’s progress you should speak to your child’s class teacher initially.
  • If you are not happy that the concerns are being managed and that your child is still not making progress you should speak to the SENCO or Head Teacher.
  • If you are still not happy you can speak to the school SEND Governor.

How will the school let me know if they have concerns about my child’s learning in school?

If your child is then identified as not making progress the school will set up a meeting to discuss this with you in more detail and to:

  • Listen to any concerns you may have.
  • Plan any additional support your child may receive.

SEND Report

This report complies with:

  • section 69(2) of the Children and Families Act 2014.
  • regulation 51 and Schedule 1 of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014.

1. How accessible is the school environment?

  • The school is accessible to children with physical disability via ramps and a lift.
  • We ensure that the equipment used is accessible to all children regardless of their needs.
  • There are double doors strategically placed around the building to allow wheelchair access

2. How are children identified as having Special Educational Needs?

At Castilion Primary School children are identified as having SEN in a variety of ways e.g.

  • Concerns raised by parents /carers
  • Concerns raised by teachers
  • Concerns raised by the child
  • Changes in a child's behaviour or self -esteem is affecting progress
  • A child finds learning difficult
  • A child is performing well below age-related expectations
  • Information received from outside agencies and pre-schools e.g. speech and language therapist, Paediatricians

3. How are parents and carers supported if they think that their child has SEN?

We have a good home-school partnership where regular communication between parents and staff takes place. Mr Pepperrell, The Headteacher, is in the playground meeting and greeting parents before and after school.  At Castilion we invite parents in to speak to the class teacher in the first instance and if there are further concerns parents and carers are referred to the SENCO, Mrs Clark. The process…

  1. Speak to the class teacher.
  2. Make an appointment to meet SENCO, Mrs Clark, to discuss your child's needs.
  3. The SENCO will work with your child and their class teacher to identify the area of need and set individual targets.
  4. Additional support will be given to your child if necessary. This may be additional support from the Class Teacher or Teaching Assistant. They may be referred to our Learning mentor if the need is social-emotional or behavioural.
  5. The class teacher will review the targets and progress.
  6. If targets are not met they will be broken down into smaller steps.
  7. The SENCO will make an appointment with parents to discuss the involvement of outside agencies if there are concerns about progress.
  8. Outside agency involvement –new targets set
  9. If there are still concerns about the progress a meeting will be set up to discuss an assessment for an Education Health Care Plan.

4. How are parents/carers kept informed about the support the school have put in place?

Each child’s education will be planned by the class teacher. It will be differentiated accordingly to suit the pupil’s individual needs. This may include additional support by the teacher or teaching assistant in class.

If a pupil has needs related to more specific areas of their education, such as reading, spelling, handwriting, numeracy or literacy skills then the pupil will be placed in a small focus group. This will be run by the teacher or teaching assistant. The length of time of the intervention will vary according to need but will generally be for a term. The interventions will be regularly reviewed by all involved to ascertain the effectiveness of the provision and to inform future planning.

These interventions will be recorded on the Year group Provision map (this is a record of the interventions, timings, and impact of the intervention). Parents are notified about these interventions by the class teacher. If you have any queries related to the interventions please do not hesitate to contact the class teacher or the SENCO.

Pupil Progress Meetings are held each half term. This is a meeting where the class teacher meets with the Senior Leadership Team to discuss the progress of the pupils in their class. This shared discussion may highlight any potential problems in order for further support to be planned which will be discussed and implemented by the class teacher/SENCO.

Occasionally, a child may need more expert support from an outside agency such as the Speech and Language Therapist, Educational Psychologist or Paediatrician. Referral forms are then completed in conjunction with parents/carers and forwarded to the most appropriate agency. After a series of assessments, a programme of support is provided to the school and parents/carers. The class teacher uses the programme to plan effective support for the teaching assistant to implement.

The SENCO has a termly meeting with Mr Gurnett, the SEND governor, who monitors SEN, Safeguarding and Child Protection to ensure that policies and procedures are followed. The SENCO reports this information to the full governing body.

5. How is the curriculum differentiated and matched to a children’s needs?

When a child has been identified with special educational needs their work will be differentiated by the class teacher to enable them to access the curriculum more easily. Teaching assistants may be allocated to work with the child in a 1-1 or small focus group to target more specific needs.

If appropriate, specialist equipment may be given to the pupil e.g. writing slopes, concentration cushions, pen/pencils grips easy to use scissors or coloured overlays for reading. The class teacher works with all children in his/her class. The class will plan the work for the teaching assistants to implement. All support staff receive internal or external training for the areas of SEN support that they carry out.

6. How is progress measured?

Staff at Castilion communicate regularly with parents. You are welcome at any time to make an appointment to meet with either the class teacher or the SENCO to discuss your child’s progress. We can offer advice and practical ways that you can help your child at home.

If your child is on the SEN register they will have individual targets. Targets are discussed at either the termly SEN evening or the termly Parent consultation evening. The targets are set by the class teacher and both children and parents are encouraged to contribute to this process.  

The targets set are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time scaled) targets with the expectation that the child will achieve the target by the time it is reviewed. If your child has complex SEND they may have a Statement of SEN, which means that a formal meeting will take place with you and all agencies involved to discuss your child’s progress and a report will be written.

7. How are parents/carers kept informed about their child’s progress?

As a school, we measure children’s progress in learning against National and age-related expectations. The class teacher continually assesses each child and notes areas where they are improving and where further support is needed. As a school, we track children’s progress from entry at Nursery through to Year 6, using a variety of different methods including Development Matters and the National Curriculum.  

Children who are not making expected progress are discussed during half termly Progress meetings with the class teacher and Senior Leadership Team.

In this meeting, a discussion takes place concerning why individual children are experiencing difficulty and what further support can be given to aid their progression. If your child is discussed at one of these meetings and additional support is recommended you will be informed. 

When a child’s PLP is reviewed comments are made against each target to show what progress the child has made. If the child has not met the target, the reasons for this will be discussed, then the target may be adapted into smaller steps or a different approach may be tried to ensure the child does make progress.

8. How are parents/carers helped to support their child's learning?

At Castilion Primary School we keep parents/carers informed about whole school events through:

  • Termly Outline of learning for each class.  
  • School Monthly Newsletter
  • Termly class Newsletter
  • Home/School Reading Guides and books.
  • Parent workshops for how to support your child in  reading, writing and maths
  • Headteacher coffee mornings.
  • Yearly Reports

9. How are wellbeing, personal and medical needs supported in school?

We offer a wide variety of pastoral support for children who are encountering emotional difficulties. We are a caring, understanding staff who look after our children and parents.

Your child's class teacher is the first person to contact with concerns about your child's overall wellbeing.

If further support is needed the class teacher will liaise with the SENCO who will give advice and support and put a plan of action into place. This may involve support from teaching assistants or the Learning Mentor who are readily available for children who wish to discuss issues and concerns.

Children with medical needs: If a child has a medical need then a detailed Health Care Plan is compiled by the SENCO in consultation with parents/carers and the school nurse. This is discussed with all staff who are involved with the child.

We have three fully trained first aiders and all staff members have a basic knowledge of first aid.

If your child has a medical condition that requires medication, a meeting will be held with parents/carers, SENCO, designated staff members and first aider to explain our Health and Safety Policy and procedures. Parents and all staff members who agree to administer medicines will sign a medication agreement form to ensure the safety of both child and staff member.

Behaviour: At Castilion Primary school we have a very positive and effective behaviour policy, with clear rewards and sanctions, which is followed by all staff and pupils.

If a child has behavioural difficulties an Individual Behaviour Plan is written alongside the child, teacher and parents to identify the specific difficulties and agree on appropriate targets. As a result of the support we give, we rarely exclude children however, we have zero tolerance on physical violence towards staff.

Attendance: Attendance of every child is monitored on a daily basis by the Admin Officer. Lateness and absence are recorded and reported to the Headteacher.

Good attendance is rewarded with certificates. Where families are struggling with attendance and punctuality we may refer parents to the Learning Mentor who will offer advice and strategies to get their children into school on time.

10. How do children contribute to the everyday life of the school? How are their views gathered?

We encourage every child to contribute and to express their thoughts and ideas which we value, respect and celebrate. We do this in different ways throughout the school year:

  • In class, children are encouraged to contribute to lessons
  • There is a School Council meeting every half term where issues or viewpoints are discussed.
  • We have pupil questionnaires to gather ideas and opinions about curriculum topics
  • Children with social, emotional and behavioural needs set their behaviour targets with their class teacher and the Learning Mentor
  • Children who have PLPs (Personalised Learning Plan) discuss and set their targets with their class teacher.
  • Children with Statement of SEN share their views before the review meetings.

11. What expertise and specialist services are available through the school?

As a school we work closely with any external agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs within our school including:

  • Educational Psychologist
  • CAMHS (Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service)
  • Inclusion Team
  • Speech & Language Therapy
  • School Nurse
  • Social Care
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Paediatricians
  • Learning Support Service
  • Behaviour Support Service
  • Play Therapy
  • Autism Outreach Team
  • Therapeutic Play

An Educational Psychologist is allocated to each school. He/she would normally only work directly with children whose needs are felt to be quite considerable and have not responded well to the interventions previously put in place for them.

This involvement is discussed at Progress Meetings with the Senior Leadership Team and class teachers. In order to help understand the pupil’s educational needs better, the psychologist will generally meet with the parent and give feedback after the assessment has been completed. He/she will offer advice to the school and parent/carers on how to best support the child to move their learning forward.

12. What training do staff receive?

Our SENCO achieved The National Award for SEN Coordination in 2013 and has been trained in a wide range of SEN including Autistic Spectrum Disorder, Speech-Language and Communication and Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning.

The school has a school development plan, including identified training needs for all staff to improve the teaching and learning of children including those with SEND. This may include whole school training on SEND, to ensure consistency of the school’s approach and/or individual training requirements. 

Individual teachers and teaching assistants attend training courses directly linked to the needs of specific children in their class e.g using visual strategies, challenging behaviour management, ASD, ADHD, speech and language. Training takes place on a regular basis. If you would like to hear about the training which is currently taking place or has taken place by the staff members in the school, please speak to the SENCO.

13. How are school trips and activities outside the classroom organised? How does the school ensure that pupils with SEND included?

Activities,  school trips and residential are a very important part of every child’s learning experience at Castilion Primary School. Risk assessments are carried out and procedures are put in place to enable all children to participate.

If a child has a teaching assistant he/she will accompany them on the trip. However, if this is not the case and it is deemed that an intensive level of 1:1 support is required a parent or carer may be asked to accompany their child during the activity.

14. How are children supported when changing schools or transferring to other education, employment or training?

We recognise that ‘moving on’ can be difficult for a child with SEN/and or disabilities so take steps to ensure that any transition is a smooth as possible. 

Home> Nursery: A home visit is carried out for our nursery children. All parents and carers of Nursery children are invited to attend a Welcome Meeting with the Headteacher, Nursery Teacher and Nursery Nurse. 

Nursery<Reception: Children have a familiarisation day in July. All parents and carers of Reception children are invited to attend a Welcome Meeting with the Headteacher and Deputy Teacher. When joining Reception in September, children stay for 2 mornings prior to full time.

The SENCO, and when possible Class Teachers, visit pre-school settings where SEN has already been identified.

For children with SEND, we would encourage further visits to assist with the acclimatisation of the new surroundings. We would also visit them in their current school or setting.

  • If your child is moving to another school:
    •  We will contact the new school’s SENCO and ensure he/she knows about any special arrangements or support that need to be made for your child.
    •  We will make sure that all records about your child are passed on as soon as possible.
  • When moving classes in school:
    • Information will be passed on to the new class teacher IN ADVANCE and in most cases, a planning meeting will take place with the new teacher. All PLP’s and relevant information, such as reports from outside agencies, will be shared with the new teacher.
    • The SENCO will create a ‘Transition’ booklet to help children understand future changes.

Year 6: 

  • Where possible, the SENCO will attend the Primary Transition Day to discuss the specific needs of your child with the SENCO of their secondary school, and the specialist session for students with an ASD, as appropriate.
  • Your child will attend a small ‘Transition’ group in school, to support their understanding of the changes ahead.
  • Where possible your child will visit their new school on several occasions and in some cases staff from the new school will visit your child in this school.
  • We liaise closely with Staff when receiving and transferring children to different schools ensuring all relevant paperwork is passed on and all needs are discussed and understood.

15. How are resources matched to a children's needs?

  • The Head Teacher and SENCO decide on the budget for Special Educational Need in consultation with the school governors, on the basis of the needs of the children currently in the school.
  • The Head Teacher and the SENCO discuss information regarding
    • the  children getting extra support already
    • the children needing extra support
    • the children who have been identified as not making as much progress as would be expected
  • All resources/training and support are reviewed regularly and changes made as needed.
  • We ensure that all children who have Special Educational needs are met to the best of the school’s ability with the funds available.
  • Teaching assistants deliver programmes designed to meet groups of children’s needs.
  • The budget is allocated on a needs basis. The children who have the most complex needs are given the most support often involving a teaching assistant.

16. How do the school decide how much support is provided?

The class teacher alongside the SENCO will discuss the child’s needs and what support would be appropriate. Different children will require different levels of support in order to bridge the gap to achieve age expected levels. This will be through on-going discussions with parents

IMPACT

  • By reviewing children’s targets on Provision maps or PLPs and ensuring they are being met.
  • The child is making progress academically against national/age expected levels and the gap is narrowing – they are catching up to their peers or expected age levels.
  • Verbal feedback from the teacher, parent and pupil.
  • Children may move off of the SEN register when they have ‘caught up’ or made sufficient progress.

17. How are parents and carers involved in discussions and planning?

  • Parents are invited to parent conferencing meetings,
  • Parent questionnaires are sent out about new school initiatives
  • For children with SEN, parents are encouraged to support at home and contribute to the evaluations of targets on the PLP.
  • Where a child has a Statement of SEN regular meetings are held with parents and other professionals to discuss targets needs and ways forward.

18. How can parents and carers get involved in the school more generally?

We encourage parents to talk about  school with their child and support their child with during early morning work on a daily basis

  • Coffee mornings
  • Attend class assemblies and accompany class trips.
  • Workshops are available for parents
  • We always encourage parents to take part in special events throughout the year.
  • Curriculum weeks – Where parents can share their own expertise
  • The school office can provide dates of events

19. Who can parents/carers contact for further information?

The first point of contact would be your child’s class teacher to share your concerns. You could also arrange to meet Mrs Clark our SENCO/Deputy headteacher. Call the School Office on 02083115177 to make an appointment

20. How are parents and carers supported to decide whether this is the right school for their child?

Please contact Mr Pepperrell, Headteacher or Mrs Clark, Deputy Headteacher/SENCO on  0208 311 5177. If you wish to discuss your child’s educational needs or are unhappy about something regarding your child’s schooling please follow the school’s Complaints policy-a copy is available at the school office.