Special Educational Needs Policy

 

1. Introduction

• This document is a statement of the aims, principles and strategies for teaching children with special educational needs at St Paul’s CE Primary School.
• It was developed as a response to the SEN Code of Practice 2014 and approved by the governing body.
• It is linked to the teaching and learning, behaviour, equal opportunities and racial equality policies and the accessibility plan already in existence in the school.

 

2. What are special educational needs?

A child or young person has special educational needs if he or she has a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her.  A learning difficulty or disability is a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age.  Special educational provision means educational or training provision that is additional to, or different from, that made generally for others of the same age in a mainstream setting in England.  Health care provision or social care provision which educates or trains a child or young person is to be treated as special educational provision.
This SEN policy details how, at St Paul’s, we will do our best to ensure that the necessary provision is made for any pupil who has special educational needs and that those needs are known to all who are likely to work with them.  We will ensure that all teachers are able to identify and provide for those pupils with special educational needs, allowing them to join in all school activities together with pupils who do not have special educational needs.

 

3. Aims

The aims of this policy are:
• To create an environment that meets the special educational needs of each child in order that they can achieve their learning potential and engage in activities alongside pupils who do not have SEN.
• To request, monitor and respond to parents/carers and pupils’ views in order to evidence high levels of confidence and partnership.
• To make clear the expectations of all partners in the process.
• To ensure a high level of staff expertise to meet pupil need, through well targeted continuing professional development
• To ensure support for pupils with medical conditions full inclusion in all school activities by ensuring consultation with health and social care professionals.
• To identify the roles and responsibilities of all staff in providing for children’s special educational needs.
• Through reasonable adjustments to enable all children to have full access to all elements of the school curriculum.
• To work in cooperation and productive partnerships with the Local Authority and other outside agencies, to ensure there is a multi-professional approach to meeting the needs of all vulnerable learners.

 

4. Equal Opportunities and Inclusion

Through all subjects we ensure that the school meets the needs of all, taking account of gender, ethnicity, culture, religion, language, sexual orientation, age, ability, disability and social circumstances.  It is important that we meet the diverse needs of our pupils to ensure inclusion for all and that all pupils are prepared for full participation in a multi-ethnic society.  We also measure and assess the impact regularly through meetings with our SEN team and individual teachers to ensure all children have equal access to achieving success.
Through appropriate curricular provision, we respect the fact that children:
• Have different educational and behavioural needs and aspirations.
• Require different strategies for learning.
• Acquire, assimilate and communicate information at different rates.
• Need a range of different teaching approaches and experiences.
Teachers respond to children’s needs by:
• Providing support for children who need help with communication, language and literacy.
• Planning to develop children’s understanding through the use of all available senses and experiences
• Planning for children’s full participation in learning, and in physical and practical activities.
• Helping children to manage and own their behaviour and to take part in learning effectively and safely.
• Helping individuals to manage their emotions, particularly trauma or stress, and to take part in learning.

 

5. Identification, Assessment and Provision

Provision for children with special educational needs is a matter for the whole school.  The governing body, the school’s head teacher, the SENCO and all other members of staff, particularly class teachers and teaching assistants, have important day-to-day responsibilities.  All teachers are teachers of children with special educational needs.

The school will assess each child’s current levels of attainment on entry in order to ensure that they build on the patterns of learning and experience already established during the child’s pre-school years.  If the child has an identified special educational need, this information may be transferred from other partners in the Early Years setting and the class teacher and SENCO will use this information to:
• Provide starting points for the development of an appropriate curriculum.
• Identify and focus attention on action to support the child within the class.
• Use the assessment processes to identify any learning difficulties.
• Ensure on-going observation and assessments provide regular feedback about the child’s achievements and experiences to form the basis for planning the next steps of the child’s learning.

 

6. The Role of the SENCO and what provision looks like at St Paul’s CE Primary School

The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) oversees the day-to-day implementation of the school’s SEN policy together with the SEN team. They are responsible for:
• Co-ordinating provision for children with SEN and advising on the graduated approach.
• Liaising with and advising fellow teachers and assisting them in identifying, assessing and planning for children with SEN.
• Monitoring, evaluating and reporting on the provision for children with SEN to the governing body
• Overseeing the records of all children with SEN.
• Liaising with parents/carers of children with SEN.
• Contributing to the in-service training of staff.
• Liaising with local secondary schools so that support is provided for Y6 pupils as they prepare to transfer.
• Liaising with external agencies including the LA’s support and educational psychology services, health and social services and voluntary bodies.
• Co-ordinating and developing school based strategies for the identification and review of children with SEN.
• Making regular visits to classrooms to monitor the progress of children on the SEN list.
• Overseeing and maintaining specific resources for SEN
• Working with the head teacher and governors to ensure the school meets its responsibilities under the Equality Act (2010) with regard to reasonable adjustments and access arrangements.

The class teacher has a responsibility to:

• Identify provision that is ‘additional to and different from’ that which is available for all pupils.
• Make accurate use of assessment to inform planning for children with SEN.
• Set SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely) targets for Support Plans and Individual Education Plans.
• Measure the impact of interventions on pupil progress.
• Plan for and make efficient use of support staff.
• Provide appropriate use of resources for SEN within the classroom.
• Make reasonable adjustments to teaching style, learning preferences and/or learning environment to ensure barriers to progress or attainment are reduced.

 

7. Monitoring Children’s Progress

The school’s system for observing and assessing the progress of individual children will provide information about areas where a child is not making satisfactory progress.  Under these circumstances, teachers may need to consult the SEN team to consider what else might be done.  This review might lead to the conclusion that the pupil requires help over and above that which is normally available within the particular class or subject.
The key test of the need for action is that current rates of progress are inadequate.
Adequate progress can be identified as that which:
• Prevents the attainment gap between the child and his peers from widening.
• Closes the attainment gap between the child and his peers.
• Improves the child’s previous rate of progress.
• Ensures access to the full curriculum.
• Demonstrates an improvement in self-help, social or personal skills.
• Demonstrates improvements in the child’s attitude to learning.
In order to help the children with special educational needs, St Paul’s uses a graduated response.  This may see us using specialist expertise if, as a school, we feel that our interventions are still not having an impact on the individual.  The school will record the steps taken to meet the needs of individual children through the use of Support Plans, and the SEN team will have responsibility for ensuring that records are kept and available when needed.  If we refer a child for a statutory assessment for an Education Health and Care Plan, we will provide the LA with a record of our work with the child to date.
When any concern is initially noticed it is the responsibility of the class teacher to take steps to address the issue.  Parents/carers may be consulted and specific interventions put in place and monitored.  If no progress is noted after a period of time the child may be added to the school SEN list with parental permission.
The class teacher after discussion with the SEN team will then provide further interventions that are additional to those provided as part of the school’s graduated approach and the child will be given specific targets which will be worked on in the classroom and at home.  These targets will be monitored by the class teacher and teaching assistants within the class and reviewed formally with the SEN team, parents/carers and child.
Reasons for a child being added to the SEN list may include the fact that he/she:
• Makes little or no progress, even when teaching approaches are targeted at a child’s identified area of weakness and interventions have taken place over a period of time.
• Shows a specific difficulty in developing English or mathematics skills.
• Presents persistent emotional or behavioural difficulties which are not improved by the behaviour management techniques usually employed by the school.
• Has sensory, physical or medical problems which impact adversely on their learning.
• Has significant communication and/or interaction difficulties.

 

8. Partnership with parents/carers

Partnership plays a key role in enabling children and young people with SEN to achieve their potential.  Parents/carers hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs.  All parents/carers of children with special educational needs will be treated as partners and given support to play an active and valued role in their child’s education.
Children and young people with special educational needs often have a unique knowledge of their own needs and their views about what sort of help they would like.  They will be encouraged to contribute to the assessment of their needs, the review and transition process.
The school’s SEN Information Report can be found on the website, outlining the provision made by the school for children with special educational needs.
At all stages of the special needs process, the school keeps parents/carers fully informed and involved.  We take account of the wishes, feelings and knowledge of parents/carers at all stages.
We encourage parents/carers to make an active contribution to their child’s education and have termly meetings to share the progress of special needs children with their parents.  We inform the parents/carers of any outside intervention, and share the process of decision-making by providing clear information relating to the education of their child.
When a child is identified as having special educational needs parents/carers will be involved at the earliest opportunity.  The school will then work in partnership with parents/carers throughout the child’s time at the school in meeting his or her special needs.

 

9. The Nature of Intervention

The SENCO and the child’s class teacher will decide on the action needed to help the child progress in the light of earlier assessments.  This may include:
• Different learning materials or specialist equipment.
• Some group or individual support, which may involve small groups of children being withdrawn to work with the SEN team or with TA support or other Wave 2 intervention.
• Extra adult time to devise/administer the nature of the planned intervention and also to monitor its effectiveness.
• Staff development and training to introduce more effective strategies.
After initial discussions with the SEN team, the child’s class teacher will be responsible for working with the child on a daily basis and ensuring delivery of any individualised programme in the classroom.  Parents/carers will continue to be consulted and kept informed of the action taken to help their child and of the outcome of any action.
The SENCO will support further assessment of the child where necessary, assisting in planning for their future needs in discussion with colleagues and parents.

 

10. The use of outside agencies

With parental agreement these services may become involved if the school feels additional support is required despite considerable input and adaptations.  They will use the child’s records in order to establish which strategies have already been employed and which targets have previously been set.
The external specialist may act in an advisory capacity, or provide additional specialist assessment.  The child’s individual targets will set out strategies for supporting the child’s progress.  These will be implemented, at least in part, in the normal classroom setting.  The delivery of the interventions recorded in the support plan continues to be the responsibility of the class teacher.
Outside agencies may become involved if the child:
• Continues to have difficulty in developing English and mathematical skills.
• Has emotional or behavioural difficulties which regularly and substantially interfere with the child’s own learning or that of the class group.
• Has sensory, physical or medical needs and requires additional specialist equipment or regular advice or visits by a specialist service.
• Has on-going communication or interaction difficulties that impede the development of social relationships and cause substantial barriers to learning.
• Despite having received interventions over a period of time, the child continues to make little or no progress and is working at a level substantially below their peers.

 

11. School Request for Statutory Assessment

A request will be made by the school to the LA if the child has demonstrated significant cause for concern.  The LA will be given information about the child’s progress over time, and will also receive documentation in relation to the child’s special educational needs and any other action taken to deal with those needs, including any resources or special arrangements put in place.
The evidence will include:
• Previous support plans and targets for the pupil.
• Records of meetings and their outcomes.
• Records of the child’s health and medical history where appropriate.
• Data relating to attainment in English and maths.
• Education and other assessments, for example, from an advisory specialist support teacher or educational psychologist.
• Views of the parents/carers.
The parents/carers of any child who is referred for statutory assessment will be kept fully informed of the progress of the referral.  Children with a statement of special educational needs will be reviewed each term in addition to the statutory annual assessment.  When this coincides with transfer to secondary school, the SENCO from the secondary school will be informed of the outcome of the review.

 

12. Statement/Education Health and Care Plan

Children with a Statement/Education Health and Care Plan have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) and termly review meeting to which all adults involved with the provision for the child are invited. The Individual Education Plan which will include information about:
• The short term targets set for the child.
• The teaching strategies to be used.
• Who is responsible for the provision?
• How the child can be successful.
• The child’s views will be sought and taken into account, as will those of the parents/carers, whose support is vital if progress is to be achieved and maintained. Minutes of these meetings will be kept on file.

 

13. Access to the Curriculum

All children have an entitlement to a broad and balanced curriculum, which is differentiated to enable children to understand the relevance and purpose of learning activities and experience levels of understanding and rates of progress that bring feelings of success and achievement.
Teachers use a range of strategies to meet children’s special educational needs.  Lessons have clear learning objectives and staff differentiate work appropriately, and use assessment to inform the next stage of learning.  All staff have received training on adapting provision for children with SEN and planning lessons that incorporate the different learning styles that children have.  Support Plans, which employ a small-steps approach, feature significantly in the provision that we make in the school.  By breaking down the existing levels of attainment into finely graded steps and targets, we ensure that children experience success.  All children on the special needs list have a Support Plan with individual targets.
We support children in a manner that acknowledges their entitlement to share the same learning experiences that their peers enjoy.  Wherever possible, we do not withdraw children from the classroom situation.  There are times though when, to maximise learning, we ask the children to work in small groups, or in a one-to-one situation outside the classroom.

 

14. Allocation of resources

The SENCO is responsible for the operational management of the specific and agreed resourcing for special needs provision within the school, including the provision for children with Statements of Special Educational Needs and Education Health and Care plans.
The head teacher informs the governing body of how the funding is allocated to support special educational needs has been employed.
The head teacher and the SENCO meet annually to agree on how to use funds directly related to Statements/EHCP.

 

15. The Role of the Governing Body

The governing body challenges the school and its members to secure necessary provision for any pupil identified as having Special Educational Needs.  They ask probing questions to ensure all teachers are aware of the importance of providing for these children and ensure that funds and resources are used effectively.

 

16. Monitoring ,evaluation and review

The SENCO monitors the movement of children within the SEN system in school and provides staff and governors with regular summaries of the impact of the policy on the practice of the school. The SENCO and the head teacher hold regular meetings to review the work of the school in this area.  In addition the SENCO and the named governor with responsibility for special needs also hold regular meetings.
This policy will be reviewed annually during the autumn term.

 

 

GUIDELINESS FOR SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS

 

1. Children who do not make adequate progress (despite classroom intervention strategies) need to have a Record of Concern (ROC) referral form, overseen by the SEN assistant. This should be filled in by the class teacher.

2. The ROC places a child at the monitoring stage.
At this stage the SENCO will be notified. A copy of the ROC is put on file and the pupil’s name added to the monitoring list. The class teacher will deal with the needs that are identified by the SEN assistant and inform the parents. This might normally take place at a parent consultation meeting.

3. If adequate progress is not made within the normal class arrangements, then the SEN assistant should be re-notified.
The teacher will present the SEN assistant with a report of what further steps have been taken to address the needs of the child.
The SEN assistant  and the SENCO will take the decision, after considering the Special Educational Needs Code of Practice 2014, to keep the child at the monitoring stage or move them on to the SEN list.

4. If a child is moved to the SEN list an observation and an assessment will be made by the SEN assistant. Based on this a Support Plan will be drawn up in consultation between the teacher, parent/carer and child. The parent will receive a copy of the Support Plan. At this stage there will be a termly review meeting.

5. If adequate progress is not made despite sustained intervention strategies the child might be referred to the school’s Educational Psychologist for further assessments and advice from outside agencies.

6. At all stages the class teacher retains the ultimate responsibility for the teaching of the child with assistance from the SENCO and SEN team, the Educational Psychologist and other professionals.