At Wolviston Primary School, we embrace the fact that every child is different, and, therefore, the educational need of every child is different. Our aim is for every child to thrive and maximise their potential, regardless of individual starting point. We pride ourselves that we are an inclusive setting where the needs of all pupils, including those with Special Educational Needs (SEN), are met through a broad and balanced curriculum which is line with The Equalities Act 2010 and The Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Regulations 2014.
We have a culture of high expectations and aspirations for all our pupils, including those with Special Educational Needs in all year groups. As part of our robust process to ensure high standards are achieved, we closely monitor and track the progress of all pupil groups, including those at risk of underachievement.
If you are concerned about your child’s learning, please do not worry, we are here to listen and will provide reassurance that we can support you and your child. Your child’s class teacher is the first person to share your concerns with, they know your child well. After discussion they may suggest you speak to the school’s SENDCo (Special Educational & Disabilities Needs Coordinator). Both Mrs Hawes and Mrs Allred are the school’s SENDCOs, Mrs Allred is your first point of contact, she works closely with parents, children, and class teachers to identify barriers to learning. Mr G. Thirlaway is our SEN Governor.
Sometimes, some children need additional support to make the best possible progress they can, this can include their teacher making adaptations to their learning task, the use of additional resources, revisiting the concept more often or 1-1 precision teaching. In consultation, Mrs Allred will discuss any concerns that may have been raised. Teachers and Teaching Assistants at Wolviston Primary are very experienced and adapt their planning and teaching delivery to support learners. Occasionally, we ask specialist colleagues for advice, this may include working closely with the Educational Psychologist, an Occupational Therapist or Speech and Language Therapist who can all offer specific advice.
Local Authorities and schools are required to publish and keep under review information about services they expect to be available for the children and young people with Special Educational Needs (SEND) aged 0-25. This is called the ‘Local Offer’. The intention of the Local Offer is to improve choice and transparency for families. It will also be an important resource for parents in understanding the range of services and provision in the local area. Details of Stockton Local Authority Local Offer can be found at www.stocktoninformationdirectory.org or by telephoning the Stockton Family Information Service 01642 527225.
At Wolviston we:
- Provide a secure and accessible environment in which all our children can flourish and in which all contributions are considered and valued.
- Value parent & pupil voice in the Assess, Plan, do, Review cycle & throughout all elements of the provision & support for pupils.
- Include and value the contribution of all families to our understanding of equality and diversity.
- Make inclusion a theme that runs through all the activities of the school.
- Provide positive non-stereotyping information about gender roles, diverse ethnic and cultural groups and disabled people.
- Improve our knowledge and understanding of issues of anti-discriminatory practice, promoting equality and valuing diversity.
In our practice we:
- Identify at the earliest opportunity, all children that need special consideration to support their needs, whether these are educational, social, physical, or emotional
- Successfully matching pupil ability to the curriculum
- Ensuring that all pupils have access to the school curriculum and all school activities.
- Helping all pupils achieve to the best of their abilities, despite any difficulty or disability they may have
- Ensuring that teaching staff are aware of and sensitive to the needs of all pupils, teaching pupils in a way that is more appropriate to their needs
- Supporting pupils to gain in confidence and improve their self-esteem
- Working in partnership with parents/ carers, pupils and relevant external agencies in order to provide for children’s special educational needs and disabilities
- Making suitable provision for children with SEND to fully develop their abilities, interests and aptitudes and gain maximum access to the curriculum.
- Ensuring that all children with SEND are fully included in all activities of the school in order to promote the highest levels of achievement.
- Promoting self-worth and enthusiasm by encouraging independence at all age and ability levels.
- Giving every child the entitlement to a sense of achievement.
- Regularly reviewing policy and practice to achieve best outcomes.
- Making reasonable adjustments to access and to the curriculum to provide the best provision for all pupils.
We measure our provision by:
- Following the Assess, Plan, Do, Review cycle in accordance with the SEND Code of Practice 2014.
- Identify pupils at the earliest opportunity who seem to be making significantly less than expected progress.
- Identify pupils continuing to make significantly less than expected progress over a sustained period and following intervention.
- Work collaboratively with parents and the child to assess their concerns needs and support requirements.
- Provide those pupils with a SEND Support Plan – identifying their needs, barriers to learning and provision required to help them learn and achieve.
- Complete a sustained period of intervention, provision, and support, which will be reviewed on a half termly basis for impact on progress.
- Review SEND Support Plans, alongside parents and child (where appropriate) to assess impact and plan the next steps for each child.
- The SENDCo will work collaboratively with parents, teachers, and other professionals to continuously monitor progress and review support in place for each child to consistently ensure maximum impact for each child.
- Refer to external assessments where progress continues to be of concern or with a change in the child’s presenting needs.
SEND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What kinds of Special Needs do we provide for?
Wolviston Primary is a maintained school, our current SEN profile shows that there are 17 (13.26%) of children in the school identified as having SEN, with 14 (10.92%) identified as requiring SEND Support and 3 (2.34%) requiring a higher level of support and have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). We have a range of additional needs in school including pupils who have:
Special Needs is categorised into four areas:
- Communication and Interaction Difficulties
- Cognition and Learning Difficulties
- Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties
- Sensory and/or physical needs
A child has Special Educational Needs if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for additional provision that is above and beyond quality first teaching. The SEND Code of Practice states:
‘A child has a learning difficulty or disability if they have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age and or have a disability that prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in a mainstream setting’.
What are the policies and practices for identifying children with SEN and assessing their needs?
Staff at Wolviston follow The Department for Education recommendations and approach SEN support as a cycle of Assess, Plan, Do and Review in relation to meeting the needs of children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. A child’s SEN journey begins with identifying their need by assessment. Using careful observation and a range of assessment data, information from parents/carers, partner agencies, teachers can identify whether a child may have a special educational need. Where a special educational need is identified in school, parents are invited to planning meetings to discuss how their child’s need may be met. Where Special Educational Needs and or disabilities have been identified school will with the consent of the child’s parents/carers place the child on the SEND register. The child will be registered as SEND support and will have a SEND Support Plan written. (Appendix A) This process begins with the child, parent and teacher discussing the needs and writing three over-arching targets. From these, a SEN Support Plan is written with initial targets that will lead to meeting these over-arching targets across the cycle. This plan will be shared with parents and updated three times a year, more often if necessary. If a child has significant difficulties and requires support from a range of support agencies and or high levels of adult support to make progress an Educational Health Care Plan may be required. The school (or parents/carers) can request that Local Authority SEND Services carry out an EHCP 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 request has been made to the EHC panel, they will decide whether they think your child’s needs (as described in the paperwork provided), seem complex enough to need an EHCP. If this is the case, they will ask you and all 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 current support. After the reports have all been submitted, the panel will decide if your child’s needs are severe, complex, and lifelong. If this is the case, they will write an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP). The EHCP will outline the level of support your child will receive from the LA, how this support should be used, and what strategies must be put in place. It will also have long and short-term goals for your child. Children, parents/carers, teaching, and support staff are directly involved in reviewing progress. This review can be built into the intervention itself, or can be a formal meeting, where we discuss progress and next steps. EHCP will be reviewed as a minimum every 12 months.
What are the arrangements for consulting with parents/carers of children with SEN and involving them in their child’s education at Wolviston Primary School?
We promote an ‘open door’ policy throughout the year should you need to speak about your child’s needs. Parents of children with additional needs will receive information about their child’s progress at least half termly and are able to discuss this with the SENDCo or class teacher. Parent consultations are held twice per year and most SEND pupil’s parents have ongoing dialogue with the SENDCo and class teacher. A written report on progress for each individual pupil is provided annually in July.
What are the arrangements for consulting with your child and involving them in their education at Wolviston?
A person-centred approach is very much at the heart of our SEN Support Cycle. Class teachers will discuss with your child their individual SEND targets at an age-appropriate level. Children will be asked about their strengths and weaknesses and how teachers can help them to learn. Children who have an Educational Health Care Plan will be asked to give their views and this will be included in their plan.
What are the arrangements for assessing and reviewing children’s progress towards outcomes, including the opportunities available to work with parents and young people as part of this assessment and review?
This should include the opportunities available to work with parents and young people as part of this assessment and review. Children are assessed in a variety of ways. Teachers carry out observations, look at work in books and use a range of assessments to determine a child’s ability, strengths, and target areas. If a child has made little or no progress, then the class teacher/SENDCO will seek external assessments from experts such as specialist teachers or an educational psychologist. If a class teacher/SENDCO has concerns in regard to the assessments, then they will speak to the child’s parents/carers and inform them of the next steps. If it is felt a discussion with the child is useful, teachers will also discuss next steps with the pupil. Parents will also be encouraged to help their child make progress by also supporting outside of school with additional reading etc. Some parents of children identified as having additional needs will also receive more support through targeted conversations, including yearly SENDCo meeting/telephone days. Assessments are used for diagnostic purposes. All children have a SEND file kept within a locked cupboard and the use of CPOMs is also used to record information.
What are the arrangements for supporting children in moving between phases of education and in preparing for adulthood. As young people prepare for adulthood outcomes should reflect their ambitions, which could include higher education, employment, independent living and participation in society?
When a child is moving to a new year group, school will make this transition as seamless as possible. There is a rigorous summer transition process to ensure that all staff are made aware of the SEN children in their class along with their needs and relevant information. The receiving teacher will meet with the child’s previous teacher to discuss their individual needs and discuss their pen portrait and future needs. If it is felt useful the child will be given additional opportunities to meet their new teacher and where appropriate social stories will also be used. This transition support is also available as children leave Wolviston to access their secondary education. The children and parents have input into this and are valued members of this process. Arrangements will be made for those children who are considered to be vulnerable learners, extremely anxious about moving to secondary. If an enhanced transition is required, then additional visits will be organised to support the child with their move. The SENDCo will also ensure that the child’s SEND file is also passed to the new setting.
What is the approach to teaching children and young people with SEN at Wolviston?
Overall curriculum structure is directed by the government through the National Curriculum: all pupils have an entitlement to study a full, broad, and balanced curriculum. Differentiation (adapting the curriculum to suit the needs and ability of the child) is the responsibility of the class teacher. Informed by the data and information on each pupil, teachers plan for and deliver using different styles of teaching and meeting individual needs through a range of strategies, such as different learning styles. Teachers must ensure using quality first teaching the targets they set their pupils are stretching and attainable. If year group objectives are not suitable for an individual pupil, a more personalised curriculum is used and sometimes supported by additional adults such as teaching assistants. Teachers and teaching assistants may teach the child in a small group, focusing on developing basic skills, speaking and listening activities, reading, spelling, writing, number or social and emotional skills. Children may join intervention groups on the same day or next day to support learning. Children could receive extra lessons on a particular subject e.g. reading. Children may be given access to computer programmes. Children with additional needs in reading will be given regular reading or additional phonic sessions.
What adaptations are made to the curriculum and the learning environment of children and young people with SEN at Wolviston?
As mentioned in the previous section, our curriculum is adapted to meet the needs of the child and sometimes the child will be given access to additional specialist resources such as writing slopes, seating wedges, laptops, spring loaded scissors, non-slip mats, coloured exercise books, triangular pens to name just a few. Each classroom has a visual timetable to support all learners. Adaptations to the learning environment include things such as accessible access to the school by the main entrance and an accessible toilet.
What is the expertise and training of staff to support children with SEN, including how specialist expertise will be secured?
All staff are responsible for meeting the needs of individual children within their class, but some children have very specific difficulties or diagnosis. If this is the case, then we will contact experts in this field to gain advice and extend our knowledge. Within school we have a range of staff who have completed additional training and qualifications in a range of specialist areas including:
- Speech and Language needs
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Attachment Needs
- Sensory Processing
- Social Emotional and Mental Health needs
Within school we endeavour to keep staff knowledge in relation to Special Educational Needs up to date and our continuous professional development plan includes training opportunities for all staff. This year additional training has been made available to all staff through the NASEN website as well as receiving bespoke training from ‘Let’s Talk’ for Speech and Language. Our SENDCo holds the Masters Level awared in SEN Coordination (NASENCO).
How is evaluating the effectiveness of the provision made for children with SEN at Wolviston?Monitoring progress is an integral part of teaching and leadership within Wolviston. Progress data for all children is collated by the school termly and recorded on our tracking system. This data is monitored by teachers, senior leaders, governors, and the Trust. Teachers and SENDCo collate the impact data of SEN support and interventions, to ensure that we are only using interventions that work effectively. We scrutinise the work of pupils through the year to ensure that pupils’ learning is challenging, relevant and accessible. We also monitor the success of other provision and support in school such as educational psychology, counselling, and family services. The SENDCo also reports termly to governors in regard to the SEND provision at Wolviston.
How are children with SEN at Wolviston Primary enabled to engage in activities available with children in the school who do not have SEN?
Our school is committed to providing all pupils with equal access to an enriched and extended curriculum. When possible, staff will make visits to sites prior to a trip to ensure that it is accessible to children with physical or sensory needs and is appropriate for those with academic difficulty. If required, school staff will liaise with site staff to decide adaptations needed, based on the safety and needs of the individual. Residential visits are organised well in advance so that all pupils have an opportunity to take part; programmes can be amended to suit the needs of classes or individuals whilst maintaining the safety of the individual pupil. A variety of after school clubs cater for a range of interests and abilities and include art, sports, and computing. All children are welcome at our after school clubs regardless if they have an additional need or not.
What support is available at Wolviston for improving emotional and social development?
In addition to our PSHE (Personal and Social Health Education) curriculum, we are currently running a Chill Out Club, where children are supported to look at their resilience, co-operation, continuous improvement, and concentration. Children are also encouraged to talk to their teacher if they have a problem, concern, or worry. Our children also know that pastoral support is available from the SENDCo, Leadership Team and Head Teacher. Class teachers discuss bullying with children in an age-appropriate manner and reinforce how pupils can seek support if they feel they are being bullied.
How does Wolviston involve other bodies, including health and social care bodies, local authority support services and voluntary sector organisations, in meeting children’s Special Educational Needs and supporting their families?
In our school, we have access to various specialist services provided by Stockton Local Authority which are described on the Local Offer website https://www.stocktoninformationdirectory.org Wolviston has also commissioned additional support:
- Judith Wise Psychology Service
- Alliance Psychology Services
The Bungalow Partnership – counselling and play therapy
In addition, we regularly work with a range of external agencies to meet the needs of children. Attending meetings, providing advice and following targeted programmes of work/adopting advice for individual children.
Services that are regularly providing support in school include:
- Health visitor and school nursing service
- Social Services
- Paediatric physiotherapy services
- Speech and Language
- Behaviour Support Team
- Occupational Therapy
- Early Years Inclusion Team
- Visual/Hearing impaired support services
- Daisy Chain – local ASD support service
- Working with secondary schools to support transition
What are the arrangements for handling complaints from parents of children with SEN about the provision made at the school?
Wolviston Primary works, wherever possible, in partnership with parents and carers to ensure a collaborative approach to meeting the needs of their child. All complaints are taken seriously and are heard through the school’s complaints policy and procedures. We would encourage parents and carers to discuss any concern they have with their child’s class teacher or SENDCo initially, as it is in everyone’s interest that complaints are resolved at the earliest possible stage, and we expect that concerns will be resolved this way. The locally provided support service SENDIASS (01642527158) is available for further advice, help and/or support.
Click the links below for more information on Stockton Local Authority Local Offer and our own Special Education Needs Information Report.