This policy complies with the statutory requirement laid out in the SEND Code of Practice 0 – 25 (July 2014) 3.66 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)
School SEN Information Report regulations (2014)
Statutory Guidance on Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions April 2014
The National Curriculum in England Key Stage 1 and 2 framework document Sept 2013
Teachers Standards 2012
The process of developing the draft of this policy was initially carried out by the Affinity TSA SENCo Leadership Development Group. It was then finalised by the SENCo in consultation with SEN Governor, parents, pupils and staff at the school.
SenCo: Heather White
We are committed to using our best endeavours to provide an appropriate and high quality education for all children at our school which enables them to
· Achieve their best
· Become confident individuals living fulfilling lives
· Make successful transition to their next phase of education.
We consider every teacher to be a teacher of every child, including those with special educational needs and disabilities. We have the highest aspirations and expectations for all pupils, including those with special educational needs.
We aim to achieve a community where parents and those working in school have a mutual trust and confidence in each other, created through clear, consistent approaches to communication and collaborative working, to enable outstanding outcomes for children with SEND.
We aim to provide all children, including those with special educational needs and disabilities, with a broad, balanced academic and social curriculum, which is accessible and ensures they are fully included in all aspects of school life and feel equally valued and fully part of the school community.
To achieve this aim we will:
1. Strive to establish a fully inclusive school, eliminate prejudice and discrimination and create an environment where all children can be happy, flourish and feel safe.
2. We will respond to learners in ways which take account of their varied needs and life experiences, moving away from an approach that locates a problem within the child, but means doing everything we can to meet a child’s SEN.
3. We are committed to identifying a pupil’s special educational needs at the earliest point and then making effective provision as this is known to improve long term outcomes.
4. Work in close partnership with parents to achieve these aims. We are committed to parents participating as fully as possible in decisions and being provided with information and support necessary to enable this.
5. Support pupils themselves to participate in discussions and express their views and be fully involved in decisions which affect them encouraging them to become increasingly effective self-advocates.
6. Work in close partnership with a range of specialist agencies to enable us to provide effective targeted support.
7. Provide support, advice and training for all staff working with pupils with special educational needs to enable them to be increasingly able to adapt teaching to respond to the strengths and needs of all pupils.
8. Appoint a qualified Special Needs Coordinator who will have responsibility for the day-to-day operation of the SEN policy and coordination of specific provision made to support individual pupils with SEN, including those who have EHC plans.
The head teacher, SENCo, all staff and the Governing Body will work within the guidance outlined in the SEND Code of Practice 0 -25 (July 2014)
Identification of Special Educational Needs
A pupil has SEN where their learning difficulty or disability calls for special educational provision to be made for them, that is provision different from or additional to that normally available to pupils of the same age. For some children, SEN can be identified at an early age. However, for other children and young people difficulties become evident only as they develop.
The identification of SEN is built into the overall approach to monitoring the progress and development of all pupils. Class teachers will assess each pupil’s current skills and levels of attainment on entry, building on information from previous settings. Class teachers then make regular assessments of progress for all pupils identifying in particular where pupils are making less than expected progress given their age and individual circumstances. Where a pupil’s progress is causing concern, this may be characterised by progress which:
• is significantly slower than that of their peers starting from the same baseline
• fails to match or better the child’s previous rate of progress
• fails to close the attainment gap between the child and their peers
• widens the attainment gap
It can include progress in areas other than attainment – for instance where a pupil needs to make additional progress with wider development or social needs.
Broad areas of need as outlined in the SEND Code of Practice (2014)
These four broad areas give an overview of the range of needs that the school plans for and not to fit a pupil into a category. In practice, individual children or young people often have needs that cut across all these areas and their needs may change over time.
· Communication and Interaction
· Cognition and Learning
· Social, Emotional and Mental Health
· Sensory and/or Physical
The purpose of identification is to work out what action the school needs to take, not to fit a pupil into a category. In practice, individual children often have needs that cut across all these areas and their needs may change over time. In our school, the needs of the whole children will always be considered in this process.
There are other factors that may impact on progress and attainment that are not considered SEN:
· Attendance and punctuality
· Health and Welfare
· English as an additional language
· Being in receipt of pupil premium grant
· Bring a looked after child
· Being a child of a serviceman or service woman
Any concerns relating to a child’s behaviour may be an underlying response to a need which the school would work with parents to identify.
The Graduated Approach to SEN Support
Identifying and adapting teaching to meet pupils’ needs is a process that is in place for all pupils. The school has a rigorous and regular system, through half termly pupil progress meetings, to identify where pupils are not making expected progress or working below national expectations. Class teachers will put in place if necessary, relevant and timely interventions, through quality first teaching, appropriate differentiation and in-class support, aimed at closing the gap or raising the attainment. The class teacher will also to talk with parents to ensure there is a shared understanding of pupils needs and to gain parental perspective on any emerging concerns and areas of strength.
Where a pupil’s needs are persistent, the class teacher will complete an initial concerns checklist and arrange to meet with the SENCo. At this meeting the requirement for additional fine-tuned assessments will be ascertained. Parents will be invited to attend this meeting and share their perspective. Where appropriate, the child’s views will be sought. If, as a result of this process, it is clear that different and additional provision is required to meet the child’s needs, the child will then be placed on the school SEN record at ‘SEN Support’. The parents will be informed if the school is making special educational provision for a child. The class teacher remains responsible and accountable at all times for the progress and development of all children in his/her class, even where a child may be receiving support from a teaching assistant. High quality teaching, differentiated for individual pupils is always seen as the first step in responding to pupils’ who may have SEN
Working together the SENCo, class teacher, parents and child (where appropriate) will select appropriate support and intervention to meet the outcomes identified for the pupil, based on reliable evidence of effectiveness. This will be delivered by staff with sufficient skills and knowledge. This SEN support will take the form of a four part cycle (assess - plan - do - review) through which earlier decisions and actions are revisited, refined and revised with a growing understanding of the pupils needs and of what supports the pupil in making good progress and securing good outcomes. This is known as the Graduated Approach. It draws on more detailed approaches, more frequent reviews and more specialist expertise in successive cycles in order to match interventions to the SEN of a child.
The effectiveness of the support and interventions and their impact on the pupil’s progress will be reviewed each term. The review process will include an evaluation of the impact and quality of the support and intervention and the views of the pupil and their parents. This review will then feed back into the analysis of the pupil’s needs. The class teacher, with support from the SENCO where needed, will revise the support in light of the pupil’s progress and development, deciding on any changes to the support and outcomes in consultation with the parent and pupil.
The school can involve specialists at any point to for advice regarding early identification and effective support. However, where a pupil continues to make less than expected progress, despite evidence based support and interventions that are matched to the pupil’s area of need, the school will consider involving specialists, including those secured by the school itself or from outside agencies. Parents will always be involved in any decision to involve specialists along with the child’s class teacher and in appropriate cases, the child them self. Specialist agencies will only be contacted where parents are in agreement. It is the SENCo’s role to contact any specialist agencies and ensure thatthe involvement of specialists and what was discussed or agreed is recorded and shared and fully understood by parents, teaching staff and, where appropriate, the child. The involvement of specialists and what was discussed or agreed will be recorded and shared with the parents and teaching staff supporting the child.
Examples of specialist agencies used by and that are available to be used by the school
- Educational psychologists
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)
- Education Inclusion Service specialist teachers
- Specialist teachers for children with hearing and vision impairment , including multi-sensory impairment, and for those with a physical disability
- Speech and language therapists
- Occupational therapists and physiotherapists
In some cases, there is a charge for accessing specialist agency support; funding for which will come from the school’s notional SEN budget and will be monitored by the SENCos and head teacher.
Where pupils are made subject to a Statement of SEN or and EHC plan, the school will work in close partnership with any specialist agencies is named on the Plan to provide support and specialist advice.
The LA SEN Support Plan and Education Health and Care Plan process
Where the special educational provision required to meet the child or young person’s needs cannot reasonably be provided from within the resources normally available to the school, the school, in consultation with parents, will consider requesting a LA SEN Support Plan or Education, Health and Care assessment from the Local Authority is appropriate. To inform this decision, the SENCO will have close regard to the local authority’s criteria for funding through an SEN Support Plan or for an EHC Plan assessment. This can be found on the Leicestershire Local Offer web site along with information on the EHC plan coordinated assessment process and will be shared in full with parents to ensure they are confident and clear about what the process and how they are involved in it.
Removing pupils from the SEN register
In consultation with parents, the child will be considered for removal from the SEND register where he / she has made sustained good progress that:
Ø betters the previous rate of progress and has sufficiently closed the attainment gap between the child and their peers of the same age,
Ø or where a child’s wider development and /or social needs have improved and progress in the targeted area is considered to be sustained
Ø and SEN Support is no longer required to ensure this progress is sustained.
Supporting Parents/Carers of Children with Sen
The school is fully committed to a meaningful partnership with parents of children with special educational needs where they can be as fully involved as possible in decisions and are provided with the information and support necessary to enable participation in those decisions.
The school will do this by:
- Always making parents feel welcome and actively listening to their concerns, wishes and aspirations for their child, instilling confidence and building effective partnerships.
- Providing all information in an accessible way
- SENCo available for meeting by appointment through the school office or by email.
- Publishing about how the school implements the SEND Policy on the school web site following the information set out in the SEN information regulations (2014) and as part of the school’s contribution to the Local Offer. (web link here)
- Class teachers meeting with parents, in addition to parent evening appointments, to discuss concerns regarding pupils’ progress at the earliest opportunity, raised either by the class teacher or the parents themselves.
- Class teachers will invite parents of pupils with SEN in their class at least three times a year to set and review the outcomes of support, discuss the activities and support that will help achieve them, and identify the responsibilities of the parent, the pupil and the school. It will provide an opportunity for the parents to share their views. This meeting may part of or in addition to parents’ evening meetings and may be supported by the SENCo.
- The school will ensue that teaching staff are supported to manage these conversations as part of their professional development.
- Support and guide parents in ways that they can help with their child’s learning and development at home.
- A record of the outcomes, action and support agreed through the discussion are kept and shared with all the appropriate school staff and a record will be given to the pupil’s parents.
- Signposting parents to wider support, information and services pertinent to their child’s SEN by ensuring they know how to access the Local Offer and the LA’s Parent Partnership Service.
- Consulting with a representative group of parents of pupils with SEND when reviewing the school’s SEN Information Report (see school web site) and the SEND policy. A paper copy will be made available to parents on request.
- Planning in additional support for parents at key times, for example, when considering and making a referral for a coordinated assessment for an EHC plan and to ensure smooth and successful transition into the school or to next phase of education.
- Seeking parents’ views through periodic questionnaires and considering adjustments to practice in the light of analysis.
Supporting Pupil Voice
The school recognises that all pupils have the right to be involved in making decisions and exercising choice. We aim to develop pupils’ self-advocacy skills to enable them to transfer to their next phase of education confident and able to communicate, convey, negotiate or assert their own interests, desires, needs, and rights becoming increasingly able to make informed decisions about their learning and future and take responsibility for those decisions.
How the school will do this
· Self-knowledge is the first step towards effective self -advocacy so, with their parents, we will support pupils to understand their strengths, needs and approaches to learning that are particularly successful for them and to have the confidence to voice their concerns, hopes and aspirations.
· Wherever possible and in an age appropriate manner, pupils with SEN are involved in monitoring and reviewing their progress are and as fully as possible in making decisions about future support and provision. They views are recorded and shared.
· All staff will actively listen to and address any concerns raised by children themselves.
· Pupils with SEND are encouraged to stand for election to the School Council.
· Planning in additional support for pupils at key times, for example, when considering and making a referral for a coordinated assessment for an EHC plan and to ensure smooth and successful transition into the school or to next phase of education.
· Pupils are also provided with additional support to contribute as fully as possible in their Annual Review. This can be, for example, by attending part of the review meeting in person, preparing a statement to be shared at the meeting, using a peer advocate to support them in the meeting or by preparing a recorded presentation to share at the meeting.
· Seeking pupils’ views through regular questionnaires / group interview activities undertaken by the SENCOs and / or SEN Governor, considering adjustments to keep in the light of analysis.
Supporting Pupils at School with Medical Conditions
The school recognises that pupils at school with medical conditions should be properly supported so that they have full access to education, including school trips and physical education. Some children with medical conditions may be disabled and where this is the case the school will comply with its duties under the Equality Act 2010.
Some may also have special educational needs (SEN) and may have a statement, or Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan which brings together health and social care needs, as well as their special educational provision where the SEN Code of Practice (2014) is followed. Arrangements in place in schools to support pupils at school with medical conditions are detailed with the school’s policy for Supporting pupils with Medical Conditions.
Monitoring and Evaluation of Sen
The school regularly and carefully monitors and evaluates the quality and effectiveness of provision for all pupils including those with SEN. This is done through scrutiny of data related to the achievement of pupils with SEN, work scrutiny, observation and sampling of parent and pupil questionnaires. The school’s SEN Governor also has a role in scrutinising the findings of the school’s self-evaluation and relevant RAISEonline data as part of the Governing body’s process of monitoring the effectiveness of the school’s SEN Policy.
In order to maintain and develop the quality of teaching and provision to respond to the strengths and needs of all pupils, all staff are encouraged to undertake training and development.
Training needs of staff are identified through the school’s self-evaluation process.
All teachers and support staff undertake an induction process 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.
The school’s SENCos regularly attends (SENCO Network / Affinity SENCO Leadership Development meetings/ member of NASEN / Local SENCo meetings etc) in order to keep up to date with local and national updates in SEND.
Funding For Sen And Allocation of Resources
The school’s core budget is used to make general provision for all pupils in the school including pupils with SEN. In addition, every school receives an additional amount of money to help make special educational provision to meet children’s SEN. This is called the ‘notional SEN budget’.
The amount in this budget is based on a formula which is agreed between schools and the local authority. The government has recommended that schools should use this notional SEN budget to pay for up to £6,000 worth of special educational provision to meet a child’s SEN. Most children with SEN need special educational provision that comes to less than £6,000. If the school can show that a pupil with SEN needs more than £6,000 worth of special educational provision, it can ask the local authority to provide top-up funding to meet the cost of that provision. Where the local authority agrees, the cost is provided from funding held by the local authority in their high needs block. Schools are expected to use this funding to make provision for that individual pupil
The school may also use of Pupil Premium Funding where a pupil is registered as SEN and is also in receipt of Pupil Premium grant to address the needs of these pupils and enhance learning and achievement .
Each term, in consultation with the head teacher and class teachers, the SENCos will map the targeted provision in place for pupils on the SEN record to show how resources are allocated and to monitor the cost of the whole of our SEN provision. This targeted provision is outlined on the school’s Provision Map.
Roles and Responsibilities
The key responsibilities of the SENCO are taken from the SEND 0- 25 Code of Practice (2014) and include:
• overseeing the day-to-day operation of the school’s SEN policy
• coordinating provision for children with SEN
• liaising with the relevant Designated Teacher where a looked after pupil has SEN
• advising a on the graduated approach to providing SEN support
• advising on the deployment of the school’s delegated budget and other resources to meet pupils’ needs effectively
• liaising with parents of pupils with SEN
• liaising with early years providers, other schools, educational psychologists, health and social care professionals, and independent or voluntary bodies
• being a key point of contact with external agencies, especially the local authority and its support services
• liaising with potential next providers of education to ensure a pupil and their parents are informed about options and a smooth transition is planned
• working with the headteacher and school governors to ensure that the school meets its responsibilities under the Equality Act (2010) with regard to reasonable adjustments and access arrangements
• ensuring that the school keeps the records of all pupils with SEN up to date.
Governing Body and Head teacher
The Governing Body will, in line with SEN Information Regulations, publish information on the school’s website about the implementation of the school’s policy for pupils with SEN. The information published will be updated annually and any changes to the information occurring during the year will be updated as soon as possible.
A member of the Governing Body is appointed to have specific oversight of the school’s arrangements for SEN and disability and to ensure that the full governing body is kept informed of how the school is meeting the statutory requirements
The head teacher, SENCO and governing body will establish a clear picture of the resources that are available to the school and will consider the strategic approach to meeting SEN in the context of the total resources available, including any resources targeted at particular groups, such as the pupil premium.
Head teacher will ensure that the SENCO has sufficient time and resources to carry out his / her functions. This will include providing the SENCO with sufficient administrative support and time away from teaching to enable them to fulfil their responsibilities.
Storing and Managing Information
All records containing sensitive records relating to the special educational needs or disabilities of pupils in school will be treated as highly confidential and be securely placed in a locked cabinet when not in use.
Reviewing this Policy
This policy will be formally reviewed annually.