Special Education Needs
SEN Information report 2015-16
1.What kinds of special educational needs provision is at our school?
Our school is an inclusive school where every child matters; we aim to address children’s needs and support their development in the most appropriate way possible and celebrate effort as much as achievement. Our school’s SEND policy document is available on this website, detailing our philosophy in relation to SEND.
Additional and/or different provision is currently being made in school for children with a range of needs, including:
- Cognition and Learning – Moderate learning difficulties; Specific learning difficulties - dyslexia, dyspraxia.
- Sensory, Medical and Physical – hearing impairment, sensory processing difficulties, epilepsy.
- Communication and Interaction – autistic spectrum condition, Asperger’s Syndrome, selective mutism, speech and language difficulties.
- Social, Emotional and Mental Health – attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and mental health issues.
- The school's SENCo is Mrs Janine Wain. She is a fully qualified teacher and has many years expereince supporting pupils with specific educational needs.
- Our team of 7 teaching assistants have extensive experience and training in planning, delivering and assessing intervention programmes.
- All of our staff are trained as much as possible on the needs of new students joining the school – this can include training from specialist agencies or consultants, as well as from our SENCo or other staff with relevant expertise.
- SEND training forms part of the continuing professional development of all teachers and TAs and is organised in accordance with the needs of our children.
- The school works closely with other local schools, sharing training opportunities including outside experts.
- The SENCo meets weekly with the Inclusion Team (Head Teacher and FLO) to review practice within the school, plan training, guidance and advice so that staff across the school ensure they meet the additional learning requirements of our children.
2. What are school’s policies with regard to the identification and assessment of children with SEN?
Our school’s Inclusion Policy (which is available in school) outlines the process used throughout the school to identify and meet the needs of those children with SEN. Additional and different assessment tools may be required when children are making less than expected progress, which can 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.
Progress in areas other than attainment is also considered e.g. where a child needs to make additional progress with social needs in order to be fully integrated into school life or make a successful transition to high school. If behaviour is causing concern, it is always considered whether there are any underlying difficulties; if there are none, the class teacher would speak to parents/carers about anything that might have happened at home. The class teacher/ Inclusion Team would gather information about incidents occurring, at what time of day, during which lessons and behaviour checklists may also be used to analyse and consider any patterns of behaviour. Observations would be conducted in class/on playground to record behaviours, considering involvement of others/environmental factors and an intervention devised taking into account all information gathered. Then along with the parents and the child the school would put into place a Pastoral support and behaviour plan.
Parents are always informed if school staff consider that their child has an additional need and parents and children (as appropriate depending upon age and capability) are involved in the planning to meet the need. We often recommend initially that eyesight and hearing are checked to discount these aspects as possible underlying causes of learning issues.
At St Michael’s, a range of specific, more specialised tests are used (by the SENCo or intervention teacher) to assist in the identification of an individual child’s needs in order to plan targeted programmes for them and to use as a benchmark for measuring the impact of subsequent interventions:
To obtain further understanding of a child’s learning difficulties, we may use:
- Salford Sentence Reading
- Phonological Assessment Battery (PhAB)
- Rapid Lass – Dyslexia screening test.
- Language link – language difficulties / EAL
- Numbers count assessment
- Letters and sounds assessment – phonics
- Sandwell Maths assessment
Other specialised assessments which may be used in school to identify barriers to learning include:
- Social, emotional, behavioural checklists – e.g. Leuven Children’s Wellbeing Scale, Strengths and Difficulties
- Boxall Profile - used as a measure of children’s well being and attitude to learning
- Observation schedules e.g. for behaviour, concentration, attention.
- British Picture Vocabulary Scale (BPVS)
- Expressive Vocabulary Test (EVT)
- Ravens Matrices
In addition, school can request assessments from the services of the STLS (Specialist Teaching and Learning Services) via the LIFT (Local Inclusion Forum Team) process.
3. What are school’s policies for making provision for children with SEN whether or not they have Education, Health and Care Plans?
a) How do we evaluate the effectiveness of provision for children with SEN?
- use of a provision map to measure progress and achievement each term
- use of assessment information/progress rates etc. pre- and post- interventions termly
- use of attainment and progress data for children with SEN across the school (part of whole school tracking of children’s progress against our Learning Journey objectives)
- use of pupil/parents interviews /questionnaires.
- monitoring by SENCo/Inclusion Manager
b) What are our arrangements for assessing and reviewing the progress of children with SEN?
Our school’s Assessment Policy (available in school) outlines the range of assessments regularly used throughout the School tracking of pupil progress in terms of levels in our Learning Journey.
- a cycle of consultation meetings, based on the plan-do-review model takes place through pupil progress meetings with teachers and teaching assistants and the Inclusion Team
- an Annual Review is held for children holding Statements of Special Educational Needs; interim reviews can also be arranged throughout the year if deemed necessary
- when children are assessed by the SENCo or by external agencies, meetings take place with the parents/carers and the class teacher to discuss the finding and how best to address need and meet targets
- when assessing children with SEN , consideration is given to recording needs e.g. a reader, scribe, additional time or rest breaks may be necessary – generally whatever support is provided in the class room is provided as far as is permitted during tests
- initial concerns about a child’s progress are discussed with the SENCo and parents and followed by referrals to external agencies or placement on intervention programmes as deemed appropriate
- Individual provision plans are reviewed as necessary for those children with EHCP’s
c) What is our approach to teaching pupils with SEN?
The fundamental aim of our school, and the very reason for our existence, is to enable each child to be all that they can be, to embrace and fulfil their unique potential, following the example provided to us by Jesus Christ. To unlock potential and remove barriers to learning is the promise and commitment of our school. We work in partnership with all of our families and external agencies where appropriate to make high aspirations a reality for every child, taking specific action to create effective learning environments, secure children’s motivation and concentration and provide equality of opportunity, use appropriate assessments and set suitable targets for learning.
Quality First teaching takes place in all class rooms with the setting of high expectations and the provision of opportunities for all to achieve; the impact of this is apparent in the results obtained in national tests at the close of each key stage – please see our Results here.
Provision for children with SEND is a matter for the school as a whole. In addition, the Governing Body, Head teacher, SENCo and all staff members have important day-to -day responsibilities. All teachers are teachers of children with SEND. A cycle of planning, teaching and assessing is firmly embedded, which takes account of the wide range of abilities, aptitudes and interests of our children; the majority of our children will learn and progress within these arrangements.
Children with SEND will receive support that is additional to or different from the provision made for other children. All of our teachers take account of a child’s SEN in planning and assessment; they provide appropriate support for communication, Language and literacy needs.
Teachers plan where necessary to develop children’s understanding through the use of all available senses and experience; they plan to enable children to take full part in learning, physical and practical activities; they help children to manage their behaviour in order to take part in learning effectively and safely; they help children to manage their emotions in order to take part in learning effectively.
At St Michael’s, we aim to identify children with particular needs as early as possible. Assessment of need may include:
- observation of children’s social skills and learning experiences in all curriculum areas
- specific assessment by the school’s SENCo
- teacher assessment
- use of assessments
which will enable peer group comparisons to be made.
In completing assessments to consider the whole child, we acknowledge that gifted children often require additional resourcing to extend and fully develop their potential. Children who speak English as a second language may also require additional modified programmes and differentiation of the curriculum.
We acknowledge that not all children with disabilities necessarily have special educational needs. All our teachers take action, however, to ensure that children with disabilities are able to participate as fully as possible in the National Curriculum and statutory assessment arrangements.
Teachers plan enough time for the satisfactory completion of tasks; plan opportunities where required for the development of skills in practical aspects of the curriculum; identify aspects of programmes of study and attainment targets that may present specific difficulties for children with disabilities.
d) How do we adapt the curriculum and learning environment?
The curriculum is scaffolded and differentiated to meet the needs of all our children. Differentiation may occur by:
- Grouping (e.g. small group, 1:1, ability, peer partners)
- content of the lesson
- teaching style (taking into account that children may be visual, auditory or kinaesthetic learners)
- lesson format (e.g. thematic games, simulations, role-play, discovery learning)
- pace of the lesson
- provision of alternative recording methods (e.g. scribing, use of ICT, mind mapping, photographs etc)
- outcomes expected from individual children
- materials used
- support level provided
- provision of alternative location for completion of work
- school always acts upon advice received from external agencies (e.g. enlarging of print for VI children
- most advantageous positioning of HI children within the classroom and use of aids as recommended
- use of laptops for children with recording needs
- use of coloured overlays and exercise books for children with Meares-Irlen syndrome
- use of brain breaks, sensory cushions, weighted blankets for children with sensory issues
We endeavour to ensure that all class rooms are dyslexia friendly including use of labelled resources, word walls, prompt mats, highlighting pens and reading rulers, coloured interactive boards, individual resources – number lines, 100 squares, phonic prompts, alternative means of recording, writing frames, modelled and shared writing opportunities.
We endeavour to ensure that all class rooms are ASC friendly including use of visual timetables, personalised timetables and prompt/sequence cards as necessary, visual schedules, quiet work stations, areas of retreat, pictorially labelled resources.
We endeavour to ensure that all class rooms are speech and language friendly including use of Task boards, ‘chunking’ of instructions, use of ’10 second rule’ to allow processing time, pre-teaching of key vocabulary and Language for Learning strategies and resources.
We have 2 small group rooms available to provide quiet work areas for 1:1 or small group work.
e) What additional support for learning is available for children with SEN?
There are currently approximately180 children on roll. We have 8 teaching assistants employed in school which includes two HLTA’s and one 1:1 LSA. We also employ an Intervention Manager and an Intervention Teacher to maximise learning potential for all our children.
Most TA’s are trained to deliver a number of intervention programmes throughout the school. Most TAs are deployed in classes to support children on a 1:1 or small group basis or to cover the class in order that the class teacher can provide 1:1 or small group support. In Y6, a HLTA and Intervention manager provide additional support in the delivery of the literacy and numeracy curriculum.
We follow the Code of Practice for SEND.
We teach a differentiated curriculum to ensure that the needs of all children are met.
We implement SMART targets within our provision maps which are reviewed each term.
A number of intervention programmes are in place for children who require additional support :
- Precision Teaching
- Listening to children reading,to increase fluency and comprehension (this will also include Reading to Dogs scheme once up and running)
- SULP programme which deals with social use of language and feelings
- Teodorescu’s Perceptuo-Motor Programme for handwriting development
- Beat Dyslexia – working with 1:1 or small group work on spelling
- EAL – oral work group
- EAL – grammar work group
- Letters and Sounds – Phonic programme
- Sensory Circuits – to enable children to be ready to learn through a program of sensory activities
- Individual laptops are used for children with recording needs employing programmes such as ‘Clicker 6’ to support recording across the curriculum
For children with specific identified or diagnosed needs, we work very closely with external agencies to ensure that the best possible support is in place (e.g. educational psychologist, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, specialist teachers from STLS outreach from Bower Grove School or Five Acre Woods School). Meetings are often held in school involving specialists (as noted above) and/or parents to set targets, evaluate progress and ensure consistency of approach in addressing needs in school and at home.
Specific resources or strategies are in place for many children recommended by external agencies e.g. coloured overlays/exercise books, sloping boards, sensory cushions, use of ‘brain breaks’, access to area of quiet, personalised schedules or sequence strips.
f) What activities are available for children with SEN in addition to those available in accordance with the curriculum?
All extra-curricular activities (listed on this website) are available to all our children.
Breakfast Club is available to all our children.
Residential trip in Year 6 to PGL is open to all our children.
School Choir is open to all our children including the trip to Young Voices at the O2 Arena.
Forest School is also availabl e
g) What support is available for improving the emotional and social development of children with SEN?
- Specialist advice from the STLS team
- Specialist advice can be bought in from an Educational Psychologist
- Specialist advice from colleagues at CAMHS and Early Help
- ‘Quiet areas’ within or outside some class rooms can be used
- Place 2 Be – counselling service is open to all our children
- Film Club is open to all children after school, once a week
- Assessment tools and intervention programmes e.g: Leuven Wellbeing Scale, SEALS materials, Socially Speaking – SULP
- Boxall Profile Assessment – to assess the social and emotional well being of child
4. What is the name of the SENCo and contact details for the SENCo?
Our SENCo is called Mrs Janine Wain and she can be contacted by email: Jwain@st-michaels-junior.kent.sch.uk
She is available onMondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays and can be contacted through the school office should you need to speak to her.
5. What is the level of expertise and training of staff in relation to children with SEN and how will specialist expertise be secured?
During the course of the last academic year the SENCo and relevant staff (i.e. staff directly involved with children with specific need relating to the course) received SEN training in areas such as ASC, Dyslexia, Sensory Processing, Mental Health and Well being, Inclusion, Precision Teaching.
As specific needs arise the SENCo approaches specialists from a range of agencies (e.g. STLS, Occupational Therapy, Educational Psychology) to seek advice about raising awareness of the specific type of SEN. To enhance knowledge about a specific type of SEN (in order for the class teacher or TA working directly with a child with a particular type of SEN to adapt teaching and learning to meet the need appropriately) more specific training may be sought via the CPD offered through STLS service of Kent.
It is planned that during the course of the next few years St Michael’s will continue to become more Inclusive in its provision with classrooms being Inclusive and building on becoming more ASC and Dyslexia friendly too.
General support and advice from the SENCo with regard to the implementation of interventions, creation and monitoring of Provision Maps, and tracking of children with SEN. Particular support is given to NQTs and other new members of staff. Should a pupil with a specific low incidence need be admitted to the school, then the SENCo will pursue relevant training, in the first instance, for the class teacher and support staff concerned.
Our SENCo attends ‘LIFT Meetings’ throughout the year funded by the L.A. organised to support Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators in their work in school, affording an opportunity to discuss special educational needs issues and refer children for STLS assessment and advice. The SENCO also attends termly AEN meetings which disseminate information regarding SEND in National Policy as well as local policy.
At the close of each school year, teachers hold meetings with the class’s next teacher to discuss the children and SEN information in preparation for the following year.
Our SENCo organises training on a needs basis and also staff may request specific training.
6. How is equipment and facilities to support children with SEN secured?
- through discussion with specialist agencies involved.
- through discussion with parents
- through discussion with our Head teacher
Equipment and facilities to support children with SEN are non-negotiable at our school; whatever our children with SEN require, within reason they get e.g. an area of quiet retreat for a child with a diagnosis of ASC; provision of coloured overlays/exercise books for children with Meares-Irlen syndrome; provision of equipment e.g. sensory cushion and implementation of strategies e.g. brain breaks for children with sensory issues.
If a child has an EHCP that requires specialist equipment, then a High Needs Funding application can be applied for which should cover the cost of resources required.
7. What are the arrangements for consulting parents of children with SEN about and involving such parents in the education of their child?
Throughout the year there are 2 Parents’ Evenings and there is an end of year annual report to parents.
Parents are invited to Provision Plan meetings for those children with EHCP’s where they are evaluated with parents and recommendations for new targets discussed alongside suggestions for supporting their child in the home setting.
Our parents appreciate the ‘open door’ policy whereby the SENCo is easily contactable via the school office/telephone/email.
Parents may be invited into school to discuss their child’s progress at any time and additional meetings are set up as required or as requested by parents to discuss particular aspects of a child’s SEN; we particularly welcome information from parents about how their child learns best in order that it can be shared with those people who teach the child.
Progress and outcomes of assessments are also discussed during consultation meetings with external agencies such as the STLS service and when we use an Educational Psychologist; parents are given a report and discussion takes place regarding the outcomes of any EP, STLS assessments/observations. The progress of children holding a Statement of SEN is discussed at their annual review (interim reviews may also be called as necessary). At Y5 annual reviews transition to high school is considered with discussion involving parents and the LA. At Y6 annual reviews the SENCo of the receiving high school is usually invited to attend.
Parental views are sought at annual reviews and throughout the year to obtain views about their child’s SEN, support in place to address needs and any modifications to this support which parents feel may be appropriate.
8. What are the arrangements for consulting children with SEN about and involving them in their education?
Children’s self evaluation is actively encouraged throughout the school and children are supported where necessary to think of areas for development and how best to develop in these areas in school and at home. Children are aware of their Learning Journey levels and the challenging targets set to support their development.
Pupil Voice is sought in annual reviews and throughout the year to obtain their views about their SEN, support in place to address needs and any modifications to this support which children feel may be helpful for them.
9. What are the arrangements made by the Governing Body relating to the treatment of complaints from parents of children with SEN concerning the provision made at school?
It is in everyone’s interests for complaints to be resolved as quickly and at as low a level as possible and our SEN complaint procedure is as follows:
- The complaint is dealt with by the class teacher – the complainant needs to feel that they have been listened to and that all points raised have been addressed. This is usually fed back to the SENCo.
If the matter remains unresolved:
- the complaint is dealt with by the SENCo or by a senior manager.
If there is still no resolution the Head teacher should become actively involved
If the matter is still not resolved then the Complaints Procedure of the school is followed.
10. How does the Governing Body involve other bodies, including health and social services bodies, local authority support services and voluntary organisations in meeting the needs of our children with SEN and in supporting the families of such children?
External support services play an important part in helping school identify, assess and make provision for pupils with special educational needs.
The School may seek advice from Specialist Teaching Learning Service for children with sensory impairment or physical/medical difficulties or social communication difficulties.
- the speech and language therapy and occupational therapy services (NHS) involved with individual children support school in the implementation of specific programmes and contribute to the monitoring of progress and reviews of children
- school maintains links with child health services, children’s social care services and education welfare services to ensure that all relevant information is considered when making provision for our children with SEN.
- our School Health Practitioner is available for advice and attends meetings in school on request following referrals to the service made by school.