How will school support my child?

How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

Quality First Teaching

It is a guiding principle of all our schools that children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) are valued and their needs are recognised and met through a varied and flexible provision, which begins with high-quality teaching.

All staff and adults are aware of those children who need additional support for any reason. Work is carefully differentiated as appropriate by the subject/class teacher to meet your child’s needs, ensuring progress. Due to highly focussed support by our Learning Support team and an understanding of specific needs we endeavour to give your child the very best possible chance to maximise their potential and raise their self-esteem.

The progress of children with special educational needs or disabilities is monitored carefully and further support is put into place if necessary. Rigorous tracking systems inform us of any child who is falling behind and who may need further help. We aim to keep parents fully involved in the process and you will be informed of any support which we feel would benefit your child. The SENDCo will work closely with the subject/class teacher to offer further advice if necessary.

 

In the first instance you should direct all questions and concerns to the class or subject teacher, who is responsible for…  

  • Checking on the progress of your child and identifying, planning and delivering any additional help your child may need. This could be things like additional support in class from the teacher or other adults, differentiated  work or special programmes to follow, or special equipment and resources
  • Letting the SENDCo know of the need for your child to be added to the school’s SEND register if appropriate. (The SENDCo is the member of staff responsible for co-ordinating work on Special Educational Needs and Disabilities throughout the school).
  • Ensuring that all staff working with your child in school are helped to deliver the planned work/programme for your child, so your child can achieve the best possible progress. This may involve the use of additional adults, outside specialist help and specially planned work and resources.
  • Working with the SENDCo to update intervention and support plans and set new targets.
  • Writing a report for meetings about your child (for example an annual report for a review of statement meeting, or completing questionnaires from outside agencies working with your child).

 

The SENDCo is responsible for:

  • Overseeing the provision for your child and ensuring that plans and progress are regularly reviewed and targets reset
  • Supporting class teachers and support staff in meeting the needs of children in their care so that they make the best possible progress
  • Co-ordinating all the support for children with special educational needs 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.
  • Ensuring that parents are:
    • involved in supporting your child’s learning
    • kept informed about the support your child is getting
    • involved in reviewing how they are doing
  • Liaising with all the other people who may be coming into school to help support your child’s learning e.g. Speech and Language Therapy, Educational Psychology etc
  • Updating the school’s SEND register termly, and making sure that there are excellent records of your child’s needs, programmes followed, and progress made.

 

The SENDCo will also co-ordinate support and interventions for your child. This may include:

  • In-class support where a Teaching Assistant, working closely with the Teacher, will help your child to access the curriculum.
  • 1-2-1 or small group support as appropriate where the Teaching Assistant will work with your child either individually or with other pupils.
  • Homework club where staff who know the expectations for the subject are available to help your child to complete homework.
  • Social Clubs where staff encourage social skills development and the building of relationships between peers and have fun.
  • The Home School Link worker will support your child in situations such as illness and other difficult circumstances.
  • Medical – There is a person with overview of all medical difficulties. Provision for pupils with physical disabilities is made as appropriate. First Aid is always available from trained members of staff.

 

Targeted ‘In-Class’ Support 

To make the most effective use of additional support staff in our lessons, Teachers and Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) need to plan together and work together as a team. Support may be provided by a LSA  or a member of our teaching staff.

Some key features of high quality support in class are:

  • working with small groups of students
  • observing student behaviour and keeping records
  • ensuring students have understood the task given
  • helping to mark work
  • preparing adapted materials (with the teacher’s guidance)
  • working with a larger group so that the teacher can work on specific tasks with a small group
  • being an extra pair of eyes and ears
  • praising and encouraging (the teacher and the students!)
  • supporting individuals with reading and written work
  • recording in student’s planners where appropriate

If your child is falling behind, Wave Two Strategies are available

This means:

  • That your child is slightly behind expectations for the class but well placed to improve and catch up with regular individual or small group support, usually from a teaching assistant, for either a short or sustained period

Wave Three Strategies are also available

This means:

  • That your child is unlikely to catch up in the short term and that work covered in class may be inappropriate
  • Specific strategies (which may be suggested by the SENDCo or outside staff) are in place to support your child to learn
  • Small steps of progress will be identified and shared with parents and pupils
  • Your child will have an “intervention” plan which explains their current abilities, the targeted ability within a 6-8 week time frame, and the programme being followed to help your child reach their goals
  • Your child will work individually or in a small group with an adult, usually a teaching assistant, several times a week, and may also have differentiated work to follow in class to develop their independence when reinforcing the skills they are learning
  • There will be an informal assessment at the beginning and end of the intervention period to help determine starting points and measure progress. This process is known as ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review’

 

Additional Support from an Outside Professional

If the class teacher’s or parent’s request for advice in providing for a child cannot be met from within the expertise of the school, the SENDCo or Head teacher may identify the need for extra specialist support in school from an outside professional e.g. Local Authority central services such as LIST (Local Inclusion Support Team), Visually Impaired Service and Hearing Services or outside agencies such as the Speech and Language therapy (SALT) Service and CYPS (Children and Young People’s Service ie mental health)

For your child this would mean:

  • Your child has been identified by school staff, or you may have raised your own concerns, as needing specialist  input in addition to quality first teaching and intervention groups.
  • A visiting specialist professional will work with your child to observe their work and behaviour and to directly question them or ask them to complete assessment tasks if appropriate.
  • The specialist professional will discuss the staff’s hopes for the outcome of the visit and look at records of the child’s assessment and the targeted work to date.
  • The specialist professional may give immediate verbal feedback to staff and will prepare a written report which is shared with parents.
  • You will be asked to come to a meeting to discuss your child’s progress and help plan possible ways forward.
  • You will 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 better 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 targets which will include following programmes in their specific area of expertise.
  • A group run by school staff under the guidance of the outside professional e.g. a social skills group.
  • A group or individual may work with the outside professional.

The school may suggest that your child needs some agreed 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.

 

Speech and Language support

If your child has been identified as requiring additional speech and language support and has been assessed by the SALT Service, (Speech and Language Therapy) there are trained and experienced teaching assistants within school to deliver programmes, following the recommendations of the SALT who also visits school at least termly.  These teaching assistants also work within your child’s class or key stage, can therefore follow up targets in other lessons and can link practical and oral activities to the topics being studied.  Your child is referred to this service via school as soon as a specific need is recognised. Children may have also been referred to this service before starting Middle School, in which case, school can liaise with a professional from the Speech and Language Therapy Service to continue this support.  

For your child this could mean:

  • Working with a teaching assistant within school usual 1:1 for 2 short sessions each week
  • A visit by the SALT to school once a term, to which you are invited, to review progress and set new targets
  • Following up programmes within class where the SALT, class teacher and teaching assistant can plan together to address needs
  • Bringing home visual materials to reinforce the speech sound or area of grammar addressed, so that you can practise together at home

 

Support for Fine and Gross motor skills

Your child may have been referred to an Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist and  require a specific exercise program which needs to be carried out regularly at home and in school.  Referrals may be done through school or through your family doctor.

We will allocate a specific member of staff to carry out recommended exercise programs, and class teachers will build in activities eg to improve manual dexterity, to whole class or targeted group work as necessary. We have teaching assistants who have experience of delivering motor skills programmes, and these staff and class teachers will meet professionals from Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy services to discuss programmes, review the child’s progress and update exercises as required.  Additional resources are sometimes required to follow programmes, which can be bought by the school or loaned by the therapy services.

For your child this could mean:

  • Following a specific physiotherapy programme, checking specialist clothing for comfort, completing daily exercises and warm ups before PE lesson on a 1-1 basis
  • Following gross motor physical programmes in a small group as an alternative to or in addition to the usual PE lessons
  • Following fine motor programmes including handwriting and hand strengthening exercises in a small group
  • Following other fine motor programmes which would be built into class lessons including art and technology and could also be completed by many or all of the classmates
  • Using adapted materials such as training scissors

 

Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Asperger Syndrome

We have much experience of integrating children with behavioural and social difficulties in school. Some of our support staff have a great deal of training and experience in this area. We continue to use methods such as workstations and social stories with children who can benefit from these approaches.

For your child this may mean:

  • The support of outside agencies observing your child in the classroom and discussing their provision with school staff – possibly leading to a diagnosis and additional funding for adult support becoming available.
  • Working in a quieter corner of the classroom or a side room near to where other children are working for part of their day.
  • Using overt routines, rewards and consequences which are understood by your child.
  • Withdrawing to a quieter area when the child is not coping in the main class or for specific intervention such as a social skills group or individual social story.
  • Working through a set of tasks with minimal adult involvement to build up academic or motor skills alongside increasing independence.
  • Spending parts of the school day which are identified as difficult (sometimes breaks or dinner times) in a separate activity with an adult or within a small supervised group.
  • Gradually adjusting all of the methods above so that your child can work towards tolerating activities that are more difficult for them and integrate more successfully with their peers.

 

ADD and ADHD (Attention Deficit /Hyperactive Disorder)

We will work with families and other professionals to ascertain the specific reason for your child’s behavioural difficulties and help them the overcome them. This may mean using some of the strategies mentioned above to help your child understand reasons for our rules and routines, integrate successfully with their peers, and achieve their best.

For you child this could mean:

  • Attending individual or group appointments at CYPS and being observed by CYPS staff in school.
  • Using methods such as a workstation or rewards and sanctions.
  • If diagnosed, receiving medication which could be administered at school if required.