Our school is an inclusive school where every child matters. We believe in achievement for all and we aim to give all children the opportunity to know and reach their full potential. We strive to create an inclusive culture in our school so that all children regardless of individual need make the best possible progress. We are committed to narrowing the attainment gap between SEND and non-SEND pupils. This may include short-term intervention learning programmes, in-class support, small group withdrawal, 1:1 tuition and other learning interventions developed to personalise learning. We encourage our pupils to take an active role in their learning.
St John’s has compiled its Local Offer and this is available to read on the school website which is easily accessible for parents.
The SENco is Mrs Elizabeth Sharkey.
Identifying Special Educational Needs
Special Educational Needs and provision can be considered as falling into four broad areas:
- Communication and Interaction
- Cognition and Learning
- Social, Mental and Emotional Health
- Sensory and/or Physical
(SEND code of practice 2014)
At school we place significant emphasis on the early identification of pupils experiencing difficulties accessing learning. Any SEN are identified as early as possible so that the specific support put in place can have maximum impact. The SENco liaises closely with other members of the leadership team and class teachers to analyse data and individually track children experiencing difficulties. Baseline information, EYFS information, SATs, PIVATS and specialist teacher screening and assessment are all used to identify children who may require additional intervention in order to achieve.
The following are possible indicators of SEN:
- the child is not attaining at the expected level;
- the child is making less progress than peers;
- the child has had short term wave 2 intervention (boost) but not made the same progress as the other children in the group;
- the child has an identified specific medical or learning need;
- a CAF assessment identifies SEND.
The Code of Practice (2014) suggests that pupils are only identified as having SEND if they do not make adequate progress once they have had all the interventions / adjustments and good quality personalised teaching. Children will only be placed on the SEND Register if their needs are ‘additional to’ or ‘different from’ the quality differentiated teaching and learning opportunities. The SEND register is kept by the SENco in consultation with class teachers.
A Graduated Approach to SEND
At St John’s we follow a graduated approach to identify if any children need extra help and may have SEN. This is a child centred approach. All teachers have the highest possible expectations for all pupils in their class.
If a Parent/Carer is concerned that their child may have SEN then they would speak to the class teacher. Following this intervention may be put in place in the short term to see if that has a positive impact. If Parents/Carers are still concerned then a meeting would take place with the SENCo, to identify whether further action needs to be taken. We strive to build positive and supportive relationships with all our parents, valuing and including them in all aspects of their children’s life at school.
Monitoring and Evaluating SEND provision in school
We operate an ‘open door’ policy and encourage all our parents to be involved in their child’s school life. In addition to the two Parent’s Evenings each year we have further meetings with parents, teachers and the SENco both at our request and parents.
We aim to be sensitive and honest with our parents in terms of the progress that their child is making and if we have any concerns take action early through monitored additional support. We strive to respond quickly to parents concerns and put relevant strategies in place.
At St John’s all children have quality first teaching with their individual needs being met in class through differentiation. Each class teacher has a teaching assistant who supports the teacher in moving the children’s learning forwards. In addition to this we have Level 3 TAs, Learning Mentors and a Family Support Worker. They are strategically timetabled to provide targeted support both academic and pastoral.
We strive to give all of our SEN children the opportunity to take an active part in every aspect of school life, including extra-curricular activities. We take on board parent’s comments re extra-curricular provision and strive to adapt what we do.
Adaptations can be anything from allocating a member of staff to support the child, being flexible on when the child attends. Parents are fully involved in planning for their children to access any extra-curricular activities or trips. This may include visiting a venue before the trip to access what adaptations need to be made and incorporating children’s needs into the risk assessment.
Emotional and Social Development support
We follow the Social, Emotional Aspects of learning (SEAL) curriculum from reception to year six. Each class has a discreet SEAL lesson each week. Pastoral support is seen as a key part of our school life and at Induction meeting with parents we prioritise the value that we place on our pastoral care. We encourage parents to be part of the team and over the years they have sought advice and support from school in terms of their children’s behaviour, emotional well being and medical needs. They have also sought advice on other family situations.
Specialist services and expertise
We have level three teaching assistants who have each developed more specialist knowledge. They provide support for the teachers/teaching assistants in terms of strategies to use in class and liaise with any outside agencies. They work with the SENCo to ensure that the support in class meets the identified children’s needs.
We have a Pastoral team who support the children, teachers and parents in breaking down barriers to learning. In addition we have a Family Support Worker who works directly with families to support a range of issues including attendance, behaviour at home and supporting families with other issues that can affect children in school.
Transition between school placements and key stages is fully supported at St. Johns.
Children and families will have the opportunity to access support from a member of the ‘Inclusion Team’ within school in order to make smooth transitions. Transition to high school starts with meetings in school with the relevant SENCo and parents to identify each child’s needs and to formulate a plan.
St John’s Primary school is fully wheelchair accessible. The school has ensured that all doorways and entrances to the school are on a single level and wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair if necessary. There are accessible parking spaces available for the public and disabled persons. We regularly look to improve access to the building through specialist teacher audits each year in response to any new needs that children may have.
Staff have a greater knowledge and understanding in identifying and supporting children with a range of SEN. As a school we actively follow the Social, Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL) curriculum and is developing Restorative Approaches to support children with Behaviour, Emotional and Social Development.
This is constantly reviewed in terms of the needs of individual children and parents. The annual medical form provides parents with the opportunity to inform school of any disabilities that they have. Information is available both in letter form and on the school website.
See above for specialist equipment/resources that are used in school to support our children with SEN.
Roles and Responsibilities
The person responsible for managing SEN provision (SENco) in school: Mrs Elizabeth Sharkey
SEND Governor: Mrs C-A Boutell
Special Educational Needs and Disability Officer from the Local Authority: Tracey Scotland – 01254 220894