SEND Policy

Special Educational Needs & Disabilities Policy

Formulation date: September 2014 Reviewing Committee Pastoral and Inclusion
Approved on:  Next Review date: September 2015

 

The SENCO (Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator) at Newbridge High School Academy Trust and member of the Senior Leadership Team is: Mrs Katrina Farragher

The role of the SENCO

The SENCO must be a qualified teacher working at the school.

The SENCO has an important role to play with the headteacher and governing body, in determining the strategic development of SEN policy and provision in the school.

The SENCO has day-to-day responsibility for the operation of SEN policy and co-ordination of specific provision made to support individual pupils with SEN, including those who have EHC plans.

The SENCO provides professional guidance to colleagues and will work closely with staff, parents and other agencies. The SENCO should be aware of the provision in the Local Offer and be able to work with professionals providing a support role to families to ensure that pupils with SEN receive appropriate support and high quality teaching.

The key responsibilities of the SENCO include:

  • Overseeing the day-to-day operation of the school’s SEN policy
  • Co-ordinating provision for children with SEN
  • Liaising with the relevant Designated Teacher where a looked after pupil has SEN (Mrs Vallance)
  • Advising 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
  • Liaising with parents of pupils with SEN
  • Liaising with 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
  • The school should ensure that the SENCO has sufficient time and resources to carry out these functions. This should include providing the SENCO with sufficient administrative support and time away from teaching to enable them to fulfill their responsibilities in a similar way to other important strategic roles within a school.

Newbridge’s SEND policy details how this school will do its best to ensure that the necessary provision is made for any pupil who has special educational needs and those needs are made known to all who are likely to teach them. The school will use its best endeavours to ensure that teachers in the school are able to identify and provide for those pupils who have special educational needs to allow them an inclusive education, so far as is reasonably practical.

The school will have regard to the Code of Practice when carrying out its duties toward all pupils with special

educational needs and ensure that parents are notified of a decision by the school that SEND provision is being made for their child.

Partnership with parents plays a key role in enabling children and young people with SEND to achieve their potential! The school recognises that parents hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs and the best ways of supporting them. All parents of children with special educational needs will be treated as partners and supported to play an active and valued role in their children’s education.

Young people with special educational needs often have a unique knowledge of their own needs and their views about what sort of help they would like to help them make the most of their education will be ascertained. They will be encouraged to participate in all the decision-making processes and contribute to the assessment of their needs, the review and transition processes.

Aim: As a school we aim to raise the aspirations of and expectations for all pupils with SEND to ensure the best possible opportunities for their future goals, become confident individuals living fulfilling lives, make a successful transition to the next stage of education and in doing so make good contributions to the wider community.

  1. To identify and provide for students who have special educational needs and additional needs
  2. To work within the guidance provided in the SEND Code of Practice, 2014
  3. To operate a ‘whole student, whole school’ approach to the management and provision of support for special educational needs
  4. To provide a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator who will work to the SEND Policy
  5. To provide support and advice for all staff working with special educational needs students
  6. To develop, maintain partnership and high levels of engagement with parents
  7. To ensure access to the curriculum for all students

Admission of students with statements of SEN/EHC Plans:

Newbridge follows the School Admission Code that came into force in February 2012 which makes clear that all children with a statement of SEN must be admitted if the school is not oversubscribed. Admission authorities must ensure that the arrangements will not disadvantage unfairly or discriminate against a child, a disability or special educational need. Our approach also complies with the Equal Opportunities Legislation of 2010

Definition of Special Educational Needs

A child or young person has special educational needs if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them. A student of compulsory school age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if they:

  • have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age
  • have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for children of the same age in mainstream schools within the area of the local education authority

Monitoring pupil progress

All teachers are teachers of SEN and as such their duty is to differentiate their teaching to meet the needs of all students! This is known as Wave 1 intervention.

However, teachers may conclude that the strategies they are currently using are not resulting in the student learning as effectively as possible. In these circumstances, they will consult the SENCO to consider what else might be done. The starting point will always be a review of the strategies being used and the way in which these might be developed within the classroom. Evaluation of the strategies in place may lead to the conclusion that the student requires help over and above that which is normally available within the particular class or subject.

Consideration should then be given to providing Wave 2 intervention. The key test of the need for action is evidence that current rates of progress are inadequate. Adequate progress can be defined in a number of ways.

It might, for instance, be the progress which:

  • closes the attainment gap between the pupil and the pupil’s peers
  • prevents the attainment gap growing wider
  • is similar to that of peers starting from the same attainment baseline, but less than that of the majority of peers
  • matches or betters the pupil’s previous rate of progress
  • ensures access to the full curriculum
  • demonstrates an improvement in self-help, social or personal skills, demonstrates improvements in the pupil’s behaviour

Wave 2 intervention would be a whole school programme which aims to bridge the gap between the student and their peers, the type of interventions used at Newbridge are outlined through the Local Offer. Should this not be adequate in bridging the gap then they would receive Wave 3 intervention and be placed on the SEND Record.

Wave 3 intervention would be a programme which is individualised and tailored to meet the child’s specific need; this maybe in the form of alternative curriculum, specialised provision and intervention or additional staffing and behaviour management support. They would have a Student Support Plan.

Identification of a Special Educational Need:

Assessment is a continuing process that can identify pupils who may have special educational needs. The school will measure children’s progress by referring to:

  • evidence from teacher observation and assessment
  • their performance against the level descriptions within the National Curriculum at the end of a key stage
  • their progress against the objectives specified in any National directives.
  • standardised screening or assessment tools.
  • Information received on transfer through professional dialogue or SEN records

Identification

Students will be identified according to 4 broad categories of need. While these 4 categories identify aspects of primary need for the student Newbridge will consider the needs of the whole child which will not just include the special educational need.

Communication and interaction

Children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) have difficulty in communicating with others. This may be because they have difficulty saying what they want to, understanding what is being said to them or they do not understand or use social rules of communication. The profile for every child with SLCN is different and their needs may change over time. They may have difficulty with one,some or all of the different aspects of speech, language or social communication at different times of their lives.

Children and young people on the autistic spectrum, including Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism, are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication and imagination, which can impact on how they relate to others.

Cognition and learning

Support for learning difficulties may be required when children and young people learn at a slower pace than their peers, even with appropriate differentiation. Learning difficulties cover a wide range of needs, including moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD), where children are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum and associated difficulties with mobility and communication, through to profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD), where children are likely to have severe and complex learning difficulties as well as a physical disability or sensory impairment.

Specific learning difficulties (SpLD), affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This encompasses a range of conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.

Social, emotional and mental health difficulties

Children and young people may experience a wide range of social and emotional difficulties which manifest themselves in many ways. These may include becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. These behaviours may reflect underlying mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression, self-harming, substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Other children and young people may have disorders such as attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder.

Sensory and/or physical needs

Some children and young people require special educational provision because they have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided. These difficulties can be age related and may fluctuate over time. Many children and young people with vision impairment (VI),hearing impairment (HI) or a multi-sensory impairment (MSI) will require specialist support and/or equipment to access their learning, or habilitation support. Children and young people with an MSI have a combination of vision and hearing difficulties.

Some children and young people with a physical disability (PD) require additional ongoing support and equipment to access all the opportunities available to their peers.

Alone the following do not constitute SEN – But may impact on progress and attainment:

  • Disability – reasonable adjustments must be made for all under the Disability Equality Legislation 2010
  • Attendance and Punctuality
  • Health and Welfare
  • Being in receipt of Pupil Premium Grant
  • Being a Looked After child
  • Being a child of a serviceman/woman
  • EAL (English as an additional Language) – Where there is uncertainty about an individual, the school will look carefully at all aspects of the student’s performance in different subjects to establish whether the problems they have in the classroom are due to limitations in their command of the language that is used there or arise from a special educational need.

A Graduated Approach to SEND Support:

When a student is identified as having special educational needs, school will place the student on the school’s Student Support Record, identifying the primary and secondary needs with regard to the above categories.This information will be supplied to staff on a Student Support Summary to ensure teachers are aware of all students’ difficulties. Parents will be informed and invited in to discuss any interventions to take place.

A member of the SEND Team will then be identified as key worker and will be responsible for making sure the appropriate interventions/support is in place. This system is recognised nationally as The Graduated Approach which is to: ASSESS, PLAN, DO, REVIEW. This intervention can be Wave 2 or 3 (See Local

Individualised Student Support Plan:

It is possible that a student has significant difficulties and requires a more detailed cycle of ASSESS, PLAN, DO, REVIEW and this will take the form of a Student Support Plan, where all relevant parties will be involved in the process, this may include external agencies and will include the students themselves and Parents. A Wave 3 programme of intervention will be set up (see Local Offer.)

When school seeks the help of external support services (via referral forms), those services will need to see the pupil’s records in order to establish which strategies have already been employed and which targets have been set and achieved. The external specialist may act in an advisory capacity, provide additional specialist assessment or be involved in teaching the pupil directly. The resulting Student Support Plan for the student will set out new strategies for supporting the student’s progress; implemented, at least in part, in the classroom setting. Delivery ofsuch strategies will remain the responsibility of subject teachers. (See Local Offer for External Agencies we can draw on and referral paperwork.)

If the SENCO and the external specialist consider that the information gathered about the pupil is insufficient, and that more detailed advice must be obtained from other outside professionals, then the consent of the pupil’s parents will be sought.

As a school we may also seek support and advice from our local Special Schools (Forest Way and Maplewell.) We also work closely within our family of schools and at times may seek a Managed Move to allow the student access to provision which is more appropriate elsewhere or a fresh start.The subject teacher will remain responsible for monitoring progress, overseen by the Key Worker who will update the Student Support Plan following Student Progress Meetings, as outlined below:

Student Progress Meetings:

Year 7 – initial meeting with the SEND Team Key Worker

Tutor Evening in the autumn term (following reports)

Parents Meeting with subject teachers and Key Worker (following Spring Term reports)

Review meeting in the summer term (following Summer reports)

Any other as and when required depending on progress and concerns

N/B SENCo and Key Workers will be available at all Parents Evenings

LA High Needs Funding:

It is possible for the school to apply for high needs funding without the need of a EHC Plan (see below). We would seek this with parental agreement should a student have needs identified on their Student Support plan which requires significantly increased funds in order for the child to remain within the mainstream setting. This could relate to an increase in staffing or to provide alternative educational arrangements to meet their needs. School request for an Education, Health Care Plan (EHCP) For a few pupils the help given by schools may not be sufficient to enable the pupil to make adequate progress. It will then be necessary for the school, in consultation with the parents and any external agencies already involved, to consider whether to ask the LA to initiate an assessment for a EHCP. Where a request for an assessment is made to the LA, the student will have demonstrated significant cause for concern and the school will provide written evidence to the LA detailing:

  •  the school’s action
  • Student Support Plans for the pupil
  • records of regular reviews and their outcomes
  • the pupil’s health including the pupil’s medical history where relevant
  • National Curriculum levels attainments in literacy and mathematics
  • educational and other assessments, for example from an advisory specialist support teacher or an educational psychologist
  • views of the parents and of the pupil
  • involvement of other professionals
  • any involvement by Social Services or Education Welfare Service.

What the LA Say

  • Children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities may be eligible for an SEN support plan or an education health and care (EHC) plan. This will replace the current system of statements and learning difficulty assessments.
  • Children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities will be eligible for an assessment for an education, health and care plan from birth until the age of 25 whilst in education.
  • Children and young people who are eligible for an education, health and care plan will be offered the option of a personal budget to provide more choice over their care package.
  • Professionals will work in a more coordinated way to join up help across education, health and social care

Any students in receipt of an existing Statement will be changed over to a EHC Plan at transition to the next phase of education.

Annual review of a statement of special educational needs and or EHC Plan All statements/EHCP will be reviewed at least annually with the parents, the pupil, the LA and the school to consider whether any amendments need to be made to the description of the pupil’s needs or to the special educational provision specified in the Statement. The annual review should focus on what the child has achieved as well as on difficulties that need to be resolved. The annual review held in year 9 will be particularly significant in preparing for the pupil’s transition to the Upper School, Adult life Education and Vocational training. The aim of the annual review in year 9 and subsequent years is to review the young person’s statement and draw up and review the Transition Plan. This must involve Career Advice. (Details Code of Practice 2014)

Criteria for exiting the Student Support Record:

Should the intervention put in place be successful in closing the gap between that of the student and their peers or that the student has learnt to manage their difficulties to an extent that no additional provision is required and continued progress has been maintained for over a year then they would be removed from the record with the consultation of their parents.

Supporting students and families:

  • Please refer to Leicester County Council Local Offer (regulation 3a) on their website for more information www.leics.gov.uk/eduation
  • We can put you in touch with agencies such as Supporting Leicestershire Families if you feel you would benefit from support at home with your child www.leics.gov.uk/supportingfamilies
  • For further independent support and advice please contact Parent partnership which is a free service who can guide you through any questions or concerns you may have regarding the New Code of Practise www.leics.gov.uk/index/education/parents/htm

Transfer arrangements:

Key staff (Pastoral Managers, Key Workers and the SENCo) are all involved in visiting primaries and Upper schools to meet with students and teachers in order to gather or share as much information about all students as possible. Students are given the opportunity to have extra visits to enable them to become comfortable and as familiar as possible with the school’s layout and staff. Any Student Support Plans are written and appropriate support and provision is set up to enable as smooth a transition as possible. Induction Days at Newbridge and the first few weeks of the school year are supported by Classroom Support staff to ensure a familiar face and people who are trained to look out for any potential difficulties – they are the eyes and ears

Access Arrangements (help with exams):

During the Year 9 students are screened to identify anyone who may be eligible for access arrangements during their exams. This could include:

  • Scribe/ reader
  • Use of ICT
  • Modified papers/ live speakers etc…

This information is passed onto the upper school who apply for these arrangements online.

Funding

All schools are given funding for SEND students based on the number of students listed on the January census for the previous year. It is therefore expected that the school will meet the first £6000 costs for all students

Any additional costs identified through Statements, EHCP or Top Up funding will be met by the LA on a

Roles and Responsibilities:

SEND Governor – is responsible for monitoring and evaluating the process and impact of SEND provision within school, they will liaise regularly with the SENCo and visit the school to observe and talk to staff and students about their role and experiences.

Mrs Michelle McDonald is our designated governor who has a specific interest in SEND.

Classroom Support Staff – We are fortunate to have a large and skilled team of staff who support our students in a variety of ways, such as every day support of students learning in the classroom, running interventions to develop learning gaps, addressing emotional and social difficulties, mentoring and advice for individuals. At times this support is provided on a 1:1 basis, but this would be as part of a specific Student

Support Plan provision. Many of them have been with us for a long time and have become experienced and skilled in specific areas of need, such as: ASD, Emotional Literacy, Speech and Language and Literacy/Numeracy assessment and intervention. They have regular training sessions where knowledge and learning can be shared and updated. Full time staff are also attached to specific subject areas and attend departmental meetings/training to ensure subject knowledge is accurate and their support in class is effective.

Safeguarding – Mrs Vallance and Mrs Warren are our designated child protection officers. Mrs Vallance (Staff Governor) is also responsible for monitoring LAC and Pupil Premium Funding allocations.

Storing and managing information:

As per our confidentiality policy all SEND files are kept alongside our whole school files in locked cabinets, any information shared with outside agencies is done so with parental permission. The SEND summary is shared with all staff, but they follow the confidentiality policy in keeping that information safe. We send on all records to the next phase school but retain scanned copies for a minimum of 6 years, which are then destroyed.

Dealing with complaints:

Any complaints or concerns are encouraged to be talked through with the SENCo or Headteacher, should this not resolve the issue parents should follow the complaints policy published on the website.

The information in this policy is taken from:

Special Educational Needs Code of Practice. DfEE 581/ July 2014 available online from DfE

Katrina Farragher

(SENCO)

 

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