The term ‘special educational needs’ has a legal definition. Children with special educational needs all have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children of the same age. These children may need extra or different help from that given to other children of the same age.
Children with special educational needs may need extra support as a result of particular barriers to learning. Many pupils with needs have more than one area that needs supporting. These difficulties can present as cognitive, physical and sensory, social, emotional and mental health, speech language and communication needs.
At Spires Academy we aim to help children overcome the barriers their difficulties present quickly and easily, but a few children will need extra help for some or all of their time in school.
All schools must have regard for the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Code of Practice when taking decisions relating to pupils with SEN or disabilities.
The code explains that Local Authorities (LAs) must ensure that children, their parents and young people are involved in discussions and decisions about their individual support and about local provision.
It also outlines how mainstream schools can ensure that they improve attainment for children and secure good outcomes whether or not they have an EHC plan.
At Spires Academy we:
- use our best endeavours to make sure that a child with SEN gets the support he/she needs – this means doing everything we can to meet children's and young people's SEN. However, this does not mean that we will provide a 1-1 TA, this will be dependent on need and is generally only required in exceptional cases;
- ensure that children and young people with SEN engage in the activities of the school alongside pupils who do not have SEN;
- inform parents when we are making special educational provision for a child;
- prepare an SEN information report and the arrangements for the admission of children with disabilities, the steps being taken to prevent children with disabilities from being treated less favourably than others, the facilities provided to enable access to the school for children with disabilities and an accessibility plan showing how we plan to provide access and improvements we will be making.
There are four broad Categories of Need:
- Communication and interaction
- Cognition and learning
- Social, mental and emotional health
- Sensory and/or physical
SEN support is implemented and regularly reviewed using the ‘graduated approach’ outlined below. You should be involved at every stage of this process:
- Assess: SENCO will clearly analyse a pupil’s needs before liaising with relevant agencies and subject teachers, before identifying them as needing SEN support.
- Plan: SENCO will identify the support to be put in place, create a provision which is then shared with all staff, and parents will be notified and consulted with.
- Do: the class/subject teacher remains responsible for working with the pupil on a daily basis. Pupils may also receive additional interventions outside the main curriculum, but the focus will be on integrating all pupils and continuing to use high-quality, differentiated teaching.
- Review: SENCO will review the effectiveness of the support regularly and agree any changes where needed. This information will be shared with teachers, parents and pupils.
The Designated SEN Coordinator is Ms A Bensberg and all enquiries regarding SEN should be made to her in the first instance.