Special Educational Needs and Disabilites- Local offer
What is SEND?
(Definitions from the Department for Education)
A child has SEND if they have learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made.
A child of compulsory school age has a learning difficulty or disability if they have significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age or has a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools.
What is the ‘Local Offer’?
Local Authorities must publish a Local Offer setting out the provision they expect to be available across health, education and social care for children and young people who have SEN or are disabled. Schools and nurseries must also publish information on their websites about their policies for pupils with SEND, in an accessible, family friendly format.
The purpose of the Local Offer is:
- To improve choice and transparency for families
- Make provision more responsive to local need through the involvement of children, young people and their families.
The following information is provided for Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy families as required by the SEND Code of Practice.
How does the school know if children need extra help?
- Concerns may be raised by the child’s parent or carer at any stage in the child’s education.
- Regular assessments and individual pupil tracking by the class teacher may indicate that extra help may be needed. If the concerns persist despite the class teacher’s best efforts to resolve difficulties, then he/she would discuss the child with the school’s SEND co-ordinator (SENDCo), who may in turn make a referral to outside agencies (with your agreement) such as Child Psychology. The teacher would then be advised as to what strategies to try with the child.
- The school’s leadership team may raise concerns following the termly tracking of each individual child with the class teacher.
Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy strives for early identification of a child’s needs and early planned intervention to support them.
What should I do if I think my child may have Special Educational Needs?
- Make an appointment to speak to the class teacher; speaking to the teacher at the door at home time or in the morning will not be ‘quality time’.
- You could contact school and ask to speak to the SENDCo or to the Head, Deputy Head or Assistant Head of the school – any of these would be very happy to make an appointment to discuss your concerns.
- Your views and participation in the identification process are valued by the school. What happens then?
- We will begin a process of gathering evidence for the concerns raised in order to assess the level of need. The SENDCo will oversee this.
- If the level of need is relatively high, we may ask other agencies to support your child e.g. Educational Psychologist and the TESS team (Targeted Educational Support Service), Speech and language therapy or Occupational therapy. Any referrals made will be with the prior approval of the parents and you will be fully included in any decision making.
How will school staff support my child?
Once your child is identified as having a Special Educational Need, an education plan will be developed which will focus on removing barriers to learning. This will be drawn up in collaboration with you, your child and any educational / health agencies as deemed necessary.
The SENDCo will be responsible for bringing the plan together. Typically, the plan will give:
- 2 or 3 intended outcomes for your child which are small, measurable and achievable steps towards the bigger learning goals.
- Time and resource allocations.
- Details of home links and agreed home support.
- Details of who will be working with your child. This may include the class teacher, teaching support assistant and/or outside agencies.
The SENDCo will explain all aspects of the plan to you, including information about who is to be involved and what will be their role. The plan is then implemented by the class teacher who will work with the SENDCo to monitor the progress your child is making, tweak the plan where necessary, and then carefully evaluate how successful the plan has been in helping your child make better progress. It is important that you are involved in this evaluation.
The cycle of assess, plan, do and review will take place usually three times per year and you (and your child) will be involved throughout. All schools are required to have a governor with responsibility for reporting back to the Governing Body on how effective the school is in meeting the needs of individual children. The SEND governor will meet with the SENDCo to discuss the school’s policies and procedures; your child will not be identified in this process.
How will the Curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?
Class teachers are required to plan a curriculum and individual lessons, to meet the needs of every child in their class. In doing so, they are expected to have high expectations for children with Special Educational Needs and disabilities and to follow the individual education plans which have been prepared with your collaboration. The teacher will ensure that his/her lessons offer high levels of challenge and support for all children, but where necessary, will plan slightly different tasks, questions to ask, support to be given* or outcomes expected depending on where groups or individuals are up to. This is called differentiation.
*At Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy , we recognise the importance of ‘Quality First’ teaching; it is teachers themselves rather than support staff who are usually best trained to overcome barriers to learning. Therefore, we expect class teachers to deploy support staff appropriately in order to meet the needs of all children in their class and this may not automatically mean that the support staff will work with the children with SEN or disabilities.
How will I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?
At Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy , all children are continuously assessed by the class teacher and in year 1 to 6, they are also formally assessed three times per year. The results are entered onto our school tracking system. Parents are informed as to how much progress should be made per year and how much has actually been made by their child. In addition to the normal reporting arrangements (appointments to meet the teacher, open door at end of day, parents’ evenings, school reports etc.), for children with SEND, there is a termly review of your child’s education plan to which you will be invited.
You will be asked to contribute to assessing how much progress has been made and then to help decide what the next learning steps should be. You will be offered support in helping your child at home and training will be given if necessary.
What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?
Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy puts the child at the centre of all its policies and practices and places great emphasis on each child’s positive wellbeing. Pastoral, medical and social support is provided by our team of education professionals, including a Learning Mentor, trained first aid staff and lunchtime welfare staff.
When a child has a disability or specific medical need, we ensure that a health care plan is drawn up with parents and health professionals. Where necessary, e.g. anaphylaxis, diabetes etc, all relevant staff have in-house training by the health team supporting the child. We have a fully accessible school in terms of physical layout and provision of e.g. toilets for children with physical disabilities. Social/ emotional issues are well supported by class teachers and where necessary, by the learning mentor who will use a variety of approaches e.g. nurture group, counselling, play therapies etc.
As a parent, you will be involved in any decisions made and be kept informed about the progress your child is making.
Attendance and behaviour are of a high standard at Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy and exclusions take place only when the school has exhausted all other options. Where problems arise, parents are involved and in some cases outside agencies may be brought in to support a child and his/her family.
We actively encourage every child to have a voice in how the school operates through the class council, school council, sports council and eco council.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?
Teaching staff and support staff are trained regularly in key areas of the curriculum and also in identifying / supporting children with learning difficulties, emotional or social difficulties or in dealing with certain medical conditions. School has direct access to a wide range of services all of which can support the child and his/her family. These include Speech and Language, Child Psychology, Child and Adolescent Mental Health, TESS team, Visual and Hearing Impairment team, Diabetes support, Social care, and the School Health Service.
Many of these services will meet with the child and/or family in school time on school premises so as not to disrupt your child’s education too much.
What training are the staff supporting children with SEND having or have had?
The SENDCo has at least a diploma in SEN. All staff have relevant medical training as necessary (detailed above) We have First Aid trained staff and Paediatric First Aid trained staff. Child Protection and safeguarding training is in place.
School INSET training includes identifying and supporting children with educational needs. Key staff have received Team Teach training which supports children in dealing with difficult situations.
How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom, including school trips?
At Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy there is a culture of inclusive education; all activities wherever they take place are designed to be accessible by all children. As part of the planning for outdoor activities or trips, a risk assessment is made which will consider any child with SEND and plan for barriers to inclusion to be overcome. Where necessary, extra support will be provided to ensure full participation is possible; sometimes this is a parent or carer e.g.: on a residential visit. First Aid equipment and children’s medicines are taken on every trip or visit /outside school.
How accessible is the school environment?
Orrell Lamberhead Green Academy has full accessibility for wheelchairs and is arranged on ground level only. We have toilet facilities / wash facilities for disabled pupils and provide laptops or ipads where necessary to support learning needs. Other modifications are made as required after taking advice from parents, health care professionals etc.
Where the parents do not have English as their first language, we provide support through the EMAS service e.g. translating documents, offering English lessons and offering a translating service at meetings.
Equipment and facilities required to overcome barriers to learning are secured in the first place from the school’s SEN budget and /or with funding from education, health or social services (see below)
How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school or to transfer to a new school or High School?
School encourages parents and children to visit the school to meet their new teacher prior to joining. There are New Intake nights for Reception classes where key information is shared about the school, its routines and arrangements for visits.
Parents are encouraged to speak to staff about any concerns at these meetings and at the Home Visits which are arranged prior to a child starting. Staff also visit a child’s Early Years setting to discuss the child’s development and progress.
If a child starts mid-year, a member of the Leadership team will show the parents and child round the school and answer any queries. If SEND has already been established prior to starting school, a meeting between school, parents and any agencies involved will be arranged so that your child’s needs are met from day one.
Transition between classes is facilitated by visits to the next classroom and teacher in the weeks leading up to the summer break. This is particularly important for children who are on the Autistic spectrum or who suffer from other anxiety related conditions.
Similarly, arrangements with the High School or other receiving school are made in advance of transition, to allow children with SEND or other vulnerable children to visit the school and meet key staff. An important element of transition at any stage is the quality of communication between schools or classes regarding each child’s individual needs; we ensure that these conversations are facilitated.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s Special Educational Needs?
Each spring, our school receives an amount of funding in its Annual Budget to help ensure the curriculum is available for all SEN pupils. This provides the mainstream support that most SEN children require.
Children with more complex or severe needs who have a Statement of Educational Need or an Education Health Care plan receive an additional allocation of money to meet their needs. Part of this funding is contained within the school’s budget, but the Local Authority provides top-up funding for those children with the greatest need.
Teaching staff, together with the SENDCo and parents and any other agencies involved in the child’s review, will plan the provision and this will be costed on a Provision Map.
How are parents involved in the school? How can I be involved?
Parents are actively encouraged to be part of the school’s decision making and day to day school life. For instance:
- Become a parent Governor
- Attend a parent Forum meeting
- Respond to school questionnaires
- Volunteer in school (requires Police vetting)
- Attend your child’s class assemblies and/or performances
- Attend Open days
- Attend Parents’ Evenings
Who can I contact for further information?
Your first point of contact if your child is in school is his/her class teacher who can be seen after school, or can be contacted to make an appointment.
More serious or ongoing concerns may be addressed through the SENDCo, or a member of the school’s Leadership team. Appointments can be made via the school office on 01942 768760
What shall I do if I have any complaints with regards to SEND?
We would always want parents and carers who are unhappy with any aspect of the school’s provision to let us know so that we can work together to make any improvements necessary.
In the first instance you should always contact your child’s class teacher. If you concerns cannot be addressed at that point, you should contact school and ask for a meeting with the school’s SENCO.
If after meeting with the SENCO, your concerns or complaint remain unresolved, you should follow the school’s complaint procedure- available on the school’s website.
If you are considering a place at our school, please ring the office to make an appointment to see the Headteacher who will be happy to discuss your child’s needs and answer any specific questions about his / her education.