SEN & Disability
Newton-le-Willows Primary School
What is the local offer?
Our local offer is information for parents and carers of children who have Special Educational Needs (SEN) or a disability (SEND) and for all of those who support children with additional needs. The information outlines the support and provision they can expect to receive whilst attending our school. At Newton-le-Willows Primary School, the staff strive to ensure that the individual needs of each learner are catered for, so that children make good progress in their learning and development.
How does Newton-le-Willows Primary School define Special Educational Needs?
At our school, we adhere to the SEN Code of Practice which outlines that: ' A child has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them'.
In line with the Code of Practice, at Newton-le-Willows Primary School, the identification of SEN happens when:
· a child has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age and/ or
· when a child has a disability which prevents or hinders them from accessing the educational facilities within our school.
A child can have a SEN for a variety of reasons, some are:
1. Medical/ Physical/Sensory Needs
2. Cognition and Learning Needs
3. Emotional, Social and Behavioural Needs
4. Communication and Interaction Needs
How will Newton-le-Willows Primary School identify if my child has Special Educational Needs?
Who is the best person to talk to about my concerns?
Our school has a designated Special Educational Needs Co-Ordinator (SENCO); Miss J. Mercer. In addition, Mrs J. Rothwell is SEN team and Mrs M. Needham is Pastoral Lead.
Miss Mercer has completed and is accredited with the National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordination with Edge Hill University (February 2018).
We have rigorous on-going observation and assessment procedures in place at school which support the accurate identification of children with additional needs. These systems support us in the identification of children with a range of difficulties. Close liaison and communication exists between class teachers, Learning Support Assistant’s (LSAs) and the SENCO to ensure that we are proactive to children's fluctuating needs. We strive to maintain on-going informative dialogues with parents so that children's needs are met.
How will Newton-le-Willows Primary know if children need extra help?
Children may be identified as having SEND through a variety of ways including the following:
- concerns are raised by parents/ carers
- child performing below age expected levels
- through termly pupil progress meetings held between the class teacher and the head teacher
- concerns raised by teacher, for example behaviour or self-esteem is affecting performance
- health diagnosis e.g. through a paediatrician
- liaison with external agencies e.g. speech and communication needs
This is what happens at our school...
- The teacher will discuss your child’s progress with you at our parents’ evenings. At these meetings, you will be informed of your child’s progress and any additional support that is being given.
- When a teacher or yourselves (as parents/carers) raise concerns about your child’s progress, you will discuss what targeted support your child has had. If this support has not yet met your child’s needs then this will be discussed further with the SENCO.
- We also have meetings every term between each class teacher and the Head teacher to ensure that all children are making good progress. This is another way your child may be identified as not making as much progress as expected.
- If your child is identified as not making progress we will make a decision about whether to monitor this or set individual targets. We may also set up an intervention group or provide target group support. These groups may take place for a short period or over a longer period of time. When individual targets are set, your child will have their own Individual Education Plan (IEP) which outlines their immediate next steps to support them to make progress in their area of difficulty. These IEPs are reviewed at least three times per year.
- If your child is still not making expected progress we will discuss with you our next steps. These could include the following:
- Further in school interventions on a small group or 1:1 basis.
- Consultation and referrals to outside agencies. If you have any concerns we recommend you speak to your child’s class teacher initially and at the earliest opportunity. These concerns will then be shared with Miss Mercer (SENCO) and appropriate action will be taken.
How will the teaching be adapted for my child with learning needs (SEN and/ or disability)?
Our Class Teachers plan lessons according to the specific needs of all groups of children in their class. They ensure that learning tasks are adapted to enable your child to access their learning as independently as possible. At our school, we have a high number of support staff across school who additionally deliver small group quality learning sessions for children with SEN and/or disability (SEND).
We tailor the provision we provide in order to meet individual need. We implement specific resources and strategies will be used to support your child individually and in groups. We include children with SEND into whole class learning.
Planning and teaching is adapted on a daily basis to meet your child’s learning needs and increase your child’s access to a broad and balanced curriculum.
What are the different types of support available for children with SEN and /or disabilities in our school?
Class teacher input with quality first teaching
This support and provision is available for ALL children at our school. Our Teachers and LSAs have the highest possible expectations for your child and of all children in their class. All teaching builds on what your child already knows, can do and can understand. Learning experiences will be appropriately challenging. Class Teachers are responsive to need and alter provision so that all children can access learning. This may involve a more practical style of learning for some children or the incorporation of specially adapted resources. Class Teachers liaise closely with the SENCO and LSAs to put in place specific strategies to enable your child to access learning and make good progress.
Small group work
At our school , intervention groups are used to address a variety of needs including learning needs, social skill development, life skills and physical development.
This provides an increase in support and is allocated to those children who are not making age related learning and/or developmental progress. These groups are led by the Class Teacher/ Learning Support Assistants in your child's class:
- Target Group: Your child may be in a target group for a specific learning area. This means that they receive additional adult input to address the current areas of difficulty.
- Intervention Groups: These are led mainly by our Learning Mentor and LSAs who have received specialised training.
When a child has specific barriers to learning that cannot be overcome through whole class teaching and intervention external agencies are consulted.
- If your child has been identified as needing more specialist input instead of or in addition to good and outstanding class room teaching and intervention groups, referrals will be made to outside agencies to advise and support us in enabling your child to make progress.
- Before referrals are made you will be asked to come to a meeting to discuss your child’s progress and help plan possible ways forward. This is usually with the Class Teacher and/or SENCO/Pastoral Lead.
- If it is agreed that the support of an outside agency is a way forward, you will be asked to give your permission for the school to refer your child to a specialist professional. There are a range of agencies with whom we maintain a strong liaison: Speech and Language Therapy, Occupational/ Physiotherapy, Educational Psychology, Learning Support Services, Children's Disability Service, Behaviour Improvement Team, Community Paediatrics and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. Referrals may be made to one or more of these services to help us and gain a better understanding of your child's needs.
- The specialist professional will work with your child to assess their needs, understand their difficulties and make recommendations to help your child to make progress.
The recommendations may include some of the following:
- Making changes to the way your child is supported in class e.g. some individual support or changing some aspects of teaching
- Support to set targets which will include their specific professional expertise
- Your child’s involvement in a group led by school staff. These groups are led under the guidance of the outside professional e.g. a social skills group coordinated by Children’s Disability Service or physical development group co-ordinated by Occupational Therapy
- Group or individual work with outside professional Specified support .
We may suggest that your child also needs some agreed individual support or group support in school with a member of our Support Staff. We will tell you how the support will be used and what strategies will be put in place. This support looks very different for all children dependent upon the individual need.
Using our professional expertise and incorporating advice from external professionals, we may decide to apply to the Local Authority for some ‘top up’ funding for your child. This is decided through consultation at Termly Multi-Agency Planning Meetings. If this support is granted, your child will have a ‘Provision Agreement’ document which outlines a specific number of hours of support provided through our school and what focus this support will be used for.
If your child’s level of need is of a high/complex level, school and/or parents may decide to apply for an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). This means your child will have been identified by the class teacher/SENCO as needing a particularly high level of individual and small group teaching. The school (or you) can request that the Local Authority carry out a statutory assessment of your child’s needs. This is a legal process and you can find more details about this from the Local Authority. Usually, if your child requires this high level of support they may also need specialist support in school from a range of professionals outside of our school. This may be from:
· Children's Disability Service
· Speech and Language Therapy
· Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy.
After the school have sent in the request to the Local Authority, they will decide whether they think your child’s needs seem complex enough to need a statutory assessment. If this is the case they will ask you and all professionals involved with your child to write a report outlining your child’s needs. If they do not think your child needs this, they will ask the school to continue with the support already in place.
After the reports have all been compiled, the Local Authority will decide if your child’s needs are severe, complex and lifelong. They also consider if your child needs more specific support in school in order to make good progress. If this is the case they will write an EHCP. If this is not the case, they will ask us to continue with the support at a school level.
The EHCP will outline the number of hours of support your child will receive from the Local Authority and how the support should be used and what strategies must be put in place. The EHCP can identify if specialist provision is required. It will also have long and short term goals for your child.
The additional adult may be used to support your child with whole class learning, run individual programmes or run small groups including your child. If this procedure was necessary for your child, multiple meetings would take place between yourself, school and the Local Authority.
Are the staff who support pupils with SEND at Newton-le-Willows Primary provided with appropriate training?
LSAs have received training in delivering reading and phonics programmes (RWI) and Provision Teaching, Speech, Language and Communication, ASD and ADHD Awareness Training. Whole school training in response to St Helens’ Graduated Approach, has taken place and needs led support relating to SEND issues, relevant to the pupils they are supporting, is given. The Behaviour Improvement Team and the Language and Social Communication (LASC) team have provided advice for staff working with the pupils they are supporting in school. Several LSAs have accessed the Sunshine Sensory Course and more recently a LSA completed the Early Bird Plus training.
What specialist services and expertise are available at the school?
As a school we work closely with any outside agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs. The agencies used by the school include:
- School Nurse and Paediatricians
- Educational Psychology Service
- Local Authority Inclusion Team
- Speech and Language Therapy Service (SALT)
- Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Service (OT)
- Behaviour Improvement Team (BIT)
- Learning Support Service (LSS)
- Children’s Disability Service
- Language and Social Communication Service (LASCS)
- St Helens Autism Spectrum Pathway (SHASP)
- Educational Welfare Service
- Social Care
An Educational Psychologist is allocated to each school. This involvement is planned at the termly planning meetings held between school staff and other professionals. The Educational Psychologist will generally meet with the parent/ carer and offer advice to the school, parent/carer on how best to support the pupil in order to take their learning forward
What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?
The school’s Pastoral Team offers a wide variety of support for pupils who are experiencing emotional difficulties. This includes bereavement counselling, nurture groups, anger management support etc. The Pastoral Lead, Mrs M. Needham, may involve outside agencies such as Health and Social Care, the Behaviour Improvement Team (BIT) and the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS).
For pupils with medical needs, a Care Plan is compiled with support from the school nurse in consultation with parents/ carers. These are shared with all staff who are involved with the pupil. Medication is administered in school when necessary in agreement with parents/ carers. A signed consent form must be completed by the parent/ carer to ensure the safety of both the child and staff member. Robust procedures are in place and medication is administered by the school’s Management Team.
Staff receive appropriate training delivered by health professionals. The Learning Support Assistant staff team have basic first aid training.
How will my child be included in activities outside of the classroom, including school trips?
Activities and school trips are available to all. We will provide the necessary support to ensure this is successful. Risk assessments are carried out prior to any off site activity and procedures put in place to enable all children to participate. If it is deemed appropriate, a parent/ carer may be asked to accompany their child during an offsite activity.
How accessible is the school environment?
Newton-le-Willows Primary is situated on one floor and is wheelchair accessible. Facilities include ramps into school, a toilet and shower adapted for disabled users and a lift to enable use of the school stage. We liaise closely with the Children’s Disability Service, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Services and loan equipment as needed. As a school, we are happy to discuss any individual access requirements.
How will we support your child with identified Special Needs starting at school?
If your child has been allocated a place in our Nursery or Reception class via the Local Authority and they have a special educational need and/ or disability, please contact us as soon as you receive the offer as we may not have details of their needs at this stage.
- We will first invite you to visit our school with your child to have a look around and speak to staff, including your child's class teacher and SENCO.
- If other professionals and agencies are involved, a meeting will be held in school to share information about your child, discuss any particular programmes/ strategies that are in place. This meeting happens to ensure that the correct provision is in place for your child before they start. It is our upmost priority that transition is as smooth as possible for your child.
- Your child’s Teacher and SENCO may visit your child if they are attending another provision
- We may suggest adaptations to the induction period to help your child to settle more easily but these will be agreed with you.
- If they have not already visited, your child will be invited into school in advance of starting to meet the staff they will be working with.
- The class teacher will be in constant communication with you, through informal dialogues at the beginning and end of each day. We will also arrange an early meeting with you to review your child’s learning, following the settling in period.
- The staff will then hold regular meetings in school to monitor the progress of your child and invite you into school at least once a term to review this with you.
- If your child has a LSA designated to work alongside them for a set number of hours, they will always be involved in the review and feedback process with yourselves.
How will we support your child when they are leaving this school? OR moving on to another class?
Transition to another school or another class can be difficult for any child. At Newton-le-Willows Primary School we recognise that ‘moving on’ can be particularly challenging for a child with SEN and/ or Disability and we take steps to ensure that any transition is a smooth as possible.
If your child is moving to another school: We will contact the SENCO at the new school and ensure s/he knows about any special arrangements or support that need to be made for your child. We will make sure that all records about your child are passed on as soon as possible.
When moving classes in school: Information will be passed on to the new class teacher IN ADVANCE and a planning meeting will take place with the new teacher. All IEPs and IBPs will be shared with the new teacher. If your child would be helped by a ‘social story’ or transition booklet to support them understand moving on then it will be made for them.
In Year 6 : The SENCO, Pastoral Lead and Class Teacher will meet with the Year 7 Transition Co-Ordinator in order to discuss the specific needs of your child. If appropriate, individual transition meetings will be held with High School Transition Co-Ordinator, Primary SENCO, Pastoral Lead, Class Teacher, External Agencies and Parents. Your child may participate in small group work in school to support their understanding of the changes ahead. This may include creating a ‘Pen Portrait’ which includes information about themselves for their new school and a transition booklet. Where possible, your child will visit their new school on several occasions and in many cases staff from the new school will visit your child at our school.
How is extra support allocated to children in our school?
The SEN budget is allocated each financial year. The money is used to provide additional support or resources dependent on needs. Additional provision may be allocated after discussion between the class teacher, SENCO and head teacher. Resources may include deployment of staff depending on individual circumstances. The Head teacher, in consultation with the school governors, will be responsible for the deployment of the school’s LSAs.
How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive
The class teacher alongside the SENCO will discuss the child’s needs and what support would be appropriate. Decisions are then made in consultation with the Senior Leadership Team. Decisions are based upon Termly Tracking of pupil progress and as a result of assessments/ advice given by outside agencies e.g. Educational Psychologist, Learning Support Service etc.
How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s education?
All parents are encouraged to contribute to their child’s education. This may be through informal discussions with the class teacher, discussions during parents’ evenings, during discussions with the SENCO or Pastoral Manager and during discussions about your child’s IEP/ IBP when appropriate.
Who can I contact for further information?
If you wish to discuss your child’s special educational needs, please contact the school office to arrange a meeting with the SENCO, Miss J. Mercer. If you have concerns regarding your child’s emotional wellbeing, please contact the school office to arrange a meeting with the Pastoral Lead, Mrs M. Needham.
We will be more than happy to speak to you to answer your questions and solve your queries.
lease follow the link below to access information and services relating to St Helens' Council Local Offer.
Useful support services for children and young people with additional needs
www.autism.org.uk/ National Autistic Society
www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/ British Dyslexia Association
www.adhdfoundation.org.uk/ ADHD foundation
dyspraxiafoundation.org.uk/about-dyspraxia/ Dyspraxia foundation
www.who.int/blindness/en/ Visual Impairment
https://www.gov.uk/browse/disabilities Gov.uk entitlements for
Please feel free to contact Miss Mercer (SENCo) with any recommendations for additional websites to be considered for adding to this ‘work in progress’ list.