At Good Shepherd Catholic Primary School, we are an inclusive School. At our school, inclusion recognises a child’s right to a broad, balanced, relevant and challenging curriculum, which is appropriate to their individual abilities, talents, and personal qualities. We believe that every pupil has an entitlement to develop their talents, skills and strive for excellence in our learning irrespective of their differences. In order to do this many steps are taken to support them through their learning journey. Quality teaching is essential however, for some children there are occasions when further additional support may be needed to help them achieve and progress.
At Good Shepherd school, we provide for a wide range of SEND needs.
The ‘Code of Practice’ (July, 2014) states that there are four main areas which denote Special Educational Needs. These areas and their meanings are as follows:
Communication and interaction
6.28 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.
6.29 Children and young people with ASD, 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
6.30 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.
6.31 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
6.32 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.
6.33 Schools and colleges should have clear processes to support children and young people, including how they will manage the effect of any disruptive behaviour so it does not adversely affect other pupils. The Department for Education publishes guidance on managing pupils’ mental health and behaviour difficulties in schools – see the References section under Chapter 6 for a link.
Sensory and/or physical needs
6.34 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. Information on how to provide services for deafblind children and young people is available through the Social Care for Deafblind Children and Adults guidance published by the Department of Health (see the References section under Chapter 6 for a link).
6.35 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.
Who shall I speak to if I have concerns about my child’s needs?
If you have concerns around your child’s needs then your first point of contact should be your child’s class teacher. For further advice make an appointment to speak to Mrs Skelding (SENCo). You can also arrange an appointment to discuss concerns around your child’s needs with Mrs Baker (Learning Mentor), Mr McConville (Principal) or Ms Karen Cadden (SEND representative – LAC/Staff representative LAC).
What are the procedures at Good Shepherd Primary School if my child needs extra support?
Our class teachers closely monitor the progress made by all children and your child’s teacher will discuss their progress with you at parents evening. As soon as any concerns are raised about a pupil, the class teacher will discuss their concerns with you, ask advice from the SENCo and will then plan activities such as small group work or interventions to help the child. If these activities do not help the child make good progress, with your consent we may make a referral for advice or assessment from an external agency. Your child may be placed on a Special Needs register to inform teachers of the areas in which they need extra support. You will be fully involved in every step of this process.
What is the school’s approach to teaching children with SEND?
The school offers a continuum of provision to meet the diversity of pupils’ needs. We plan a broad and balanced curriculum that can be adapted to the needs of all learners. Quality first teaching aims to ensure that all lessons and activities are differentiated to the needs of each learner in the class and supports the needs of children with SEND. Additional in-class support is available, which is provided by HLTAs and TAs. We ensure learning environments are tailored to the needs of the children.
For children with SEND, we are committed to implementing provision which is additional to and different from quality first teaching. Provision mapping tracks all children with SEND and the interventions and support in place. These interventions are available to pupils through either 1:1 or small group support. Records of these interventions are kept and the SENCo monitors the impact and effectiveness of these.
As part of our curriculum redesign to key elements have been placed as fundamental parts of as many lessons as possible. The first element of this is the retention, recall and retrieval of key facts (often referred to with the children as “sticky knowledge”). The overarching theory underpinning with is from Rosenshine but we have looked closely at research from Tom Sherrington who outlines the benefits of this for children with SEN. In addition to the recall and retrieval of facts, the explicit teaching, application and understanding of vocabulary is viewed as central to learning. This will be seen in different curriculum areas and draws on research from the Education Endowment Fund and the work of Alex Quigley.
How does the school check and review the progress made by pupils with SEN?
Teachers continuously monitor the progress of children in their class through ongoing assessment. Arbor is used to record and monitor children’s progress. Meetings take place between the teacher and SENCo on a termly basis to discuss the progress of children with SEN. The SENCo then meets with other SEN professionals from external agencies on a termly basis to discuss the progress of children on the SEN register.
How does the school train its staff to support children?
All of our staff are highly skilled in delivering interventions which cater for a wide range of needs. The school provides continuous training dependent on staff need. Where specific training needs are identified, external expertise may be sought.
Within the school there are staff members trained in:
Involvement of outside agencies
The SENCo holds termly multi-disciplinary planning meetings with outside agencies who work with our school. Children’s needs are discussed and hours are allocated to those who require assessment, review or intervention. Outside agencies we currently work with are:
What support is available for improving the emotional and social development of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities?
Good Shepherd works very closely with a range of external agencies to provide extensive social and emotional support where needed and employs a Learning Mentor to work directly with vulnerable children. Meetings are held regularly with parents of children with a high level of need and we endeavour to support the family where appropriate as well as the individual child.
What provision does the school make for children with identified medical needs?
Where children have identified medical needs, they will have a specific care plan produced in collaboration with the parent, child, school nurse or identified medical practitioner.
What provision does the school make for Looked After Children (LAC) with SEN?
For children who are Looked After, all involved individuals will be invited to all key meetings regarding the child. The SENCO and Designated Teacher (Mr McConville) work together closely to ensure that the implications of a child being both looked after and having SEN are fully understood by the relevant school staff. This may include joint attendance at meetings, update meetings between these two members of staff as and when required and close communication with the other adults involved in the care of the LAC.
In addition, information from the SENCO regarding the SEN of the looked after child will be used as part of the planning for the child’s Personal Education and Health Plan where needs warrant this. Because we recognise that looked after children with SEN are vulnerable with regards to bullying and other social and emotional issues, we take particular care to monitor the emotional needs of LAC by working closely with the Learning Mentor (Mrs Baker).
How will Good Shepherd Catholic Primary support your child when they are leaving this school? Or moving to another class?
We recognise that transitions can be difficult for a child with SEND and take steps to ensure that any transition is as smooth as possible.
If your child is moving to another school, we will contact the school SENCO and ensure he/she knows about any special arrangements or support that needs 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 via professional dialogue meetings which are held in advance of your child moving. If necessary, a transition meeting can be arranged for you to meet and discuss your child’s needs with their teacher before the new academic year begins.
In Year 6 the SENCO and class teacher and in some cases the Learning Mentor will meet with the Primary Transition Team from your child’s new school and all information will be discussed and shared. Meetings will also be held with you throughout year 6 to support you with your child’s transition. Where appropriate and necessary arrangements can be made for your child to visit their new school with a member of our staff to ease transition. The school will ensure that all records and assessments are discussed and shared with the new school.
If your child requires specialised support to help with their move, e.g. a transition book, this can also be arranged in advance.
How will I be involved in my child’s education?
If your child is identified as needing extra provision for their needs, your child’s class teacher will meet with you and your child to draw up a Personal Education Plan (PEP) whereby school and home can work in partnership to set targets that will help your child to progress and will meet your child’s needs. These structured conversations will take place 3 times a year and the targets will be reviewed at each meeting. If your child is still not making progress, then further referral and advice from outside agencies will be sought. In some cases, an assessment for an Education and Health Care Plan (EHC) may be drawn up in partnership between you, your child and school.
How is my child involved in their education?
Your child’s needs will be at the centre of all we do and their views will be considered along every step of their journey at our school. Your child will take part in each PEP meeting and share their thoughts and feelings.