'Fairness is not giving everyone the same thing. It is giving each person what they need to succeed'
Special educational provision is underpinned by high quality teaching and is compromised by anything less (SEN Code of Practice 2014). Having read our recent Ofsted report you will know that teaching at Weeke is at least good and in many cases is outstanding; this is why all pupils, including SEN children do so well at Weeke.
How are SEN needs identified?
At Weeke Primary School children are identified as needing SEND Support through:
- Liaison with pre-schools/previous school
- A child performing significantly below age related expectations
- A lack of progress
- Through assessment and screening tests
- Concerns raised by parents or teachers
- Through liaison with external agencies
- Health diagnosis through paediatrician
This model illustrates how we identify a Special Educational Need or Disability (SEND) and how we intervene and monitor progress. Children who are identified as having a SEND are recorded on our school SEND Register as 'SEN Support'. Some children then make very good progress or their needs change and we may no longer feel that they need to be listed as SEN Support; these children are maintained on the register as 'monitoring'. Some children have a greater level of need and have an Education and Health Care Plan (EHC Plan). These children have allocated 1:1 support hours linked to their EHC Plan and are supported in school by a 1:1 Learning Support Assistant (LSA).
My child has SEND, now what?
SEND support is very varied but in a nutshell, the Inclusion Manager will liaise with teachers and Learning Support Assistants to decide what provision is needed which is 'different from, or in addition to' the usual school activities and curriculum. This might include:
- Support or resources in the classroom which is different to other children, for example, by having access to writing slopes or an iPad to type rather than write
- More 1:1 or small group support in lessons
- Different resources or outcomes in a lesson
- Access to learning breaks to support concentration, processing of information or physical/sensory needs
- Interventions outside of the classroom to support a particular need for example emotional support through ELSA, phonics/reading/writing support from our family of Rapid Intervention programmes, catch up maths programmes, Speed Up handwriting programmes or physical programmes to develop gross/fine motor skills.
The teachers and LSAs at Weeke Primary School have helped to create a working document called the Weeke SEND Support Map which identifies possible ways we might support different SEND needs in school.
Parents are kept informed of specific SEND support their child is receiving through:
- Class/year group Provision Maps which detail additional Interventions, targets for your child and outcomes after a term of intervention. These are shared with parents at Parent Consultation evenings in the autumn term and again in the spring term.
- We no longer write Individual Education Plans (IEPs) for children with SEND Support as we have reviewed our practice following research and school trials and have adopted Provision Mapping as a way forward at Weeke.
'I don't know what this is?'
This is something we commonly hear from parents as titles such as Speed Up and Rapid are something of a mystery – what are they actually doing?
This handy guide to our Interventions might help parents to better understand the different programmes and activities your child might be involved in.
The importance of really understanding your child
We pride ourselves on the excellent relationships which all staff develop with children in their care. For children with a SEND this is particularly important as we need and must get it just right in the ways we talk to them, work with them and develop them.
We ask for parents of children on the SEN register to help us gather the important background and views of your unique child by completing a Pupil Profile (please note: The Provision Map and Pupil Profile shown on this page are examples only and do not contain information on any children at Weeke). This year 2015/16 we are trialling this with children who have an EHC Plan in place.
I hope you find the information in this section of use and of interest. I have aimed to include lots of useful links and ways you can research further on your own. I always welcome meeting parents and it is great when we can work in partnership. If you have concerns or questions I am always open to meeting parents at Parent Consultation evenings or as part of the school day.
Hampshire County Council now publishes information about services that are available for children and young people from birth to 25 who have Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities. This is known as the ‘Local Offer’. On this site, you’ll find a wealth of useful material that can help you access the right services and support for you and your family.
The importance of talk! Did you know? Amazingly, research tells us that the level of children's vocabulary at age 5 is a very strong predictor of the qualifications achieved at school leaving age and beyond.
That is why, as a school, we are so passionate about speaking and listening.
At Weeke Primary School we use a computer based package called Language Link to assess all children's understanding of spoken language. This assessment is completed during their first year of school but is then reviewed during Year 1 and Year 2. Following the assessment we then set up Language Links intervention groups to support children, in a small group.
Parents will be provided with 'Homework Packs' of games, activities and advice to support the development of their language at home. These resources are linked specifically to the aspect of spoken language they will be working on, for example understanding instructions.
Research shows us that parents can make a great difference to how quickly a child can learn to understand spoken language so we value your support with this.
No Pens Wednesday:
On the 2015 No Pens Wednesday the children enjoyed a whole day without their pens and pencils as they put down their pens and picked up their language for the day. Classes continued with their usual lessons but instead of writing they learned though speaking and listening activities like drama, debate, practical science and maths games. A day which challenging their thinking at times and demonstrated to everyone the power and importance of talk!
Look at these websites for excellent resources about how you can support your child with speech, language and communication:
At Weeke we use a multi-sensory approach to teaching but especially to learning phonics for reading and for spelling. This approach is especially useful for children who find learning more difficult and need to tackle something in a number of different ways.
Weeke Spelling Pack
- Click here to open our Spelling pack - how to support children to learn and remember their spellings but in a fun way!
- Click here to link to the spelling lists for each year group
We are striving to be as 'Dyslexia Friendly' a school as we can be, this is done through raising awareness of Dyslexia, adapting our classrooms environment and providing quality first teaching which supports the needs of Dyslexic children.
Click here to open a presentation (assembly) from some of our Dyslexic children about 'what it means to be Dyslexic'. This was presented to the whole school in our Dyslexia Awareness Week.
We are a Rapid school! We have bought into a number of excellent intervention programmes from Pearson called Rapid Phonics, Rapid Reading and Rapid Writing. All LSAs are trained by Pearson and a great number of children benefit from the programmes which are designed to rapidly 'catch up' children who have fallen behind. The Rapid family of interventions are still relatively new to Weeke but the children and staff who use them love them as they are so quick, punchy and motivating! Click here to read more.
We also recommend Paired Reading, a supportive strategy for home reading when children are first starting to read or if they lack confidence.
Please refer to our Weeke SEND Support Map for more information about the ways Dyslexic children are supported at Weeke Primary School.
Children’s emotional health can be a huge barrier to learning, at Weeke Primary School we have two trained Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSAs) who between them offer our children 7 afternoons of ELSA time to support children 1:1 or in small group to address issues, such as:
- Self-esteem/personal identity.
- Identifying and understanding their feelings.
- Discussing their feelings.
- Resolving conflicts.
- Forming and sustaining relationships.
Both our ELSAs receive what is commonly referred to as ‘clinical supervision’ from educational psychologists and also attend regular training. Children are identified for ELSA support thorough both parents and teachers working together to identify children for whom their emotional health is proving to be a barrier to learning. ELSA support is usually for 6 weeks on a weekly basis but can be more regular or on going in some cases. Often our ELSAs will work with a children for a set time and then ‘keep them on’ to monitor and catch up with them weekly to ensure they continue to use the strategies taught in ELSA sessions.
At Weeke Primary School we also share expertise from our ELSAs and our school educational psychologists to support children in the classroom for example through developing Success Books to share achievements and milestones – a great strategy to boost children’s self-esteem.
We are pleased to also be involved in Fit Fest events run in Hampshire by CAMHS. Their motto is Get Fit. Get healthy. Get happy!
As a school we have excellent relationships with and work closely with any external agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs within our school, including: Educational Psychologist (Zoe Collins); Primary Behaviour Support; Health including – GPs, School Nurses, Clinical Psychologist, Paediatricians, Speech & Language Therapists; Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists; CAMHS; social services including – Early Help Hub and Locality Teams. Charities and organisations who offer counselling and family support. We also access outreach from Shepherd's Down special school and Lanterns Nursery.
If parents have concerns about their child, or feel that another outside agency may be able to support they should make an appointment to discuss this with Kathryn Knapp via the school office.
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