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1. What kinds of SEND are provided for at St. John’s School?
Our school currently provides additional and/or different provision for the four broad areas of need in the SEND Code of Practice 2015, including:
- Communication and interaction, for example, autistic spectrum disorder and speech and language difficulties
- Cognition and learning, for example, dyslexia
- Social, emotional and mental health difficulties, for example, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Sensory and/or physical needs, for example, visual impairments, hearing impairments, processing difficulties
2. How does St. John’s School identify pupils with SEND and assess their needs?
We will assess each pupil’s current skills and levels of attainment on entry, in liaison with parents, and other service providers (previous settings, health and other professionals who know the child well). We use the Oxfordshire Guidance for SEND Support to help us identify a child or young person’s special educational needs, what level of support we are expected to offer and how to arrange and monitor the support given. In addition, class teachers will make regular assessments of progress for all pupils and identify those whose progress:
- Is significantly slower, or markedly different, than that of their peers starting from the same baseline
- Fails to match or better the child’s previous rate of progress or development
- Fails to close the attainment gap between the child and their peers
- Widens the attainment gap
This may include progress in areas other than attainment, for example, emotional, communication and social needs.
Slow progress and low attainment will not automatically mean a pupil is recorded as having SEND. Conversely high curriculum attainment only does not automatically mean a pupil does not have SEND. The development of the whole child is considered.
When deciding whether special educational provision is required, we will start with the desired outcomes, including the expected progress and attainment, and the views and the wishes of the pupil and their parents. We will use this to determine the support that is needed and whether we can provide it by adapting/enhancing our core offer, or whether something different or additional is needed.
3. How does the school consult with and involve pupils and parents?
Class teachers, and the SENDCo, will have an early discussion with the pupil and their parents when identifying whether they need special educational provision. These conversations will make sure that:
- Everyone develops a good understanding of the pupil’s areas of strength and difficulty
- We take into account the parents’ concerns
- Everyone understands the agreed outcomes sought for the child
- Everyone is clear on what the next steps are
- Everyone is clear about who is involved in supporting the child to meet the agreed outcomes
We will formally notify parents as soon as it is clear that a child is in need of SEND support. When a child is placed on the SEND register a Pupil Profile is created, this captures all the information we have gathered about the strengths and difficulties the child faces, their views and aspirations and the views of their parents.
4. How does the school assess and review pupils' progress towards outcomes?
We will follow the graduated approach and the four-part cycle of assess, plan, do, review.
The class or subject teacher will work with the SENDCo to carry out a clear analysis of the pupil’s needs. This will draw on:
- The teacher’s assessment and experience of the pupil
- Their previous progress and attainment and behaviour
- Other teachers’ assessments, where relevant
- The individual’s development in comparison to their peers and national data
- The views and experience of parents
- The pupil’s own views
- Advice from external support services, if relevant
The assessment will be reviewed three times a year. Planned support is captured on a Provision Map and will specify when the SEND support is one-to-one or small group.
All teachers and support staff who work with the pupil will be made aware of their needs, the outcomes sought, the support provided, and any teaching strategies or approaches that are required. We will regularly review the effectiveness of the support and interventions and their impact on the pupil’s progress.
5. How are pupils supported when moving between phases and preparing for adulthood?
We will share information with the school the pupil is moving to when a place has been offered and it is agreed with parents that this handover of information should take place.
Transfer and transition plans, between phases and between settings are individualised based on pupil needs. Broadly speaking though, in the summer term prior to transfer, transfer/transition arrangements might look like this:
Pre-school to Early Years (EYFS):
- visits are made to the pre-school provider(s) to gather information about the child, speak to pre-school staff and parents, observe the child, and where necessary work with external professionals to create a ‘Transition Plan’ to facilitate a smooth and positive transfer
- additional visits to St John’s are made available for the child if it is in their best interests to experience them in advance of their peers joining
- photo story books are made available for the child so that their parents can support them further to ease transition to EYFS, photo story books include pictures of the new class environment and adults who will be working with the child.
Between Phases within School:
- Class teachers plan transition to new classes and the SENDCo with external professionals, if needed, will offer guidance as required
- If needed, the receiving teacher will attend the final summer term Pupil Profile Review for that pupil
- Again, additional visits to the new classroom along with photo story books are created to support this
- Where needed, the receiving teacher will spend time working with the child in the summer term prior to entry to their class, to form a relationship and reduce any anxieties
Transfer to New Primary School
- The SENDCo liaises with the new school and the child’s Pupil Profile and provision needs are shared
Y6 to Y7 Transfer:
- The SENDCo consults with the receiving school SENDCo to discuss the child’s Pupil Profile and provision to date
- Additional transfer visits are arranged, these include additional visits for the child to the new school. These can also include visits to St John’s from Y7 staff and the secondary SENDCo, depending on the needs of the child
6. The St. John’s School approach to teaching pupils with SEND
Teachers are responsible and accountable for the progress and development of all the pupils in their class.
High quality teaching is our first step in responding to pupils who have SEND. This will be differentiated for individual pupils.
We are always ‘panning for now’ but with our ‘eye on the future’ within our graduated approach of an ‘assess, plan, do and review’ cycle. As far as possible we want all our children to be as independent as they can be. Therefore, when we adopt approaches and interventions, we consider the knowledge and skills they need to achieve this and are careful to ensure children do not become ‘adult dependent’ in school.
We adopt carefully chosen, evidence-based interventions including:
- Colourful Semantics
- Precision Teaching
- Little Wandle
- Write from the Start
- ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) support
- Zones of Regulation
- Social Stories
- A Volcano in My Tummy
- Lego Therapy
- Active Listening for Active Learning
- We Thinkers
- Circle of Friends
7. What adaptations to the curriculum and learning environment are made?
Within our ‘core offer’ we weave SEND inclusion approaches and adaptations into Quality First Teaching and the typical school day so that access for all is our starting point. For example, the following SEND approaches are taught to all pupils, and so are not ‘bolted’ on for pupils with SEN. These approaches are visually supported in every class:
- Active listening (Whole Body Listening)
- Emotional regulation (Zones of Regulation Visuals) to determine scale of the problem ‘v’ size of the reaction
- Visuals to support oral and written communication (for example, Colourful Semantics)
- Visual timetables and ‘Now and Next’ Boards
- Task management boards to aid independence
- Sensory/mindfulness boxes in classes
We make the following further adaptations to ensure all pupils’ needs are met:
- Differentiating our curriculum to ensure all pupils are able to access it, for example, by grouping, 1:1 work, teaching style, content of the lesson, etc.
- Adapting our resources and staffing
- Using recommended aids, such as Numicon, laptops, coloured overlays, visual timetables, larger font, task management boards etc.
- Differentiating our teaching, for example, giving longer processing times, pre-teaching of key vocabulary, reading instructions aloud, peer to peer support etc.
- Consideration of the environment to avoid overwhelming a child and placing excessive demands on them, for example, if they have sensory needs
8. What additional support for learning is available?
If a child is not responding to our ‘core inclusion offer’, and our monitoring shows that the core offer is of high quality, we have teaching assistants who are trained to deliver interventions such as those listed above.
Teaching assistants will support pupils on a 1:1 basis or small group as directed by the class teacher. They will also work with a range of other pupils.
Teaching assistants do not replace the class teacher, the child will continue to be directly taught by their class teacher on a daily basis.
Teaching assistants enhance the work planned by the teacher and assist the class teacher in making suitable adaptations flexibly, monitoring the progress made, facilitating independence as far as possible and carrying out ‘close the gap’ and personalised work as directed.
9. What is the expertise and training of staff at St John’s?
Our SENDCo, Ms Butcher, has gained the National Award in SEN Coordination (NASENCO). The school has a qualified ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant), Mrs Kenny, and we have a team of teaching assistants, who are trained to deliver SEND provision.
In the last academic year, staff have been trained in inclusive classroom practice with a focus on EAL strategies, effective TA support to develop pupil independence, sensory needs, Colourful Semantics and Social Stories. Individual staff have received training on dyslexia, dyscalulia and ADHD according to the needs of the pupils that they work with.
10. How does the school secure equipment and facilities?
The whole school profile of SEND is monitored termly, which over time informs the general picture of equipment and facilities that may need to be available.
Decisions are made based on pupil need in as proactive a way as possible, for example, ensuring that wobble cushions or ear defenders are available in school for children who may have sensory needs.
Equipment and facilities are also purchased and/or adapted based on the review of pupil need following Pupil Progress Review Meetings and from advice from specialist services, for example, from the SENSS Physical Difficulties team.
11. How do the staff evaluate the effectiveness of SEND provision?
We evaluate the effectiveness of provision for pupils with SEND by:
- Reviewing pupils’ individual progress towards their goals each term
- Keeping in regular contact with parents through meetings and daily handover
- Holding regular pupil profile review meetings between class teachers and the SENDCo
- Reviewing the impact of interventions after 6 weeks
- Using pupil questionnaires and parent questionnaires
- Monitoring by the SENCO
- Using provision maps, individual intervention trackers and observations to measure progress
- Holding annual reviews for pupils with EHCPs.
12. How does the school enable pupils with SEND to engage in activities available to those in the school who do not have SEND
- All of our extra-curricular activities and school visits are available to all our pupils, including our before-and after-school clubs.
- All pupils are encouraged to go on our residential trips
- All pupils are encouraged to take part in sports day/school plays/special workshops, etc.
- Pupils with SEND are encouraged to be part of the whole school community and contribute to such things as the school council.
- No pupil is ever excluded from taking part in these activities because of their SEN or disability.
We further support pupils with disabilities by:
- Risk Assessments and pre-visits are carried out to ensure that plans are put in place, and adaptations made, to ensure that pupils with SEND can engage in activities safely and are not disadvantaged during their visit
- Ensuring that arrangements for the admission of disabled pupils are thoroughly planned through ‘Transition Planning’ meetings, that involve the family and all the relevant professionals working with the child. This ensures that professional development and securing equipment and facilities, where needed, can be carried out in a timely, proactive way.
- We ensure that staff have ongoing professional training, that reflects current research, so that they can actively prevent SEND pupils from being treated less favourably than other pupils.
- The school has bespoke areas where children can learn 1-1 or in small groups.
For more information the school’s accessibility plan can be found on our website.
13. What is the support for improving emotional and social development?
We provide support for pupils to improve their emotional and social development in the following ways:
- Our school ELSA, Ms Kenny, runs a regular Worry Club where all children can share any anxieties that they have. Teachers can also refer pupils for targeted support sessions.
- Pupils with SEND are also encouraged to be part of wider clubs to promote teamwork/building friendships etc.
- Progress of social and emotional development for pupils with SEN is tracked using the QCA behaviour Scale. This also helps identify developmental areas that may impede future well-being.
- When teachers identify these areas where a child may need further support interventions are planned, such as A Volcano in My Tummy.
- External professionals, such as the school Educational Psychologist and CAMHS will advise on strategies if needed.
We have a zero-tolerance approach to bullying. All allegations and incidences of behaviour that could lead to bullying are reported using CPOMs. CPOMs software allows staff to quickly, easily and above all else securely record all the information in one place. The information held is regularly reviewed by staff. This ensures that incidences of bullying or potential bullying behaviours, and those involved in them, are captured and trends and vulnerabilities are much easier to spot. This enables teachers and senior leaders to take swift action.
14. How do staff and the SENDCo work with other agencies?
Children with SEND support have many of their needs met within the context of the classroom with carefully planned adaptations, approaches and interventions.
There may be times when the school involves other agencies, for example when a pupil is not making adequate progress, despite a high quality SEND Support offer. At these times the school will involve the relevant specialist service to help plan provision.
Children with an EHCP have the involvement of other agencies in devising outcomes within the plan. Their progress is monitored by the SENDCo and other agencies on a termly basis. Specialist agencies are asked to contribute to the EHCP Annual Review.
We work with the following agencies to provide support for pupils with SEN (not an exhaustive list):
- SENSS (Special Educational Needs Support Service) Communication and Interaction Team
- SENSS Physical Disabilities Team
- SENSS Hearing Support team
- NHS Occupational Therapy Service
- NHS Speech and Language Service
- CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services)
- Educational Psychology Service
- OXSIT (Oxfordshire Schools Inclusion Team)
15. Complaints about SEND provision
Complaints about SEND provision in our school should be made to the class teacher in the first instance. If the issue remains unresolved then the SENDCo should be involved immediately. Following that, if unresolved, parents must contact the Headteacher. If they still feel that the issue is unresolved, then parents must refer to the complaints policy.
SENDIASS can also be accessed to support parents. https://sendiass-oxfordshire.org.uk/
The parents of pupils with SEND have the right to make disability discrimination claims to the first-tier SEND tribunal if they believe that our school has discriminated against their children. They can make a claim about alleged discrimination regarding:
- Provision of education and associated services
- Making reasonable adjustments, including the provision of auxiliary aids and services
16. Contact details of support services for parents of pupils with SEND
There are a number of services available locally to support parents, see the Oxfordshire Local Offer below:
There are also a number of useful national support services available.
Special Needs Jungle https://specialneedsjungle.com/
National Autistic Society https://www.autism.org.uk/
Downs Syndrome Association https://www.downs-syndrome.org.uk/
17. Contact details for raising concerns
Parents are asked to contact the SENDCo if they have a concern that has not been addressed fully by the class teacher. If they do not feel that their concern is addressed then they are to contact the Headteacher.
18. The local authority local offer
Our local authority’s local offer is published here:
Date: March 2023
Date for next review: March 2024