Mrs Lester is the SENCO, and as SENCO is responsible for the operation of the Special Educational Needs (SEND) policy and co-ordination of specific provisions that are used to support children with SEND. An essential part of the role is to liaise with staff to monitor progress and identify where further inventions and support is necessary. There is regular contact with a range of agencies including the Your Psychology, who are able to provide specialist advice and support to school. If you have any concerns regarding SEND matters, do not hesitate to contact Mrs Lester on 01902 558977.
What is the Local Offer?
The Local Offer was introduced in the Green Paper (March 2011) as an easy to understand set of information of the support and services available to support disabled children and children with SEND and their families. Wolverhampton Local Authority’s Local Offer can be found at the website below:
There are 14 questions that were devised following consultation with parents/carers as well as other agencies, which reflect common concerns and interests. These are answered by schools, agencies and colleges to provide information to parents/carers to enable them to make decisions about how to best support their children’s individual needs. In this document Holy Trinity answers the questions and documents the strategies, intervention and support available.
- How is Holy Trinity an inclusive school?
At Holy Trinity we ensure that we provide an inclusive education for all by providing a broad and balanced curriculum. SEND provision is central to the work of every class and every subject within a continuous cycle of planning, teaching and assessment. Teachers, Higher Level Teaching Assistants (HLTAs), Teaching Assistants (TAs) and Learning Mentors (LMs) will take account of these requirements and make provision, where necessary, to support individuals or groups of children and thus enable them to participate effectively in curriculum and assessment activities. Such children may need additional or different help from that given to other children of the same age.
With regards to transition, we have a feeder Nursery within our setting where transition occurs during the summer term before starting Reception in September. Where the children attend a different setting, staff liaise with those settings to ensure a seamless transition. In most cases, the SENCO receives documented information regarding individuals who have been identified with additional needs and will work with the Reception class teacher to implement the appropriate provisions. Holy Trinity works closely with local feeder schools to ensure smooth transition and awareness of needs. Where appropriate, the SENCO from both schools will make contact and in some instances set up observations. Individual documentation is sent to the new school, which documents individual support that the child has received.
- How does Holy Trinity know if my child needs extra support and help?
At Holy Trinity children are identified as requiring additional support through SEND provision in a number of ways:
- Concerns are raised by parents/carers, teachers or the child;
- Looking at individual progress and attainment, where little or no progress has been made with regards to individual levels;
- When quality first teaching and group intervention have not assisted in progress being made;
- There is a change in the child’s behaviour.
- What should I do if I think my child has Special Educational Needs?
The class teacher of your child is your initial point of contact for raising any concerns. You can see the class teachers before or after school, or an appointment can be made through the school office. In addition, you can contact the SENCO (Mrs Lester) or the Head Teacher (Mrs McNally), appointments can be made through the school office or Mrs Lester is on the playground every morning.
- How will Holy Trinity support my child in their learning?
Every child’s learning is planned for by the class teacher, it will be differentiated appropriately to match the child’s individual needs. This may include additional support by the teacher or teaching assistants within class. If a child requires additional, targeted support, in a small group to ensure progress is maintained or accelerated they may receive support through a GAS (Goal Attainment Scaling) intervention. These are either led by the classes HLTA/TA or a member of staff responsible for intervention (Mrs Cook, Ms Coleman or Mrs Clayton). These interventions are monitored on a half-termly basis, assessing the impact on the child’s progress and attainment. The class teachers use information from these interventions to inform planning and next steps required for individuals.
If a child required additional, individual targeted support then they receive support through an Individual Action Plan (IAP). The targets are set with the SENCO, class teachers, parents/carers and the children. These plans enable the teachers to plan and provide individual support to ensure that progress can be made.
Pupil progress meetings are held on a half-termly basis, where class teachers meet with members of the LMT (Leadership and Management Team) to discuss the progress of all individuals within their class. This provides opportunities for concerns to be raised and support to be provided. The SENCO monitors the data and work of all children, to assess whether individuals require additional support.
Occasionally, there may be a need for additional outside support, where a child has not made sufficient progress despite continued, targeted intervention. A referral will be made, with your consent, and forwarded to the most appropriate agency. After a series of assessments, a programme of support is provided which the school implements and shares with parents/carers.
- What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?
We strive to offer a wide variety of pastoral support for children who are encountering emotional difficulties. Members of staff such as the class teacher and SENCO are readily available for children who wish to discuss issues and concerns. At Holy Trinity we employ a Good Mental Health and Well-Being Leader (Miss Evans), whose work entails them providing emotional support for individuals. Where this is being provided, you will be informed and consent will be required. Also, as part of the curriculum and through school policies, the children are educated and supported about healthy lifestyles.
If a child has a medical need then a detailed Care Plan is compiled with support from the school nurse in consultation with parents/carers. These are discussed with all staff who are involved with the child. Staff receive epipen and asthma training delivered by the school nurse. Where necessary and in agreement with parents/carers, medicines are administered in school but only where a signed medical consent form is in place. Many members of staff have first aid training.
- How accessible is Holy Trinity? How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
We provide an accessible school environment for all children; we will discuss individual access requirements where necessary. The school site is all on one level, with wide doors and open plan classrooms. In addition, we have a toilet adapted for disabled users.
We operate an inclusive school environment, where all children are included in all aspects of the curriculum. Our SEND policy and Equal Opportunities and Inclusion policy promotes involvement of all children across the curriculum, including activities outside the classroom. Children with SEND are fully integrated into all aspects of school life. All relevant policies are reviewed in light of equal opportunities, human rights and disability discrimination.
- How can Holy Trinity help me to support my child’s learning?
The class teacher will provide information on ways you can support your child, whether this is through homework or additional activities matched to targets. Mrs Lester may meet with you to discuss how to support your child with strategies to use for a range of circumstances. If outside agencies are involved then they may also provide suggestions and programmes of study that could be used at home.
- What specialist services are available in school?
Members of staff within the school have different specialisms, which are used to support the children. There are staff within each Key Stage that have received Speech and Language Training known as ELKLAN. This enables them to support children with the development of their speech and language, as well as identify children for further support and intervention. The SENCO is accredited with the National Award for Special Educational Need Co-ordination. All staff have undertaken SUMO training, where these skills are used with the children to develop emotional well-being. We invest time and money in training all our staff to improve whole class teaching and develop enhances skills in the delivery of interventions.
- Which external agencies are accessed by the school?
At times it may be necessary to consult with external agencies to receive specialist support and advice. Where they exist, the agencies used by the school include:
- Educational Psychologist
- Specialist Teachers
- Education Welfare Officer
- School Nurse
- Speech and Language Therapy
- Occupational Therapy
- Parent Support Advisor
- CAMHS (Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service)
- The Gem Centre
- Practitioners at the local hospitals
- How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs? Who will oversee, plan and work with my child?
All teaching teams strive to provide quality first teaching (Wave 1) and this is monitored regularly by the leadership team. All staff receive regular and relevant training to support their teaching, and also realise the importance of providing a stimulating environment in which children’s learning is at the centre. Therefore, differentiation is embedded in our curriculum and practice; all lessons are differentiation to match the individual needs in each class. We also have pupil progress meeting, staff meetings and phase meetings to monitor and reflect on the next best steps. This enables all staff to be able to provide a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum, which caters for the needs of each individual child.
Where a child has been identified with special needs then they will have the opportunity to receive additional support in class and out of class. This is often provided by a Teaching Assistant and can be either one-to-one or small group work. An IAP will be written, with targets set according to the child’s area of need. These will be written by the class teacher and monitored by the SENCO. Officially they are written three times a year however they are checked and updated on a regular basis, when the children have met their targets or when they required further support. The day-to-day management of the IAP targets will be recorded and monitored using GAS forms. These are completed by Teaching Teams and will be updated every 2-3 weeks, these can be shared with parents if requested. All targets and support will be shared with parents at an IAP meeting and/or Parents’ Evenings.
- How are Holy Trinity’s resources allocated and matched to the children’s SEND needs?
The SEND budget is allocated each financial year and the Head Teacher, Governors and Bursar oversee this. Budgets are closely monitored and aligned to the School Improvement Plan (SIP). The money is used to provide additional support or resources dependent on an individual’s need. Provisions may also be allocated after pupil progress meetings or following MASH support. We seek to ensure value for money; the SENCO and bursar cost out and evaluate interventions to inform effectiveness of future provision for children. Resources may include the deployment of staff depending on individual circumstances.
- How will Holy Trinity know that my child is making progress and support is having an impact?
As part of the quality first teaching (wave 1) all staff ensure that they are continually assessing the attainment of the children through teacher assessment. To inform this they use samples of the children’s work, annotated planning with notes on how the children have contributed throughout the lesson and test data. Class teachers inform the SENCO about a child experiencing difficultly and should additional support be required, this is undertaken after consultation with the family, learner and relevant staff.
All interventions are monitored for impact and outcomes are agreed at the start, the duration and frequency are also monitored. The class teacher, teaching assistant and SENCO are all involved in the monitoring process. We do not wait until the end of an intervention to assess whether progress has been made. Notes are made following each session; these are monitored by the class teacher. If it is felt that the intervention is not having a positive impact then it is either stopped or changed. If it is felt that the intervention has been successful then either the intervention is withdrawn or new targets and outcomes are agreed.
- How will I know that my child is making progress?
A pivotal part of the ethos of Holy Trinity is to work in partnership with parents/carers and ensure that a two-way dialogue is in place in order to support the children’s learning. There are many opportunities for informal discussions between parents/carers and staff. We operate an open door policy and staff are either available in the morning before school or the evening after school. We operate a Friends of the School, which provide opportunities for parents and staff to meet. In addition, the Good Mental Health and Well-being Worker runs parent sessions.
Formal discussions are also available; parents/carers can make appointments through the school office to see class teachers, the SENCO, Deputy Heads and the Head Teacher. Every term a Parents’ evening is held, where there are opportunities to discuss progress, support and any other concerns.
- Who can I contact for further information about Holy Trinity? Who should I contact if I have concerns regarding my child’s SEND provision?
The Governors of Holy Trinity are available to provide additional support and information about Holy Trinity. Mrs Ann Ramsbottom is the SEND Governor, and she works with the SENCO to ensure that SEND provision is a pivotal part of school life. Mr David Higgs is the Chair of Governors and he can be contacted if further information is required about Holy Trinity.
In the first instance, parents/carers are encouraged to discuss any concerns with their child’s class teacher. Further information and support can be provided from the SENCO and the Head Teacher. The school works, wherever possible, in partnership with parents to ensure a collaborative approach to meeting the children’s needs. All complaints are taken seriously and are heard through the school’s complaints policy and procedure.
Wolverhampton Parent Partnership Service is a statutory, confidential service for parents/carers of children with special educational needs. They provide access to impartial information, advice and support about all aspects of SEND. More information can be found at their website: http://www.wolvesparentpartnership.org/.