When a child first begins school the amount of information presented to parents can seem daunting, especially if their child has SEND. We have published a number of FAQs posed by parents relating to our school and SEND provision.
Who decides if my child has a SEND?
Often, children may join our school, with parents having a clear picture of their child’s needs – parents know their children best – and as a school we see parents as full partners in their child’s education. Sometimes, however, it is school staff who may initially identify a concern. If this were to be the case, school staff would liaise with parents at the earliest opportunity to discuss such concerns and agree a way forwards. Additional support can be sought by families from the Information Advice and Support Service (IASS). For some concerns, we may discuss the involvement of the Educational Psychology Service, the Learning Support Service, the Occupational Therapy Service, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service or your local GP. It is important to understand, however, that the purpose of such involvement of professionals is not always to seek a ‘label’ or ‘diagnosis’ – but more often in order for advice to be offered to help the child learn as well as they possibly can. For example, certain programmes may be advised, teaching strategies, resources or services in order to address the needs as best as possible. As previously mentioned, if these needs are addressed, we are confident in the outcomes of such support, and the issue has been resolved, your child will no longer be placed on our SEND register.
There are two categories of SEND at Esh Winning Primary School, these are children in receipt of: –
A Support Plan; the children are overseen by the school and the school and parents initiate, review, amend, and cease support for children whose needs are seen at ‘Support Plan’ level.
A Statement / Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP); historically, children who had higher needs were issued a ‘statement’, by the Local Authority. From September 2014, statements will cease to be issued, and EHCPs will be issued in their place. All children with a current statement will be assessed against the criteria for EHCPs over the coming years. Children with needs at this level have their plans initiated and ceased by the Local Authority, but reviewed and monitored by the school and parents at least annually.
How can I find out what schools, social care and health should be providing for my child?
The new SEND code of practice sets out how decisions should be made for children and young adults with SEND. This is statutory guidance and all schools, local authorities and health providers must have regard to it when providing for SEND children/young adults. The Code of Practice is available from the gov.uk website by clicking this link.
How accessible is your school?
Our school is built on one level giving easy access to all areas including the building and play areas. We have disabled toilet facilities and a selection of specialist furniture within school to meet the needs of a variety of physical conditions.
Please contact us if you have any questions about accessibility.
What specialist services are available at your school to meet my child’s needs?
We work with an extensive range of services and professionals to ensure we meet the needs of each individual child. We encourage these professionals to visit school as often as possible to work with our staff and share their expertise. Wherever possible, staff implement programmes of work linked to these professionals e.g. speech and language programmes, exercises recommended by physical therapies etc.
What training does staff supporting children with SEND have?
Members of staff have Paediatric First Aid and Safeguarding Level 1 qualification. In addition, our SEND support staff have a selection of training relating to Makaton, Movement Difficulties Programmes and specific training from Speech and Language Therapists. Each year the needs of children within our school are carefully considered and training organised to up-skill staff e.g. use of suction devices, PEGS feeding etc.
How will my child be included in activities outside of the classroom including school trips?
We ensure that all children are offered the opportunity to participate with activities outside of the classroom by making reasonable adjustments to the organisation of these. For example, we ensure SEND children have an appropriate level of adult support if going out of school, we organise transport that provides appropriate access and staff complete a comprehensive risk assessment of any excursion to ensure all children are safe and included. In addition, our SEND children are given the opportunity to participate in visits to settings that meet their specific needs e.g. sensory play.
How will your school prepare my child for the transition to Secondary school?
Children with SEND are given an extensive level of support before they leave for a new school. Their teacher and SENCO will discuss with secondary colleagues how many transition visits can be arranged over and above those offered to children without SEND. These additional visits to the new school will be carried out with the child and Secondary School Staff in the summer term. This ensures that bridges are built between schools, key information shared between staff and the child is given the opportunity to settle into a new routine with the support of a familiar adult.
How are parents involved with your school?
We very much value the contribution that parents can make to their child’s education. In order for parents to be fully involved in the life of the school, when they generally do not drop off or pick up their child from school, both school and home must work hard at this important aspect of school life. You are always welcome to call in to see how your child is getting on, so long as you let us know that you are coming, however we do also arrange many ‘joint learning’ sessions to help you to feel part of Esh Winning.
We also expect parents to attend a child centred ‘Annual Review’ for all pupils with a ‘Support Plan, or ‘Educational Health and Care Plan’, to enable all of the staff who work with yourselves to discuss the placement each year. There are also three Parents’ Evenings each year.
Who can I contact for further information?
Please contact the school to arrange an appointment to speak to Mrs Corrigan or Miss Common (SENCOs) if you have any further questions you would like to ask.
If you would like to discuss your SEND requirements in detail please contact the school to arrange an appointment.