Special Educational Needs
Schools have obligations under the Children and Families Act (Clause 65) to ensure that parents are fully informed about the provision the school is making for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND). The “School Information Report” should help to draw a picture of provision in the School for SEND and inform the parent. It should also help the parent and their child or young person feel welcome as part of the school community.
We hope that the following information gives a clear picture of our commitment to ensuring children with SEND are given the best opportunities and provision to enable them to achieve their best at Oaklands.
If you are considering Oaklands Infant School for your child, we would strongly recommend that you come and visit, and we will then be able to answer specific questions in person. Alternatively please contact Mrs Clark (Special Educational Needs Coordinator, SENCo) or Mrs Williams (Headteacher) via the school office on 01245 352166 or email [email protected].
Links to Other Policies
Our School Information Report 2022-23
The aims of our school are:
- Work in partnership to provide a happy, secure and nurturing environment where a broad education of the highest quality takes place
- Enable each child to become a respectful, independent individual, ready to meet change and challenge
- Provide a creative, stimulating and challenging curriculum, relevant to children’s needs and abilities, through which each child can achieve their best
Oaklands Infant School takes a whole school inclusive approach to children with special educational needs, recognising that the aims of the school are the same for all children, whatever their abilities. We value the contributions made by all children, professionals and parents to help enhance and maintain our inclusive school community. We are committed to working in partnership with the child, parents, carers and outside agencies to identify needs, provide support and monitor the progress of all children.
What is included under the term Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)?
Oaklands Infant school recognises that a child or young person has SEND if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them and, as defined in the 2014 Code of Practice, a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if they:
- Have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age; or
- Have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions
Special educational provision is educational or training provision that is additional to, or different from, that made generally for other children or young people of the same age by mainstream schools.
The Code of Practice breaks down SEND into the Four Broad Areas of Need:
- Communication and Interaction
- Cognition and Learning
- Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties
- Sensory and/or physical needs
This information report is based on the statutory Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Code of Practice and the following legislation:
- Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014, which sets out schools’ responsibilities for pupils with SEN and disabilities
The Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, which set out schools’ responsibilities for education, health and care (EHC) plans, SEN co-ordinators (SENCOs) and the SEND information report
Our SEND policy and practice reflect the principles of the SEND Code of Practice , the SEN and Disability Act [amended 2001], Index for Inclusion [updated 2001] the Discrimination and Disability Act [Dec.2006].
For further information please look on this website where relevant documents including the SEND and Accessibility policies are published.
How do we work in partnership with families?
We are committed to work in partnership with you to support your child’s education.
Throughout your time at Oaklands, you, as parents of a child with additional needs, are given regular opportunities to discuss your child’s progress and concerns. These opportunities can occur, for example, through:
- Weekly liaison with key workers and class teachers
- Termly meetings to discuss progress with the SENCo or other appropriate member of staff
- Statutory meetings and reviews
- Meetings to agree transition arrangements and support at the end of Year 2
At Oaklands we are committed to ensuring that your views are the starting point for our discussions, and that decisions around outcomes set and strategies put in place arise from full consultation. We hope that you have high expectations for your child and will work in partnership with us to achieve them.
Your child is central to the planning for, and the review and evaluation of, the resources put in place to support their progress. We are committed to hearing their voice and to ensuring their needs are met. We seek to ensure that your child is empowered to bring their needs to the attention of staff and help decide the best ways in which they can be supported, for example through:
- Age appropriate conversations about outcomes and progress
- A one-page profile of your child’s strengths, barriers to learning, likes and dislikes
- Termly PSHE lessons giving each child an opportunity to discuss their strengths and challenges at school
- Participation in One-Planning meetings or Annual Reviews
- Discussions about changes to the physical environment or resources which would be supportive to them.
How do we identify pupils with SEND and assess their needs?
We assess each pupil’s current skills and levels of attainment on entry, which will build on previous settings, where appropriate. Class teachers make regular assessments of progress for all pupils and identify those whose progress:
- Is significantly slower than that of their peers starting from the same baseline
- Fails to match or better the child’s previous rate of progress
- 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, social and emotional needs.
These factors will not automatically mean a pupil is recorded as having SEND but highlight to the class teacher any areas in which a child needs some additional support.
The method of identification and provision follows a graduated approach. Concerns are first raised when High Quality Teaching strategies used at a whole class level are not meeting the needs of a particular child. These are addressed through classroom adaptations such as small group work or the provision of additional resources.
If a child continues to find learning challenging after additional classroom strategies have been implemented provision will then take the form of a high quality, personalised teaching and learning approach. Following a discussion with parents/guardians, child, staff, and other professionals as required, an individual support plan (known as a One-Plan) is created. Through this discussion we make sure that:
- Everyone develops a good understanding of the child’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
Progress is reviewed at least termly and adaptions to the support provided are made as required. One-Plans relate to an agreed set of expected outcomes designed to stretch your child’s learning and development which are broken down into smaller steps each term. These are then assessed at the next meeting to clearly identify areas of progress and persisting challenge. This cycle of ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review’ enables teachers to monitor the quality, appropriateness and impact of the provision in relation to each child and their individual needs.
Schools have funding identified within their overall budget to provide high quality, appropriate support for those children with significant needs. A child who has persisting, complex or severe needs will require more extensive support which will need additional core funding. At this point, an assessment of Educational, Health and Care (EHC) needs will be undertaken by the Local Authority and an EHC Plan developed if appropriate. This should take no more than 20 weeks. You, your child and the school will be fully involved in this process.
What do we provide for all children in school?
As a school we are committed to ensuring that all teaching is at least good and that much is outstanding. High quality teaching is that which is adapted and personalised to meet the needs of the majority of children and young people. We aim to ensure that:
- All staff provide high quality teaching which allows children to learn effectively. A range of teaching and learning strategies may be required to ensure that all children can access the curriculum.
- Members of staff understand that they are all teachers of children with special educational needs.
- Teachers and Learning Support Staff have had extensive training to support high quality provision for children with additional needs.
- As part of Bridge Academy Trust, we have made a commitment to becoming a Dyslexia Friendly School and employ whole school strategies to reduce visual stress.
- All children, regardless of ability, have full access to a wide range of suitably challenging educational opportunities which are appropriate to their needs.
- Every child at the school is provided with opportunities to make progress in every aspect of their development, enabling them to be the best they can be.
- All children, regardless of any additional needs, are offered opportunities to take part in after school clubs and school trips with appropriate support in place.
- Every child is encouraged to take part in school productions, sports days and other events to the best of their abilities.
How do we support children with Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs?
We use strategies such as Essex STEPS therapeutic approach, Emotion Coaching and the Zones of Regulation programme to support the development and well-being of all pupils. For pupils who require additional support, small group or individual well-being interventions are put in place to work on identified areas of need. We also offer access to our Family Support Worker and children's counsellor as well as signposting to relevant services such as the Essex Child and Family Well-being Service or Essex Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
What type of SEND provision is made in the school?
We will work closely with you and your child to identify what support is needed, what the specific barriers to learning are and to understand why they may not be making progress. We will then seek to put in place appropriate interventions such as:
- 1 to 1 or small group work
- Appropriate resourcing
- Input from our Local Authority Inclusion Partner and Educational Psychologist
- Input from staff at Mildmay Hearing Impaired Resource Base
- Specific equipment requirements
- On site access, via referrals, to other professionals including Family Support Worker (FSW), Counsellors, Speech and Language Therapist, Occupational Therapist
- Signposting to SEND support services, paediatrician, CAMHS, Health, Essex Child and Family Well-being Service, Action for Family Carers, Families in Focus
- Wide range of interventions to support a child socially and academically
- We ensure that no child with a disability is treated less favourably than others in admissions or provision.
- We encourage all pupils, regardless of SEND need to participate fully in all aspects of school and are committed to full participation for all to extra-curricular activities, providing 1:1 support for after-school clubs where necessary and possible.
In order to fulfil our commitment to fully support every child to be successful, the school has experience in providing a range of interventions and continues always to seek new ways of providing support. Examples of interventions are:
- Precision Teaching
- Literacy interventions
- Maths interventions
- Emotional and Well-being interventions
- NELI spoken language programme
- Multi-Motor Time (gross and fine motor skills integration circuit)
- Attention Autism
- Music Communication
- Intensive Interaction
- Purposeful Communication Programme (a comprehensive language assessment and intervention programme developed by an independent practitioner with links to Oaklands, aimed at children with significant communication and language delay)
- Verbal Imitation Speech Sound System (an assessment and intervention programme to support the accurate articulation of speech sounds, developed by an independent practitioner with links to Oaklands)
What SEND expertise is in school?
Our SENCo, Amy Clark, has eight years’ experience in the role of SENCo and has been a member of the teaching staff for eighteen years. She is allocated two days a week to manage SEND provision.
Mrs Clark plays a key role in the life of the school, regularly meeting with senior staff, teachers, LSAs, families, named governors and professionals. She identifies training opportunities and monitors the quality and impact of interventions. With the Headteacher and bursar, she is responsible for managing the SEND budget and, with the Headteacher and Governors, determining the strategic development of SEND policy and provision.
The continuing professional development of staff in relation to SEND is part of the overall School Improvement Plan, which is reviewed termly by governors and the senior leadership team. All class teachers understand that they are responsible for the education of all pupils in their class and that they are all teachers of children with SEND. In addition, Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) are employed and trained to support children with a range of SEND.
Through consultation with other members of staff the SENCo identifies areas in which staff require further development and support and leads formal and informal in-house training sessions or makes contact with any additional services as appropriate.
Oaklands currently provides additional and/or different provision for a range of needs, including:
- Communication and interaction, for example, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, speech and language difficulties
- Cognition and learning, for example, a range of literacy difficulties including Dyslexia
- Social, emotional and mental health difficulties
- Sensory and/or physical needs, for example, sensory processing difficulties, gross and fine motor difficulties, hearing impairment
At present our LSA team has expertise in autism.
In the last academic year, relevant staff have received training in:
- Colourful Semantics
- Zones of Regulation
- Inclusion Framework
- Emotion Coaching
- Supporting successful playground interactions
- Sensory Processing Difficulties
What happens if my child needs specialist equipment or facilities?
The school works hard to ensure that no child is disadvantaged in terms of facilities and equipment, dependent upon need. To ensure that we achieve this goal we work with outside professionals such as specialist teachers, occupational therapy and specialist nursing teams. Our broad approach here is captured in the Bridge Academy Trust Accessibility and Student Equality policies which are available on our website or upon request. The kinds of support offered could include:
- Disabled toilet
- Modified furniture
- Access to specialist teacher input
- Access to computer & tablet technology
- Using recommended aids for reading and writing
- Specialist sensory equipment
- Specialist PE equipment
You are welcome to visit the school to look at our range of resources or meet with the SENCo to discuss your child’s particular needs. Every effort is made to enable children with special educational needs to participate in the full range of opportunities and events arranged by the school.
What provision is there for evaluating provision and achievement data?
We follow the graduated approach and the four-part cycle of ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review’. Achievement of each child is carefully tracked, and provision evaluated against progress and impact. Provision will be evaluated with supporting evidence from a range of sources including teacher assessments, consultant visit notes, work scrutiny, monitoring and observation files.
The SENCo monitors school assessment data each term to track children's progress for those on the SEND register and to identify any pupils who are not making the expected progress. This is then discussed with the class teacher to decide what further support is necessary.
All teachers and support staff who work with pupils with SEND are made aware of their needs, the outcomes sought, the support provided, and any teaching strategies or approaches that are required.
Year on year our children identified with particular needs attain well compared with the national picture. Our latest Ofsted report (2013) acknowledged that “the school’s success in achieving equality of opportunity is shown by the outstanding progress of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs.”
Please see our website documents relating to the use and impact of Pupil Premium Grant.
What is the Criteria for exiting the SEND register?
A child may be removed from the SEND Register if:
• Their progress is such that they achieve what is broadly expected for a child of
• The child no longer requires support which is additional to or different from what is
normally provided within the class.
Parents/carers will always be informed if their child no longer requires SEND Support however, regular one planning meetings will ensure that you have been aware that your child is requiring less extra support and so this will be a graduated approach. If a child is taken off of the SEND Register, their progress will continue to be monitored by their class teacher and SENCo.
What is The Local Offer?
The Local Authority publishes a ‘Local Offer’ which is available at www.essexlocaloffer.org.uk/. This sets out the provision available in the local area for children and young people with SEND and includes information about education, health and social care, support groups and leisure activities.
How are transfer arrangements between school phases supported?
We share a common interest in the learning, development and well-being of your child. We will liaise fully with pre-school settings to ensure a smooth transition to Oaklands.
Transition arrangements for children joining Reception are robust and the SENCo and class teacher are closely involved where additional needs are made apparent, for example through additional visits to pre-schools and meetings with parents and relevant professionals. We believe that you and your child’s pre-school have a responsibility to liaise with us so that we can support your child effectively on transition to Oaklands.
The relationship between Oaklands Infants and Moulsham Junior School is strong, but we will support you to look for alternative provision if appropriate. Throughout Year 2 there are numerous and varied opportunities for you and your child to visit and prepare for transition to the next stage of their education. These may include:
- meeting their Year 3 teacher
- activities with a Year 3 buddy
- writing letters to a Year 3 buddy
- an opportunity to have lunch and explore the playground
- an opportunity to use the ICT suite
- an opportunity to watch a school production
Children with additional needs may have opportunities for extra visits to Moulsham Junior School and you will have the chance to discuss your child’s needs in depth with members of staff such as the SENCo or Head of Year 3. A transition book will be created for these children for them to refer to over the summer holidays.
Who do I contact with my questions?
Our SENCo, Amy Clark, is a knowledgeable SENCo and an experienced teacher. She is contactable in person, by phone or email.
Contact Mrs Clark (SENCo) via the school office on 01245 352166 or email on [email protected] . Please note she may be unable to take calls immediately, but we will take your name and number and get back to you as soon as possible.
Our SEND Governor, Lucy Hawkridge, specifically oversees the responsibility of SEND and reports to the Governing Body. She liaises at least termly with the SENCo and has a high level of engagement within the school. She is a qualified teacher and she brings her experience and passion to her role. Mrs Hawkridge is also contactable via the school office.
What can I do if I am not satisfied with an aspect of provision?
As a school, we work hard to be in effective communication with children and parents, and to listen and respond positively to any concerns brought to our attention. We are committed to taking all concerns seriously and would like to think that, through being open and accessible, concerns can be both raised and dealt with easily. Our SENCo and Headteacher are easily accessible; we aim to resolve any issues swiftly and in person, coming to mutual understanding and agreement.
If the situation arises where you have a concern about the provision being made for your child or the impact of that provision, and feel that the class teacher or SENCo has been unable to reassure you that needs are being met effectively, then the school’s Complaint Procedure – which is available on our website or by request – sets out clearly what the steps are.
We look forward to working with you to ensure your child is given the best opportunities and provision to enable them to achieve their best.
Please note that the information in this document is subject to change at any time. Up-to-date copies are available on our website.
This information report is reviewed annually. It is also updated if any changes to the information are made during the year.
It is approved by the governing body.