How does Buckland St Mary C of E Primary School know that my child needs extra help?
Some children’s needs are identified before they start school and the pre-school they attend will make sure we are aware of these. Sometimes this may mean that we hold a School Entry Meeting to discuss how the school can prepare to meet the needs of your child. Once children start school teachers will monitor their progress every half term and may discuss any concerns they have with you. If they need extra advice they will talk to other teachers and the school Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), Cath Harris. All teachers have been trained in identifying needs early so that any support needed can be quickly put in place. Where particular needs are identified your child’s name may be added to the Special Needs Register so that all adults working with him/her will know about their needs. If this happens you will be notified by letter and your child will have an Individual Learning Plan with clear targets to achieve. This will be discussed with you.
What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs (SEN)? Please talk to us at the earliest opportunity if you have concerns about the needs your child has. All teachers are happy to talk to you about any concerns you may have and it is important that you share these with us. You can talk to them at a parents evening or make an appointment. If you prefer to talk to the school SENCo, Cath Harris, then you can contact her through the school office (01460 234251) to make an appointment.
How will the school staff support my child? Teachers and Teaching Assistants are trained and skilled in providing additional support where it is required. Your child may work in a small group with a teacher or teaching assistant or may have some individual time to work on the areas they are finding difficult. The support we can offer is very varied (see Provision Map Appendix 1).
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs? Teachers will plan carefully and make the necessary adaptations to meet the needs of the children in their classes. Sometimes children are grouped to work with others of a similar ability, with or without the support of an adult. Teachers mark carefully and use assessments to identify the next steps in learning that your child will need to take. The work they are given will match these.
How will I know how well my child is doing and how will I know how to support my child’s learning at home? Your child’s progress will be formally discussed with you at Parents Evenings in the Autumn and Spring Terms and will be written on their School Report in the Summer Term. There are many opportunities for more informal discussions with teachers at the end of the school day. If your child has an Individual Learning Plan you will be invited to review it with the teacher each term and help to draw up new targets. You will then be able to support the work towards these targets as we will make suggestions of activities to complete at home. Some children with a higher level of need will have an Annual Review with the SENCo and professionals involved together with parents. This enables everyone to discuss progress and the next steps needed.
What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing? All staff in school are aware of the need to help your child develop into a valued, confident individual. As adults we support the self-esteem of all children. Our curriculum is varied and all children are given a chance to shine in their favourite areas e.g. music, sport, Forest School etc. Our regular celebration assemblies give teachers a chance to praise both effort and achievement on all levels. Children can also share achievements they have out of school. Where we have concerns about a child’s wellbeing we will discuss these with you. Our school Safeguarding Policy provides further information.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school? As a school we have a range of education and health professionals who support us in meeting the needs of all children. These include an Educational Psychologist, Learning Support Advisor, Social and Emotional Support Services Advisor, Autism and Communication Team Advisor, the Integrated Therapy Service (Speech and Language therapists, Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists), Vision Support Team, Hearing Support Team, Physical and Medical Support Services. We also have advice and support from the School Nurse and Specialist Children’s Nurses for specific medical conditions.
What training have the staff supporting children with SEN and disabilities had or are having? All teachers and teaching assistants spend time keeping their skills and knowledge up-to-date through Continuous Professional Development opportunities (CPD). Our SENCo, Cath Harris has completed a post-graduate diploma in specific learning difficulties (dyslexia).
How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips? Teachers and teaching assistants work very hard to include all children in activities and trips. Wherever possible, adaptations will be made to ensure that children are able to access the experiences on offer.
How accessible is the school environment? Our school is very accessible for children with a range of needs. The SENCo and SEN Governor regularly review the Accessibilty Plan to ensure that all areas of the school are accessible to all children.
How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new school or the next stage of education? If your child’s needs have been identified before starting school we may hold a School Entry Meeting with you and everyone involved in your child’s care to ensure that the school is ready to meet their needs. We have a well-founded transition system for transferring children to their next school and this may include a Transition Meeting so that the needs of the child have been clearly explained and plans put in place to meet them in the new setting.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s educational needs? At Buckland St Mary C of E Primary we are pleased to offer additional teacher and teaching assistant time to make sure that all of our pupils make good progress, whatever their needs may be. Children whose names have been added to the Special Educational Needs Register will have a Learning Plan which will clearly set out the support that they will receive. Some children who have very specific needs may have some additional financial support from the Local Education Authority which will be allocated to meet your child’s needs in school.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive? Teachers and the school SENCo will seek to clearly identify the specific needs your child has. If these are complex they will seek advice from the education or health support services. They will then discuss the steps needed to provide the best support. A Learning Plan will be developed together with you and this will be reviewed after an agreed period to evaluate the success of the support given. This may lead to further support, a continuation of the plan or an agreement that the needs have been overcome.
Who can I contact for further information? If your child is already at Buckland St Mary C of E Primary School please talk to their class teacher in the first instance. You may also wish to make an appointment to meet with the school SENCo, Cath Harris (please contact the School Office 01460 234251). If your child is not yet at Buckland St Mary C of E Primary you may wish to visit us or contact Cath Harris (SENCo) or Helen Woodhams (Head of School) for a preliminary discussion about your child’s needs.
The Redstart Learning Partnership known as The Redstart Primary School is an exempt charity. The Redstart Learning Partnership is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England at: The Redstart Primary School, Redstart Road, Chard, Somerset. TA20 1SD. Company No: 07649832