SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS POLICY

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1 SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS POLICY Basic Information about the school s special education provision The College s policy is to integrate students with Special Educational Needs, thereby giving them access to all curriculum areas. The SEN provision is that educational provision which is additional to, or otherwise different from, the educational provision made generally for students of their age in college. Uppingham Community College strives to be a fully inclusive college. It acknowledges the range of issues to be taken into account in the process of development. All students are welcome, including those with special educational needs, in accordance with the College s admission policy. The SEN Department is known as the Additional Needs Department, operating within a Faculty of Personal Development and Support. The department aims to provide support and guidance to students who have significantly greater difficulties in learning than the majority of their peers. Students have access to support in two ways. Extra staffing may be given within normal timetabled lessons and/or some withdrawal time for individuals or small groups where considered appropriate. The overall aims of the department are therefore to: Support students with learning difficulties associated with literacy, numeracy, social, language and/or practical skills and therefore functioning at a level considerably lower than that expected for the majority of students of the same age. Encourage students to use suitable strategies to help cope with these difficulties Liaise with other departments to help with differentiation of the curriculum Have a flexible timetable in order to respond to immediate needs of students or staff whenever possible. The college s S.E.N. Co-ordinator (SENCO) is responsible for: the day to day operation of the colleges SEN policy liaising with and advising subject teachers on the day to day operation of the college s SEN policy co-ordinating the provision for students at the various stages of assessment maintaining the college s SEN records

2 managing Teaching Assistants liaising with parents contributing to in-service training of staff liaising with Local Authority support services Information about the college s policies for identification, assessment and provision for all students with SEN It is the College policy to screen all students transferring from feeder Primary Colleges for possible special educational needs. These requirements fall into four broad areas: Communications and Interaction Cognition (acquiring knowledge) and learning Sensory and physical Emotional, social and behavioural difficulties All feeder schools pass on test results for each transferring year group. This information, along with college and parental information, is used for initial identification of students in need of extra support. Additional transfer arrangements are organised for those students for whom the change of school is considered to be likely to cause particular difficulties. Parents/guardians are also invited in to college to meet with SEN staff prior to transfer. Further to this the college SENCO attends Year 6 Annual Reviews. All teaching staff are informed of individual student competence at the beginning of each academic year. Further information concerning involvement by outside agency support services is given where relevant, e.g. Hearing Impaired Service, Autistic Outreach Service, Educational Psychology Service. If a student transfers to the college with a statement of SEN additional transfer arrangements are made and more detailed reports are given to all staff (and college support staff where relevant). All new year 7 groups are screened using MIDYIS. Further assessments are given for those students who have not achieved a level of literacy considered sufficient to give them access to the curriculum. Mainstream curriculum performance is then also considered when deciding on the type and extent of support deemed suitable. Parents are notified. The need for withdrawal time is discussed at this stage. Year 8 and 9 students are encouraged to be involved in the decision making concerning appropriate withdrawal and support sessions available for them. A specific allocation of time is made available, when required, for students requiring literacy support for National Curriculum assessments. Also in Years 8 and 9 a

3 greater percentage of time is given to supporting students with their mainstream work where required. The college endeavours to give greatest support for learning difficulties in Year 7 aiming to improve the students performance by years 8 and 9 thereby minimising the support needed in these years to those students with greatest difficulties. When staffing resources allow, time is allocated to short term modules of withdrawal for more able students with specific difficulties e.g. spelling, handwriting. SEN Record The college adopts a graduated response in order to help students with SEN. We recognise there is a continuum of special educational needs. If a student is showing increasing difficulties in the classroom and is not progressing, regardless of alternative strategies tried, then information will be gathered from all those involved (e.g. staff, parents, student). The student will then be placed on the college record as needing school action. School Action means the student is requiring additional or different action to enable them to learn more effectively. An Individual Education Programme (IEP) will be set up to: Identify up to 3 short term targets Suggest strategies and provision to be put in place Be reviewed at least twice yearly. The IEP is distributed to all curriculum areas. At this point the Additional Needs Department will provide some extra support and parents will be informed how this will be given. When sufficient progress is made, the student will be removed from School Action. If the student continues to make little or no progress in learning or behaviour, the college will need to seek help from outside agencies. This becomes School Action Plus. School Action Plus - as above plus further advice from an outside agency, e.g. Educational Psychologist. At this point a new IEP is distributed to all curriculum areas. If, having implemented the new advice and any new strategies, progress is still not made then those involved may request Statutory Assessment. Statutory Assessment - at this point the college will provide evidence of strategies and interventions tried; an outside agency will provide diagnostic evidence for the LEA to consider providing a Statement of SEN. Meanwhile, the processes of School Action Plus will continue.

4 Statement of SEN - A statement of SEN is a legal document drawn up by the Local Authority which recognises the individual needs of the student and identifies special provision and resources that should be put in place. This is monitored and reviewed with the Local Authority annually. All of this information and these actions are recorded on the college SEN Record. All staff are made aware of students on this record and their needs. Clear lines of communication are established with SEN issues regularly discussed and considered at morning briefings, through written updates and through the college s meeting cycle. Additional Needs staff feedback issues and progress by means of a lesson by lesson work log. Information about the college s staffing and Partnership with bodies beyond the colleges Finance The college has a delegated budget. Funding is allocated on the basis of student numbers. The principle informing SEN resource deployment is one of ensuring access to the curriculum. Budget resources for SEN are therefore allocated both to the Additional Needs and all other departments. Resources include a wide range of books and materials to suit students of differing abilities and an appropriately stocked SEN resource base offering a fresh approach to work through such resources as computers, word processors, spellcheckers, tapes, videos and various appropriate games.. Staffing resources for SEN are shown as attached. Staffing resources in the Additional Needs department are deployed to give both continuity of contact and best use of teacher specialisation. Therefore students have the same Additional Needs teacher whenever possible in withdrawal time and will be supported by a Teaching Assistant in specific subject areas. We try to ensure continuity of contact in individual curriculum areas with a particular Additional Needs link as this helps to deter the possible appearance of minding a student/group by a single person. However key students do have a main SEN link person. Withdrawal time is reported to parents within the college s normal reporting process and on IEPs. Individual departments assessment and reporting procedures acknowledge the specific needs of students with SEN and identifies their individual progress. The college has a named college nurse within the District Health Authority to whom references are made in accordance with the procedure for assessment. Similarly contact is made with the Social Services Department and Educational Welfare Service as appropriate. We also work regularly with the services provided centrally by the Local and Health Authorities, particularly the

5 Educational Psychology Service and Special Needs Teaching Services who have staff specialising in supporting students with: Hearing Impairment Visual Impairment Autistic Spectrum Disorders Travellers Service Multi-Cultural Support Occupational Therapy The Governing Body endeavour to ensure the best possible provision for Special Needs in this college. All governors are aware of their responsibilities for Special Needs and discuss the issues regularly. One of their four committees is entitled Education and Special Needs. Mrs Jane Thornalley is the nominated governor for Special Educational Needs. The programme, policy and provision of the education which is provided at the college for students with SEN is monitored throughout the year by the Principal and the nominated governor, with regular reports to Governors. The Governing Body evaluates the success of the education provided through the students reports, reviews, progress in attainments recorded in individual education plans, numbers of students remaining at a stage of assessment or reverting to a previous one and the level of importance given to SEN in college development planning and differentiation. The college is aware of the necessity for a close working relationship with parents and recognises the crucial nature of such relationships when supporting students with special needs. This process is initiated prior to transfer with SEN files being opened as soon as a parental concern is voiced. This often commences through consultations in Year 6 at Open Day/Evening. There is also an opportunity for parents of Year 6 students to meet individually with the SENCO on an Induction Day in the summer term. This is arranged by distribution of letters through Primary Schools. Great emphasis is given at this point for the need for regular communication between college and home. We value the contribution they can make given their unique knowledge and experience of their child. We equally encourage students to contribute individually to determine the direction of their learning and development The College has been included in the Times Good Schools Guide Special Educational Needs

6 STAFFING RESOURCES: Denise Beresford: SENCO: Head of Additional Needs Margaret Trenwith: 2 nd in department with responsibility for access arrangements for internal and external exams. Helen Harris: Sue Geary: English teacher working with small group. Consultant teacher with specialist accreditation for assessment of students for KS3 and GCSE access arrangements.

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