According to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice 2015, “a child or young person has a learning difficulty or disability if he or she has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age.”
At St. Mary’s C of E Primary School, children may be identified as needing extra help in a variety of ways, this could include some of the following:
If you have concerns regarding your child please initially arrange to speak with his or her Class Teacher. Where appropriate concerns will be passed on to the school SENDCo (Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator: Mrs Sarah Stewart). Further discussions may then take place between all parties involved to decide on the best way forward for your child.
If a child has been identified as having or possibly having SEND the school will support them in the following ways:
The progress of all children is reviewed regularly between teachers, the Headteacher and the SENDCo, termly at formal Pupil Progress Meetings and throughout the term on a more informal basis. The information is shared with parents at twice yearly Parent Consultations and through the end of year report.
If a child is identified as having Special Educational Needs and a Pupil Passport is in place there will be termly meetings between the class teacher, child and parents to review and celebrate achievements and to plan new targets and strategies. This will be in addition to the Parent Consultations and end of year report.
The school adopts a graduated approach to the identification and assessment of pupils with SEND. This is followed when allocating provision for specific pupils. Pupils may move between the levels depending on current levels of need.
St. Mary’s follow the structured PSHE and Health and Well-being Jigsaw Scheme which runs throughout the school. Additional support may be provided through a targeted social skills group. We recognise that some pupils have additional social, emotional and mental health needs and that these present themselves in a variety of ways. It may be necessary to involve outside agencies for example a Family Support Worker, DESC, CAMHS or the School Nurse. If a multi-agency approach is required parents may be advised to set up a FFA (Families First Assessment) with the SENDCo. This ensures regular meetings are held between the family and child and all agencies involved.
The SENDCo liaises regularly with a range of external agencies and specialists. We may feel it would be helpful to refer a child to an external specialist for advice and additional support. Any referral will first be discussed, in full, with you as parents. Outside agencies that we may access include:
Further information about these services is available as part of the Hertfordshire Local Offer
The SENDCo has been awarded the National SENDCo accreditation. All staff have access to CPD for SEND when relevant and there are opportunities for whole staff training on particular aspects of SEND. Recent training includes:
Newsletters and class curriculum letters are sent out informing you of current learning within school. Children will be set regular age appropriate homework tasks to complete with parents involving reading, writing, phonics, maths or topic work. These tasks may be set to reinforce learning or in preparation for a new topic. If your child has a Pupil Passport in place there will be strategies related to particular areas of need, these may be related to learning that will be taking place during intervention sessions. During termly meetings these strategies will be shared and discussed so that they can be used at home to support your child. If a child is receiving support from an outside agency, for example the Speech, Language, Communication and Autism Advisory Service, suggestions for ways that you can support your child at home will also be set out within the advice that they provide.
We encourage you to speak to the Class Teacher, SENDCo or Headteacher if you have concerns surrounding your child’s education at any point. If your child has been identified as having SEND and has a Pupil Passport, termly meetings will take place between you, your child and the class teacher. This is in addition to Parent Consultation meetings in the Autumn and Spring term and a written report at the end of the Summer term. You will always be informed if your child has been referred to an outside specialist. When an outside agency has been involved with your child you will be invited into school to receive feedback and be involved in discussions about planning next steps. If you have an FFA (Families First Assessment) or EHCP (Education Health and Care Plan) regular meetings will be planned with you to share information and discuss progress.
Children with all levels of physical and learning disability are encouraged to take part in all areas of the curriculum including school trips. All such activities are planned well in advance and any necessary adaptations to the level of adult support, the physical environment or resources available are made. Risk assessments are carried out prior to any off site activity and an separate risk assessment may carried for individual children as appropriate.
The school is fully compliant with the Equality Act and reasonable adjustments are made for pupils with SEND. Specialist equipment can be provided if necessary and advice is sought from appropriate medical and health professionals to ensure needs are met within the school environment.
If your child is currently a pupil at the school please speak to the class teacher in the first instance. Further information is available from the SENDCo or Headteacher
General information relating to SEND can be found on the school website.
The school has an amount identified within its overall budget called the Notional SEN Budget. This is used to support the progress of children with SEN e.g. to provide specialist training for staff, buy specialist equipment or books or to employ Teaching Assistants to support learning. Where a child exceeds the nationally prescribed threshold, additional, top up funding can be applied for through the local authority known as Local High Needs Funding.
The support of Teaching Assistants is allocated across the school according to need. The amount and type of support will be determined by barriers to learning and current progress, the level of support will be adjusted accordingly. Interventions are time limited and will be reviewed and monitored to ensure they are appropriate and are having impact on each child.
Hertfordshire County Council’s Local Offer can be accessed online at
Government Legislation requires us to publish a report called the SEN information report. This will be reviewed and updated during the year in consultation with parents, staff and governors.
The school “maintains a close eye on the vulnerable pupils who are most in need of support. It is clear that the well established relationships that all staff have with parents provides strong support for families, as well as for children.”
Ofsted September 2017
As part of the SEN reforms, the Hertfordshire County Council has to provide access to information of what is on offer across the county.
The purpose of the local offer is to:
Provide clear, comprehensive and accessible information about the support and opportunities that are available for all children and young people with SEND aged 0-25 and their families (not just those who have an education, health and care plan).
Information on the Hertfordshire Local Offer can be found here.
Alongside the County Local Offer, schools are required to have a School Offer. The aim of this will be to give clear information on how the SEN Code of Practice is implemented in the school.
Our SENDCo is Sarah Stewart who can be contacted via the school office: firstname.lastname@example.org
DSPL is a Hertfordshire wide initiative, working to improve the range of provisions and support services available for children and young people with SEND, aged 0 – 25.
Please follow the link below to visit the DSPL website