Special Educational Needs

All children are welcomed to Eastchurch (Church of England) Primary School where they are valued and respected. We are aware that some children will require extra support whilst at school and we aim to provide appropriate support for them. In some cases this will only be for a short time but occasionally a child’s needs may develop during their time with us and their needs will be ongoing. At our school we understand the role parents play as a child’s first teacher and their expert knowledge of their child.

All teachers are teachers of children with Special Educational Needs and are supported by a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), Carol Laker, the SENCo works closely with the Heads of School and Executive Headteacher to oversee SEN provision in school. There is also a statutory duty to monitor SEN by the Governing Body. The SENCo and SEN Governor meet to discuss SEN.

The SENCo and Heads of School co-ordinate teaching assistant support in classrooms, while the SENCo liaises with outside agencies who may offer further support for your child; usually if your child requires extra support their progress will be carefully monitored and they will be added to Special Educational Needs Audit. Mrs Laker operates an “open door policy” and regularly meets with parents who have queries or concerns regarding their child’s needs.

Admissions

A disabled child has equal access for admission. Reasonable adjustments are made if the need arises. We would always seek to do our utmost to provide for a child with a disability.

Special Educational Needs Audit

The audit is a list that is kept in school of children who may require support from various people. There are currently three categories of support but this may change in the near future when updated Government guidelines are issued. At the moment children who have a little extra support are identified as School Action. Children who require further support from outside agencies are identified as School Action Plus and children whose needs are very complex may have a Statement of Special Educational Need. The list is always reviewed at the end of Term One and is regularly re-examined, usually termly, by class teachers and the SENCo, and sometimes by Heads of School and Executive Headteacher. Updates can be made at anytime throughout the year.

Termly progress meetings are held by teachers, teaching assistants, the SENCo, Heads of School and sometimes the Executive Headteacher. Children’s progress is reviewed and in some cases it may be necessary to set specialist targets, these may be recorded on the school provision map or occasionally on an individual education plan.

There are 4 main categories of SEN

  • Communication and Interaction

  • Cognition and Learning

  • Physical and Sensory

  • Behavioural Social and Emotional

Outside Agencies

A variety of people are available to visit the school and offer support for children. Schools meet regularly with outside agencies to discuss their concerns for children, usually services can be commissioned at these meetings. Parental permission is always sought prior to these meetings. Below is a list of some of the people that may provide the school with support:

  • School Nurses provide information to help us deal with children with medical difficulties such as diabetes or incontinence.

  • Speech and Language Therapists provide support for children who are struggling with speech production and understanding and using grammar.

  • Specialist Teachers are teachers that have further qualifications in Special Educational needs and many have worked in special schools.

  • Educational Psychologists are psychologists, many of whom, also hold teaching degrees and usually help in assessing children’s strengths and weaknesses.

  • Physiotherapists/Occupational Therapists can provide support for children with cerebral palsy or dyspraxia and offer guidance on exercises and activities we can run in school.

Support Programmes

A variety of support programmes are carried out in school, the following list is not exhaustive but provides an idea of provision in school.

Literacy Interventions

All children take part in half hourly phonics (Letters and Sounds or Soundswrite), grammar, spelling or comprehension sessions each day, the groupings allow children to work at a level that is appropriate for their needs. Other literacy intervention varies throughout the school, some children work in small groups in the afternoons to focus on reading, writing or speaking and listening skills; or their area of difficulty may require precision teaching on a one to one basis to learn something they are finding very tricky. These sessions may involve use of the computer using programmes like Clicker 5, Acceleread or Accelewrite; many are delivered by a teaching assistant in your child’s year group. All planning for intervention groups is completed by your child’s class teacher.

Numeracy Intervention

Children in Years 1, 2 and 3 and occasionally Year 4 take part in daily 20 minute “First Class at Number 2” sessions to secure basic maths skills. Other numeracy intervention varies throughout the school, some children work in small groups on an area they are finding tricky, such as times tables, counting on 10 or place value. Sometimes precision teaching on a very specific area is required. Children also work on computers to develop progress specific skills. Intervention is usually delivered by a teaching assistant in your child’s year group. All planning for intervention groups is completed by your child’s class teacher. Children are encouraged to participate in RM EasiMaths.

Speech And Language Therapy (SALT)

Children who have attended Little Owls Nursery may have already had some Speech and Language input from our Speech and Language support, Jill Stevenson-Irons, or from other nursery provision. In addition, some children arrive in school with Speech and Language Therapy plans. When joining our school, all children are screened for both speech and language difficulties. Parents are usually informed of the outcome of this screening at the first Parents’ evening. Children with specific difficulties then work with our Speech and Language, Jill Stevenson-Irons, on any issues that are raised. Mrs Stevenson-Irons regularly meets with class teachers to discuss progress. The children are re-screened at the end of reception and the majority of children require no further support. This screening also identifies children who may benefit from a formal screening with the Speech and Language Therapist.

Fizzy/Beam/Clever Hands/Clever Fingers

Fine motor skills are essential for children to be able to write and sometimes children require a little extra help to develop their manual dexterity. These are a range of programmes used to help children develop both gross and fine motor skills. Resources are available to support these programmes.

Additional Daily reading support

Teaching assistants attempt to read daily with children who have been nominated by the class teacher. We are also fortunate to have a number of valued volunteers who are attached to classes and offer opportunities for additional reading. The school appreciates and values the time parents spend reading with their children at home.

Resources

There are a wide range of resources available for children with difficulties. These include: pencil grips, wedges, cushions, specialist reading books, coloured overlays, ICT programmes. This list not exhaustive and when specific equipment is recommended then the school will provide this as soon as possible.

Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties

The school has its own provision for children with behavioural, social and emotional difficulties. This takes place in a separate classroom called ‘The Nest’ and there is a Nest at both All Saints and St Clement sites. Sometimes children are identified for behavioural, social or emotional issues. Children go to the Nest if they are experiencing difficulties as a ‘safe place’ to go, they can talk through their problems with trained adult staff or may also go at set times to do individual (such as friendship, anger, bereavement) or group work (for example friendships, social groups, anger management, team work) to meet their behavioural, social or emotional needs. If emotional needs require additional support then the School are able to access these. Teachers can send children to the Nest if their behaviour is poor and the child can work in isolation for a set period of time. Quite often children with particular difficulties (such as ADHD) will not come into school ready to learn, often the behaviour support teacher or assistant can spend time helping the child to become ready to enter the classroom giving them the best chance to make progress and learn. The behaviour support teacher can take the time to reinforce the school behaviour policy and school rules and acts as a support for those children who require additional support with their behaviour. The Nest operates a very successful lunch club for a small number of vulnerable children, the children eat together and interact socially in a safe, calm environment, children with an ASD diagnosis often benefit from the small group social interaction. In the last few years, the SPARK project has been running in our school and will continue dependent on project funding.


If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact the school.