4. HOW DO WE IDENTIFY AND ASSESS CHILDREN WITH SEND – WORKING CLOSELY WITH PARENTS/CARERS?
Special Educational Needs – What does it mean?
A child at Carlton School is defined as requiring SEN support when:
The updated SEN Code of Practice describes four areas of difficulty. We recognise that some of our children will experience difficulties in more than one area.
– Communication and interaction;
– Cognition and learning;
– Social, emotional and mental health difficulties;
– Sensory and/or physical needs
Disabilities – What does it mean?
The Equality Act 2010 defines a disability as having a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on your ability to do normal daily activities. Substantial is more than minor , eg it takes much longer than it usually would to complete a daily task like getting dressed. Long-term means 12 months or more.
An education provider has a duty to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ to make sure pupils with disabilities are not discriminated against. At Carlton, we understand that At Carlton, we understand that ‘equal opportunities’ means that some children will need more support and/or adjustments to access all aspects of school life.
Schools are not subject to the reasonable adjustment duty to make alterations to physical features, like adding ramps. They must make the buildings accessible for their disabled pupils as part of their overall planning duties.
Identifying Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
Some children may join the school with SEND already identified. If a child has attended a Nursery School or Children’s Centre we use information to plan from day one the best programme of support. This may involve a Transition Plan*. In addition we assess all children in their first half term at school through careful and sensitive classroom observation and an early review of progress. In the Nursery and Reception classes we give children six weeks to settle in before assessing. In Years 1-6 we assess children after three weeks to ensure we don’t miss anything. With children transferring from other schools, we always call the previous school for a discussion with the class Teacher, SENDCO and/or Head Teacher depending on the level of need. We also listen to children to find out how they are settling in to school. We continue to assess and monitor all through the child’s time in school so that we can look out for any Special Educational Needs that might arise later on.
For pupils already in the school, we use teacher’s assessments and observations of pupils’ attainment and progress over time to support our identification of needs. We assess pupils regularly and children who are below the expected level or that are making slower than expected progress are discussed at half termly pupil progress or standards meetings. Following this meeting, the inclusion team will plan interventions for the next half term. Children will receive targeted support (this could be delivered by the class teacher or through additional intervention support). The children’s progress will be measured. For children who continue to make slow progress, the inclusion team will consider whether to make a referral for more specialist support (e.g. speech and language therapy, occupational therapy) or whether to put in additional or different school based support. Parents and carers will be kept informed throughout this process and we seek parental consent before making a referral to a specialist SEND services.
Below are the procedures for Teaching and Learning:
Below are the pathways to identifying different SEN/D:
We take great care to establish whether lack of progress is because a pupil has English as an additional language (EAL)* as opposed to SEND, for example by talking to the child (and parents) in his/her home language.
We follow Camden’s guidance for the identification and support for children with SEND (Camden Summary Guidance).
We are committed to personalised planning and regular assessment and review to make sure that your child makes progress.
You can see more details on how we identify children with SEND in our SEN policy and policy on transition here.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS – HOW WE IDENTIFY AND ASSESS CHILDREN WITH SEN/D
If my child has been assessed as having a SEN/D, what happens next?
Class Teachers regularly assess the progress of the children in their class and if they have any concerns, they will talk to the SENDCO and discuss what the next steps will be. Initially this will mean extra support from the Class Teacher and/or Teaching Assistant and sometimes we will involve a specialist service or further intervention beyond the class Teacher’s adaptions/provision.
Will my child have an individual plan?
All children with SEND will have a ‘My Plan’. When we have assessed your child’s needs we will meet with you and agree a plan and short term targets for progress. The targets will focus on the most important areas of need.
What should I do if I think my child has a SEN/D?
You should contact the school and ask to talk to your child’s Class Teacher. S/he will then talk to the SENDCO about possible next steps. The SENDCO will always talk to you about your concerns and may begin an assessment of needs. If there is an agreement that your child has a Special Educational Need the school will work with you to plan a programme of support.
I am a Carer of a boy in Year 5 – he has been looked after (LAC) for three years. I think that he may have special educational needs. Who do I talk to about this?
Arrange a meeting with our SENDCO. She will assess his needs and make provision which will help him to make progress. We will also make sure that we work closely with the school’s designated teacher* for LAC and with services and link workers to make sure that we “join up” our support.