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Special Educational Needs (SEN)

Many children, at some point during their time at school, need a little extra support in order to make progress with their learning. Most of these children will have extra help arranged for them in school, using a differentiated teaching approach, and classroom resources. Some children, however, may have ‘special educational needs’.

What are ‘special educational needs’?

Children have special educational needs if they have a learning difficulty, which requires them to have special help. A child has learning difficulties if he/she finds it much harder to learn than most children of the same age do, or if he or she has a disability. Their special educational needs may fall into one or more of the following areas: Communication and interaction; Cognition and learning; Social, emotional and mental health difficulties; Sensory and/or physical. If your child is considered to have special educational needs (SEN) then further help is required. This help is called special educational provision.

What ‘special educational provision’ is given at Viking Primary school?

The graduated approach
All children make progress at different rates, and it is the responsibility of the Class Teacher to respond to all pupils’ needs with quality first teaching. The majority of pupils will respond to good or better teaching and will make progress, but there are a minority of children who need extra provision.

If normal good practice within the classroom does not result in progress then the class teacher, in conjunction with the SENCo, will begin to review the child’s access to the curriculum. This is the graduated approach, as detailed below.
No SEN →      Booster group   →    SEN Support   →    EHC Plan

SEN Support
The decision to begin SEN support for a child is not taken quickly or lightly. Where a teacher has specific concerns (and may have tried ‘booster groups’) they will discuss these concerns with the SENCo. The teacher and SENCo will then discuss these concerns with the child and the parents in a planning meeting, and SEN support may begin.

Upon beginning SEN support, the teacher will fill out an IEP(Individual Education Plan for the child. These show targeted interventions for that child. These interventions may be small group or 1 to 1 depending on need. Small targets will be set for each area of need, with clear success criteria. The child will know of these targets in an age appropriate way, and these targets will also continue in class work as directed by the teacher.

Our approach to SEN support follows the recommended cycle: ASSESS – PLAN - DO – REVIEW.

Every 3 weeks the teacher will meet with all staff providing SEN support to review targets. A child’s learning will be assessed and then the team will plan appropriate targets and support. This support will be provided little and often, and then reviewed after a further 3 weeks.

Statutory Assessment
The special educational needs of most children will be met through SEN Support. Some children, however - those with severe, complex or long-term learning difficulties or disabilities - will need to have extra support arranged for them by the LA. Following this Statutory Assessment, the LA may decide to issue a ‘statement of educational needs’ or ‘EHC Plan’. The statement/plan describes in what area(s) your child has needs and includes details of extra resources that are required to help the school support your child further. The support for your child will usually take place at the school but may on occasions involve working with other professional organisations.

Working in Partnership with Parents/Carers
You will be invited to all review meetings and kept fully informed as to the progress of your child. You are encouraged to support your child and take part in the review and target setting process.

What is inclusion?
All pupils at Viking Primary School receive an inclusive education. Whatever a child’s ability, they have an entitlement to be educated in a mainstream school whether or not they have SEN. A copy of the school’s Special  Educational Needs Policy is available on the school website or on request from the school office.

Resources to support parents

Ealing speech and language therapy team on Youtube

Take a look at their YouTube channel(link is external) for:

  • Workshops: including understanding autism, shy, quiet and anxious talkers and supporting children who stammer
  • Awareness content, giving quick facts and strategies for children who have selective mutism and developmental language disorder
  • School assembly presentation on selective mutism.
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