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Special Educational Needs & Disabilities

Last Reviewed May 2023


Foxdell Primary School Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Policy


Our Vision

At the Foxdell, we empower our children to be creative, confident individuals who are enthusiastic and proud of everything they achieve; whether it is writing, maths art or music, we believe all children should have the opportunity to excel in an inclusive environment. The unique contribution every child brings to our community is valued. The achievements, attitude and well-being of every young person is paramount – the children of Foxdell are at the heart of all that we do.



We believe that:

  • every child has the right to a broad and balanced curriculum.
  • every teacher is a teacher of every pupil, including those with special educational needs and disabilities; it is the responsibility of all teachers to help each pupil reach their own potential whatever their needs.
  • early identification of difficulties is important in order to provide the correct support to enable a pupil to make maximum progress.
  • parents have a vital role in their children's education.
  • it is important that pupils are encouraged to become motivated learners, involved in decisions about their learning, and are able to relate well to others.
  • Foxdell Primary School has regard to the Children and Families Act 2014. Under this code and The Special Educational Need and Disabilities Code of Practice 2015 (SENDCOP) which now covers the 0-25 age range, there is a clear focus on the participation of children and young people in decision making. Also there is guidance on the joint planning and close co-operation between parents, pupils and the school education, health and social care (EHC) plans.


Legislation and guidance

This policy and information report is based on the statutory Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Code of Practice and the following legislation:

Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014, which sets out schools’ responsibilities for pupils with SEN and disabilities The Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 20145, which set out schools’ responsibilities for education, health and care (EHC) plans, SEN co-ordinators (SENCOs) and the SEN information report


Definitions of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)

At our school we use the definition for SEN and for disability from the SEND Code of Practice 2015 which states:

SEN: A child or young person has special educational needs if he or she has a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her. A learning difficulty or disability is a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age. Special educational provision means educational or training provision that is additional to, or different from, that made generally for others of the same age in a mainstream setting in England.


Disability: Many children and young people who have SEN may have a disability under the Equality Act 2010 – that is ‘...

a physical or mental impairment which has a long- term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.’


There are four broad areas of need within the SEND Code of Practice 2015:

  • Cognition and Learning Needs
  • Communication and Interaction Needs
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health Needs
  • Sensory and/or Physical Needs


‘These four broad areas give an overview of the range of needs that should be planned for.

The purpose of identification is to work out what action the school needs to take, not to fit a pupil into a category.

In practice, individual children or young people often have needs that cut across all these areas and their needs may change over time.

For instance speech, language and communication needs can also be a feature of a number of other areas of SEN, and children and young people with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) may have needs across all areas, including particular sensory requirements.

The support provided to an individual should always be based on a full understanding of their particular strengths and needs and seek to address them all using well-evidenced interventions targeted at their areas of difficulty and where necessary specialist equipment or software.’


However, we do not ‘fit’ a pupil into a category, but rather provide support based on their particular area/s of need.


Definitions of the four broad areas of need are:


Communication and interaction

6.28 Children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) have difficulty in communicating with others. This may be because they have difficulty saying what they want to, understanding what is being said to them or they do not understand or use social rules of communication. The profile for every child with SLCN is different and their needs may change over time. They may have difficulty with one, some or all of the different aspects of speech, language or social communication at different times of their lives.


6.29 Children and young people with ASD,, are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication and imagination, which can impact on how they relate to others.


Cognition and learning

6.30 Support for learning difficulties may be required when children and young people learn at a slower pace than their peers, even with appropriate differentiation. Learning difficulties cover a wide range of needs, including moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD), where children are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum and associated difficulties with mobility and communication, through to profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD), where children are likely to have severe and complex learning difficulties as well as a physical disability or sensory impairment.


6.31 Specific learning difficulties (SpLD), affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This covers a range of conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.


Social, emotional and mental health difficulties

6.32 Children and young people may experience a wide range of social and emotional difficulties which manifest themselves in many ways. These may include becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. These behaviours may reflect underlying mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression, self-harming, substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Other young people may have disorders such as attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder. Sensory and/or physical needs


6.34 Some children and young people require special educational provision because they have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided. These difficulties can be age related and may fluctuate over time. Many children and young people with vision impairment (VI), hearing impairment (HI) or a multi-sensory impairment (MSI) will require specialist support and/or equipment to access their learning, or habilitation support. Children and young people with an MSI have a combination of vision and hearing difficulties.’

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Code of Practice (2015, Page 97).


The Graduated Approach to SEN Support

How the school decides whether to make special educational provision


A process of on-going teacher assessments and termly pupil progress meetings with the leadership team identifies those pupils making less than expected progress, given their age and individual circumstances. The school’s first response is high quality targeted teaching by the class teacher. Where progress continues to be less than expected, the class teacher will enrol the child into targeted interventions to meet their needs. If there are still concerns, the class teacher will raise them again with the Inclusion Team. With parental permission, the Inclusion Manager will discuss children causing concern at termly consultation meetings with outside agencies such as the Educational Psychologist, The Learning Support Service, Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service. This gives the team an opportunity to discuss their issues and problem solve by sharing and developing expertise. In deciding whether to make special educational provision, the class teacher and the Inclusion Manager will consider all of the information gathered from within the school, alongside the views of parents/carers and the pupil. Adaptations to the school’s core offer are made. If the support needed can be provided in this way then a child might not be considered SEN or placed on the SEN register. If, however, the support required is different from or additional to what is ordinarily offered by the school, the child will be placed on the SEN register at SEN Support.


When a child is identified as needing SEN Support, this begins a cycle of Assess, Plan, Do, Review (as laid out in the SEND Code of Practice). We believe in a ‘person centred’ approach to information gathering with the child and parents/carers at the centre of the process.


The four part cycle:


Assess: As part of our whole school practice we regularly assess all pupils’ needs so that each child’s progress and development is carefully tracked, and compared to their peers and national expectations. For those pupils who may need SEN support, we believe that listening to the views of parents/carers and the pupil is an important part of 3 the assessment process. The Inclusion Manager and the SEND support team use a variety of standardised tests and diagnostic materials and techniques to assess pupils’ specific needs and to inform target setting, e.g. assessment of phonic sounds, vocabulary skills, non-verbal reasoning skills, receptive and expressive language tests. In some cases we will draw on assessments and guidance from other education professionals e.g. Educational Psychologists (EP) and the Learning Support Service (LSS), Speech and Language Therapy (SALT), Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHs)


Plan: To ensure all SEN pupils have equality of opportunities to work within the curriculum, the teacher and relevant staff form a plan to identify learning outcomes from our school curriculum that will inform the pupil’s targets. If necessary, advice from other professionals mentioned above will form part of this plan and progress is tracked. The tracking form identifies the additional support, intervention and strategies required to meet the pupil’s targets. An individual education plan includes targets in response to specialist, professional advice.


Do: The class teacher is responsible for working with the pupil on a daily basis. She/he will also liaise closely with TAs or specialists who provide support set out in the pupil’s plan and track their progress. The Inclusion Manager and SEN support team can provide support, guidance and advice for the teacher and teaching assistants on how to support the pupil.


Review: The impact and outcomes of the plan is closely tracked and will be formally reviewed each term by the teacher, support staff, parents/carers and the pupil. This ensures everybody celebrates the pupil’s progress and achievements and is involved in planning the next steps for a further period or where successful, the removal of the pupil from SEN Support. These meetings are planned to coincide with parents’ evenings (Oct/Nov, Feb/March, July).


This four part cycle is known as the graduated approach where earlier decisions and actions are revisited, refined and revised with a growing understanding of the pupil’s needs and what supports the pupil in making good progress.


Pupils who have high levels of SEND

For pupils who have high levels of need, with the agreement of parents/carers, the school may seek advice from external agencies. These agencies include:

  • Educational Psychology and the Learning Support Service
  • Behaviour provision at Hillborough Primary School
  • Autism Advisory Teachers
  • Special Education Needs Advisory Teachers for Early Years, Speech, Language & Communication Needs


Services provided by the NHS

Speech and Language Therapy (provided by Health but paid for by the Local Authority) Pediatrician (a medical practitioner for children) School Nurse Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service)


The advice and strategies provided by these professionals may form an Individual Educational Plan.


Requesting an Educational, Health and Care (EHC) needs assessment


A small number of pupils, whose needs are significant, complex and long term, may require a greater level of support than that provided at SEN Support from the school’s own resources. For these pupils, evidence will be collected to show that outside agency advice i.e. from an Educational Psychologist has been implemented over a period of two terms. The outcomes are recorded and must form part of the application, along with any medical reports, for an (EHC) plan which is made to the local authority to conduct an assessment of education, health and care needs.

This may result in an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan being provided if it is felt additional funding is required to support the needs of the child in school. This brings together the child’s health and social care needs as well as their special educational needs.


Current Education, Health and Care Plans


Pupils with an EHC plan have an annual review meeting; the date set for this is based on the date the plan was first put in place. Pupils will attend part or all of the meeting to share their achievements for the year and aspirations for the future.


What is not SEN but may impact on progress and attainment?


Disability and medical conditions

Pupils with medical conditions are supported so that they have full access to education, including school trips and physical education. Where a medical condition meets the criteria of disability, the school will comply with its duties under the Equality Act 2010. Reasonable adjustments will always be made to promote access to all areas of the school curriculum for pupils with a disability. Specific staff will have training to support particular needs, e.g. tube feeding and managing diabetes.


Attendance and punctuality

Attendance is closely monitored; when it falls below 95% parents/carers are asked to attend a meeting at school to resolve any impacting issues.


Health and welfare

Our family workers are on available to support with any needs that may arise in this area and are equipped with the knowledge to put you in touch with someone who can fulfil your needs. Where a child and family need co-ordinated social care support from more than one agency, an Early Help Assessment (EHA) may be used to identify help required and to prevent needs escalating.


Looked After Children (LAC)

These pupils are closely monitored through the policy and guidelines of the LA.


English as an Additional Language (EAL)

Particular care is taken when identifying and assessing SEN for children whose first language is not English (See Foxdell's  New to English/EAL Policy).


SEN Provision

Each pupil with SEN is an individual and their support is tailored to meet their particular needs, therefore SEN support can take many forms. It could include:

  • an individual learning programme such as ‘Toe by Toe’ or ‘Word Wasp’
  • evidence based interventions such as a Talking Partners/Talking Maths
  • extra help from a teacher or a learning support assistant
  • making or changing materials, resources or equipment 5
  • working with the child in a small group
  • using specialist equipment
  • helping a child to take part in the class activities
  • making sure that a child has understood things by encouraging them to ask questions and to try something they find difficult
  • helping other children to work with a child, or play with them at break time
  • supporting a child with physical or personal care difficulties, such as eating, getting around school safely, toileting or dressing


Criteria for adding or removing pupils from the SEN Register

If it is felt a child needs to be added to the SEN register, parents are informed and an appointment is made to discuss your child’s learning needs. Your child’s class teacher would have already raised concerns with you before this point. When a child has made sufficient and sustained progress towards achieving their targets and it is felt that they are able to maintain this with quality first teaching, they may be removed from the SEN register. Parent/carers will be informed of this in writing. The school will continue to monitor pupils recently removed from the register to ensure good progress is maintained.


Roles and responsibilities


The Inclusion Manager is responsible for:

  • Working with the head-teacher and SEN Governor to determine the strategic development of the SEN policy and provision in the school.
  • Working with the head-teacher and governing board to ensure that the school meets its responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 with regard to reasonable adjustments and access arrangements.
  • Having day-to-day responsibility for the operation of this SEN policy and the co- ordination of specific provision made to support individual pupils with SEN, including those who have EHC plans.
  • Providing professional guidance to colleagues and work with staff, parents, and other agencies to ensure that pupils with SEN receive appropriate support and high quality teaching.
  • Advising on the graduated approach to providing SEN support
  • Liaising with parents and offering advice and support
  • Making referrals and liaising with external agencies including the Educational Psychology Service, Learning Support Service, Speech and Language Therapy and other external agencies.
  • Advising on the deployment of the school’s delegated budget and other resources to meet pupils’ needs effectively.
  • Liaise with potential next providers of education to ensure pupils and their parents are informed about options and a smooth transition is planned.
  • Ensure the school keeps the records of all pupils with SEN up to date.


The SEN Governor will:

  • Help to raise awareness of SEN issues at governing board meetings
  • Monitor the quality and effectiveness of SEN and disability provision within the school and update the governing board on this
  • Work with the headteacher and SENCO to determine the strategic development of the SEN policy and provision in the school 6 The Executive Headteacher will:
  • Work with the SENCO and SEN governor to determine the strategic development of the SEN policy and provision in the school
  • Have overall responsibility for the provision and progress of learners with SEN and/or a disability Class Teachers


Each class teacher is responsible for:

  • The progress and development of every pupil in their class
  • Working closely with any teaching assistants or specialist staff to plan and assess the impact of support and interventions and how they can be linked to classroom teaching
  • Working with the SENCO to review each pupil’s progress and development and decide on any changes to provision
  • Ensuring they follow this SEN policy Monitoring arrangements This policy and information report will be reviewed annually by the Inclusion Manager. It will also be updated if any changes to the information are made during the year. It will be approved by the governing board. Links with other policies and documents


This policy links to our policies on:

  • Accessibility plan
  • Behaviour
  • Equality information and objectives
  • Supporting pupils with medical conditions
  • New to English/EAL Policy 7