All schools and settings should have a clear approach to identifying and responding to special educational needs and will carefully monitor the progress of all children and young people.
The benefits of early identification are widely recognised. Identifying need at the earliest point and making effective provision improves long term outcomes.
SEN support is a staged approach to identifying needs and providing support which will involve conversations/meetings with school/setting, parents/carers, children and young people. This is often referred to as the “Graduated Approach” or as “Assess, Plan, Do, Review”
Teaching staff will look at individual development and progress. As part of any assessment your views should be taken into account. In some cases, outside professionals may already be involved and should help to inform any assessments and planned support. The SENCo may wish to contact services not already involved and should seek your agreement to do so. You must be told if SEN support is needed.
The plan of support will be agreed with you, detailing interventions and support to be put in place. The school/setting should agree with you, the desired outcomes, what help will be provided and a date for it to be reviewed. SEN support should be delivered by staff with sufficient skills and knowledge. The plan should consider what approaches and strategies can be used at home (or elsewhere) to enhance SEN support. The plan should be in writing, shared with you and appropriate staff to ensure everyone is aware of individual needs, the support required and agreed strategies or approaches.
The teacher/tutor/early years practitioner is responsible for implementing SEN support on a daily basis, even if this means working away from the main class or group. There is also a requirement to work closely with teaching assistants or specialist staff involved to link the interventions and plan of support to classroom teaching. The SENCo will provide further support to staff.
The school/setting should review the plan regularly with you in line with the agreed date. The review should evaluate the effectiveness of the support, the quality and impact on progress towards meeting the identified outcomes. Teachers, with the SENCo, should consult you for your views before deciding on any changes to the support plan and next steps. Reviews should take place three times a year.
SEN support can take many forms and, dependent on age, may include:
- A special learning programme
- Extra help from a teacher or assistant
- To work in a smaller group
- Observation in class or at break
- Help taking part in class activities
- Extra encouragement in their learning, e.g. to ask questions or to try something they find difficult
- Help communicating with other children
- Support with physical or personal care difficulties, e.g. eating, getting around school safely or using the toilet
- Assistive technology
Specialist services may be involved at any stage. These may include professionals such as:
- An Educational Psychologist
- A specialist learning support teacher
- An Occupational Therapist
- Staff from the Sensory Inclusion Service (SIS)
- A member of the Special Needs Early Years Service
- A Speech and Language Therapist
- A Physiotherapist
- Other medical professionals
- Social care workers
- Wolverhampton‛s Outreach Service
Read our SEN booklet for more information.