At Sutton St James Community School we are determined to meet the educational needs of all our pupils. Pupils with special educational needs are encouraged to become increasingly independent and take responsibility within the school.
The school manages to meet the needs of children who may be experiencing difficulty with learning, or who have a disability, according to the current requirements as set out in the Code of Practice 2015. (This, along with our Special Educational Needs Policy, is available on request.) The Special Educational Needs Coordinator, Mrs Dawn Howell, is responsible for overseeing assessment and provision for SEN pupils in school, and also leads our team of Teaching Assistants, many of whom spend much of their time working closely with small groups and individual children.
Children of high ability, as well as those experiencing difficulties, are identified by their class teacher and given additional input and support. The class teacher is able to draw on the advice and experience of colleagues, particularly the school’s Special Needs Coordinator, and external agencies where appropriate to meet the needs of these children.
Each child with special educational needs has an Individual Education Plan, which is reviewed three times per year. When an IEP is reviewed the parent or guardian is invited to attend the meeting and is provided with a copy of the IEP so that they can support their child at home. All teachers plan, set and mark work appropriate and relevant to the individual needs of their pupils, taking into account any requirements set out in the Individual Education Plan.
The Governor with responsibility for SEND is Mrs S Clifton.
Our SEND policy can be found on our Policy Page. If you have any queries about the Special Educational Needs provision for your child or about Special Educational Needs generally, please speak to Mrs Howell or Miss Willows.
Below is our School SEND offer.
Sutton St James Primary School values the abilities and achievements of all its pupils, and is committed to providing each pupil with the best possible opportunities for learning. We recognise that many pupils will have special needs at some time during their school life. Whilst many factors contribute to the range of difficulties experienced by some children, we believe that much can be done to overcome them by parents, teachers, support staff and pupils working together.
Objectives of Sutton St James SEND Provision
Pupils with special educational needs are provided for in a variety of ways. Provision is tailored to the needs of the pupils as much as possible. Staff are committed to making all of the children's school lives not only productive but happy. Examples of SEND provision include:
Sutton St James Primary School firmly believes that a strong partnership with parents/carers will enable children and young people with SEND to achieve their potential.
Since September 2014, all schools are required to publish details of its school offer, detailing support for pupils with special educational needs and/or a disability to compliment the Lincolnshire LA Local Offer. Below are details of the current school offer at Sutton St James Primary School and a link to the Local Offer for Lincolnshire.
The following policies will give you more detail about how we support pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities.
You can find links to these policies and documents at the end of this page.
What is a SEND Register?
This is a list of all the pupils in the school and class who have special educational needs (SEN) and/or a disability. This makes it easier for the SENCo and staff to monitor those pupils who need extra help.
Why is my child on the SEND Register?
Any pupil on the SEND register has been identified as having a special educational need and/or disability. This may include a short period of time during which a child is making less progress than expected, as identified in termly monitoring and assessment.
What does this mean for my child?
If your child is placed on the SEND Register, then they will start to receive extra help. This will be set out on an Individual Education Plan (IEP) so that you can see what help your child is receiving and how often and what you can do at home to help.
Will my child always be on the SEND Register?
Not all pupils placed on the register will remain on it. Some pupils with significant needs will always be on the SEND Register because they will always need help. Other pupils may only need help for a short amount of time and if they no longer need any help, then they will be removed from the SEND Register in discussion with parents/carers.
How accessible is the school for pupils with a disability?
Will my child be included in all activities, for example school visits?
We allow all pupils to take part in all activities. We go to great lengths to ensure that any pupil with a special educational need and/or disability has the necessary adult support or required equipment so that they can take part, this includes school trips and residential visits. A risk assessment will be undertaken for any visit, including an assessment for the suitability of the trip for some children with SEND.
How will my child be included in lessons if they have special educational needs and/or a disability?Staff always work hard to plan activities that all children can achieve in. A pupil's Individual Education Plan (IEP), Education, Health Care Plan (EHCP), De-Escalation Plan or other document may inform planning of activities.
SEND Reforms (from September 2014)
How will the changes affect my child?
At Sutton St James Primary School changes to 'Special Educational Needs and/or Disability' (SEND) will not affect your child very much. The changes primarily affect how we work in school and will further improve how we work with parents/carers and other professionals. Some of the main changes are:
What does all the jargon mean?
Please see below the different words and abbreviations that we use in school:
Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo)
Who is the SENCo?
The SENCo at our school is Dawn Howell.
When is the SENCo available and how do I contact her?
Mrs Dawn Howell is the SENCo at Sutton St James. Mrs Howell works on Tuesdays and you are welcome to make an appointment to see her on this day.
Should you wish to meet with Mrs Howell please ring the school office or speak with a member of our office staff to arrange an appointment. Alternatively, you may e-mail Mrs Howell with any queries you may have at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What does the SENCo do?
Mrs Howell is responsible for anything relating to 'Special Educational Needs and Disabilities' (SEND) within the school. This makes sure that any special educational needs are identified and that support is put in place to help them. Other duties include:
How can the SENCo help me?
Mrs Howell will be able to offer advice about how to identify if your child has any special educational needs and what support they might need. She can make direct referrals to many outside agencies and lead multi-agency meetings to make sure that your child's needs are met in school. She can also provide advice about any family needs and suggest who can help.
What experience and qualifications does the SENCo have?
Mrs Howell is a qualified teacher and has been awarded the National SENCo award, a qualification needed by all SENCos.
Mrs Howell attends the South Holland SENCo cluster group, so that she can meet with SENCos across the area to share good practice and support each other across the local area. In the academic years from 2018 - 2020 the school took part in the LENS project in order to further improve the quality of SEND provision throughout the school. The SENDCo has also taken part in LA workshops.
How do I get a diagnosis for my child?
I think my child has special educational needs, how do I get a diagnosis for my child?
Pupils will only receive a diagnosis if they have a specific learning difficulty such as as Dyslexia, or have a medical need. The SENCo, in agreement with the class teacher and Head Teacher, will identify that a pupil has a difficulty which is preventing them from learning in the same way as their peers and will place them onto our SEND Register.
If you are concerned that your child has a specific difficulty such as ADHD or Autism, the SENCo can make a direct referral to the Community Paediatrician. If the referral is accepted, you will receive an appointment with a paediatrician, who will give you further information and an assessment may begin.
If you are concerned that your child has a learning difficulty such as Dyslexia, the SENCo can make a referral to a Specialist Teacher from a team called the 'Specialist Teaching Team (STT). A Specialist Teacher works at our school for one day per short term. She can identify if a pupil has difficulties consistent with Dyslexia and provide advice about how best to support their needs.
If you are concerned that your child has a speech and language difficulty, the SENCo can make a referral to the 'Speech and Language Therapy Service' (SALT) based at the Johnson Community Hospital. A therapist may then assess and identify if a pupil has a specific speech and/or language difficulty and provide advice about how best to support their needs.
How long does a diagnosis/referral take?
Referral time can vary depending upon the agency involved. Referrals to the NHS (Community Paediatrics and Speech and Language Therapy Service) take considerably longer, on average it can take between three to four months to receive an appointment. Not all pupils will receive a diagnosis and/or decision. Where diagnoses are made, this can take a considerable time depending upon the individual. In many cases, a diagnosis follows several appointments, which could take more than a year.
Referrals to the Specialist Teacher are made within the school and waiting times are dependent on how many referrals have been made at that point.
What happens once a diagnosis has been made?
At Sutton St James we do not wait until a diagnosis has been made to put support in place, since this can be a very long process. If it is very clear that a pupil has a difficulty and is struggling to learn, we will do everything that we can to help them.
If a diagnosis is made, we will ask advice from the relevant outside agencies about how best to help the pupil. This advice will be identified on the pupil's Individual Education Plan (IEP) and shared with you and/or discussed at a meeting. We will put this advice in place straight away or once the relevant resources/equipment have been purchased.
How can I access support for my child and family?
If you have any concerns about your child or family's needs then you can speak with the SENCo.
The SENCo will be able to advise you about what support is available both within the school and through outside agencies. In most cases the SENCo can make a direct referral to the professionals that you need in order to get advice or help.
In some cases where the help needed is not educational, the SENCo will need to complete an 'Early Help Assessment' form to identify the help that you or your child need. (See Lincolnshire County Council website for more information)
Will every member of staff working with my child be aware of their needs?
All staff working with your child would be made aware of their special educational needs and/or disability (SEND). This ensures that all staff can offer the help and support that your child needs. This would involve all staff working within your child's class. Where a pupil has significant needs, wider staff would be aware of your child's needs, including midday supervisors so that the support is provided at all times, for example where a child uses sign language or has a visual or hearing impairment.
Who can I talk to about my child's special educational needs and/or disability? (See SENCo)
The class teacher and Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) will support you and your child with any concerns that you have and provide you with any information that you need.
Will someone be able to help me with all the processes? (See SENCo)
The SENCo will help you to understand all the processes and support you with the things that you need to do. There is no such thing as a silly question.
What do I need to do to support my child and the school, and how will I be involved?
The SENCo will ensure that everything is in place to support your child, and will let you know what you need to do. Where a pupil has outside agencies involved and has specific difficulties, you will meet with the SENCo, class teacher and professionals regularly to keep you informed and to make any decisions necessary. Where a pupil does not have any outside agencies involved, you will meet with class teachers each term at Parent Consultations to discuss your child's progress.
You can help your child by supporting them with the targets on their Individual Education Plan (IEP). (See Individual Education Plan)
What do staff do if they have a concern about my child?
If any member of staff has a concern about your child, and thinks that they are finding it difficult to learn compared with other children in their class, then they will discuss their concerns with the SENCo. If the conclusion is that your child may have special educational needs, either the class teacher or SENCo will discuss these concerns with you and together you will decide the best course of action. This will normally be to place your child on our Special Educational Needs Register and to provide extra support to help them. (See SEND Register)
How will my child be involved in the process?
If we have identified that your child has special educational needs (SEN) we will write an Individual Education Plan (IEP) for them and share this with your child. We will discuss with them what they are good at and what they find difficult. We will talk to your child about what could help them and ask them to sign the IEP.
If we have any meetings with you or have to complete any paperwork, we will ask your child how they think they are getting on so that their views are heard and taken into account.
How will my child's progress be tracked and how will the school keep me informed about their progress and achievements?
Teachers tracks pupils’ progress and attainment very closely and report to the Head Teacher and Governors at least termly. Pupil progress is discussed at Pupil Progress Meetings held every term with the Head Teacher, SENCo and class teacher so that any concerns may be addressed.
Your child's progress and achievements will be shared with you at termly Parent Consultations and during any review meetings that may be held. Discussions will be held around their attainment, academic progress and progress against the targets that have been set on their Individual Education Plans.
If your child is not making the progress that we would like, then we will discuss changing the support that they are receiving or involving new outside agencies to offer advice and support.
What happens if my child has 'Special Educational Needs and/or a Disability' (SEND)?
What support is put in place for pupils with special educational needs and/or a disability?
My child has special educational needs and/or disability (SEND), what extra support could you provide and who will decide on the support?
This will depend upon your child's individual needs. Each child's needs are unique and so each child will receive different support, depending upon their specific needs. The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) and class teacher will decide which strategies and resources are appropriate to support your child's needs. Where outside agencies are involved, they will provide advice about how best to support your child's needs. Special Educational Needs (SEN) are divided into four areas. Below are some examples of what our school can provide
Cognition and Learning (Learning Need)
Communication and Interaction (Speech and Language)
Social, Emotional and Mental Health
Medical, Physical and Sensory Needs
What equipment and resources does the school have to help my child?
Over the years we have supported many pupils with significant difficulties and so we have lots of equipment and resources already in school. Below are some examples.
How will I be kept informed about the support that my child is receiving and what do I do if I have concerns about it?
The support that your child receives will be outlined on an Individual Education Plan (IEP). This will tell you what the school is doing to help your child and how often they will be getting help. We will share the IEP with you at Parent Consultations every term so that you are kept informed. If your child has outside agencies involved, we will also review the support that they receive at regular review meetings. If you have any concerns about the support that your child is receiving or the support is not helping your child to make progress then we will change the support appropriately.
What are Individual Education Plans (IEPs)?
An Individual Education Plan (IEP) is a document which identifies what your child finds difficult, sets small achievable targets for them to help them to make progress and outlines what extra support your child will receive The IEP is shared with you in the Autumn, Spring and Summer terms. At these times, we will review the previous targets to let you know how your child has got on, and if they have achieved their targets. You will be given a copy of the new IEP so that you can take it home so you can help your child with each of the targets if you wish to. IEPs are shared with your child too, so that they understand what they are trying to achieve and what we are going to do to help them.
What enhanced adult support is available?
The amount of support that SEND children receive differs for every child depending on their specific needs and how much progress they have made.
What is an Outside Agency and which ones are used by the school?
An outside agency, is an agency, service or profession used by the school to offer advice about how best to support a pupil's needs. The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) can refer to most of these agencies directly. Most agencies used by the school are to provide the school with advice, but the SENCo can also refer to, or advise you about, services that can support a parent/carer or family. Most referrals will require parental/carer permission and a referral form will need to be signed. The school cannot access agency support without this permission. Sutton St James uses the following outside agencies:
Cognition and Learning (Learning Needs)
Communication and Interaction (Speech and Language)
Social, Emotional and Mental Health
Medical, Physical and Sensory Needs
Where a pupil has lots of outside agency involvement, the SENCo may suggest using a service called 'ESCo' (Early Support Care and Co-ordination), a team which will lead and organise the many agencies supporting the family.
For specific details about what these agencies provide please click on the link to visit Lincolnshire Authority's Local Offer.
Who decides if an outside agency needs to be involved?
The SENCo would normally decide that the school needs advice from an outside agency because the support already put in place has not helped the pupil to make enough progress. This would be discussed with the parent/carer and a joint decision would be made and parental agreement given.
If an outside agency is involved with my child, does that mean that social care will become involved?
Where the pupil only requires support within school to access the curriculum due to a special educational need, social care would not normally be involved. Where there are wide ranging issues and a family struggling to cope, social care may become involved in order to support both the pupil and family.
How does the school support a transfer from one school/class to another?
How will the school support my child with special educational needs when they start at Sutton St James Primary School?
Entry into Foundation Stage
If your child attends a pre-school/nursery, the SENCo there will normally inform us that your child will be joining us and that he/she has special educational needs. The EYFS teacher at our school will then attend any meetings at the pre-school before they start school and feedback to the SENCo, so that we have a clear picture of your child's needs and what support they might need when they join us. If any support is needed, we will try to have it in place as soon as they start, for example any training or equipment. The SENCo will also speak with outside agencies involved to make sure that any advice is in place.
If your child has significant needs, they may need some extra visits to our Foundation Stage class in addition to those already provided.
Joining school at other times, e.g. mid-year
If your child joins our school at any other time in their school life and they have additional needs, their previous school should send us all their pupil information, which would identify that they have special educational needs. We will then initially rely on the information that they send us. It would be useful if you could tell us all about your child and their needs too. The information from the previous school should tell us what support has been in place at their previous school. We will use this information as a starting point, and try to provide similar support within a short space of time. If outside agencies are involved, the SENCo will contact them so that they continue to support your child in our school. This will often be through a review meeting to which you, the parent/carer, will be invited.
Moving from one class to another
When your child moves from one year group to another, the two teachers (current and new) meet together to discuss each pupil. The current teacher will pass on any significant information to the new class teacher so they are kept fully informed. Any pupil who has a special educational need and/or disability will have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) and possibly other support plans. The new teacher has access to all paperwork regarding a child’s SEN needs so that they have a full understanding of the pupil, their needs and what support needs to be in place to help them. The SENCo will also ensure that new teachers and support staff are informed about pupils with SEN so that there is a smooth transition between classes and support continues as soon as pupils start in their new classes in the new academic year. Children will have a ‘taster session’ in their new class at the end of the academic year.
Moving to another Primary School
If your child moves to a new school due to relocation, once we have been informed that they are on roll at their new school, we will send on any relevant paperwork, including documents such as IEPs and outside agency reports. The new school will then have all the relevant information needed to put support in place as soon as your child joins them. It is always helpful for you to also keep the new school staff informed and make sure that they have received the paperwork from us.
Moving to Secondary School
The school makes contact with all the secondary schools during the final term of Year 6 to inform them of all pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities joining their school. Details of the pupil's needs are passed on to the new school, along with details of what support has been in place at our school to help them. Our SENCo passes on information about any outside agencies that have been involved and all SEN paperwork is passed on, including documents such as IEPs and outside agency reports. The receiving secondary school will then have all the relevant information needed to put support in place as soon as your child joins them in Year 7. Where it is of benefit to the child additional transition to secondary school will be arranged.
How can I help during a transfer?
It is always helpful for you to personally speak with new staff to make sure that they are fully aware of your child's special educational needs and/or disability. Always check, after a short time, that support has been put in place and that you understand what help your child is receiving. If moving to a new school, take your child to visit the school so that you can both see the environment and ask any questions which you may have.
What are Education, Health and Care Plans?
What is an Education, Health Care Plan?
An 'Education, Health Care Plan' (EHCP) is a legal document which is produced by the Local Authority following a 20 week assessment process. It outlines a pupil's special educational needs and the support that the school needs to put in place to help them. A pupil may only be awarded a EHCP once the school's normal resources have been exhausted and they cannot meet the pupil's needs without additional resources and/or funding. Since September 2014, 'Statements' have been replaced by 'Education, Health and Care Plans'. This document outlines a pupil's special educational need and the support that the school needs to put in place to help them. It is a child friendly document, based around the pupil and their family.
How will I know if my child needs an EHCP?
You will need to discuss your concerns with the school Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), who will advise you about whether your child would benefit from an Education, Health and Care Plan. Only pupils with significant special educational needs would be considered for an EHCP and only once the school has exhausted its provision and outside agency support. These discussions are normally held at a review meeting with outside agencies.
How can I get an Education, Health and Care Plan for my child and how long does it take?
At the moment, either you can make a parental request to the Local Authority for a 'Request for Statutory Assessment' or the school can make a request. If you make a parental request, the Local Authority will ask the school to complete a 'School Advice Form', the same as if the school make a request. However the request is made, the Local Authority will want to see as much evidence as possible about your child's needs, what has been put in place to help them and what impact the support has had on your child's progress. At the moment, the 'Statutory Assessment' process takes 20 weeks.
My child has an Education, Health and Care Plan but now I feel that they need a special school place, what do I do?
If at any point you or the school feel that a mainstream school can no longer meet your child's needs, an early Annual Review can be called. Any discussions about school places need to be discussed at the Annual Review, preferably with any supporting outside agencies present to give their views. The request for a special school place will be noted on the Annual Review form and the Local Authority will consult the named special school. A decision will then be made based on whether any places are available and if the special school could meet your child's needs.
What training and qualifications do the staff have (in relation to SEND)?
The SENCo has achieved the National SENCo award and Lego therapy training, Mental Health First Aid Training and the Lincolnshire four tier Safeguarding Training.
All staff at our school have training in a great number of areas of special educational needs and disability. Staff have had training in the following:
'I am really pleased the school is moving forward in the right direction with SEN. As a parent of a child with Aspergers I now feel that we have the correct support for both of us, as parents and for my son. Mrs Howell has made us feel that someone understands. I feel that the school has become very approachable and I really love the fact that we work as a team to support both my son and the school'. Mrs Jarvis
What are the strengths of Sutton St James in meeting the needs of pupils with SEND?
At Sutton St James we work hard to be an inclusive school and to ensure that the needs of all our pupils are met. Below are some of the strengths of our school, in meeting the needs of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities:
At Sutton St James Primary School we have a caring, sensitive and approachable team of staff who are committed to working together to ensure that your child achieves their full potential in all areas.
Reviewed September 2021