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SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS (SEN) - Updated September 2017

All schools have a significant role in meeting children's special educational needs.  At Gamston, we recognise that all children have their own individual needs and abilities.


However, there are some children who, at some stage of their school lives, may find learning difficult.  In many cases, the action necessary to respond to a child's needs will be met by adapting the teacher's planning. Some children may have specific learning difficulties and assessments of children's progress are made carefully and regularly, so that specific, individual education plans can be created for those children who are experiencing difficulty. Where appropriate, Teaching Assistants will be used to provide additional, targeted support for individuals or small groups of children.


Gamston also benefits from the support of outside agencies such as the Psychology Service, Behaviour Support Service, English as an Additional Language (EAL) team, Inclusion Support and Language and Speech Therapy Service.  These agencies may be called upon to offer help and advice where appropriate.  Parents will always be consulted before any such contact with these services is made. 


Our Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) will consult with teachers, parents, children and outside agencies, to ensure that we meet the needs of individual children.


At Gamston Primary we identify gifted and talented pupils as having special educational needs.  Their talents need to be specifically created for by their class teacher by providing more chanllenging work, Teaching Assistants may also be used to provide support to extend their learning. We aim to ensure that all children are given the opportunity to fulfil their potential.

Advice is sought from specialist teachers and key stage 3 specialists in order that gifted children's attainments are further enhanced. A list of gifted and talented pupils is kept by the SENCO and achievements are regularly monitored to ensure effective progression occurs.


Special Educational Needs Local Offer


How will you know if my child needs extra help?

We aim to identify children with special needs as soon as possible at Gamston CE Aided Primary School. However, it is important to consider that all children enter school with different experiences, progress at different rates and attain different academic levels.


Staff working directly with your child may raise a concern if he/she does not appear to be making the expected progress over a number of weeks. Perhaps they appear to be falling significantly behind the level of their classmates, despite working hard, or you yourself, may notice that they don’t appear to be improving in their learning.


Usually a child will be identified in one of the following ways.

· Information from a pre-school setting or other school

· A pupil performing significantly below the expected level for their age

· A parent or carer expressing a concern

· Concern raised by a member of school staff, for example where self-esteem or behaviour appears to be affecting performance

· Information received from external agencies regarding physical difficulties or a health diagnosis from a paediatrician.


What should I do if I think my child needs extra help?

Please talk to us! Members of staff at Gamston are approachable and parents should feel they can discuss any issue that may be worrying them regarding their child’s time at school. Every morning between 8:45 a.m. and 8:55 a.m. a member of staff will be on the playground and available to discuss any concerns you may be having. You are also welcome to talk to their class teacher; all staff are very approachable and happy to talk to you in their classroom. If you prefer, you can request a formal appointment, or perhaps you might feel more comfortable speaking over the telephone or writing to us. The main thing is, to share your concern with us. We will always try to be open and honest with parents and we hope they feel able to take the same approach with us.


Where can I find the school’s SEND policy and other related documents?

SEND stands for Special Educational Needs and Disability. You can find all this information on the school’s website or you may request a paper copy from the school office.


How will you teach and support my child?

Our aim is for all children, regardless of their need, to be given the opportunity to take part in appropriate learning opportunities in an inclusive manner. Teaching and learning is of a high standard and geared towards helping all pupils to access a broad and rich curriculum to foster independent learning and develop lifelong skills. Staff are expected to deliver high quality first class teaching which is differentiated to meet the needs of all our learners.


Within the classroom setting you may find that your child:

· Uses alternative forms of recording their work

· Uses physical or mobility aids

· Uses additional visual prompts

· Uses concrete apparatus

· Uses ICT

· Works in small focus groups with an additional adult

· Works 1:1 with an additional adult

· Takes part in an intervention programme, available to support children who require help in a specific area which goes beyond the work available in class.

· Works with a specialist teacher, for example a Speech and Language Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Educational Physiologist, Behaviour Support Team or Schools and Family Support Services –who may support children with autism or dyslexia.


If your child receives significant, additional levels of support, an Educational Health and Care plan (EHC) may be created for him/her. This will detail the specific areas of learning, targets and strategies they are using to improve. You will receive a copy of this, so you are fully aware of how your child is being supported at school.


The targets set are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time scaled), with the expectation that the child will achieve the target by the time it is reviewed.


The plan is regularly reviewed and updated throughout the year and you will have the opportunity to discuss your child’s progress at regular parent-teacher meetings and termly structured conversation meetings. You can, of course, access the Head Teacher, SEN consultant or members of the support staff for updates at any time.


At Gamston Primary School we produce termly Provision Maps, which outline the additional support that is being provided for children with additional needs. This may be 1:1 teaching support, an intervention programme or targeted teaching assistant support and may take place in class or in a group withdrawn from class. The impact of the additional provision is reviewed at the end of the term by the teacher in conjunction with the SEN consultant and the TA delivering the programme. The provision is then reviewed in the light of this.


How will the curriculum and learning environment be matched to my child’s needs?

Gamston Primary is not a large school and staff pupil ratios are high. All work within class is pitched at an appropriate level so that children are able to access it according to their specific needs. Typically, this might mean that in a lesson there would be three different levels of work set for the class. Teaching assistants are very experienced, and have the ability to deliver individually differentiated activities and use their initiative to intervene when learning objectives need to be broken down into even smaller steps. Class teachers are encouraged to discuss approaches to differentiation with specialist staff.

Teachers/teaching assistants attend training sessions provided by outside agencies. There are regular discussions between teaching assistants, class teachers, the head and the SEN consultant regarding pupil progress.


How is the decision made about what type, and how much support my child will receive?

Who will make the decision and on what basis?

When your child’s needs are initially discussed, the provision he/she needs will be agreed. It is important that the school, parents and pupils work together at this stage. If there are differences of opinion about the nature of support required, or very specialist support is suggested, the school may seek the advice of external agencies to help in the decision making process.




How will the equipment and facilities to support children with SEND be secured?


In order to make sure that learners with SEND have the required resources in each classroom, a proportion of the budget is used towards class based provision. This might take the form of additional physical resources e.g. enlarged visual aids, additional ICT equipment, writing slopes, alternative seating etc. or assessment materials for dyslexia, dyscalculia etc.


Class teachers are encouraged to discuss their resource needs with the SEN consultant and Head Teacher.  For those requiring provision additional to class based approaches, funding facilitates the school’s range of intervention programmes. In some cases it might also be used to provide additional human resources e.g. teaching assistants, therapists, specialist teachers etc.


Specialist training of staff may also be necessary. Funding is applied using a flexible approach, to enable pupils to achieve specific outcomes at any particular time. The budget is the responsibility of the Head Teacher and regular discussion and monitoring takes place with the SEN consultant to ensure that resources are allocated appropriately and cost efficiently. Where much more specialist personalised equipment is required, the school liaises with the relevant external advisory service (e.g. occupational therapy, sensory impairment services) to seek advice on the best options for the procurement of these.


Parents will be involved wherever possible in these discussions.


How will you and I know how my child is doing, and how will you help me to support their learning?


School staff have high expectations for all learners. Teachers monitor children’s progress on a day to day basis through a range of assessment types. For learners with the most significant needs, daily contact with families takes place, for example through informal conversation at the end of the school day or sometimes in home-school books. As a school, we measure children’s progress in learning against National expectations and age related expectations. It is the class teacher’s responsibility through discussion with teaching assistants to note areas of improvement and where further support is needed. We track

pupil’s progress from school entry to Year 6, at the end of each half term.



Children who are not making expected progress are picked up through discussion between teachers, teaching assistants, SEN consultant, Head Teacher and parents. Information about pupil progress is shared with parents at parent-teacher meetings and through the progress report sent home at the end of the Summer Term. Parents with children with SEND are encouraged to attend additional appointments to discuss their child’s progress.


If a child has not met a target on their plan, the reasons for this will be discussed, then the target may be adapted into smaller steps or a different approach may be tried to ensure the child does make progress.


How does the school consult with and involve children with SEND in planning and reviewing their education?

At Gamston Primary School we encourage all pupils to have a viewpoint. Children with special needs discuss and set child friendly targets with their class teacher/teaching assistant. They are encouraged to evaluate for themselves whether targets have been met and if not, what strategies they can use to improve. Periodically a pupil questionnaire is used, along with School Council meetings, where we actively seek the viewpoints of children. Pupils are encouraged to speak to a trusted adult if they have a worry. If your child has an

Education Health and Care Plan (EHC Plan), their views will be sought before any review meeting. (Children with Current Statements will be transferred over to EHC plans in the next year).


How does Gamston Primary School assess and evaluate the effectiveness and sufficiency of its arrangements and provision for children with SEND?


The Head Teacher’s report includes a section updating issues relating to SEND which are available to be discussed. This gives governors the opportunity to contribute to any decisions related to evaluating the effectiveness of provision. Children are not identified by name. There is a designated SEND governor. Under the new Code of Practice we anticipate there will be about

10-15% of pupils on the SEN register.

Children can be placed on, or removed from the register at any time throughout the year. At the end of each term, there is a discussion between all class teachers and the SENCo regarding the sufficiency of provision. A provision map is prepared for the coming academic year.




What support is available to assist with my child’s emotional and social development?

Gamston Primary School is an inclusive school; we welcome and celebrate diversity.  All staff believe that children having high self-esteem and the ability to communicate clearly is crucial to a child’s well-being. We have a caring, understanding team looking after our children. Pupils who regularly work with teaching assistants on a 1:1 basis always have chance to share their worries or concerns during these sessions.


The class teacher has overall responsibility for the pastoral, medical and social care of every child in their class, therefore this would be the parents’ first point of contact. If further support is required the class teacher liaises with the SEN consultant or Head Teacher for further advice and support. This may involve working alongside outside agencies such as Health and Social Services, Educational Psychology, and/or the Behaviour Support Team.



What our parents say

'On the whole we feel included in what happens at school'


'She really enjoys her lessons and her friends at school'



What expertise is available at Gamston Primary School in relation to SEND?


Our present SENCo (the Head Teacher) has been in the role for 1 term.  A newly appointed teacher will be taking over the role and training for the SENCo Qualification.

We have teaching assistants who have had training in:

· Delivering Speech & Language programmes from Speech & Language therapists.

· Delivering reading spelling / phonics and numeracy programmes.

· Delivering specific programmes, such as St.Kitts. 

· Supporting children with ASD/dyslexia, BSED and ADHD.

· Manual Handling.

· MAPA training.

· Administering medicines and First Aid procedures.


Which other services do you access to provide for and support pupils with SEND (including health, therapy and social care services)?


As a school we work closely with any external agencies that we feel are relevant to our children’s needs including: - Behaviour and Emotional Interventions; Health including – GPs, school nurse, play therapists, paediatricians, speech & language therapists; occupational therapists; social services including - social workers and educational psychologists. We also seek regular advice from our family of schools at regular SENCo meetings.


Who is the SEN Coordinator/Governor and how can I contact them?

Mr Dominic Woodsford – SENCo

Mrs Lucy Vernon - SEN Governor

All of the above can be contacted by email office@gamston.notts.sch.uk or

TEL: 01777 838631


How will my child be supported to have a voice in school?


Your child’s opinions play a very important role in their ability to make progress. Every effort is made to ensure that his/her thoughts are taken into consideration when assessing and establishing targets. Their thoughts are gathered in different ways. More often it is via conversation with the class teacher. Younger or less able children are given the opportunity to contribute their ideas in discussions which take place with a familiar adult who acts as an

advocate for them. Some learners might need to be supported to express their views in alternative formats such as pictures or using an eye gazer to communicate preferred choices.



What help and support is available for the family through school?


In today’s world family circumstances can be extremely diverse. Here at Gamston Primary School we try to support families in a holistic way and appreciate that everyone faces problems at one time or another. When extra support or guidance is needed, we are very happy to signpost parents and carers to a range of support services within Nottinghamshire:


Parent Partnership: 0115 948 2888 www.ppsnotts.org.uk


Autism Support Groups in Nottinghamshire: www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/autism/support


Indigo Kids.web.com norsaca.org.uk Helpline: 0115 976 1805


Nottinghamshire ADHD Awareness: 0788 164 5663 www.netmums.com email



RUSH: http://www.rushadhdsupport.org


Dyslexia action Nottinghamshire: 0300 303 8350 nottingham@dyslexiaaction.org.uk

Please also see the Local Offer from the Local Authority on the NCC website



How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom, including trips?


All pupils are included in all parts of the school curriculum and we aim for all children to be included on school trips/residential visits. We will provide the necessary support to ensure that this is successful.  A risk assessment is carried out prior to any off site activity to ensure everyone’s health &

safety will not be compromised.


In the unlikely event that it is considered unsafe for a child to take part in an activity, school would firstly discuss the difficulty with parents to see if they could help, working in partnership, to facilitate a solution. Alternatively, we would try to provide activities which would cover the same curriculum areas.


Who should I contact about my child joining the school?


Contact the Office Manager/Assistant in the school office, to arrange to meet the Head Teacher Mr David Fotheringham. He will be willing to discuss how the school could meet your child’s needs.


office@gamston.notts.sch.uk Tel: 01777 838631


How will you prepare and support my child(ren) to join your school, and how will you support them to move on to the next stage of their education?


We encourage all new children to visit the school prior to starting when they will meet their teacher and classmates. They will also be shown around the school. For children with SEND we may encourage further visits to assist with the acclimatisation of the new surroundings. We would also be keen to visit them in their current school.


When children are preparing to leave us for a new school, typically to go to secondary education, we arrange transition visits and additional enhanced transition visits when necessary. Our ‘feeder’ secondary school runs a programme specifically tailored to aid transition. Transition staff also come to talk to children and staff.

We liaise closely with staff/SENCOs when receiving and transferring children to different schools, ensuring all relevant paperwork is passed on and all needs are discussed and understood.


Nottinghamshire SEND local offer