Sexey's School's Special Educational Needs Offer
At Sexey’s, we believe that all young people should be able to achieve their very best. Some of our students need additional help to learn. This is often known as Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).
We keep a register of students who require additional help to learn. This register includes all students with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs) or Statements as well as any students with identified additional needs who are not meeting the national age related expectations. We will work with the students, teachers, parents and carers as well as outside professionals to ensure these students get the best possible help. As a mainstream secondary school, this help can be part of our normal inclusive Sexey’s lessons or in additional specialised lessons or provision.
In line with the ‘Children’s and Families Bill’, schools are now required to publish their own ‘SEN Offer’. This document explains Sexey’s SEN provision in response to questions put forward by Somerset Parent Partnership.
Sexey’s School Local Offer
Sexey’s School has a strong reputation for its inclusive ethos and ensuring all students are fully included in all learning and extra-curricular activities. We have a Small Learning Support department including a SENDCo and Learning Support Assistants (LSAs). The Team support individual students with additional educational needs in class with their peers across the curriculum. They also provide one-to-one support for literacy and numeracy intervention, speech and language, social/life skills, exam revision, homework, coursework and mentoring. The team also supports small groups of children and works alongside teachers encouraging students’ greater confidence, independence and self-management strategies. We believe strongly in a collaborative approach and we work very closely with families, communicating regularly through emails, phone calls and meetings.
How does the school know if children/young people need extra help and what should I do if I think my child/young person may have special educational needs?
- We gather information about each child during the primary/secondary transition. Individual support and provision is put in place at the start of year 7 based on information provided by parents/carers/primary Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (SENCo) and other external agencies.
- We use a range of assessment data including end of Key Stage 2 data, CATS and internal assessments.
- There are a range of interventions for students starting Year 7 with identified additional needs, examples include: literacy and numeracy support, speech and language and social communication.
- There is an on-going review of the support of all students with additional needs at regular intervals throughout the year. There is also regular communication from parents/carers and teachers regarding any child who may need extra support.
- Teachers who have any concerns about the progress of individual students will liaise with the SENCo
- The SENDCo will hold meetings with parents/carers throughout the year.
- If you have any concerns that your child has additional needs you should contact the SENCo.
How will the school setting support my child/young person and how will it communicate to all staff that my child has special education needs or a disability and the support he or she will need?
- The SENCo discussion with the Heads of Year, prepare a Vulnerable Learners register which is available to all staff, this register includes an outline of the students’ individual needs.
- The SENDCo provides Staff SEND Overview sheets that provide key information for staff on students who have SEND including strategies to help and support them.
- The Vulnerable Learners register is regularly reviewed and updated and is available to all teaching and support staff.
- Students with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP ) have a detailed pen portrait which summarises needs, support and provision details from the EHCP. This is available to all teachers and support staff.
- The SENCo liaises with parents/carers and external agencies and with parental permission, further updated information is distributed to all teachers.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s/young person’s needs?
- Maths, English and Science all set by ability and staff differentiate to provide a high quietly learning experience matched to student’s needs.
- Teachers plan lessons according to the specific needs of all children in their class.
- Specific resources and strategies will be used to support your child individually and/or in groups with differentiation to enable access to the whole curriculum.
- All students study a board and balanced curriculum.
- The school has offers the ASDAN Life skills and Personal Development courses at entry level, level 1 and 2 at Key Stage 4. These courses build students’ independence and confidence.
- Where students have complex learning needs and require a significantly modified curriculum this is managed inline with their EHCP.
How will both you and I know how my child/young person is doing and how will you help me support my child’s/young person’s learning?
- The SENCo is available at Parents Evening and at other times to meet with you to discuss your child’s progress and any other concerns/updates you may have. Home/school communication is important to us and we encourage you to contact and share with us your knowledge and experiences.
- You are able to contact your child’s tutor and Head of Year if you have any concerns about your child’s well-being and progress.
- The school has parents evenings for all year groups that are held at set times in the year as detailed in the school calendar and you will also receive reports on progress four times a year.
- If your child has an EHCP you will be invited to an Annual Review meeting as well as informal meetings throughout the year.
- LSAs that support students with EHCPs will update you either by emails, phone calls or home/school communication books, as agreed with parents/carers.
- If there are significant concerns about your child’s progress in school, you will be invited to attend meetings and with your permission, external professionals will also be involved to offer advice and support.
- For some students additional arrangements and adjustments can be made to enable them to fully access a range of tests. Access Arrangements might include: additional time; rest breaks; the use of a scribe, the use of a reader or the use of a word processor. Only tests and assessors authorised by the school and recognised by JCQ can be accepted for access arrangements for public examinations. The SENCo works with the school exam and data team to identify those who are eligible for additional examination access arrangements.
What support will there be for my child’s/young person’s overall well-being?
In addition to the Learning Support Department, pastoral support is given by each Year team. The school’s pastoral support ensures the continuing well-being and personal growth of all students. In addition, arrangements are in place to support the medical needs of students throughout the day. The school has a Pastoral Student Support Team to reinforce positive behaviour and rebuild students’ self-esteem and engagement in learning. To follow is a list of some of the strategies used in Sexey’s School :
Strategies to support the development of students’ social skills and enhance self-esteem
- Small group programmes
- Lunchtime clubs
- Peer mentors
- Mentoring sessions
- Quiet spaces available at lunch/break time
- Social Skills/communication groups
- The Learning Support Room (S3)
- Liaison with Learning Support staff
- Pastoral support
Strategies to reduce anxiety/promote emotional wellbeing (including communication with parents)
- Transition support, visits and events
- Personalised timetables
- Regular contact and liaison with parents
- Open door policy
- Lunchtime support
Strategies to support/modify behaviour
- Reward system as set out in School Behaviour Policy
- Pastoral Support Team
- Mentoring and Peer mentoring programmes
- Achievement evenings and celebrations
- Celebration Friday
Support/supervision at unstructured times of the day including personal care
- Break time – Learning Support Room
- Lunch clubs – Learning Support Room
- Trained staff supervising during break periods, lunchtimes and at the start and end of the day
- Quiet room – The Sanctuary
- Lunchtime clubs available in different faculties
Personal and medical care
- First Aiders available for students throughout the day
- Health Centre – staffed 24 hours a day
- Weekly NHS Health Clinic with School Nurse Team
- Weekly GP Clinic
- Individual Health Care Plans for students with medical needs
- LSAs support individual students with more complex medical and personal care needs
Access to strategies/programmes to support occupational /physiotherapy needs
- Advice of professionals is disseminated and followed
- Use of any recommended equipment and support
Access to modified equipment and I.T.
- Specialist equipment as required on an individual basis to access the curriculum
- Use of laptops, computers or iPads across the curriculum
- Modified resources and equipment for students with sensory needs
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school and how do you all work together?
The school works with a number of external agencies on a regular basis for additional guidance and support to ensure that the needs of all children are met. These include:
- Somerset Learning Support Service
- Somerset Educational Psychology Service
- South Somerset SENDCO Network
- Mendip PRU
- REACH Project
- Liaison with Speech and Language Therapists regarding individual students, guidance and advice on Speech and Language Intervention and Support.
Other services used:
School Health Nurse, Occupational/Physiotherapy Paediatric Services, CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service), GET SET
What training has the staff supporting the children and young people with SEND had or are they having?
The Learning Support Department has an experienced team of staff with a range of knowledge and expertise in all areas on SEND including Autism Spectrum, Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder, Sensory Support, Specific Learning Difficulties/Dyslexia, Behaviour Emotional and Social difficulties (including Attachment needs) and Complex Needs.
An on-going programme of training is in place to ensure that teachers and support staff have appropriate skills and knowledge in areas that will further improve their support of children with additional needs through staff INSET and external courses. The Learning Support Team also offer guidance and support to teachers and organise training for newly qualified and student teachers.
Our SENCo actively engages with opportunities to share best practice and keep abreast of current local and national initiatives and policy to support students with SEND.
The School seeks advice and guidance from local special schools to review, evaluate and develop provision for students who have the most complex needs.
We have Learning Support staff with specialised expertise and qualifications in school including:
The SENDCo holds the National SENCo Award
How will my child/young person be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
- We ensure that all children are able to access all external trips and visits alongside their peers.
- The Learning Support Department liaise with other departments to make arrangements to ensure that all students are included and participate in all extracurricular activities including school trips.
- Students with more complex needs are fully supported and supervised in all activities outside the classroom. Contact is made prior to the visit to ensure accessibility and safety arrangements are in place.
- Students with EHC plans who are attending trips for extended periods of time, including trips abroad are supported by experienced support staff in agreement with parents.
How accessible is the school environment?
- Sexey’s School has a fully inclusive ethos and ensures that every child is able to access the curriculum and all school activities.
- We ensure that equipment used is accessible to all children regardless of their needs
- We ensure that the learning environment is accessible to students of all abilities and this includes differentiation of the curriculum, support and interventions
- We provide support with homework clubs and access to the library at lunchtime, before and after school
- Key words and literacy resources are used across the school to support learning
- ICT is used extensively across the curriculum to support and develop learning
- Laptop computers, iPads and other ICT equipment are used by students with more complex needs and/or sensory impairments
- Accessible toilets are situated at the Sixth Form Centre and Main Building
How will the school prepare and support my child/young person to join the school, transfer to a new setting/school/college or for the next stage of education and life?
Sexey’s School has a well-established extended Year 6 to 7 transition programme for students who might find the move to a secondary school more challenging. We liaise closely with primary schools, families and external agencies during Year 6 and this enables us to gain more detailed knowledge and understanding of the individual needs of children, we can then ensure that support and provision is in place to enable a smooth transition.
The Learning Support Department liaise closely with the Year 7 pastoral team throughout the transition process and ensure that all staff are aware of the additional needs of all new students.
Towards the end of Key Stage 4 we support students to prepare for the next stage in their education and life, this includes: visits to Post 16 colleges and sixth form, taster days, individual visits and liaison with college/sixth form staff.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s/young people’s needs?
Individual students with EHCPs receive allocated top up funding to ensure that appropriate support and provision is in place, this includes individual support, small groups and personalised timetables.
The School has funding to allow us to provide a number of small group interventions to support students.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child/young person will receive?
A student with an EHCP will have a level of support outlined in their plan. The type of individual support and provision is planned following discussions with parents/carers, teachers and external agencies. Support can be delivered by LSAs working with students in lessons, in 1:1 sessions, in specialised small classes and in small group sessions. Students with more complex needs may receive additional support from professionals such as Sensory Support teachers and other support agencies.
Other students identified with additional needs may receive a range of support including small groups, literacy and numeracy interventions, mentoring and social communication sessions. There are also lunchtime extra-curricular activities available on a daily basis.
How are parents involved in the school? How can I be involved? How will you build on your equal partnerships with parent carers?
The Learning Support Department has regular communication with parents/carers. This may be through regular phone calls, emails, home/school communication books. Parents/carers are always welcome to meet the SENCo to discuss their child’s individual needs or any concerns, by making an appointment through main reception.
Who can I contact for further information ?
Email: Jane Hicks (SENDCo)
See further information on Somerset Choices here.
SEND documents and Policies
Updated Sept 2019