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Welcome to our SEND Information Report which is part of Durham County Council’s Local Offer for children and young people with Special Educational Needs. Durham County has provided a wealth of information for families on SEN. The Local Offer outlines what Durham County can offer families/carers in order to support children with SEN. This can be found on the Local Offer Website.

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we are committed to the equal inclusion of all pupils in all areas of school life. We recognise the diverse and individual needs of all of our pupils and take into account the additional support required by those children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

Here at Wheatley Hill Primary School, we recognise that all pupils are entitled to a quality of provision that will enable them to achieve their full potential. We believe in positive intervention, removing barriers to learning, raising expectations and levels of achievement and working in partnership with other agencies in order to provide a positive educational experience for all our pupils including those with a special educational need or disability.

Our school recognises there are particular groups of pupils whose circumstances require additional consideration by those who work with them to support their SEN.

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we have appointed a Designated Teacher for Looked after Children & those with SEND - our SENCO ensures all teachers in school understand the implications for those children who are looked after and have SEN. At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we ensure that all pupils, regardless of their specific needs make the best possible progress.

Our SEND Information Report
Section A
Introduction

Definition

A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made that is additional to or different from that made generally for other children or young people of the same age. (CoP 2015, p16)

 
1. Broad Areas of Need

There are four broad areas of special educational need, these are: 

Communication and Interaction - Includes pupils with Autism Spectrum Condition and those with Speech, Language and Communication Needs.

 

Cognition and Learning - Includes pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties, Moderate Learning Difficulties, Severe Learning Difficulties and Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties.

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties - Includes any pupils who have an emotional, social or mental health need that is impacting on their ability to learn.

 

Sensory and/or Physical Difficulties - Includes pupils with hearing impairment, visual impairment, multi-sensory impairment and physical difficulties.

 

School Ethos & Approach

Wheatley Hill Primary School is a caring, inclusive mainstream school in the heart of the local community, with an Enhanced Mainstream Provision supporting pupils with Speech and Language Difficulties and a huge specialist provision named The Climb Project, which supports children with a wide range of complex needs.

Our school welcomes all children and values them as individuals, treating them equally and with dignity and respect. We believe that all children have the right to have their own particular needs recognised and addressed in order to achieve the best possible outcomes. We believe that all teachers are teachers of children with SEND and it is therefore a whole school responsibility to ensure that these children’s needs are met in the best possible way. We believe that all children, no matter what needs or disabilities they have should be given the opportunity to achieve their full potential and be given the best chance possible.

Through staff working together as a team, and in partnership with pupils and their parents, we strive to ensure that the following aims are met.

Consultation in Production of SIR
  • Children are at the centre of everything we do at Wheatley Hill Primary. When producing the SEND information report, we consulted with children, parents, carers and governors.

 

Related Policies:

  • Admissions arrangements;

  • Accessibility Plan;

  • Equalities Information & Objectives;

  • Safeguarding, SEND Policy;

  • Supporting pupils with medical conditions.

 
Review arrangements of SIR

The SIR is reviewed annually and was last reviewed in Oct 2021.

Key Contacts – 

 

The full range of local support available for children/ young people with SEND and their families within and outside of school can be found in the County Durham Local Offer: http://www.durham.gov.uk/localoffer  

 
2. SEN Provision

The kinds of SEN that are provided for:

  • Communication and interaction needs. This includes children with autism, speech and language difficulties and disorders, aspergers’ syndrome, PDA, social skills difficulties, Tourette’s syndrome and many more.

  • Cognition and learning needs, including children with specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia and dyspraxia. Children who have developmental delay, global delay, general learning difficulties and visual processing disorder.

  • Social, emotional and mental health difficulties, such as anxiety, ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and OCD. Children who struggle to manage their emotions and find it difficult to regulate themselves.

  • Sensory or physical needs such as downs syndrome, cerebral palsy, epilepsy fine and gross motor delay, hearing or visual impairment and sensory processing difficulties

 

Enhanced Mainstream Provision (EMP)

Our EMP supports pupils with Speech and Language Difficulties. Children who access this provision receive regular Speech and Language Therapy and can access specialist teaching and resources where required.

 

The Climb Project

We also have a specialist provision named The Climb Project, which supports children with a wide range of complex needs. Children with an EHCP, access our Climb Project. The Climb project is a specialist SEND inclusion approach that joins Special School and Mainstream teaching routes in a clear learning pathway.

 

This provides young people with a simultaneous Special & Mainstream School learning route. Young people within the climb-project receive the intensive specialist support, as you would expect in any quality Special School provision, whilst at the same time offering the young people the teaching approaches, peer integration and expansive curriculum associated with the mainstream primary experience. All young people, regardless of need, follow an individualised learning route that is specifically designed to meet the young person’s needs based on the outcomes of their EHCP.

Our approach to teaching children/young people with SEND

Inclusive education means supporting all pupils to learn, contribute and participate in all aspects of school life alongside their peers. The curriculum includes, not only the formal requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum/National Curriculum, but also a range of additional opportunities to enrich the experiences of pupils. The curriculum also includes the social aspects that are essential for life-long learning, personal growth and development of independence.

Each mainstream class, up to year 5, are taught in two halves. One half of the class receive a formal teaching session, whilst the other have a practical session – both which link together. These groups then swap, in order for our pupils to access their learning in a multisensory way. Each mainstream class, has a base class linked to it from the Climb Project. These bases have children working in them who may find a fulltime timetable in a mainstream class difficult. Children have a range of provision built into their personalised timetable such as: sensory room, soft play, sensory swings, task boxes, choice boxes, access to workstation, therapy room and much much more. Children from the climb project, have a hybrid offer of education enabling them to receive the specialist support they need in a specialist setting, but also accessing the mainstream with support when appropriate.

We use a tool called the Engagement Model to assess our pupils who are working below year 1. Children who are at EYFS phase in their education follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum/ National Curriculum at a level and pace that is appropriate to their abilities.

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we encourage independence at all levels. We use visual cues to support our children to become more independent learners with lots of modelling and prompts. We encourage all of our children in our EYFS setting to explore and investigate their environments and set up lots of problem solving activities in our continuous provision areas. As the children get older, we teach them real life skills including how to cook a meal, how to read a bus timetable, how to keep themselves safe, hygiene lessons and many more.

How we adapt the curriculum and learning environment for children and young people with SEND

At Wheatley Hill primary School, there are a wide range of intervention programmes and provision that may be put into place for a child with Special Educational Needs. These include:

  • A fully scaffolded / differentiated or modified curriculum

  • Special equipment and resources

  • English programmes and phonics support

  • Numeracy Programmes to develop basic skills

  • Social skills sessions

  • Social stories

  • Comic Strip Conversations sessions

  • Specialist classrooms in our Climb project

  • Work stations

  • Visuals

  • PECS

  • Communication boards

  • Identiplay

  • Zones of Regulation

  • Task boxes

  • Work systems

  • Scaffolded activities

  • Practical learning opportunities

  • Outdoor learning

  • Forest School

  • Beach school

  • Sensory swings

  • Art therapy

  • Lego Therapy

  • Independent purpose activities

  • Soft play area

  • Sensory room complete with ball pit and sensory lights

  • Counselling support

  • Anger Management work shops

  • Life skills programmes

  • Sensory sessions

  • Visual discrimination

  • Fine motor interventions

  • Gross motor skills interventions including gross motor carousels

  • Rebound Therapy

  • Work with other agencies such as Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, ASD team etc

 

In consultation with staff, parents and pupils, the SENDCO chooses the appropriate provision/intervention programme for each child. The SENDCO ensures that all children with SEND are catered for effectively. Using data analysis, lesson/session observations and pupil, staff and parent feedback, the SENDCO evaluates the impact of provision/intervention programmes, including value for money in relation to the SEND budget. This is formally reviewed termly and the SENDCO tracks data carefully to measure the impact of each provision.

 

Children with SEND have their curriculum adapted and made accessible to them. This depends on the child’s needs and interests and a bespoke package is created - both to ensure that the child is learning new skills and consolidating those skills. We have a big focus on the outdoors and outdoor learning, where the children can learn real life skills in the natural environment. The outcomes for individual children, which are detailed on their EHCPs and SEND support plans are careful thought out and activities planned for, in the outdoors to meet these outcomes and targets.

The curriculum is adapted to provide a multisensory approach to learning and bespoke to our pupils needs.

Lots of environments within Wheatley Hill Primary have been adapted and made accessible for our pupils. We have quiet dinner rooms and lunch areas for those children who find the main dining room too busy, children have work stations of they find working in groups overwhelming, we have stair lifts for those who can’t manage the stairs, visuals are used in and around our environments – these are just a few examples.

 

View our Accessibility Plan here.

How we identify, assess and review children/young people with SEN

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we aim to identify SEND as early as possible. It is important that there is early identification, assessment and provision for any child who may have SEND since the earlier action is taken, the more responsive the child is likely to be, and the more readily an intervention can be made. Identification may come as a result of the following methods of assessment:

  • Prior to admission – Parents are asked to provide us with certain information when they place their child’s name down for the Nursery or school. They are asked to include details of any difficulties in their child’s development, if any services are already involved or if any previous support has been given to their child.

  • In our Nursery – The details given at the time of application for a Nursery place are all checked on admission, amendments made and supplementary information noted.

  • On entering school - this is continued into Reception and progress against the Early Learning Goals are recorded and reported at the end of the year.

 

Through their discussions, observations, assessments and data analysis, the SENDCOs, class teachers, key workers and support staff will identify any children who appear to have SEND. Children with SEND may also be identified by outside agencies and organisations. Parents and carers may also inform the SENDCOs or teaching staff of any concerns and possible Special Educational Needs. When a child is identified as having SEND they will be placed on the SEND register as school support and issued with a support plan.

 

We meet the needs of most children and young people in our mainstream classes with excellent classroom practice and provision through Quality First Teaching. Some of our pupils need reasonable adjustments made in order to achieve. We make these adjustments in a vast range of ways – depending on the needs of our pupils – this may range from something as simple as a chew buddy or fidget toy to a package of SEND resources such as regular access to a calming space, regular movement or sensory breaks or TEACCH approach work systems at a quiet work station.

Early identification of need

We constantly work in partnership with parents/carers, to identify need at the earliest opportunity. We may also:

  • Consult with relevant external agencies

  • Use assessment tools & materials

  • Use observations

  • Use Short Notes

 
SEND Support

Where a pupil is identified as having a special educational need, school will follow a graduated approach which takes the form of cycles of “Assess, Plan, Do, Review

  • Assess a child’s special educational needs

  • Plan the provision to meet your child’s aspirations and agreed outcomes

  • Do put the provision in place to meet those outcomes

  • Review the support and progress.

 

In consultation with parents/carers, the pupil will be placed on the SEN register and given a SEND Support plan detailing the pupil’s needs, outcomes and provision in place to meet those needs. These are formally reviewed termly. The class teacher will provide interventions that are additional to those provided as part of the school’s usual scaffolded / differentiated curriculum. Discussions will happen with parents, teachers and SENDCO as part of a child centered approach and progress monitored closely.

 

The triggers for SEND support are that, despite receiving quality first teaching the child:

  • continues to make little or no progress in specific areas over a long period;

  • continues working at National Curriculum levels substantially below that expected of children of a similar age;

  • continues to have difficulty in developing literacy and mathematics skills;

  • has emotional difficulties which substantially and regularly interfere with the child’s own learning or that of the class group.

  • has sensory or physical needs, and requires additional specialist equipment or regular advice or visits by a specialist service;

  • has ongoing communication or interaction difficulties that impede the development of social relationships and cause substantial barriers to learning.

 

If a child on SEND support continues to make limited progress in one of the 4 broad areas of need, the SENDCO may refer the child to outside agencies such as Educational Psychology, Cognition and Learning team, CAMHs, ASD team, Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language Therapy or a range of other Specialist Support Teams for additional support.

Advice and recommendations from these services would then be added to the child’s SEND support plan and implemented in school. Progress would be closely monitored as part of a ‘plan, do, review’ approach.

 

Referral for Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment or Top Up Funding

If a child makes limited progress in their area of need, despite the school having taken relevant and purposeful action to identify, assess and meet the SEND of a child, the school or parents may consider requesting either top up funding, or an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment.

To inform this decision, the local authority will expect to see evidence of action taken by the school. These include:

 

  • Records of regular reviews and their outcomes;

  • The pupil’s health including the child’s medical history where relevant;

  • Early Learning Goals and National Curriculum levels of attainment in literacy and mathematics;

  • Educational and other assessments, for example from an advisory specialist support teacher or an educational psychologist;

  • Views of the parents and of the child;

  • Involvement of other professionals such as health, social services or education welfare service;

  • Costed provision maps:

  • Personalised timetable

 

 

Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP)

An EHCP includes the following and will be reviewed annually:

  • The pupil’s name, address and date of birth;

  • Details of all of the pupils’ special needs, including health needs;

  • Identification of the provision necessary to meet the pupil Special Educational Needs;

  • Short term targets for the child to work towards;

  • Identification of the type and name of the school where the provision is to be made;

  • Relevant non-educational needs of the child;

  • Information on non-educational provision;

  • Reports and views of any other specialist involvement.

An EHCP will be reviewed annually and will last until the child is 25, or all targets are met. 

Details of monitoring progress for pupils with SEN

The progress of children with SEND is monitored in a number of ways. These include:

  • Reviewing of SEND support plan targets and outcomes;

  • Pupil Progress Meetings;

  • Discussion at review meetings;

  • Regular Reading assessments;

  • Moderation of book/ captured learning by the child;

  • Weekly/half term class assessments;

  • Specific Intervention Programme tracker sheets

  • School tracking systems of data

  • Observations by SENDCo

 

Adequate progress can be defined in a number of ways. It might be progress which:

  • Closes the attainment gap between the child and their peers;

  • prevents the attainment gap growing wider;

  • Is similar to that of peers starting from the same attainment baseline, but less than that of the majority of peers;

  • Matches or betters the child’s previous rate of progress;

  • Ensures access to the full curriculum;

  • Demonstrates an improvement in self-help, social or personal skills;

  • Allows children to feel happy and secure within their environment and reduce any negative impact upon their Emotional and Mental Health.

 

Assessment

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we use a system called B-squared to track our pupil’s progress. Teachers constantly assess the pupils in their class and use our school progression documents to plan from and assess. Children are assessed formally every term, where the learning captured from that term is used to assess against the criteria from B-Squared assessment tool. This data is then moderated by DHT and SENCO and assessments finalized, added to support plans and shared with parents.

If a child in year 1 or above is working academically lower than year 1, we use the engagement model to support our assessments.

We use B-Squared not only to assess academic ability, but to assess our children against the 4 broad areas of need. If we notice a child is not making progress in one of these areas or showing difficulty in one of these areas, we would refer into the correct service for specialist advice and support.

 

We encourage our parents to take an active role in their child’s development at school and all parents are invited to attend a pupil progress review every term. During this time, we update support plans together and discuss and take into account any parental concerns. This may lead to a referral to a particular service to support the child as best as possible. As well as the formal review, we have an open door policy at Wheatley Hill Primary School and encourage parents to call in and see us to chat about any concerns they may have about their child. For further information about Assessment at Wheatley Hill - Click Here.

How children with SEND engage in all activities

Each mainstream class has at least a qualified teacher and teaching assistant, some of our classes have more than one TA allocated and we have a range of academic mentors and specialist SEND assistants – this depends upon the needs of the children in each class.

Base classes in the Climb Project, have a range of specialist SEND teachers and SEND teaching assistants. Most bases have 4 members of staff – some slightly more and some slightly less. This depends upon the needs of the children in the classes and the ratio’s outlined on the children’s EHCP’s.

 

Interventions are monitored regularly as well as support plans. Every mainstream class has an intervention desk, where interventions take place, again interventions depend upon the needs of the children and what is outlined on their support plans. These are monitored by the SENDCo as intervention trackers are recorded.

In the Climb project, we have a therapy room, where many interventions and therapies take place such as 1:1 reading, maths interventions, social skills groups, Lego theory, mindfulness activities, SALT interventions, Zones of regulation workshops and many more.

To support our pupils with SEND, our behaviour policy is differentiated. Our staff are trained to recognise when a pupil is having a SEND crisis or choosing inappropriate behaviour. Pupils are encouraged to make a choice. Less demands are put on our pupils with SEND and they are offered a choice in order to feel in control. These choices may be presented visually to a child and a range of de-escalation techniques are used to help our pupils make the right choices. We do not shout at our pupils and encourage our pupils not to shout either. Children earn rather than lose. They earn extra playtime, choice time and other incentives. Some children have a personalised behaviour plan. This details how to support the child at each stage of the behaviours they display. These are shared with the child and with parents, each term.

Some of our pupils at Wheatley Hill primary have a personalised risk assessment, as well as a behaviour plan. This ensures that we eliminate as many risks as possible in order to keep our children safe.

 

Our SEND department have their own Teaching and Learning Policy. The teaching and learning policy outlines how we will support our children with SEND and outlines how our children with SEND are supported to ensure they access a broad and balanced curriculum.

Click here to read the SEND Teaching & Learning Policy

How we evaluate the effectiveness of SEND provision

At Wheatley Hill Primary, we continuously ensure the provision we provide has a positive impact on the outcomes for all of our pupils. We do this through a range of tools such as:

  • Robust evaluation of policy and practice

  • Book scrutiny

  • SENCO/SLT/Governor monitoring

  • Learning walks

  • Performance management

  • Observations

  • Health and safety audits of each environment

 

3. Support for Emotional & Social Development

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we have an array of arrangements for supporting children and young people with social and emotional development, such as pastoral support, morning meet and greet sessions, access and support from our inclusion manager and many therapies offered such as social skills interventions, Lego theory and many more as mentioned above. We use the Zones of Regulation in school, to help children identify their feelings and recognise when they are not ‘ready to learn’. We teach the children a range of skills and tools to help them back to the ‘green zone’.

We consult with a range of agencies and partnerships to facilitate arrangements for supporting children and young people with pastoral, medical and social needs. 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 SENDCO for further advice and support. This may involve working alongside outside agencies such as Health and Social Services, and/or the Behaviour Support Team.  We also have staff trained to run additional interventions to develop social needs of children e.g. through Listening Matters, Lego Therapy and other social skills groups.

Views of all children are taken into account through Pupil Questionnaires, the School Council representatives and regular discussions with children as part of the school’s monitoring, focusing on different aspects of school life e.g. learning, environment, behaviour etc.

Examples of interventions/provision offered to support children’s emotional and social development are:

  • Support/advice from SENDCO

  • Lego Therapy

  • Additional appropriately skilled adults routinely used to support flexible groupings

  • Access to targeted small group work with class teacher or TA.

  • Access to intervention group work with class teacher or TA

  • School staff access awareness-enhanced and specialist training including LA training regarding meeting the needs of pupils

  • Additional appropriately skilled adult (e.g. TA) for focused support during unstructured times e.g. lunchtime supervision/ targeted extra- curriculum activities, supervision in the playground.

  • Access to a quiet, distraction-free environment in which to deliver intervention groups

  • TA and class teacher to liaise with services as appropriate

  • Allocated time for professional meetings

  • Access to bespoke/recommended interventions from professionals.

  • Comic Strip Conversations

  • Social stories

  • Bespoke/personalised curriculum

  • Staff have accessed training in relation to Restorative Approaches and these are used consistently across school in conjunction with the Respectful relationships policy.

  • Zones of Regulation

 

4. Looked After Children with SEN

The Designated Teacher for Looked after Children is Joy Hodgkinson, she is our Deputy Head teacher and SENDCO. She ensures that all teachers understand the implications for those children who are looked after and have SEN.

PEP meetings are coordinated for those children who need them and regular contact with social workers is in place to ensure there is an excellent offer of continuity of care for our pupils.

Where a child has additional needs and is Looked after school will liaise with the LACES service to develop a Personalised Education Plan (PEP).

PEPs and SEN Support Plans are reviewed every term and parents/carers are invited into school to discuss the progress made towards targets and provision for their child going forward.  Children with EHCPs meet annually (at least) with all professionals to agree annual targets, and then their SEN Support Plans are broken down to shorter-term targets to achieve across the course of a term.

 

5. SEN Transition

Children and young people with SEND can become particularly anxious about starting school or moving on to a new class or school.  At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we know how important a successful transition is to all our children.

How we support children/young people with SEN starting at our school 

If your child has already secured additional support from the Local Authority, we will allocate them a member of support staff before they begin school. We can then arrange for your child to attend additional induction sessions before they begin school with the support of this staff member. If your child has not secured this additional support, but you feel that they have a need that requires this extra support, then contact us and we will discuss different options to support them best. Please ask us if you think your child would benefit from an extended transition period, as we can arrange this.

We are keen to involve parents/carers as much as possible in their child’s transition to school, after all you know your children best. We invite parents into school during the summer term, this opportunity involves looking around the school, being introduced to staff and having the chance to discuss any concerns again before the start of school. This meeting is followed up by another invitation in the autumn term, where the transition period is discussed, reviewed and evaluated.

We provide extra visits for those who we feel will benefit from an enhanced transition. The period of transition depends on the individual needs of the pupil. If a pupil transfers to us from another school, we will endeavour to visit them in their current setting.  This gives us an opportunity to see what is currently in place for the pupil and how we can support them at Wheatley Hill Primary School. Where needed, the SENDCO will attend the Annual Review to meet the current class teacher, parents and most importantly the pupil. At this meeting we hope to ease any worries or concerns for the move to Wheatley Hill Primary School.

How we support children/young people with SEN moving between classes

In the summer term, before children transfer to their new class, we organise transition visits within school.  A member of staff will accompany the children on a visit to their new class and helps them to settle into the new environment and meet the staff.  The organisation of transition for SEND children is an extension of this system.  As we are a small school, there are a lot of familiar faces for children!  We use transition booklets for children to move between classes with photographs and information to keep at home to try to lessen anxieties for both children and parents/carers.  This way, transition can be discussed further at home to support the preparation of returning to school in September with visual prompts as a reminder.

School staff will work closely with parents and where appropriate provide additional support to ensure a smooth transition; whether that being as a child starts school or nursery or as they move between year groups.  This can be extra visits, social stories etc. We recognise that transitions can be difficult for a child with SEND and take steps to ensure that any transition is as smooth as possible.

How we support children/young people with SEN leaving our school 

Children with SEND are given an extensive level of support before they leave for a new school. Their class teacher and SENDCO will discuss with parents how many transition visits can be arranged over and above those offered to children without SEND. These additional visits to the new school will be carried out with the child, a class teacher/TA and parent in the summer term. This ensures that relationships are built between schools, key information shared between staff and the child is given the opportunity to settle into a new routine with the support of a familiar adult. Additional meeting may also be held involving professionals to discuss transition arrangements. SENDCOs from our school and the new school will meet to discuss individual children’s needs and hand over documents. Children may be offered a place in summer school at their new school if transitioning across the summer break.

Children with SEND that have been issued with an Education, Health and Care plan are welcomed into Wheatley Hill Primary School for their Nursery and Primary School education. When considering a move to secondary-aged education, a child can then be assessed for Special School if a parent wished them to attend this type of setting.

How we support with Secondary School Transition 

During SEND Support Plan reviews, the SENCO makes contact with the relevant member of staff from secondary schools children are attending, in order to make links and invite them to be a part of SEND review meetings. This is done in order to ensure that both SEND pupils, parents, current school staff and secondary school staff have a link between both schools to fully support transition. This also ensures that all staff from the secondary phase are aware of the needs of our learners and can make adequate arrangements in readiness for the transition of our SEND pupils. The SENCO begins this process in summer term for year 5 and 6 SEND review meetings.

How we support pupils  preparing for adulthood

The Department for Education has produced a toolkit to support schools/colleges in identifying the four key PfA Pathways when developing outcomes across the age range.

This includes consideration of aspirations, activity and provision that can support progress towards the PfA outcomes and what this might mean at different ages and stages of development.

If you would like to discuss your SEND requirements in detail please contact the school to arrange an appointment.

6. SEN Specialist Expertise
SENCO & Staff Expertise

Our SENCO is Joy Hodgkinson, she is also the Deputy Head teacher. Contact details are 01429 820 594 ext 3.

The role of the SNDCO is to:

  • oversee day-to-day operation of school’s SEN policy;

  • coordinating provision for children with SEN;

  • liaise with designated teacher where a Looked after Child has SEN; 

  • overseeing SEN support plans and ensuring teachers and support staff work closely with parents/ carers  to follow a graduated approach to SEN Support;

  • advise on use of delegated budget/ other resources;

  • liaise with parents of children with SEN;

  • maintain links with other education settings and outside agencies;

  • liaise with potential next providers of education;

  • work with head and governors on Equality Act; and

  • ensure that SEN records are up to date.

  • contribute to the in service training of staff

 

Staff Training

The school makes an annual audit of training needs for all staff taking into account school priorities as well as personal and professional development. The Head Teacher and Deputy Head teacher devise a weekly training programme. The Deputy Head teacher delivers coaching sessions to each base class on a weekly basis with a different focus depending on school priorities. Particular support will be given to Early Career Teachers and other new members of staff.

Staff have had a vast range of training including:

  • Speech and Language training

  • Sensory profiling Training

  • PECs training

  • Makaton training

  • Communication Friendly Classrooms

  • Team Teach Training

  • De-escalation training

  • Rebound Therapy

  • Lego Therapy Training

  • Supporting Children with ASD

  • Pediatric First Aid

  • Forest School Training

  • Supporting pupils with PDA

  • Gross motor support training

  • TEACHH Training

  • Work system and scaffolding training

  • Communication and Interacting

  • Task box training

  • Practical learning for children with SEND

  • Using ICT to support pupils with SEND

  • Phonics Training

  • Grass Sledge training

  • Purposeful big play support

  • How to support pupils with Cognition and Learning difficulties

  • Supporting pupils with specific learning difficulties

 

External Specialists and Other Bodies

We have very strong links with a wide range of external agencies and services as well as extra service level agreement (WHP pay for extra time from services), providing a wealth of expertise for our children with SEND.  These include:

  • Speech and Language Therapy

  • Physiotherapy

  • Educational Psychology

  • Autism Outreach

  • Occupational Therapy

  • Language and Learning

  • Family Workers and Parent Support Advisors

  • Learning Support

  • Specialist Support Services for children with Physical Disabilities

  • Behaviour intervention Team

  • EWEL Team

  • School Nurse

  • Mental Health Support Teams

  • CAMHs

  • Cognition and Learning Team

  • Early Help Support

  • Parent Partnership

  • Health, including School Nurse and Health Visitors

  • Social Services

  • One Point services

 

The external specialists may:

 

The Local Authority (LA) provides the school with a budget towards meeting pupils' SEND. Wheatley Hill Primary School allocate additional funding from the main school budget to SEND.

 

The school spends this money on:

  • SEND support staff salaries;

  • Training for all teachers and teaching assistants so they can meet pupil’s needs more effectively;

  • Special resources and equipment.

 

The details of how individual pupils receive support are recorded on their SEND support plans and EHCPs

7. Consulting with SEN Pupils, Parents & Carers
Consultation with Children and Young People with SEN

Pupils are at the centre of everything we do at Wheatley Hill, Primary School. It is important that children with SEND are aware of their targets and outcomes and the additional support that is being put in place for them and why. We ensure that children are given regular feedback about their progress and are also given the opportunity to give their opinions about the progress they are making and the provision/intervention they receive. Where appropriate, we encourage children to help to set new targets and outcomes for themselves. Children with SEND support are offered regular review meetings with their parents during parents evening. Children with an EHCP are invited to the annual reviews held by the SENDCo and the children prepare and share a power point about themselves for the meeting. Children can also attend the review meetings at parents evenings, if they wish.

 

Teachers/SENCO and Support Staff will work with children and young people to identify the support needed to meet agreed outcomes.  The provision is planned and interventions are allocated to individual needs. The children take an active role with setting their outcomes and discussing them with the class teacher/SENCO.

The SEND children attending our school are aged 2-11 years so consulting with them to seek their views about how we are meeting their needs has to be age appropriate, especially when many often have communication difficulties.

We use the following strategies:

  • Have regular meetings and discussions with parents about what we have planned for their child and how to link this with interests and passions demonstrated at home.

  • Where appropriate we consult directly with children in an age appropriate manner (usually Key Stage 2 children if appropriate).

  • Make close observations during school to identify the types of activities and experiences that most engage each child so these can be developed further and be used inform future planning.

  • Involve SEND children with planning their own activities and encouraging them to share what they would like to learn and participate with including asking children about their strengths and aspirations evident on their support plans/short notes.

  • Consult with children with an EHC plan to ensure their voice is heard through my story/ through pupil voice about strengths & areas of difficulties, what they like/dislike about school, what they are good at/need to work on, what their aspirations are for now/future.

  • Monitoring between SENCO and SEN pupils for pupil voice to be heard in conjunction with support and provision they access.

  • Extend any resources that they show a preference for.

  • Most importantly, ensure the children with SEND are happy, motivated and make expected levels of progress throughout their time in school.

  • Focus on a child-centred approach.

  • Hold discussions as part of the school’s monitoring schedule focused on different aspects of school e.g. support children feel that they receive, behaviour in school, the curriculum, the environment, any interventions they access etc.

 
Consultation with parents and carers of children with SEN

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we place a great deal of value on the role of the parent/carer. We understand that it can be difficult, in some cases, for parents to deal with the fact that their child has additional needs and we are particularly sensitive in the early stages when a child is first identified.  We aim to reassure parents/carers and clarify issues/information for them throughout the SEND process. We recognise that parents hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of their child's needs and the best ways of supporting them. All parents of pupils with Special Educational Needs will be treated as partners and supported to play an active and valued role in their pupil’s education. We will always keep parents/carers well informed about their child’s special needs through:

  • Termly parents/ carers evenings;

  • Ongoing discussions with a class teacher and/or SENCO;

  • An ‘open-door’ policy, where parents and carers are welcome to come into the setting to discuss any concerns they may have;

  • Through regular reviews of their child’s SEN Support Plan/ EHC Plan.

 
8. Compliments, Complaints & Feedback

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we always seek to improve on the quality of education provided for children with SEND and are keen to hear from parents about their child’s experience. We would also like your views about the content of our SEN Information Report. If you would like to comment please complete the online form in the Contact Us section of our website.

Compliments are always greatly received and can be passed on either directly to staff and the SENCO, or formally recorded via our regular questionnaires to parents or in the form of a letter to the Head Teacher.  These positive comments will be published on this area of our school website. You can also email support@whprimary.com

We hope that complaints about our SEND provision will be rare, however, if there should be a concern we would encourage parents, in the first instance to speak to their child’s teacher, if parents feel that they need to take this further, they are encouraged to contact Miss Hodgkinson (Deputy and SENCO) or Mr Scarr, the Headteacher in order to resolve any issues quickly.

Further information can be found in our School Complaints policy which can be found in our School Policies section or visit the Durham County Council Local Offer.

If you would like to discuss your SEND requirements in detail please contact the school to arrange an appointment.

 

9. Key Policies

The most important ones for parents of children with SEN are listed below and can be found on the Policies Section of our Website:

  • SEND Policy

  • Equality Information and Objectives 

  • Accessibility Plan 

  • Anti-Bullying Policy

  • Behaviour Policy 

  • Medical Needs Policy

  • Teaching and Learning Policy

  • Complaints Policy 

Other Information
Rights Team

We are part of Unicef's Rights Respecting School Award. We have our level 2 award and believe strongly in Children's Rights.

Safeguarding

Find out about how we ensure everybody that visits our school is kept safe. 

SEND - Information Report