Special Educational Needs & Disability (SEND)
We regard every student as having individual needs. Each student will have an equal opportunity to work to their full potential so that they will learn to appreciate and value their own strengths. We aim to ensure that each student feels equally valued within the Academy community and we are committed to combating discrimination of any sort, including racial discrimination.
The Academy caters for the needs of all students with Special Educational Needs & Disability. The aim of our SEND provision is to improve the learning and raise the achievements of students with Special Educational Needs & Disability by promoting and developing student independence, in order to best prepare them for life beyond school.
All staff share responsibility for students with special educational needs in their classes. Individual subject teachers provide the support required for both the more and less able students, largely by the provision of differentiated material.
The Academy employs Teaching Assistants (TAs) to support students and their teachers. We believe there are considerable benefits for all students in catering for SEND in the mainstream class. Where in-class support is provided, teachers are better able to focus on the differing levels of ability within the group. Some students with Special Educational Needs & Disability may at times require more specialised teaching, which can better be provided within a small group situation away from the main classroom.
Students with Special Educational Needs & Disability are placed on the SEND Register and each student is allocated a named Teaching Assistant who oversees their provision, monitors their progress and liaises with staff. If an Individual Support Plan (ISP) is appropriate, a copy will be given to the student, all staff involved and parents.
Priority for support is given to Lower School students, especially Year 7 and those students in any year who have a Statement of Special Educational Needs & Disability and those students with ISPs.
Teaching Assistants assist some students, who need help with organisation, homework, basic literacy/numeracy skills, language development, revision, catch-up work and social skills. Teaching Assistants also supervise a daily Break-time and Lunch-time Club and a Homework Club which takes place every day after school. Typing tuition is provided for identified students.
A summary of the principals guiding our SEND work
All students in the Academy study the National Curriculum. The Academy seeks to develop an inclusive curriculum and thereby reduce the need for aspects of the National Curriculum to be disapplied for a student, by applying the following three principles as set out in the 1999 DfEE National Curriculum for England document:
- setting suitable learning challenges;
- responding to students' diverse learning needs;
- overcoming potential barriers to learning and assessment for individuals and groups of students.
We aim to meet students' learning difficulties by:
- identifying students with Special Educational Needs & Disability;
- enabling all staff to meet identified student needs and keep up with developments in the area of Special Educational Needs & Disability;
- making the curriculum accessible to all students, through recognising the need for differentiation and employing a range of teaching styles;
- by working closely with parents and outside agencies.
Students with learning difficulties will benefit from:
- being taught within a smaller group supported by TAs;
- a structured framework;
- a variety of teaching methods including whole class and group sessions;
- differentiated activities;
- regular and systematic assessment of their progress.
We try to ensure that all students have access to the full curriculum by adjusting:
- teaching style;
- presentation of task;
- the difficulty of the tasks given;
- the amount of initial teacher input;
- the amount of adult support;
- the ways in which our students can respond and give evidence for their learning, e.g. use of tape recorder, more structured worksheets, word-processing, etc;
- the groupings within the classroom.
The Academy believes in a partnership between teachers and parents in the education of its students. Teachers notify and involve parents when the Academy becomes concerned about a student's learning development and keep them updated throughout the various stages of review.
As part of the support offered to students in school we have a Literacy Instructor who undertakes wave 2 and wave 3 literacy interventions on a regular basis. The needs of each individual student are regularly assessed and the interventions are undertaken accordingly in group or one to one situations and cover all areas of literacy difficulties. The students are also invited and encouraged to read daily in Learning Support Reading Clubs.