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SEN Policy

This document sets out our policy towards the special educational needs of our pupils and is supplementary to the school’s policies for the education of all our pupils. Please also refer to the school’s SEN Information Report – available on the school website.




Our guiding principle is one of inclusion. We want to identify and break down any possible barriers to learning and ensure that every child can reach their full potential within all elements of school life and as part of the wider community. All children are entitled to an education that enables them to make progress so that they can:

  • Achieve their best;
  • Become confident, resilient individuals;
  • Make successful transitions to their next stage of schooling and ultimately into adulthood.


Every teacher is a teacher of every child including those with SEND. We recognise that it is the class teacher’s responsibility to meet the needs of all children in their care and the majority of pupils will have their needs met through:

  • High quality teaching and learning strategies;
  • Modification to teaching approaches and differentiation;
  • Modification to classroom organisation and teaching materials; and/or
  • Provision of ancillary equipment aids.




  • To value all the pupils at our school equally and hold the child at the centre;
  • To ensure a supportive learning environment for all our children and to respond early and appropriately to their needs, working closely with the family;
  • To ensure that all pupils have equal access to high quality teaching through a broad, balanced, creatively themed curriculum which is carefully differentiated to meet individual needs and abilities;
  • For all teachers and support staff to recognise and meet the needs of all pupils;
  • To offer high quality support to ensure that all needs are met;
  • To maximise the opportunities for pupils with SEND to join in with all the activities of the school;
  • To celebrate what children can do and to foster the success and achievement of all;
  • To seek the views of the child and place these at the heart;
  • To acknowledge and draw on parental knowledge and expertise in relation to their child and maintain close liaisons with the child’s parents / carers;
  • To set out an approach which encourages active, regular communication between all those concerned – pupils, parents/carers, teachers, support staff, specialist staff and other agencies.



This policy will contribute to achieving the objectives above by ensuring that provision for pupils with Special Educational Needs is a matter for the whole school and in some cases the wider community e.g. health care, the local authority. It will also ensure that provision for pupils with SEND is part of the continuous cycle of assessment and review.


The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO)


The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) is Mrs. Cate Phillips. 

She can be contacted by phone: 01279 307477, or by email:


Cate Phillips has been a qualified teacher since 1996 and completed the National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordination in 2015. She has been at Summercroft, as SENCO and part of the middle management team, since January 2016.


Her specific SEND responsibilities include:


  • Overseeing the day to day operation of the school’s SEND policy
  • Supporting and advising colleagues
  • Co-ordinating the provision for children with SEND
  • Maintaining the SEND register as a current document and managing the records of all children with SEND
  • Liaising with the SLT and the SEND Governor
  • Liaising with parents and carers of children with SEND
  • Contributing to the professional development of staff
  • Acting as a link  with external agencies and other support agencies
  • Monitoring and evaluating the special educational needs and disabilities provision and reporting to the board of governors
  • Managing a range of resources, both human and material
  • Co-ordination, monitoring and reviewing the range and delivery of interventions to support identified pupils
  • Contributing to raising the standard of teaching, learning and attainment for all SEND children in the school
  • Making relevant applications for Exceptional Needs Funding and Educational Health Care Plans
  • Attending SENCO cluster group who meet regularly to share good practice and to support each other.
  • Attending relevant DSPL (Delivering Specialist Provision Locally) and County meetings to ensure she is aware of current issues in the world of SEND.


Speech and Language Team


Lindsay Cox is a specialist speech and language and EAL (English as an Additional Language) interventionist who works at Summercroft 3 days a week. She works closely with the SENCO, Joy Wheeler and NHS speech and language therapists. Her responsibilities include

  • using WELLCOMM to assess the language development of all pupils in Nursery and Reception. (*WELLCOMM is a speech and language toolkit for screening and intervention).
  • using WELLCOMM to assess the continued progress for all pupils in need
  • providing speech and language/ EAL advice and support to staff
  • providing speech and language advice/EAL support to parents/ carers
  • when needed, writing and facilitating speech and language plans written in liaison, where necessary, with Joy Wheeler
  • when needed, facilitating speech and language plans written by Becky Rae
  • when needed, writing and facilitating EAL plans throughout the school


Joy Wheeler is an independent speech and language therapist who visits Summercroft once a week. She works closely with Lindsay Cox to help assess needs and plan interventions for those children referred to her.


Becky Rae is an independent NHS speech and language therapist who visits Summercroft approximately once every half term. She works closely with Lindsay Cox to help assess needs and plan interventions.


Governing Body


Governors have an important statutory duty towards pupils with special educational needs and disabilities. They need to ensure that the school’s policy and procedures for SEND are in accordance with the Code of Practice. Annette Burns is the governor with specific responsibility for SEND. She meets regularly with the SENCO, provides termly updates and an annual report for the governing body.


Teaching Staff


All teachers are involved in the development of the school’s SEND policy and are aware of the procedures for identifying, assessing and making provision for children with SEND. Inclusion is a key element within the school and all teachers do their best to adapt the curriculum to meet every child’s needs. Teachers know that they are “responsible and accountable for the progress and development of the pupils in their class, including where pupils access support from teaching assistants or specialist staff” (6.36 DfE SEND Code of Practice 2014).


Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) working directly with children with SEND


Learning Support Assistants work under the guidance of the Class Teacher and SENCO to provide day-to-day SEND provision and support. These LSAs will:


  • Ensure that the child who they are supporting has full access to learning opportunities;
  • Maintain high expectations for the child they are supporting;
  • Ensure that they are fully aware of the child’s strengths and difficulties;
  • Ensure that they are fully aware of agreed outcomes, short term targets and provision in place;
  • Attend regular review meetings as appropriate;
  • Work closely with the SENCO and any specialists working with the child;
  • Attend regular training sessions or area cluster meetings as appropriate;
  • Maintain any necessary records and/or collect evidence to track the effectiveness of provisions in place;
  • Review progress over time along with the Class Teacher and SENCO;
  • Ensure good links with other members of staff who are working to support the child.



Parents/carers of pupils with SEND


Partnership with parents/ carers plays a key role in enabling pupils with SEND to achieve their potential. The school recognises that parents/ carers hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs. All parents/ carers of children with SEND are treated as partners and supported to play an active and valued role in their child’s education.


4. IDENTIFICATION OF Special Educational Needs or Disability (SEND)


A child has special educational needs or disability if he/she has a:

a) Significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age


b) Disability, which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for children of the same age in schools within the LA.


The four broad areas of need are:

  1. Communication and interaction (Speech and language difficulties and children on the autistic spectrum continuum)
  2. Cognition and learning (General and specific learning difficulties)
  3. Social, mental and emotional health
  4. Sensory and/or physical impairment (Hearing impairment, visual impairment, physical and co-ordination difficulties)


At Summercroft Primary School we aim to identify and support children with individual needs as soon as possible. This is generally achieved through parent/ carer concerns, teacher observations or monitoring of assessment data.

Should a parent/ carer have concerns they should

  • Speak with the class teacher/ SENCO at the earliest opportunity.


Should a teacher identify concerns they will

  • Speak with the parents/ carers at the earliest opportunity.
  • Raise concerns with the SENCO, using a ‘Pupil Concern Form’


The SENCO may then

  • Have discussions with class teacher and parents/ carers
  • Observe the child
  • Carry out appropriate assessments
  • Recommend support to address the concerns
  • When appropriate, suggest a STAR plan (see below)
  • When appropriate, refer to a specialist
  • When appropriate, sign post parents/ carers to additional support from other agencies




A Graduated Response

In line with the Code of Practice (2014), we make a graduated response using the 3 wave model.

Wave 1 - Quality First Teaching ( QFT)


We aim to provide high-quality whole class teaching that takes account of all learners’ needs and prior learning. This teaching is clearly planned and matched to the learning of all children to help them make progress.

We aim to use a combination of the following types of modification in the classroom to meet the individual needs of SEND pupils.

  • Different levels of the same work
  • Different approaches (individual, paired and group work)
  • Different expectations of groups
  • Different learning outcomes for groups
  • Providing some adult support
  • Recording in different ways
  • Repeating instructions for certain groups/individuals
  • Breaking information down into smaller more manageable ‘chunks’
  • Providing visual or auditory reinforcement
  • Providing different resources to support the work
  • Suggesting different ways into a task (aural, visual, practical)
  • Providing a reader or a scribe
  • Having homework instructions printed out to avoid copying at speed
  • Pupils working in different ability groups for certain tasks
  • Withdrawal from the class
  • Teaching strategies as highlighted by the dyslexia friendly initiative


Wave 2 – Booster groups


Teachers will identify children who continue to need further support in certain areas. These children will be identified using assessment data and professional judgement. Teachers may

  • consult with the SENCo for advice
  • provide additional adult support in identified areas
  • provide small group booster sessions, facilitated by class teacher or Teaching Assistant – monitored by class teacher


Wave 3 – STAR plan (involving addition to SEND register: Wave 3) and targeted interventions


Teachers will identify those children whose needs continue to require more intensive support and will liaise with parents/ carers and the SENCO regarding these needs.

Please note: Parents/carers will be involved in discussions prior to a pupil being placed on Wave 3/ STAR support


At this stage the SENCO may suggest

  • A STAR plan (involving addition to SEND register)
  • Standardised assessments – facilitated by SENCO or SENCO support team.
  • Targeted interventions, facilitated by class teacher of teaching assistant – monitored by SENCO and SLT
  • Involving other professionals in order to provide specialist assessments and give advice on specific strategies, programmes and materials.


6. STAR plan


A STAR plan is firmly based on the process of ‘Assess, Plan, Do, and Review’ (as outlined in The Code of Practice, 2014). It is a school based document that outlines the learning steps and resources needed for specific individuals who are in need of Wave 3 support. It is reviewed and updated every term by parents/ carers, teacher and SENCO.


Review process


  • Children and their parents/ carers will be asked to complete and return questionnaires before each new STAR plan is written. The questionnaires are designed to gather important child and parent/ carer views about what has been ‘working’ and ‘not working’ since the previous STAR plan and also to priorities future progress … the ‘desired outcomes’.
  • The questionnaires and any reports from outside agencies will be used by class teacher to inform and draft the new STAR plan – during a designated staff meeting where SENCO and SLT support will be readily available.
  • Once the new STAR plan has been drafted, pupils/ parents/carers will be invited to attend a meeting to discuss it with the class teacher. At this stage, amendments can be made. Following its communal approval the STAR plan will be formalised and put into action.


7. Education and Health Care Plans (EHCP)


A few children, with very complex needs, meet the criteria for an Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP). An EHCP is a statutory document outlining the specific needs of the child and intensive supports required to meet these needs. It is written in collaboration with the family, school, outside agencies and county officials. It is a document that can be maintained for the child between the ages of 0- 25 years – being reviewed annually.

Depending on the level of banding, the EHCP may have additional funding attached.




At Summercroft there is a well-resourced mobile classroom which is available for teaching individual or groups of pupils and for setting up meetings with parents and/or pupils. This space can also be used by visiting advisory teachers such as the Speech and Language Therapist and Educational Psychologists.


Wheelchair access to many parts of the school is easy and there have been special facilities and some building adaptions for pupils with physical disabilities. The school buildings may not be suitable for all children with physical impairments, depending on their needs, but the staff and governors will make every effort to accommodate the particular needs that a pupil may have, and reasonable adjustments will be made in accordance with the Disabilities Equality Scheme.


Toilet facilities for disabled adults and children are available in both buildings and the Green Suite.




Pupils with special educational needs, but without an EHCP will be treated as fairly as all other applicants. Pupils with an EHCP will be welcomed where this is in accordance with parental choice, where the school considers it is appropriate for the child with the EHCP and that it is compatible with the efficient education of the other children.




The complaints procedure can be found on the school’s website and is outlined in the school brochure.  It is reviewed annually by the board of governors in light of ESFA guidance.



Any reference to a statute, statutory guidance and any other document shall be construed as a reference to that statute as amended or re-enacted and to the current edition or replacement of that statutory guidance or other document