Special Educational Needs (SEND)
Delivering Special Provision Locally
Please click on the link below to be directed to the DSPL7 (Delivering Special Provision Locally) website which aims to bring together information about support and services for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, as well as their families, and teaching professionals.
Support for Parents
Please click on the link below to visit the St Albans Plus website which details courses, training and support for parents, young people and families.
Special Education Needs at Abbey Primary School
Here at the Abbey Primary School we take great pride in being an inclusive school, catering for all the varying needs of our children. To this end we have invested considerable time and resources into supporting children at both ends of the spectrum.
The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) is Mrs Laura Yeldham. She is a fully qualified teacher and has been the SENCO at Abbey Primary School since the start of term. Mrs Yeldham works onsite on a Monday and, in addition, after October half term 2016 will also work on a Tuesday morning. If you have any queries, she can be contacted via email SENCO@abbey.herts.sch.uk or by phoning the school on 01727 851802 and she will return your call/email during her working days at her earliest convenience.
What to do if you are concerned about your child’s progress
If you have a concern about your child, it is best to talk to the class teacher in the first instance. The class teacher will share any concerns with the SENCO and/or headteacher and then a further appointment can be made on a Monday or Tuesday morning which the SENCO can attend.
During the academic year, if a class teacher is concerned about a child’s achievement or progress, they would first approach the SENCO and/or the headteacher and then the parent to discuss the problem. Strategies or support would be put in place, such as an Intervention, and if this was not felt to be having an impact on the child’s progress a Learning Passport would be considered.
Children at the Abbey School are supported in a variety of ways. All children receive Quality First Teaching from the class teacher. This teaching is essential to your child’s progress and development. The class teaching is differentiated and concrete resources and various teaching strategies are used to support learning.
All children are rigorously tracked and assessed at our school and children’s progress and achievement is closely monitored. Each term children are identified for intervention provision based on their prior achievements and progress. Some children are supported in class, or at the start of the day and others have short sessions outside the classroom to support the Quality First Teaching the class teacher provides. These sessions might involve consolidation work, pre-teaching or extension activities. This may be on a 1:1 basis, with the teacher, teaching assistant or SENCO and may be in a small group within the class. Once the class has settled into their new classes at the start of the academic year and the teachers have a firm understanding of all 30 children’s needs these interventions will begin and parents would be made aware of any support at the Parent’s Evening.
Parents’ Consultation Evenings
We invite parents to a ten minute Parent Consultation twice a year, in October and February. The class teacher will answer questions and inform parents of the child’s strengths and areas for development in English and Maths as well as discussing behaviour and social interaction. The teacher, if part of a job share, will read from jointly written notes. All parents will leave the consultation with a paper copy of the main bullet points covered in the meeting.
These meetings are for parents only. There will be no supervision for school age or pre-school children on site. Appointments will run strictly on time to allow parents to organise childcare arrangements off-site, potentially with other parents. Parents can book their appointments online when advised by the School Office. There are 30 slots for each class teacher and appointments can be made to see the SENCO in addition.
What is a Learning Passport?
A Learning Passport is a book that sets out individual targets for a child that they need to work on along with that child’s strengths and strategies that prove beneficial to their learning. In line with the new SEN Code of Practice 2014, Abbey School has decided to replace IEPs (Individual education Plans) with a more child and parent friendly record, called a Learning Passport. This was rolled out from September 2014. Learning Passports are written by the SENCO and the class teacher, in conjunction with the child and parents/carers and remain in the child’s classroom.
Learning Passport Important Information:
* They set 2 or 3 child friendly targets and strategies that enable teachers/teaching assistants/SENCO and parents to provide an inclusive learning environment.
* Not all children receiving support/intervention need a Learning Passport.
* No child would have a Learning Passport without the parents being informed.
* Learning Passports are reviewed termly by the SENCO, teachers and parents.
* A child can stop using a Learning Passport at any time when the school and parents are happy that the child is working within the National Expectations for their year group.
* Learning Passports may involve advice from external agencies that we are working with for the child.
* Learning Passports do not come with funding.
The Learning Passport cycle at Abbey School
For clarity, we thought we would highlight the Learning Passport cycle and review dates.
Summer term– The third review of the Learning Passport takes place by the current class teacher in conjunction with the SENCO and the following year’s teacher to ensure consistency at the beginning of the academic year. A clinic is set up to book an appointment with the SENCO to review and sign the IEP during the July Open Evening for parents.
October– Learning Passports are reviewed, read and shared at the October Parents’ Evening during an additional 10 minute appointment with the SENCO. Children’s comments are written at home with the parents
February– Learning Passports are reviewed, read and shared at the February Parents’ Evening.
Once the Learning Passports are signed by the parents, the SENCO reads them through with the children to get their comments. All paperwork is stuck into the Learning Passport along with any notes from meetings.
Education, Health and Care Plan
In September 2014, Statements of Special Educational Needs were replaced with Education, Health and Care Plans. It is a process initiated by the school or parents together with the Local Authority (Hertfordshire County Council) to determine whether a child has significant and long-term special educational needs. This will apply only to the very small percentage of children where the help given through a Learning Passport may not be sufficient to enable the child to make adequate progress. An Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan does not come with funding. It does not follow that, if a child continues to use a Learning Passports for several years then they are given an EHC Plan. The assessment process is led and managed by the SEN department at Hertfordshire County Council who work with the school to carry out the assessment.
Dyslexia Friendly School Recognition
We strive to be a Dyslexia friendly school and work closely with specialist outside agencies to train our staff to be sympathetic in our approach and teaching to those children with a diagnosis of or show tendencies of Dyslexia. Our previous SENCO, Mrs Tully, with support from Abbey School teachers achieved a certificate of participation from an initiative set up by the Dyslexia-SpLD (specific learning difficulties) Trust for Continuing Professional Development and Supporting Learners with Dyslexia-SpLD and Literacy Difficulties. The teachers have been involved in staff meetings and training and have worked hard at raising the profile of specific learning difficulties and in ensuring their classrooms and teaching continue to be dyslexia friendly.