What is the purpose of the Local Offer?
The Local Offer has two key purposes:
- • To provide clear, comprehensive and accessible information about the provision available
- • To make provision more responsive to local needs and aspirations by directly involving children and young people with SEN, parents/carers and service providers in its development and review
How does the school know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child has Special Educational Needs or Disabilities (SEND)?
At Brook Street School children are identified as having SEND through a variety of ways including:
- • Liaison with Infant school/previous school
- • Child performing below age-related expectations
- • Concerns raised by parent
- • Concerns raised by teacher eg behaviour or self-esteem is affecting performance
- • Liaison with external agencies eg Family Centre, Social Care
- • Health diagnosis through a GP, Paediatrician, Health Visitor
You can raise concerns by talking to us – firstly contact your child’s class teacher/keyworker. You could also contact the Pastoral and Inclusion Lead or the Headteacher. If appropriate, contact your GP surgery.
We pride ourselves on building positive relationships with parents. We are open and honest with parents and hope that they are able to do the same with us.
How will school staff support my child?
- Our Pastoral and Inclusion Lead oversees all support and progress of any child requiring additional support across the school.
- The class teacher will oversee, plan and direct the work with each child with SEN in their class to ensure that progress in every area is made.
- There may be a Learning Support Assistant (LSA) or Teaching Assistant (TA) working with your child either individually or as part of a group; if this is seen as necessary by the class teacher/Pastoral and Inclusion Lead. The regularity of these sessions will be explained to parents when the support starts.
- The class teacher will meet with parents at least twice a year (this could be as part of Parents Evening) to discuss your child’s needs, support and progress.
- For further information the Pastoral and Inclusion Lead is available to discuss support in more detail.
- The Pastoral and Inclusion Lead reports to the Governors every term to inform them about the progress of children with SEND; this report does not refer to individual children and confidentiality is maintained at all times.
- One of the Governors (Ms Sam Fitzsimons) is responsible for SEND and meets regularly with the Pastoral and Incluision Lead, reporting back to the Governors to keep everyone informed.
- The Governors agree priorities for spending within the school budget with the overall aim that all children with SEND receive the support they need in order to make progress.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?
- All work within class is pitched at an appropriate level so that all children are able to access it according to their specific needs. Typically this might mean that in a lesson there would be at least three different levels of work set for the class. However, on occasions this can be individually differentiated.
- The benefit of this type of differentiation is that all children can access a lesson and learn at their level.
How will I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?
- We offer an ‘open door’ policy where you are welcome at any time to make an appointment to meet with either the class teacher or Pastoral and Inclusion Lead and discuss how your child is getting on. We can offer advice and practical ways that you can help your child at home.
- We believe that your child’s education should be a partnership between parents and teachers, therefore we aim to keep communication channels open and communicate regularly, especially if your child has complex needs.
- f necessary we will operate a home/school link book which your child will bring home regularly so that comments from parents and teacher can be shared and responded to when needed.
- f your child is on the SEND register they will have a Group Intervention Plan which will have group targets. Children who are part of a Group Intervention will have additional sessions in Reading, Writing or Maths (depending on their need) which are over and above the differentiated support that they receive in the classroom. These additional sessions may be delivered by Teaching Assistants, Specialist Teachers or the Class Teacher. Group Interventions last for 10 weeks at a time. The target for each group will be set by the class teacher with the expectation that the child WILL achieve the target by the time it is reviewed. If any child does not achieve the target, they will be referred to the Inclusion Manager when the Group Intervention is evaluated after 10 weeks. It may be that that child requires some 1-1 work with a specialist teacher or further assessment.
- If your child has complex SEND they may have an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) which means that review meetings or family meetings will take place. Children with EHCPs will have an Individual Plan).
- As a school we measure children’s progress in learning against National expectations and age-related expectations.
- The class teacher continually assesses each child and notes areas where they are improving and where further support is needed. As a school, we track children’s progress from entry at Nursery through to Y6, using a variety of different methods, appropriate to the year groups.
- Children who are not making expected progress are picked up through Pupil Progress Meetings between the class teacher and the Headteacher. In this meeting a discussion takes place concerning why individual children are experiencing difficulty and what further support can be given to aid their progression.
- There are many opportunities for regular contact about things that have happened in school including Parents Evening, Review Meetings, Home/School planners.
- The school website gives details of class topic plans each half term/term. This will help you to understand what your child is learning and how you can support them outside of school.
- Parents/carers are involved in planning their child’s SEND through Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) meetings, Team Around the Family (TAF) meetings and Early Help assessment meetings. If your child has complex SEND you may get advice directly from a specialist teacher.
- Parent training/learning events are organised by the school and may cover areas such as Phonics, Maths, Family Learning, Healthy Eating and Parenting Advice. The school also holds ‘Open’ events during the year when you can visit classrooms to see the children at work.
What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?
- We are an inclusive school; we welcome and celebrate diversity. All staff believe that children having high self-esteem is crucial to a child’s wellbeing. We have a caring, understanding team looking after our children.
- 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 Pastoral and Inclusion Lead for further advice and support. This may involve working alongside outside agencies such as Social Care, Health Services, Inclusion Support, Family Support organisations and local authority Specialist Teachers.
- We recognise that some children benefit from being able to talk through difficult experiences in their lives with a trained professional. Through the Pupil Premium resource the school employs a part-time counsellor who is skilled in working with younger children. Children are referred to the counsellor after discussions between the class teacher, parents and the Pastoral and Inclusion Lead. The 45 minute sessions are usually weekly over a 10 week period.
- The school has a policy regarding the administration and managing of medicines on the school site. Please refer to our guidance on the School website under ‘Health and Welfare at School’ in the Parents and Carers section.
- Parents need to contact the class teacher if medication is recommended by health professionals to be taken during the school day.
- On a day to day basis the Headteacher oversees the administration of any medicines.
- As a staff we have regular training and updates of conditions and medication affecting individual children so that all staff are able manage medical situations.
- As a school we have a very positive approach to all types of behaviour with a clear reward system that is followed by all staff and pupils.
- If a child has severe behavioural difficulties an individual Behaviour Management Plan may be written alongside the child and parents to identify the specific issues, put relevant support in place and set targets. As a result of the support we give, the number of exclusions is very low at this school.
- After any behaviour incident we expect the child to reflect on their behaviour with an adult, completing a report sheet. This helps to identify why the incident happened and what the child needs to do differently next time to change and improve their behaviour. For further information please see the school Behaviour Policy on the School website.
- Attendance of every child is monitored on a daily basis by the Administrative Team. Lateness and absence are recorded and reported upon to the Headteacher. Support is given through an incentive scheme where good attendance is actively encouraged throughout the school. We have had many successes where families were struggling with lateness but are now able to get their children into school on time. For more information please see the school Attendance Policy on our website. We also share an attendance officer with one of the Carlisle secondary schools, she is a source of help and advice for parents struggling with attendance.
- We value and celebrate each child being able to express their views on all aspects of school life. This is usually carried out through the School Council.
- There is an annual pupil questionnaire where we actively seek the viewpoints of children especially concerning being able to speak to an adult if they have a worry.
- We also conduct interviews with pupils on different aspects of the curriculum and school life.
- If your child has an EHCP their views will be sought via a questionnaire before any review meetings.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?
What training have staff completed to support children and young pupil with SEND?
- Our Pastoral and Inclusion Lead is a fully qualified teacher with experience in managing Special Educational Needs.
- As a school we work closely with any external agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs within our school including:
- Behaviour/Inclusion Support
- Health including GP, Practice Nurse, School Nurse, Clinical Psychologist, Paediatrician, Speech & Language Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Physiotherapist, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services
- Social Care including Locality Team, Social Workers, Educational Psychologist, Counselling services and therapists
- Others eg Police Community Support Officers, Safety Net, East Cumbria Family Support, Barnardo’s, NSPCC
- At any time in the school we may have staff working who are trained in the following areas including
- Speech and language programmes
- EALIP (English as an Additional Language Intensive Programme)
- Smart Moves
- Hearing Impairment
- Team Teach
- PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System)
- All staff have had training in epilepsy awareness and anaphylactic shock first aid. All staff are first aid trained.
- All children are included in all parts of the school curriculum and we aim for all children to be included on school trips. We will provide the necessary support to ensure that this is successful.
- A risk assessment is carried out prior to any off site activity to ensure everyone’s health and safety will not be compromised. In the unlikely event that it is considered unsafe for a child to take part in an activity, then alternative activities which will cover the same curriculum areas will be provided in school.
How accessible is the school environment?
- The main school building and Early Years Unit are both wheelchair accessible for all areas with a disabled toilet large enough to accommodate changing.
- We have a wall pilot in the main school hall to facilitate multiple FM radio systems for Hearing Impaired children.
- Translation services and bilingual books/materials are available for families whose first language is not English.
How will the school prepare and support my child when joining the school and transferring to a new school?
- We encourage all new children to visit the school prior to starting when they will be shown around the school. For children with SEND we would encourage further visits to assist them with acclimatisation to the new surroundings. We would also visit them in their current school or home, if appropriate.
- We write social stories with children if transition is potentially going to be difficult as well as making photo books of visits.
- When children are preparing to leave us for a new school, typically to go to secondary education, we arrange additional visits.
- We liaise closely with staff when receiving and transferring children to different schools ensuring all relevant paperwork is passed on and all needs are discussed and understood.
- If your child has complex needs then an EHCP review will be used as a transition meeting during which we will invite staff from both schools to attend.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
- We ensure that all children who have SEND will have their needs met to the best of the school’s ability with the funds available.
- We have a team of LSAs (learning support assistants) who are funded from the school budget and deliver programmes designed to meet groups of children’s needs.
- The budget is allocated on a needs basis.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?
- The class teacher alongside the Pastoral and Inclusion Lead will discuss the child’s needs and what support would be appropriate.
- Different children will require different types of support in order to bridge the gap to achieve age expected levels.
- This could involve discussions with parents, as appropriate.
- We can judge if the support has had an impact by reviewing targets on Group Intervention plans and ensuring they are being met, by monitoring progress against national age expectations and observing that the gap is narrowing, through verbal feedback from the parent and pupil and the fact that children may move off the SEND register when they have made sufficient progress in an identified area.
Who can I contact for further information?
- First point of contact would be your child’s class teacher to share your concerns.
- You could also arrange to meet Mrs Deborah Beattie, our Pastoral and Inclusion Lead
- Contact Parent Partnership http://www.cumbria.gov.uk/childrensservices/schoolsandlearning/ils/parentpartnership/default.asp
- Contact IPSEA (Independent Parental Special Education Advice) www.ipsea.org.uk
- If you are considering whether your child should join the school, contact the School Office to make an appointment to meet the Headteacher by sending an email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also phone us on 01228 558724.