Lifelong love of learning

SEN & Disability


Dedham Church of England Primary Information Report


Our School Ethos

Dedham C of E Primary School is committed to providing a high quality and inclusive education for all children. We consider that Christian values are important in encouraging happy and well-motivated learners. We believe that through trust and respect, children feel safe to develop individual strengths while showing care and understanding for others.

We believe that the following values are essential in developing strong and successful young people:

Confidence & Perseverance

Honesty & Forgiveness

Appreciation & Gratitude

Friendship & Teamwork

Respect & Responsibility

Compassion & Service

Through these, all children are equally valued in school. We aim to encourage a sense of community and belonging, believing that educational inclusion is about equal opportunities for all learners to reach their potential and celebrate their achievements.

From September 2014, new government guidelines were introduced to help schools support pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), and their families.

This document aims to answer some of the key questions that parents might have about what our school offers children with SEND.


Who do I talk to if I think my child may have special educational needs?

We welcome all families and work closely with them as we recognise that this leads to the best outcomes for pupils.

Prospective parents are always welcome to visit the school to find out how we work and our arrangements for admission. Please contact the school office in the first instance to arrange a visit and meet the headteacher. If you think it would also be beneficial to meet with the school’s Special Educational Needs and Disability Coordinator (SENCO) at this time, this can be arranged for you. If you already have a child who started at our school, you will have been introduced to our SENCO at a welcome meeting for parents.

We listen closely to the views and comments of parents as we believe partnership is central to understanding the needs of all pupils. We are happy to answer any questions or concerns and recognise that sometimes parents will need more contact with us. Initially, the Class Teacher is the first point of contact, followed by the SENCO, Mrs Davies, or indeed the Head teacher, Mr Larner.  The school also has a designated governor for Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND), Mrs Rachel Brown.

Please feel free to drop in and see us or call the office on 01206 322242 to make an enquiry or an appointment.


How does Dedham C of E Primary School know if children need extra help?

The school regularly observes, assesses and records the progress of all children to identify those who are not progressing satisfactorily or who may have additional needs. This information is collected from:

-          Baseline assessment results

-          Progress measured against the objectives in the National Curriculum

-          National Curriculum descriptors for the end of a key stage

-          Progress measured against the P level descriptors

-          Standardised screening and assessment tools

-          Concerns raised by parents

-          Observations of behavioural, emotional and social development

-          An existing Statement of SEN

-          Assessments by a specialist service, such as educational psychology.

-          Another school or LA which has identified or has provided for additional needs


What is the process for identifying my child’s needs?

Based on the school’s observations and assessment data and following discussion between the class teacher, SENCO and parent, the child’s needs will be identified and the level of support agreed.

In the first instance, this might mean differentiated curriculum support within the class. Where more individual needs are identified the child may require “Additional SEN  support” (This is a new single category which replaces the previous categories of  “School Action and School Action Plus”) If a child is identified as requiring Additional SEN Support a Pupil Profile and an Action Plan will be written in consultation with the teacher, parents and the child. This planning process will identify appropriate outcomes for the child and how they can be achieved.

If a pupil’s needs are more complex, an assessment of educational, health and care needs may be undertaken by the Local Education Authority and an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) created for the child.  This is developed in collaboration with the child, parents and other relevant professionals.

Further details of the school’s criteria for assessing pupils’ additional needs are available in our SEND policy.


How will Dedham C of E Primary School support my child and match the curriculum to my child’s needs?

The school is committed to “Quality First Teaching” and ensuring that lessons meet the need of all pupils. Our teachers are trained to differentiate lessons and break down any barriers to learning that may be causing difficulties for the child.  Teachers use a variety of different approaches including visual, aural and kinaesthetic methods. Lessons are rigorously planned to encourage all types of learners to participate and reach their potential.  Teachers and teaching assistants work with children with SEND regularly each week.  As well as encouraging all learners to work independently and take responsibility for their learning.

We currently employ two Higher Level Teaching Assistants (HLTAs) who support in class, lead interventions and work with individual pupils. Each class teacher is supported every morning when the learning focus is Literacy and Maths by a teaching assistant. In addition in the afternoon some teaching assistants run interventions in English and Maths and support in classes.

Pupils will be supported in achieving the  outcomes on their Action Plan by their teacher, teaching assistant, special resources and other additional adults.  Support from outside the school may be requested if necessary. Each term progress towards the outcomes will be reviewed at a meeting with the SENCO, parents, pupil and teacher.  New outcomes will be agreed together when necessary. 

The school has a range of intervention strategies available to support children who are falling behind age appropriate expectations. These can include the organisation of teaching staff, teaching assistants, resources and evidence-based interventions.


How will I be involved in making decisions about my child’s education?

All parents and children are encouraged to contribute to their child’s education. Children and parents will contribute to the Pupil Profile and be involved in the planning and reviewing of the Action Plans.  We believe that by working alongside parents and pupils we will achieve the best outcomes.  Pupils will be supported in contributing through age appropriate conversations, child friendly Pupil Profiles,  Action Plans, reward charts, stickers etc.


How will I know what my child is doing?

The school reports formally to parents/carers about their child/children through:

-          An annual written report

-          Parents Evenings in the Autumn and Spring Terms

-          Termly Action Plan review meetings with the teacher and SENCO 

-          Reviews of Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP)

The school reports informally to parents/carers about their child/children through:

-          Face-to-face meetings, phone calls, home/school (reading) diaries

-          Friday ‘After school’ open classroom’ sessions

-          Celebration events

-          School newsletters

-          Class events


How will you help me support my child’s learning?

-          The class teacher may suggest ways you can support your child alongside set homework activities.

-          The SENCO, Mrs Davies, may meet with you to discuss how to support your child with strategies to use specific to your child’s needs.

-          Meet the teacher evenings at the start of the year

-          Parent workshops on specific topics such as Reading

-          The school website can be used to access resources, policies and links that will provide further support.


What training have the staff supporting children with SEND had?

All staff are qualified to work with children and have the appropriate checks.

The SENCO attends regular cluster meetings and termly conferences to update and revise developments in Special Needs Education and Inclusion.  Meeting additional needs and Inclusion issues are targeted each year through the School Development Plan (SDP).  In-Service Training and individual professional development through Performance Management Reviews (PMRs) is matched to these targets.

In-house additional needs and Inclusion training is provided through staff meetings by the SENCO. All staff are able to access professional development opportunities and are able to apply for additional needs or Inclusion training where a need is identified either for an individual pupil or whole class level. Support staff are encouraged to extend their own professional development and the management team will ensure ’tailor-made’ training where this is appropriate.


What specialist services and expertise can be accessed by the school?

An Educational Psychologist visits the school when necessary and following discussions with the SENCO decides on the focus of each visit. Local Authority agency visits are arranged to provide specific information, share resources and provide in-service training. Specialist, direct teaching from this service is used where we do not have the necessary in-house expertise.

Teachers from the Sensory Impairment Team are available to work in school to support children, both with and without Statements, who have vision or hearing impairment.  Specialist teachers can work directly with children where this is indicated on a Statement.  Class teachers would then plan alongside these specialist teachers who would also attend and contribute to the planning and review of the child's One Plan.

The SENCO liaises frequently with a number of other outside agencies, for example:

-          Social Services

-          Education Welfare Service

-          School Nurse

-          Community Paediatrician

-          Speech Therapy

-          Physiotherapy

-          Occupational Therapy

-          Educational Psychologist

-          LDG-funded Well being Mentor

-          Specialist Teacher Team

Parents/carers are informed and their consent is given if any outside agency is involved.


What support is available for my child’s overall well being?

Members of staff are available for pupils who wish to discuss any issues or concerns.  Where appropriate parents may be invited in to school to discuss concerns and plan further support. 

Other provision may include:

-          Designated areas for reflection in school (‘Quiet garden’, sensory garden)

-          Playtime peer helpers (‘Problem solvers’)

-          Well being Mentor

-          Designated named adults with whom children can speak


How will my child’s medical needs be met?

The school has members of staff who are qualified paediatric first aiders.

Where necessary and in agreement with parents/carers medicines are administered in school but only where a signed Medical consent form is in place to ensure the safety of both the child and staff member.

If a pupil has a medical need then a care plan is compiled with support from parents and in consultation with medical practitioners where appropriate.  These are shared with all staff who work with the pupil. Where necessary pupils with medical needs that may require an immediate response for example asthma, have a medical profile displayed in their classroom and the staffroom.


How accessible is the environment?

As a school we are happy discuss individual access requirements. The facilities we have at present include:

-          The school site, which is accessible to all users.

-          A purpose built accessible toilet and wet room facility.

-          A hearing loop fitted in the school hall

-          Coloured overlays

-          Consideration during tests for learners with additional needs

-          4 ipads in every class, two laptop suites of 16 machines each and a Computing area of a further 6 desktop computers.

The school also has an accessibility policy.


How does the school prepare and support my child when joining Dedham C of E Primary School or when transferring to another school?

Periods of transition can be unsettling for some children.  We understand that children need to be supported through this time and treat each child as an individual. Transition arrangements are planned around their needs.

For all children entering the school there is a structured programme of induction which includes visits to the school, visits to the preschool, phased entry, welcome packs and parents meetings.  Further arrangements will be made for children who have SEND, this may include liaison meetings with parents, attendance of SENCO/HT at key meetings and extra visits to the school.

Children leaving our school will be supported with transition by the SENCO from their next school.  Planned transition activities might include school visits, extra activities, making books about their new school etc.


How are the schools resources allocated and matched to the children’s special needs?

The SEND budget is allocated each financial year. The money used to provide additional support or resources is dependent on an individual’s need.

The additional provision may be allocated after discussion with the class teacher at pupil progress meetings or if a concern has been raised by them at another time.

Resources may include deployment of staff depending on individual circumstance.


Who can I contact for further information?

The SENCO, Mrs Davies is responsible for coordinating provision for children with SEND within the school. Her role is to manage the arrangements for pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. Mrs Davies is a fully qualified class teacher with experience of teaching KS1 and KS2 in a variety of schools and has worked alongside children with many different needs. She holds the National SENCO Award. She is fully supported in her role by the school’s Senior Management Team (SMT) and is a member of the school’s Senior Leadership Team (SLT).  To make an appointment to see Mrs Davies please contact the office.


Complaints Procedure

If you have any concern relating to the school’s provision regarding the SEND provision for your child please speak to the Headteacher or the SENCO.  We aim to resolve any concerns in person. If a complaint is made and cannot be resolved, the parent can submit a formal complaint to the Headteacher in writing.  The Headteacher will reply within 10 working days.  Any issues that remain unresolved at this stage will be managed according to the school’s Compliments and Complaints Policy.  This is available, on request, from the school office.

Other related policies:

-          SEN and Inclusion Policy

-          Accessibility Policy

-          Pupil Premium Policy

-          Admissions Policy

-          Attendance Policy



We hope these key questions have answered any queries you may have but do not hesitate to contact the school if you require further information.