SEN Information Report


At St Nicholas Church of England Primary Academy, we strive to include all pupils including those with special educational needs and disability (SEND) where that is the family’s wish.

The broad areas of SEND need are:

  • Communication and Interaction.
  • Cognition and Learning.
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health.
  • Sensory and/or Physical.

The LA Local Offer

The Children and Families Act 2014 requires the Local Authority (LA) and schools to publish and keep under review information about services they expect to be available for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) aged  0-25. The LA refers to this as the ‘Local Offer’.

The intention of the Local Offer is to improve choice and transparency for families. It will help parents and young people to understand the range or services and provision in the local area and contribute to a more equal partnership in planning for the needs of children with SEND. Follow the link below for more details:

The Special Education Needs Information Report

Schools utilise the LA Local Offer to meet the needs of SEND pupils as determined by its policy and the provision available within that particular school. Information detailing the school’s approach to SEND from identification through to support for transition to other key stages/adulthood is detailed in ‘The Special Education Needs and Disability Information report'.


At St Nicholas Church of England Primary Academy we have published our SEND information report in sections under question headings to enable you to quickly find the information you require. Any further information you feel would be helpful at this time can be requested from the school office.

The broad areas of SEND need are:

  • Communication and Interaction.
  • Cognition and Learning.
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health
  • Sensory and/or Physical.

A child has learning difficulties if he or she:

  1. Has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age.
  2. Has a disability which prevents or hinders the child from making use of educational facilities of a kind provided for the children of the same age in other mainstream schools.
  3. Is under compulsory school age, and falls within the definition at a) or b) above or would do so if special educational provision was not made for the child.

Special education provision means:

For a child over two, educational provision which is additional to, or different from, the educational provision made generally for children/of the same in maintained schools, (other than special schools) in the area.

For a child under two, educational provision of any kind.

Children must not be regarded as having a learning difficulty solely because the language or form of language of their home is different from the language in which they will be taught. At St Nicholas Church of England Primary Academy we strive to include all children regardless of their needs and/or disabilities.

The Class Teacher

Responsible for:

  • Checking on the progress of your child and identifying, planning and delivering any additional help that your child may need (this could be things like targeted work, additional support) and letting the SEND Coordinator know as necessary.
  • Writing Pupil Progress targets, sharing and reviewing these with parents and planning for the next term. Personalised teaching and learning for your child as identified on the school’s provision map.
  • Providing ‘Quality First Teaching’ for ALL pupils.
  • Ensuring that the school’s SEND policy is followed in their classroom and for all the pupils they teaching with any SEND.
  • Being the main point of contact for parents at the beginning/end of the day and through homework and/or home contact books as appropriate.

The SENCo - Mrs Starmer-Smith

Responsible for:

  • Developing and reviewing the school’s SEND policy
  • Coordinating all the support for children with SEND
  • Working closely with the school FLO, Ms Baker and Nurture Lead, Ms Gunn
  • Ensuring that you are
    1. Involved in supporting your child’s learning
    2. Kept informed about the support your child is getting
    3. Involved in reviewing how they are doing
  • Liaising with external specialists that may advise on specific programmes for your child or offer staff training eg Speech and Language Therapy, Educational Psychology, School Nursing Services, Outreach support from Special Schools etc.
  • Updating the school’s SEND register (a system for ensuring that all SEND needs pupils in this school are known) and ensuring records of your child’s progress and needs are kept.
  • Providing specialist support for teachers and support staff in the school so that they can help children with SEND in the school to achieve the best progress possible.
  • Writing individual care plans for specific conditions and putting safeguards in place for your child’s welfare.
  • Planning for transition in your child’s education between key stages and schools .=

The Head Teacher - Mr Dale and Deputy Head Teacher - Mrs Turner

Responsible for:

  • The day to day management of all aspects of the school, including the provision made for children with SEND, and the arrangements for medicines and healthcare plans.
  • As the school’s designated teacher for Children in Care, overseeing their provision and well-being.
  • Ensuring that your child’s needs are met through appointment of qualified staff within the school including a Masters level qualified SENCo (National Award for SEND Coordination) – Mrs Starmer-Smith is a qualified SENCO.
  • Updating the Governing Body about issues relating to SEND.

The SEND Governor

Responsible for:

  • Supporting the school to evaluate and develop quality and impact of provision for pupils with SEND across the school.

The Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0 - 25 years (2014) makes it clear that ‘all teachers are teachers of pupils with special educational needs.’ All teachers at St Nicholas Church of England Primary Academy are responsible for identifying pupils with SEND and, in collaboration with the SENCO, will ensure that those pupils requiring different or additional support are identified at an early stage.

Assessment is the process by which pupils with SEN can be identified. Whether or not a pupil is making adequate progress is seen as a significant factor in considering the need for SEND provision.

Our school will use appropriate screening and assessment tools, and ascertain pupil progress through:

  • Evidence obtained from teacher observation/assessment
  • Their performance judged against age appropriate National Curriculum objectives
  • Standardised screening diagnostic tests and/or assessment tools
  • Reports or observations
  • Pupil conferencing
  • Records from feeder schools etc
  • Information from parents
  • National curriculum results
  • Well-being scales
  • Behaviour logs

All evidence is discussed termly (every 6 weeks) in pupil progress meetings, where concerns can be raised with Mr Dale or Mrs Turner  and discussed with Mrs Starmer-Smith.

All parents receive annual reports and have an opportunity to meet formally in a parent consultation three times yearly to discuss your child’s progress. The school operates an open door policy and welcomes contributions from parents at any time, although class responsibilities may make certain times of day difficult for the teacher.

If your child is identified as not making expected progress, or significantly below age expected attainment, the school will set up a meeting to discuss this with you in more detail and to:

  • listen to any concerns you may have
  • listen to any concerns your child may have
  • plan any additional support your child may need
  • discuss with you any referrals to outside professionals to support your child’s learning

Should outside specialist teaching services be involved, all reports will be copied to you, and the school will arrange a meeting to allow information and findings to be shared and agree the next steps to support your child further.

If, as a parent, you have any concerns regarding your child’s progress or wellbeing, then you should make an appointment to see the class teacher initially to agree a plan to monitor the situation. If you continue to be concerned, please contact the SENCo and/or Headteacher/Deputy Headteacher .

A. Class teacher input via Quality First Teaching

For your child this would mean:

  • That the teacher has the highest possible expectations for your child and all pupils in their class.
  • That all teaching is built on what your child already knows, can do and can understand.
  • Different ways of teaching are in place so that your child is fully involved in the learning in class. This may involve using more practical learning.
  • Lessons are differentiated well, and other adults in the class are directed well to support the learning.
  • Specific strategies (which may be suggested by the teacher, parent, TA or SENCO) are in place to support your child to learn.
  • Your child’s teacher will monitor their progress and may decide that your child has a gap or gaps in their understanding/learning and needs some extra support to make the best possible progress. In this case an intervention may be planned as an individual or within a group.

Such an intervention may be :

  • Bespoke support for the individual need, an established intervention programme from the DfE (Department for Education), LA or specialist teaching services, mentoring through social groups or the SENCo, FLO or in our Nurture Group.
  • The intervention may be run in the classroom or in other learning areas around the school. The intervention may be Teacher or Teaching assistant led.

For some children a small intervention may impact quickly, however others may be identified as in need of ongoing school support and will be put on the Special Educational Needs Register.

B. Specialist groups run by outside agencies

If your child can not progress with additional school support in place, the Class Teacher and the SENCO will use further assessment tools to identify their needs. They may then seek permission from you to discuss their learning needs with the relevant agencies: specialist teachers, educational psychology , speech and language etc.

The specialist professional will work with your child to understand their needs and make recommendations as to the ways your child is given support at school.

C. Specified Individual support

This type of support is available for children whose learning needs are severe, complex and lifelong.

This is usually provided via an Education and Health Care Plan (EHC Plan). This means that your child will have been identified by professionals as needing a particularly high level of individual or small group teaching.

This type of support is available for children with specific barriers to learning that cannot be overcome through Quality First Teaching and intervention groups.

Your child may need specialist support in school from a professional outside the school, details of this will be specific to your child’s needs and identified in their EHC Plan.

Obtaining an EHC Plan is for the most severely affected 2.8% of pupils, the majority of which have complex needs and many of whom seek places in Special Schools. The 26 week process of assessment and final decision to award an EHC Plan entails information gathering from children, parents and professionals, including school. All parents have the right to appeal if they disagree with the outcome of such statutory assessment.

The school budget includes money for supporting children with SEND. The money allocated is dependent on the level of need.

The Head Teacher decides on the deployment of resources for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities in consultation with the school governors, on the basis of needs in the school.

The Head Teacher and SENCO discuss all the information they have about SEND in the school, including those children already getting support, those needing extra support and those identified as making less than expected progress. Decisions are then made on the way money be spent. This may include:

  • Supplementary materials in class to support
  • Adult learning mentors
  • Training of relevant staff
  • Purchasing of external services
  • Employment of further qualified staff

Your child’s view will be sought informally and for review meetings; this may not always be possible with very young children/ children with delayed development.

Support and the use of resources are reviewed at termly (6 weekly) Pupil Progress Meetings.

For a child who requires high levels of support and are considered to have ‘severe and complex needs’ an application may be made for High Needs Funding, with parental consent. It is not necessary for the child to have an Education and Health Care Plan to be considered for such funding. The funding application identifies the support given and is agreed at the discretion of Kent County Council. The intention is that High Needs Funding is for one academic year. In very few cases the funding may be agreed for consecutive years.

  • Head and Deputy head teachers
  • Senior Leaders
  • Teachers
  • Teaching Assistants
  • Nurture Group
  • After school Clubs
  • Breakfast Club
  • Midday Meals Supervisors

SENCO supports the class teachers in planning for children with SEND.

SENCO will often provide and/or enable training and support to enable all staff to improve the teaching and learning of children, including those with SEND. This has included whole school training on SEND relevant topics such as Attachment Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD), Speech and Language difficulties.

Individual teachers and TAs attend courses run by outside agencies that are relevant to the needs of specific children.

SENCO attends LIFT meetings, specialist training and conferences. Where possible she takes other members of staff to enable them to access the best practice training that will enhance their provision.

The school seeks advice from the Specialist Teaching and Learning Service (STLS) and other agencies as appropriate.

Class Teachers plan lessons according to the specific needs of all groups of children in their class. Daily planning takes into account individual pupils’ needs and requirements. Differentiation is approached in a range of ways to support access and ensure that all children can experience success and challenge in their learning.

Adaptations may take the form of additional or adapted equipment, small group or individual work, learning mentors, talk partners, alternative recording methods and writing frames or specialised ICT equipment.

Whilst additional adults are used to support pupils, the school monitors their use closely to avoid children becoming over-reliant on adult support and to encourage children to be self-reliant and independent, thus preparing them for next steps in their education.

All children’s views on their learning and provision are sought. Additionally, the school council provides a context for pupils to participate in authentic ‘strategic’ learning discussions.

Your child’s progress is continually monitored by his/her teacher.

  • Progress and achievement is subject to ongoing assessment.
  • His/her progress is reviewed formally every term in Reading, Writing and Maths.
  • Those children following a specific plan are monitored against specific targets and these are adapted accordingly.
  • The progress of children with an EHC Plan is reviewed at Annual Review Meetings and review meetings throughout the year.
  • During Year 1, all pupils take part in national assessment and are screened in terms of their phonic knowledge. At the end of Years 2 and 6, the children are formally assessed in Maths and English using Standardised Assessment Tests (SATs). This is something the government requires all schools to do and the results are published nationally.
  • Interventions and specific whole class teaching techniques as monitored alongside scrutiny of children’s recorded work and achievement data.
  • The school is accessible to children with physical and sensory needs. The school has a ramp and has wheel chair access throughout.
  • There is a disabled toilet available for pupils where needed.
  • We ensure, wherever possible, that equipment used is accessible to all children regardless of their needs.
  • After school provision through extra-curricular clubs is accessible to all children including those with SEND.
  • Curricular enhancements such as school trips are available to all pupils.

We recognise that transitions can be difficult for all children, including those with SEND and take active steps to ensure that any transitions are as smooth and sympathetically managed as possible.

If your child is moving to another school :

  • We will contact the Special Needs Department and ensure the sharing of information about any special arrangements or support that need to be made for your child.
  • We will ensure that all records are passed on as soon as possible.
  • We will arrange meetings with key staff to share best practice for your child.
  • Where an EHC Plan is in place, additional meetings will be arranged.

When moving classes in school :

  • Information will be passed to the new class teacher in advance and a planning meeting will take place between the relevant class teams and the SENCO
  • Individualised transition work will take place led by the SENCO where needed.

In Year 6 :

  • Focused transition work will take place including life skills such as trial runs of taking the bus, etc.
  • Liaison meetings with Secondary SENCOs and parents are started early in Year 6 once the children know where they are attending in Year 7.
  • Additional transition visits are made both as part of the secondary schools’ vulnerable children programmes as well as with negotiation where more visits are required.
  • All information is transferred to the new school and there is a requirement that they sign to evidence that the transfer of information has been made.

The emotional health and well-being of all of the children is paramount to their happiness and success in learning. At St Nicholas CE Primary Academy we have a strong, supportive, Christian ethos to provide a secure and caring environment. To support the children we offer a range of pastoral strategies and interventions.

Within the school we have a strong offer for supporting children in their emotional needs.

Our Headteacher, Mr Dale is the school’s designated teacher for Children in Care (ChiC).

Mrs Turner, Deputy Headteacher, is the Designated Senior Lead for Mental Health and Emotional Wellbeing.

Mrs Starmer-Smith , our SENCO, is an experienced qualified Play Therapist.

Ms Baker, FLO, is the school’s trained Mental Health First Aider.

Children who are identified as being likely to benefit from intensive nurture support join the Nurture Group. This is delivered by Ms Gunn who has been trained in high quality nurture provision by Nurture UK.

Children identified as not fully engaged in school life through observation in class or at play, or who raise any concerns are discussed on a termly basis as with those who show learning difficulties.

External support specialist support is sought for any child who continues to cause concern at home and/or school through accessing specialist teaching services, expert clinicians, therapy group support, etc. External counselling services are purchased when needed as well counselling services that can be accessed through referrals to the ‘Early Help’ Service.

Mrs Antoinette Starmer-Smith (SENCO) in consultation with SLT, Teaching and Support Staff.

September 2020

This report will be reviewed as necessary to accurately reflect developments in our inclusive provision.