At Huntingdon we believe that every child deserves to be safe and loved, have a healthy and happy childhood, be free from harm, and have the chance to make the most of their talents and fulfil their potential.
Huntingdon has an inclusive approach to teaching children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) which ensures that all pupils achieve their potential; personally, socially, emotionally and academically in all areas of the curriculum, regardless of their gender, ethnicity, social background, religion, physical ability or educational needs. We do this by removing barriers to learning and participation, providing an education that is appropriate to pupils’ needs, and promoting high standards and the fulfilment of potential for all pupils. We create a positive and supportive environment for all pupils without exception
Miss Yarnell is our leader of Inclusion and Welfare and Mrs Bennett is our SENDCo and together they are our SEND team. They work together with the wider staff team and local professionals to ensure the highest possible outcomes and expectations for pupils with SEND at our Academy.
We aim to provide an environment in the school where all children can access a broad and balanced education and achieve their full potential. We ensure that pupils are given the appropriate learning opportunities and that a range of provisions are put in place to engage pupils in a full range of activities and to overcome barriers to their learning.
We ensure that all pupils are fully integrated in the school community and engage in school activities and that reasonable adjustments are made so that children with SEND are not at a disadvantage compared to other pupils.
The teaching and learning requirements of all children with SEND is primarily the responsibility of the class teacher. This reflects the principle that SEND (provision for children with special needs and disabilities) is a whole school issue and a recognised aspect of all curriculum planning.
We aim for early identification of any special educational needs and disabilities, and this process starts from the first day children enter our school. If a child is attaining lower than age related expectations or progress is slower than expected/usual for the child, but it is felt that the child doesn’t have any specific needs, then appropriate intervention is planned for within the classroom and are recorded in our intervention records.
If we suspect a child might have SEND, then we talk to the people who know the child best- the parents/carers. In that initial assessment meeting, the child, their parents and their class teacher are invited to share their opinions and discuss the child’s strengths, areas of difficult and hopes for the future. This forms the starting point for future support planning.
With the permission of parents we may seek additional advice from outside specialists such as health professionals, specialist teachers or educational psychologists who would:
Carry out further assessment of the child’s needs.
Provide advice to schools on how to best support the child.
Suggest resources that would help the child make progress.
If your child has Special Educational Needs our SENDCO will:
Ensure the right support is put in place for each child.
Advise other teachers and teaching assistants on how to help each child and ensure they have an up to date Support Plan detailing how their needs will be met in school.
Arrange training for staff so they understand each child’s needs.
Work closely with parents on a regular basis to talk with them about their child’s needs and listen to any ideas or concerns they might have.
Work with all other professionals (if necessary) who may be able to help individual children, e.g. speech and language therapist /medical professional/educational psychologist.
If parents or guardians have a worry or concern about their child’s learning, emotional well-being or social interaction, they should contact a member of staff to discuss these further (this would normally be the child’s class teacher in the first instance). Where there is a need, that cannot be accessed within or by school, advice and sign posting can be given to agencies and services, who will be able to provide support.
We ask that parents support school by communicating any difficulties that their child/ren may be experiencing.
Please feel welcome to drop into school or make contact via the school office on 0115 915 6841
What is “The Local Offer?”
It sets out the support available in the local area for children and young people with SEN and/or disabilities (including those without an education, health and care (EHC) plan).
Local authorities (LAs) have a statutory duty to develop a local offer and publish it on their website.
This is so they can:
Provide clear, comprehensive, accessible and up-to-date information about available provision and how to access it
Make sure the provision responds to local needs and aspirations
The local authority will work with the local community, children and young people with SEND, and service providers (including schools)
Please click on the links below to view information about our Inclusion and SEN Policy and the Huntingdon Local Offer 2022.
At Huntingdon Academy, Mrs Bennett and Miss Yarnell are the SEND team.
What SEND needs do you cater for?
We are a very inclusive school and cater for a wide range of needs. These will fall under the four broad categories from the code of practice 2014 – Communication and Interaction, Cognition and Learning, Sensory and/ or Physical needs and Social, Emotional and Mental Health. We will always endeavour to meet your child’s needs.
What arrangements do you have for consulting with parents of children with SEND and involving them in their child’s education?
Pupils on the SEND register as SEN support have reasonable adjustments in place to ensure that they can access the curriculum and these are recorded on a class reasonable adjustment map. Children on the register as Additional SEND support have a one page profile and an IPM . These are updated termly with the views of the pupil, teacher and parents. Termly review meetings take place for all pupils with parents.
We have two parents’ evenings during the year where you will be able to find out about what your child is doing and how they are progressing in correlation to their targets. We also send home reports during the terms where parents evenings are not held. The school also operates a policy whereby parents can contact the school to make an appointment to meet the class teacher or SENCO.
What arrangements do you have in place in your school to consult with young people with SEND and how do you involve them in their education?
A twice a yearly survey takes place to ascertain the children’s views of school life. SEND pupils are represented across the school in various situations for example; school council, after school clubs and in competitions or sporting fixtures.
All children are assessed on a regular basis during each academic year. SEND pupil’s with an IPM take part in choosing and reviewing their targets. All pupils with an EHCP are involved in their annual review either in person or via sharing their views in a report.
Before your child joins our school at the beginning of the year, in Foundation 1 our staff will arrange stay and play sessions at school with parents to talk to you and introduce themselves to your child. This is a wonderful opportunity for relationships to begin and for us to discuss all relevant information.
There is a transition day for all Year 6’s during Summer Term 2 and details are shared with the relevant Secondary schools for the pupil voice. Additional visits may be set up where the Secondary or us feel it is appropriate. Children with a diagnosis of autism will receive enhance transition support from the ASD team.
What is the Academy’s approach to teaching children and young people with SEND?
Quality first teaching, by the class teacher, is delivered to all pupils. Support for learning within the classroom is the most important factor in helping pupils with SEND to make good progress alongside their peers. Learning would be scaffolded or differentiated in line with the pupils needs. Where possible children are always based in the classroom with their teacher.
Teaching assistants are deployed where the need is, and this can be done on a lesson basis in order to respond flexibly and swiftly. This may be in the form of in class support or an intervention.
For a small number of children, more support may be required. Should this arise, the SENCo would work alongside the teacher and in partnership with the parent. Schools, parents and other agencies may decide that it is necessary to request higher needs funding or a statutory assessment through the local authority. Where we feel that something additional or different is needed to support your child because they have SEND we will discuss this carefully with you. This information may well be recorded in a document for you and your child. This will include: details of any strategies being used to support your child in class; details of any extra support or interventions for your child; your child’s learning targets; the next date when your child’s progress will be reviewed. We use a range of interventions to support pupils with SEND to make better progress. Interventions are structured learning programmes. We can explain to you:- what interventions your child is receiving and what are the intended learning outcomes; when during the week any interventions will be delivered and for how many weeks; who will be delivering the interventions (usually a well-trained teaching assistant) and where (e.g. in class or outside the classroom) how the interventions will relate to and support learning in the classroom; how they will be monitored closely to make sure they are helping your child to make accelerated progress.
What sort of adaptations are made to the curriculum and the learning environment of children and young people with SEND?
Quality first teaching is delivered across all classrooms. Each teacher will make appropriate adaptations to the curriculum so all children have full access. We have a clear ambition for all strategy at school. The teachers will employ adaptive teaching strategies in order to make it accessible.
Adaptive teaching is an evolution of differentiation that focuses on the entire class while still responding to individual children’s needs. It involves knowing your pupils’ prior levels of attainment and providing targeted support.
Adaptive teaching involves scaffolding learning so that all children can access this. Scaffolding can be a term used to describe:
a visual scaffold, such as a task planner, images to support learning new vocabulary, model examples of work etc .
a verbal scaffold, such as a teacher correcting a misconception at a pupil’s desk. (live marking), specific questioning, pre teach etc.
a written scaffold, such as a writing frame, word bank, sentence stem etc.
Other scaffolds could include; writing aids, coloured overlays, wobble cushions, speaking frames, adult support. In addition to this, some pupils may require a personalised space. Each class has a reasonable adjustment map which details strategies and adjustments to the curriculum for a variety of needs. We have a large disabled toilet and shower. In line with the equality act, we ensure we meet the needs of all pupils if the need arises.
What sort of expertise for supporting children and young people with SEND do you currently have in school? How do you ensure that the expertise and training of staff to support children and young people is current? How do you access and secure further specialist support?
All staff are trained on a range of needs. We have a Leader of Inclusion and Welfare and a SENDCo who are able to support a range of needs. An audit is done to see where the training needs are. This is a mixture of in school training and external training.
As a school we may need specialist support for your child. If we feel that the involvement of another agency would be beneficial to help with your child’s needs, you will be informed and asked to give your consent.
How do you evaluate the effectiveness of the provision made for children and young people with SEND?
We have an inclusion for all philosophy at Huntingdon Academy and provision for SEND is focused on delivering high quality first teaching. We assess the quality of this through the quality assurance of the leadership team.
We use the graduated approach to support our children; Assess, Plan, Do, Review.
If your child is not making the expected progress an intervention may be required to help support them; this will be completed using a graduated approach. Your child will be assessed to ascertain where their strengths and areas to develop are. Provision would be carefully planned, the intervention will be delivered for a set period of time on a regular basis and then they will be reviewed at the end of this period.
How do you support children and young people with SEND to improve their emotional and social development?
Wellbeing and the emotional and social development of pupils is vital and it is at the heart of everything we do at Huntingdon Academy.
Training is given to staff on all areas of social, emotional and mental health in order to offer excellent support for pupils. Louise Yarnell is the school mental health lead and we have mental health first aiders for the children. We are a school that is ran through protective behaviour and restorative approaches and all behaviour is monitored and support is personalised based on needs.
Huntingdon is a Mental Health Support Team School (MHST) This have been developed to increase earlier access to support with mental health and wellbeing, they are based in school one day a week to help children access support and help to increase a whole school approach to mental health wellbeing. A Educational Mental Health Practitioner is based in the school one day a week and work closely with Louise Yarnell the mental health lead to ensure that the mental health needs within the school are identified and bespoke interventions offered. MHST offer interventions that have been shown to help support children and young people overcome difficulties with their mental health and wellbeing. These may be offered on a 1-1 basis or with your parents/caregivers.The majority of our interventions use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approaches.
How does the School involve other bodies, including health and social care bodies, local authority support services and voluntary sector organisations, in meeting children and young people’s SEND and supporting their families?
We work in close collaboration with a range of bodies to support children with SEND. School maintains excellent relationships with all relevant bodies and regularly accesses what is needed for pupils at Huntingdon Academy
The Inclusion Team works closely with; educational psychologist, autism team, behaviour support team, learning support team physiotherapy, speech therapy, school nurse, sensory team and community pediatricians.
Support for families through the local offer and a wide range of family support is available.
SEND IASS will offer information and support to families of students with SEND up to the age of 25 years whether or not they have a statement or EHC Plan. They may also be able to put you in touch with other organisations or parent support groups.
Support will be accessed from the virtual school for support of children who are looked after by the local authority. The school designated teacher is Louise Yarnell.
What are the arrangements for handling complaints from parents of children with SEND about the provision made at the school?
If you have a complaint, please speak to the class teacher in the first instance and if this is not resolved speak to the Leader of Inclusion (Miss Yarnell) or SENCO (Mrs Bennett) or the Head of School / Executive Headteacher. If it still cannot be resolved, please follow the academy’s complaints procedure.
Description: a range of apps are available for pupils with Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD) or Severe Learning Difficulties (SLD). All are interactive and many do not require significant coordination abilities.
Description: the Rapid Reading and Rapid Phonics programmes focus on accelerating progress in reading skills for pupils with dyslexia and with low levels of literacy. Designed for teachers, but suitable for parents too.
Registration: is required
Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families
Description: downloadable and printable resources that can be adapted to suit the needs of pupils. Resources are aimed at a range of abilities. Website has over 300,000 regular users and is suitable for both parents and teachers.
Description: an extensive range of education and therapy resources for parents and teachers of children with speech and language problems. A podcast is also available on iTunes for verbal and non-verbal children.