SEN

The whole team at the Academy is committed to providing a welcoming, attractive and stimulating environment to support the needs and develop the learning of the children and families in the community. Every child and family in our community is valued and diversity is celebrated.

Our school is staffed by a team of qualified teachers and Learning Mentors. The school provides a broad and balanced curriculum in a safe, stimulating and caring environment which allows everyone to achieve, develop, learn and grow.

We endeavour to make every effort to achieve maximum inclusion of all students whilst meeting students’ individual needs. We recognise the entitlement of all students to a balanced, broadly based curriculum. Our SEN procedures and policies reinforce the need for quality first teaching that is fully inclusive.

What should I do if I think my child has special educational needs? 

The key member of staff that you can contact if you think your child has Special Educational Needs is: Ms A Hulse (Deputy Head) Phone: 01625 611001 

Email: a.hulse@thefermainacademy.org 

In addition to this, you may discuss any concerns about your child’s progress with their Form Tutor:

Yr 9  Newton  Alex Hornby
Yr 10  Nightingale  Nikalas Cook & Matt Wardle
Yr 10  Churchill  Rob Downey 
Yr 11  Darwin  Rachel Hall 
Yr 11  Windsor  Abby Hunt 
Yr 11  King  Sam Boyd 
Yr 11  Shakespeare  Lucy Wheelton 

What do I need to do if I have concerns about my child having special educational needs?   

Email with any concerns to Ms A Hulse (Deputy Head) Phone: 01625 611001 

a.hulse@thefermainacademy.org 

Additionally, there are appointment slots available with Ms Hulse via teams every Tuesday 2.30-4.30 during the academic year 2023/24. 

Any parent/ carer who feels that their child has barriers to their learning due to a SEND need are free to attend virtual consultation to discuss strategies to support their child.  

In addition, there are Teaching Assistants who lead the delivery of support  

If following 2 terms of support, there continues to be concerns that your child may have a social communication difficulty then we can refer to the CEAT: Cheshire East Autism Team or the ADHD and Autism Team  

How does the school know if students need extra help with their learning?  

The Fermain Academy values all its students. The school firmly believes that each student should be given equality of opportunity to achieve their full potential – academically and socially – by recognising the uniqueness of each individual and providing a rich and varied learning experience for all and focusing on achieving the best possible outcomes. Each student, regardless of their ability, is entitled to a broad and balanced curriculum, which is relevant to their educational needs. The curriculum offered should give all students a sense of achievement and thereby help them develop.  

We aim to ensure that:

Students with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) are educated, wherever possible, in an inclusive environment alongside their peers to enable each student to reach their full potential.  

  • We foster an atmosphere in which SEND students feel valued and can develop a sense of confidence, self-worth and achievement.
  • Students with learning difficulties are able to access their entitlement to a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum as part of the whole school community.
  • We match levels of additional support for learning to the wide variety of individual learning difficulties, while enhancing self-esteem. 
  • We identify and assess students with SEND as early and as thoroughly as possible using the revised Code of Practice (2014)
  • Parents/carers and students are fully involved in the identification and assessment of SEND, and that we work in close partnership with all agencies concerned, using a multi -agency approach. 
  • We meet the needs of all students with SEND by offering appropriate and flexible forms of educational provision, by the most efficient use of all available resources.
  • We maintain up to date knowledge of current SEND good practice and methodology in order to offer support and training in these areas to all staff in our school. 
  • We maintain close links with home schools to share and develop our practice. 

The school’s provision for SEND is defined as support which is additional to or different from that which is available to all students. At The Fermain Academy, we recognise that students make progress at different rates. Therefore, students are identified as having SEND in a variety of ways:  

  • Liaison with home school/previous school. 
  • The student is performing significantly below expected levels for a sustained period.
  • Concerns raised by parents/carer. 
  • Concerns raised by teachers through our Inclusion referral system. 
  • Information from external agencies such as Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and Children, Families and Social Care (CFSC) and Children Services (CS).
  • If a student is identified as having SEND then their name will be added to the SEND register initially under the category ‘K’ so that teachers are aware and can support them, but we recognise that students’ needs may change over time and provision must reflect this.

What are the categories for SEND?  

There are four types of Special Educational Needs (SEN) as described in the SEND Code of Practice 2014:  

  • Communication and interaction 
  • Cognition and learning 
  • Social, emotional and mental health difficulties 
  • Sensory and/or physical needs

If a student has SEND, then their needs will fit into one or more of these categories. 

How will the school support my child?  

All subject teachers are responsible for the outcomes of students in their lessons. They are responsible for high quality teaching and learning and making the curriculum accessible to all students. Teaching staff will receive ongoing training about strategies to support learning. The SENCo will ensure that:  

  • All relevant information is distributed on students’ needs so that teachers have a good understanding of the needs. The SEND Team provides advice, strategies and resources so that teachers are equipped in meeting those needs. 
  • Teachers and teaching assistants liaise regularly to plan for SEND students learning. 
  • Where required there is teaching assistant support in place in classrooms. 
  • There are reading, and Maths intervention sessions offered in school when needed
  • Parents/Carers are kept informed of any changes to the provision that is in place for their child. 

The following types of additional support are available, all dependent on need:  

  • Additional adult support in the classroom – there are dedicated Teaching Assistants in the SEND department who support teachers in helping the learning of whole classes. Students with an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) will receive this support according to their needs.
  • Small group sessions – these bespoke sessions are when students come out of some lessons for targeted interventions such as developing social communication, social interaction, literacy or numeracy. 
  • Intervention from external agencies depending on need provided by: Educational Psychology/ Speech and Language Therapy/Sensory Support Service. We will review the EHCP during the full Annual Review meeting every year 

Who will explain the provision to me?  

Any additional provision that is in place for your child will be explained by the SENCo or the Parent liaison manager. 

Letters, phone-calls or emails will be used to keep parents/carers updated on their child’s outcomes. 

How are the school’s governors involved and what are their responsibilities?  

A report will be sent to the governors annually to inform them about the outcomes of students with SEND; this report does not refer to individual students and confidentiality is maintained at all times. SEND and other elements of inclusion are led by Ms A Hulse.  

How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs? 

Students are entitled to participate in all areas of the curriculum, and it is the subject teacher’s role to differentiate resources and lessons to ensure the student can access the learning. The SENCo will advise teachers about strategies and resources to use to support differentiation. At Key Stage 4, students choose from a range of courses, which help to prepare them for the next steps in their learning, be that college, apprenticeships or work. Students and parents/carers are offered advice and careers guidance at the appropriate time to help make these important decisions.  

How will I know how my child is doing and how will you support me to support my child’s learning? What opportunities will there be to discuss my child’s outcomes? 

 Parents/carers can contact staff members by calling the school on 01625 611001 

 If needed, we can arrange either face to face meetings or virtual appointments via TEAMS encourages good home/school communication and this can be in the following ways: 

Staff will communicate with parents/carers by face-to-face meetings, telephone or email. 

  • If your child has an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP), then there are legal requirements for at least one formal meeting each year. The Annual Review is organised by the SENCo or Assistant SENCo. Parents/carers, students, staff, and any outside agencies involved with the student attend the review. At the annual review the student views are shared, long term outcomes are evaluated and next steps agreed.

How does the school know how well my child is doing?  

 Teachers, as part of their professional standards, monitor and review all students’ outcomes throughout the year. At The Fermain Academy we monitor progress includes:  

  • Termly data collection, from all teachers, showing the current level of attainment of all the students they teach. This means that teachers in each subject area can track the outcomes of students across the academic year and intervene if students experience difficulties. 
  • In-class additional support is reviewed half-termly by the SEND Team. Adjustments to support are made if necessary.
  • Teaching and learning is observed by senior leaders and line managers as part of the school’s performance management system. Teaching assistants are also observed through learning walks by the SENCo.
  • At the start of the placement students take baseline testing via BKSB. Students are also tested on their reading. This allows us to identify when students may need further support, intervention, or additional assessment to detect any underlying difficulties. 

What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being? What is the pastoral, medical and social support available in the school? 

Students who need support with social, emotional and mental health have the option to go to safe spaces where the students are supported by either the pastoral or SEND team. Safe spaces are available throughout the day. In this space, students can remain until they are able to self-regulate and return to lessons. We also have counsellors on site throughout the week and we can refer to the school nurse. Students can be referred by staff or parents/carers for support from these agencies. If a student is unwell during the school day, then they will contact the student pastoral team. If the student is too ill to stay at the school, their parents/carer will be contacted and asked to make arrangements for collecting them as soon as possible. In a medical emergency, appropriate emergency procedures will be followed. Staff are made aware of students who have severe allergies or other significant health/medical needs throughout the school year. Form Tutors, Pastoral Team and Student Admin Team are the main point of contact for parents/carers about their child’s pastoral and social well-being. 

How does the school manage administration of medicines?  

If a student requires medicine during the school day, the following procedures must be followed: 

  • All medicines must be given in person to First Aid by a parent/carer.
  • The student’s name and date of birth are recorded alongside the date, time, name of medicine, and dosage.
  • Depending on how the medicine needs to be stored, it will be kept in either a locked cupboard or a fridge. 
  • The student must go to Student Reception, where a First Aider will make the medication available to be taken. 
  • Each time the medicine is administered, the time, date and dosage are recorded. 

For additional information please refer to the medical policy. 

What specialist services and expertise are available and accessed by the school? 

 The SENCo, Ms Anna Hulse is an experienced teacher and Deputy Head who has worked as SENCO for the last 12 years. The SENCo leads the SEND department and works in partnership with the many specialist services and outside agencies, to ensure provision for students is appropriate and meets all needs

The school works closely with any external agencies that are relevant to individual students’ needs, including: 

  • Health – School Health Advisor, Child Adolescent and Mental Health Service (CAMHS) paediatricians, speech & language therapists, occupational therapists. 
  • Children, Families and Social Care – locality teams, social workers, family intervention teams.
  • LA Specialists: Psychology Services -Educational Psychologist, Specific Learning Difficulties Advisory teacher. 
  • Sensory Support Service – Hearing and visual impairments.
  • Specialist Schools

What SEND training have the staff had or are currently having? 

All staff have had training in line with the SEND Code of Practice 2014. There is an on-going rolling programme of professional development for our staff, throughout the school year.  

  • Ms Anna Hulse, SENCo provides staff with training and updates. 
  • SEND training forms part of the continuing professional development of all teachers and teaching assistants and is organised in accordance with the needs of the students. 
  • The school works closely with other local schools and the Specialist Outreach Services to continue to develop our knowledge and understanding of SEND. 

How will my child be included with activities outside the classroom, including trips?  

School trips are part of the school curriculum, and we aim for all students 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. This may include advice from the SENCo where relevant. 

How accessible is the school environment? 

The school is on two sites. Both have lift access. The site has been adapted so that all areas can be reached via permanent ramps, meaning the ground floors of all buildings are accessible for wheelchair users or those with impaired mobility. 

The site has disabled toilets. There is a car park on site. The car park has parking bays for disabled badge holders, marked clearly in yellow paint. 

How will the school support and prepare my child when joining the school and transferring from a new school? We aim to ensure a student has a smooth transition when they join the school. Staff liaise with schools and with parents/carers before the student arrives. Information is gathered about the student’s needs and appropriate support is put into place. 

 Year 11 students are guided and supported by the Careers Advisors to make post 16 choices. Students and parents/carers are offered advice and careers guidance at the appropriate time to help make these important decisions. 

  • Should your child have an EHC plan then a transition plan will be developed with a Careers Advisor involved. Transition visits to post 16 providers will be arranged where necessary. 

 What happens if my child joins mid-year? 

All students admitted to the school after the start of the academic year are screened on entry, to identify any areas of need and to provide information to staff about the student’s learning. This information is passed on to the SENCo. You will be able to meet the SENCo or Parent Liaison manager. Contact is made with the home school to ensure the transfer of information about the student. 

How is the decision made about the type and how much support my child will receive? 

Our SEND provision is inclusive, and we believe that students should be supported to access learning by means of differentiation. This could be differentiated by adult support in class, resources or equipment. Some students may require specialist support. The SEND team reviews the support every half term.  

There are four tiers of support: 

 Tier 1 – The effective inclusion of all students in high quality teaching & learning in the classroom. Teaching and learning which is multi-Sensory and well structured. Changing direction and re-shaping tasks to enhance student progress and understanding. 

 Tier 2 – Additional time-limited provision in the form of small-group intervention outside of the normal classroom. Tier 2 interventions should be used for students who can be expected to ‘catch up’ with their peers. This would include; Small-group intervention, for example, withdrawal classes during the school day or after school booster classes. 

 Tier 3 – Specific targeted interventions for identified students outside of the classroom. Additional time-limited intervention and provision to enhance the progress of identified students where tiers 1 and 2 are not, on their own, having the desired effect. This will involve intensely focused teaching activities that tackle fundamental gaps in skills, knowledge and understanding which is preventing progress.  

Tier 4 – Intensive support which may include a personalised timetable, 1 to 1 support to access lessons or with outside specialist service support.  

Additional information of what is on offer from East Cheshire local offer can be found on the website: East Cheshire SEND Local Offer