Dean Trust Wigan Special Educational Needs Information Report 2020/2021
At Dean Trust Wigan we believe that all pupils are entitled to a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum. Pupils are valued equally, regardless of ability and are encouraged to maximise their learning capability. The achievements, attitudes and well-being of all pupils are important and practical steps are taken to account for pupils’ varied life experiences and needs. Thus enabling pupils to achieve their potential and make a successful transition to adulthood, the world of further education, training or work.
How does the school know if children need extra help and how is SEND identified early?
Many of the pupils on the schools Special Educational Need and Disability (SEND) Support list will have had their needs identified in primary school and the information will have been transferred upon their admission to Dean Trust Wigan. However, some Special Educational Needs are not identified until the secondary phase of a pupil’s schooling. All teachers at Dean Trust Wigan are responsible for identifying pupils with SEN and, in collaboration with the SENDco and Inclusion Co-ordinator, will ensure that those pupils requiring “different from” or “additional to” support are identified at an early stage.
All children’s progress, academically, socially and emotionally, is constantly monitored by teachers and the leadership team within the school. The core of the teachers’ work involves a continuous cycle of planning, teaching, and assessing, taking into account the differences in pupils’ abilities, aptitudes, and interests and through this planning it may become evident that some pupils may need increased levels of provision and support.
Progress is the crucial factor in determining the need for additional support. Where teachers decide that a pupil is not making adequate progress, the SENDco and Inclusion Co-ordinator are consulted. The SENDco and Inclusion Co-ordinator are then responsible for assessing the pupil to determine if there are special educational needs, they will do this by gaining a holistic view of the child and considering;
What should a parent do if they think that their child may have special educational needs?
In the first instance contact your child’s learning tutor; if you still have concerns you can contact the Inclusion Co-ordinator, Miss Kirsty Monahan and the SENDco Mrs Lindsey Wilson.
We pride ourselves on building positive relationships with parents. We are open and honest with parents and hope that they are able to be the same with us.
How will school staff support my child?
The Role of the Headteacher – The headteacher’s responsibilities include:
The Role of the Subject Teacher
The Code of Practice clearly acknowledges the importance allocated to the class teacher. Subject teachers will support your child by;
The Role of the SENDco and Inclusion Manager
The SENDco is Mrs Lindsey Wilson.
The Inclusion Co-ordinator is Miss Kirsty Monahan
The SENDco plays a crucial role in the school’s SEN provision and is supported with the day to day management of the SEND department by the Inclusion Co-ordinator. They will support your child by;
The Role of the Governing Body
The Governing Body’s responsibilities to pupils with SEN include:
Who will explain my child’s needs and progress to me?
If your child is identified as requiring SEND support they will be allocated a key worker who will meet with parents on a termly basis to discuss the child’s needs, support and progress. In addition to this you will also have the opportunity to attend parent/carer evenings to discuss your child’s progress with individual subject teachers.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s/young person’s needs?
Dean Trust Wigan follow a broad and balanced curriculum across the key stages. (More information can be found on the school website or via the prospectus available from the main office). Through “Quality First Teaching” the school provides a curriculum to meet the needs of all children. All lessons offer the challenge and support necessary for each child to learn. Differentiation of the curriculum occurs in all lessons through the work set, questions asked, support given or outcomes expected.
The curriculum is reviewed every year to ensure it is meeting statutory requirements at each key stage. Core subjects are delivered in ability based groups with the more creative subjects delivered in mixed ability year group classes; differentiated to meet the individual needs of all the pupils within a class group. The curriculum allows for progression within subjects and across key stages. Pupils in years 7, 8 and 9 follow national curriculum subjects.
Pupils in years 10 and 11 are able to make choices of option subjects. Pupils, parents and teachers work collaboratively to choose the most appropriate option choices for each child, depending on academic ability and progress. The school makes use of options choices available to allow experience of externally supported learning opportunities at local colleges or vocational work training if appropriate for individual pupils. Wherever possible and appropriate, subjects are accredited using nationally recognised accreditation and examination with appropriate adjustments and support as required. Pupils’ who require access arrangements will have their needs assessed by the school’s Inclusion Co-ordinator. The Examination Officer will put these arrangements in place for all examinations.
Individual pupil assessment of progress against their predicted grades is tracked half termly, pupils predicted grades are devised using Key Stage 2 levels, CAT scores and other nationally recognised assessment tests.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
Where special educational needs are identified, we put into place appropriate, evidence based interventions. The approach is graduated with regular review of progress made and adaptations to support provided as required.
In planning support, we always start with what we want the child to achieve in their learning. This is tracked and reviewed termly. Resources are allocated on a needs basis, with the children who have the greatest need being allocated the most support.
How is a decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?
The school curriculum is differentiated to meet the needs of all children and this differentiation can take many forms, such as targeted questions, a change to the curriculum, support within the classroom from the class teacher or support staff and on occasions the format in which tasks are given may be different.
Children’s progress is carefully monitored by the subject teacher and by members of the leadership team. Teacher assessment levels are awarded termly and actions identified for those children who are not on track.
The initial extra support is given as Quality First Teaching in subject specific areas. The class teacher will ensure that the child is aware of their level and the steps needed to move onto the next stage. Teachers may send home work for pupils to complete at home and will liaise with parents about this.
If, after this initial intervention, the class teacher still feels that the child is not making sufficient progress, or is concerned about a specific need or behaviour, then they will approach the SENDco/Inclusion Co-ordinator for advice and support. The SENDco/Inclusion Co-ordinator will gather a holistic view from across the curriculum and liaise with parents. They will then offer further advice and extra resources to the class teacher/parent or will determine whether the child requires specialist intervention or support. This may take the form of TESS, speech and language therapy, occupational health, startwell, or educational psychology service amongst others.
How does Dean Trust Wigan measure my child’s progress and judge whether the support is having an impact?
The progress of all children is continually monitored by the subject teacher at Dean Trust Wigan using the school’s data tracking systems and formal reviews are sent home 4 times a year. A full report is also sent home annually and this will provide information regarding pupil’s academic progress attendance, classwork, homework and behaviour.
If a pupil is working below National Curriculum Level 1, a more sensitive assessment tool is used which shows their level in more detail and will also show smaller but significant steps of progress. The levels are called ‘P levels’. The progress of children with a statement of SEN/ EHC Plan is formally reviewed at an Annual Review with parents/carers and all adults involved with the child.
The class teacher continually assesses each pupil and notes areas where they are improving and where further support is needed. The SENDco and Inclusion Co-ordinator will also monitor a child’s progress within any individual or group provisions that they take part in and feedback will be given to parents through letter or meeting. For pupils who require an Individual Education Plan (Pupil Passport), the SENDco or Inclusion Co-ordinator will meet with the parents twice a year to set and review specific targets aimed at addressing specific areas of difficulty or concern.
Pupils who are not making expected progress are identified through termly progress meetings. In this meeting a discussion takes place about those pupils experiencing difficulties and what further support can be given to aid their progress.
Parents can come into school to discuss the progress of their child at any point during the Academic year by telephoning, e-mailing or arranging a meeting at the main reception.
How will you help me to support my child’s learning?
There are numerous methods used across the academy to ensure that parents/carers are able to support their child’s learning;
What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being and health?
The overall well-being and general health of all pupils is paramount at Dean Trust Wigan. The school employs five pastoral development managers who support pupils in a variety of ways in order to enable them to overcome obstacles to their learning. There is also Nurture support for pupils, where they can access Relax to Learn workshops, and programmes to boost their self-esteem or overcome anger management issues. Nurture can also be accessed during unstructured times such as break or lunchtime for vulnerable pupils who do not wish to access the school canteens.
The school also serves pupils who experience a broad and sometimes complex range of medical needs. Staff are regularly trained in addressing medical needs whilst key staff are supported by the school nurse and allied health professionals from the Wigan Community Trust. Where appropriate, individual care plans are designed by a multi-disciplinary team working alongside parents and carers in order to ensure each pupil’s needs are fully met. There is a policy in place for the medical treatment of pupils and all medication is kept in pupil services and a log of administration is completed.
All teaching assistants are first aid trained as well as 17 other staff. Staff have training around specific medical conditions such as diabetes, anaphylaxis, visual and hearing impairment and adolescent mental health. Training is reviewed and updated to include new staff and to suit a specific requirement. A defibrillator is also located in the school reception for use in an emergency and key staff have had training on how to use this. For more specific needs, the Inclusion Co-ordinator and pastoral staff work closely with the physiotherapy team, the occupational health team, the community pediatrician and Child and Adolescent mental health workers. The school nurse works closely with the school and attends a drop in session for pupils during lunchtime once a week. This is a confidential service for pupils to access.
The school also houses a fully qualified counsellor, who works in the school for 3 days a week. Referrals to the counsellor can be made through Pastoral Support Staff.
What support is there for behaviour, avoiding exclusion and increasing attendance?
There is a behaviour policy in place and a clear focus on rewarding good behaviour. Good behaviour and hard work is recognised during form time, lesson by lesson and also during assemblies. The school has two reward trips a year as well as an experiential learning trip at Easter. This is an opportunity for all pupils within the school to experience something new or unfamiliar with an emphasis on developing their motivations and aspirations.
Any behavioural incidents are dealt with swiftly and effectively by key members of staff and parents/carers are kept informed. Exclusion is rare and is only used as a last resort to deal with poor behaviour.
The attendance of every child is monitored on a daily basis by the attendance officer. Punctuality and absence are recorded and reported to the Headteacher and the Governing Body. Good attendance is rewarded through the school reward policy. Where attendance issues are identified, parents/carers will be invited into school to meet with the Attendance officer and Head of Year.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?
All staff are trained regularly in key areas of the curriculum and also in identifying and supporting children with specific difficulties around learning, child development and any social and emotional problems which pupils may experience.
Specific qualifications in Special Educational Needs have been acquired by the SENDco
The school also works closely with the Targeted Education Support Service (TESS) for advice and guidance in supporting pupils with special educational needs or behavioural difficulties. The TESS teacher attends the school for two days each week. There is also an Educational Psychologist assigned to the school and key staff in the school along with TESS and Startwell hold a planning meeting twice a year to discuss individual pupil needs and ensure correct support is in place. Pastoral staff within Dean Trust Wigan also access a wide range of services all of which can support both parents/carers and children. These agencies include Speech and Language team, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service, Sensory Support Service, English as an Additional Language Team, Paediatricians and School Health Service, Restorative Solutions, Startwell and Children and Young People’s Services.
What training have the staff supporting children and young people with SEND had?
Staff receive regular training from the Health Service around key medical issues which could arise for a child. First aid training is in place, 17 staff are first aid trained and 5 members of staff are defibrillator and resuscitation trained. All Pastoral Development Managers have received Asthma training.
All staff have basic level 1 safeguarding training, pastoral staff and the core leadership team have level 2 training and 3 members of staff have designated safeguarding lead training. All pastoral staff and 3 members of core leadership are Team Teach trained to support children in dealing with and working through difficult situations. All pastoral staff are trained in early help. All staff have received basic LBGT and Prevent training.
All Teaching Assistants are qualified at Level 2 or higher in supporting young people in Education. 3 teaching assistants have recently commenced a Level 3, Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools training programme and all teaching assistants are taking part in the “Outstanding Teaching Assistant Programme”. This academic year every teaching assistant has chosen an area of SEND in which to develop their knowledge and skills, they will then become an Academy Champion in this area. Additionally, further training has been delivered on reading, spelling, phonic, handwriting programmes, Relax to Learn, Talking Partners, Social Stories, and supporting pupils who have English as an Additional language.
The SENDco, Inclusion Co-ordinator and TESS offer regular training to staff on special educational needs and behaviour, which supports the learning and development of children with additional needs. Teaching Assistants are invited to attend all training. Training is sought when necessary from specialist agencies both locally and nationally.
How will my child/young person be included in activities outside of the classroom including school trips?
Dean Trust Wigan is fully inclusive and all pupils are encouraged to take part in all activities both within and outside of school. The school has in place all statutory risk assessments, based upon Wigan Council model risk assessments and guidance adapted to the circumstances of the school. These include risk assessments associated with premises and grounds, subject specific, individual pupils. Where necessary, extra support will be provided to ensure that full participation for children with SEND is viable. Parents/carers are fully informed of the trips and activities open to every child and also all of the before school and extra curriculum activities available. First aid equipment and children’s medicines are taken on every trip or visit outside of the school. For the purpose of reward trips criteria is differentiated for pupils who have been identified as having special educational needs.
Dean Trust Wigan has a breakfast club every morning where pupils receive free porridge and homework, revision and intervention sessions after school. Vulnerable pupils are able to attend the Nurture room at break and lunchtime as and when they wish to.
How accessible is the school environment?
The car park areas maintain disabled parking spaces close to the reception entrance. The main building and library are fully accessible to wheelchair users via a lift. Adaptions are made to our specialist classrooms to ensure that pupils are able to participate in all lessons. Adaptions may include height adjustable sinks and work stations. The use of computers, iPads and iPod enable all children to have access to new technologies to support their learning needs.
There are disabled toilets on all levels of the school and two disabled shower blocks. The school has all required policies and guidance modified to account for individual school circumstances. These can be accessed via the website. The school aims to ensure that all communications in written format are clear and concise, but will inform parents/carers verbally where appropriate. For parents whose first language is not English, and for those with sensory difficulties the school will try to provide an interpreter or sign language interpreter to attend meetings.
How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school or to transfer to a new school or the next stage of education and life?
A range of practices are employed by the school to support pupils from year 6 to year 7 making sure they feel prepared on entry. Transition begins in Year 5 when pupils are invited for an open afternoon to take part in lessons, meet key staff and get a flavour of school life at Dean Trust Wigan. Following this, potential pupils, along with parents/carers attend an Open Evening in September of Year 6 to introduce them to the school and the staff, before the application process begins.
Parents/carers with SEND children can arrange extra visits to speak to the SENDco/Inclusion Co-ordinator to help them to prepare by addressing any worries, and providing information about both the transition process and the available provision at secondary school.
Year 9 pupils are trained to be peer mentors and visits are conducted by them, Senior Leadership team, Inclusion Co-ordinator, Head of Year and Pastoral Development Manager throughout the year to the main feeder primary schools in order to meet the pupils and find out key information from the SENDco and classroom teacher. Workshops are completed with pupils to address their worries concerns or questions about starting secondary school.
Year 6 transition days take place over 2 days in June and these allow pupils to visit Dean Trust Wigan and experience the school setting with their peers. Cognitive ability tests, reading, spelling and handwriting assessments take place over the 2 days to allow for the correct provision to be put into place early on in Year 7. Parents/carers of SEND pupils are welcome to phone the SENDco at any time to arrange extra visits to help with transition. A transition evening is held where parents/carers are able to meet their child’s form teacher and also meet with the SENDco to discuss plans for the forthcoming year.
One of the main aims at Dean Trust Wigan is to ensure that pupils in year 11 are able to progress at age 16 to suitable education, training or employment. Regular careers meetings take place throughout Key Stage 4 as well as a careers fair for all pupils. The School Careers Advisor starts working with pupils with SEND in year 9 to ensure that appropriate support is in place for pupils to access the next stage of their education. The Careers Advisor also attends all annual review meetings from Year 9 onwards.
How are parents involved in the school? How can I be involved?
Parents/carers are encouraged to join the Parent/Carer Voice forum, the main purpose of this forum is to give parents/carers a voice and increase their active involvement in decision-making. The forum also fosters a culture of ownership and participation as well as developing a partnership between the school and parents/carers in order to support and promote the pupils’ learning and bring about change.
The Governing body of Dean Trust Wigan is made up of representatives from the school, local community and parents/carers. Adverts for Parent/Carer Governors are circulated as a vacancy arises. Parent/carers of current pupils on roll are able to be nominated and if successful, are elected to the governing body.
Parent/carers of pupils with SEND are invited into the school for Coffee Mornings throughout the Academic year. Each Coffee Morning has a different focus and is aimed at networking with parents and ensuring communication and “joined up thinking” between home and school to overcome potential barriers for pupils in the school.
Parents are regularly encouraged to give feedback to teachers and senior leadership team about their children and events held in the school. This information helps to plan for the future and to ensure that needs are met appropriately.
Who can I contact for further information?
If parents/carers feel that they wanted to discuss their child and their specific needs or any concerns they may have in more detail they can either telephone or e-mail to make an appointment with either their child’s Head Of Year, Pastoral Development Manager, Inclusion Co-ordinator or SENDco or any member of the Senior Leadership Team.
If you are considering sending your child to Dean Trust Wigan and you feel that they have special educational needs or disabilities which you would like to discuss further, then you can ring on 01942 511987 and arrange an appointment to meet with the Inclusion Co-ordinator and Pastoral staff. During your visit you will be given a tour of the school and an opportunity to discuss your child’s specific needs and specific support which could be offered relating to your child’s education.