Millbrook Primary School
Special Educational Needs and/or Disability (SEND) Information Report
What is the SEND information report?
This Special Education Needs and/or Disability (SEND) report informs parents/carers what the school has in place to support children with additional needs.
What is the SEND Code of Practice?
The Code of Practice is the government legislation that schools and local authorities must follow to ensure that children/young adults (0-25 years) with SEND are provided for appropriately. It states that making higher quality teaching available to all pupils, leads to fewer pupils requiring support.
Schools must make every effort to help children achieve the best possible educational outcomes, preparing them for adulthood. The Code of Practice (2014) is centred on the child and parents/carers’ views, wishes and feelings emphasising a strong collaboration with the education, health and social care services.
Children with SEND and their parents/carers will be actively involved in any decisions and choices regarding the special educational provision.
What are special educational needs?
How does the school know if children/young people need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?
Through high quality teaching and differentiation, the school will be tracking the progress of all children. When children find something about a lesson difficult, we small gaps in understanding are addressed by the Teacher or Teaching Assistant before the next lesson. If a child is having a more long-term difficulty, then he or she will be included in the class Intervention plan. This will mean that extra support is put in place to support their progress and help them to quickly catch up with their age-related expectations.
The SENCo meets frequently (approximately every 2 weeks) with staff delivering additional programmes to see how the child is responding to the intervention and to make adjustments to their support if needed.
The progress of pupils is assessed formally once a term and meetings between the Head Teacher, Assistant Headteacher, Class Teacher, Teaching Assistant and Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator take place every half term. Adjustments are made to the intervention plans according to the needs of the children.
Should a child continue to experience difficulty over time, or if the child is immediately identified as having a high level of need when they join the school, then they will be placed on the Special Educational Needs Register and, in discussion with parents, we will consider whether we need to seek specialist support.
We would also notice a child has difficulty managing his/her emotions or coping in the mainstream classroom and we would support these needs through nurture provision and/or programmes of work that help to develop emotional wellbeing and social skills.
At Millbrook we have an open-door policy and if you have concerns about your child please discuss them with the Class Teacher in the first instance. You may also wish to ring the school office and ask to make an appointment to speak to the Special Needs Coordinator, Mrs. Henson.
In Reception, you will have an opportunity to discuss concerns that you may have about your child’s development, but will always be given brief opportunities to discuss your child at the end of each session, or you may make an appointment if the issue requires more time.
How will school staff support my child?
All children will be supported in class through differentiated teaching. Teachers ensure that all children have a curriculum matched to their needs. Every class is supported by a Teaching Assistant. Children with a higher level of need may be supported in a number of ways.
- They may have extra support within a group in the classroom
- They may take part in targeted group work with the Teacher, Teaching Assistant, or a Learning Support Assistant.
- They may be working on an individual programme of work, devised by the SENCo and Class Teacher. These programmes may also follow the advice of a specialised external professional.
In order to ensure that children with Special Educational Needs have the very best targeted support, we may seek advice from specialists such as the Educational Psychologist (through consultations), support from Rivers, or the Phoenix Centre (for social and emotional needs), or from the Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) Specialist Outreach Teacher.
The Special Educational Needs Co-Ordinator oversees and co-ordinates special educational provision and monitors the progress of children receiving the extra support. She is also responsible for ensuring that all staff receive the correct training either in-house, or externally.
How will I know how my child is doing?
The Class Teacher/SENCo will keep you informed of your child’s progress and may also provide activities for you to do with your child at home. There will be termly review meetings and ongoing discussions as well as formal opportunities such as parent consultations
Again, if you have any concerns please speak to the Class Teacher or make an appointment to meet with the SENCo.
How will the learning and development provision be matched to my child’s needs?
The Class Teacher plans his/her lessons to match the needs of all pupils through differentiation of lessons. We also cater for different learning styles, taking into account that some children learn visually, some learn by listening and some by ‘doing’ (kinaesthetically).
If your child has a Special Educational Need, there will be a termly meeting with the Class Teacher and SENCo. During this time we will discuss your child’s progress over the previous term and agree the next steps for your child to work towards. The child and parent’s views are central to these meetings. We will also ensure that future targets are implementing advice from any external professionals who have worked with the child.
All of the above forms the ‘assess, plan, do and review cycle’. This enables us to ensure that we are constantly enabling the child to progress by providing the right targeted support and building on what they already know.
What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?
Millbrook school is a very caring school. We prioritise children’s emotional as well as their physical/academic needs. We have a Learning Mentor, Mrs Parkyns, who provides support to children and families. She runs interventions and nurture to support children to develop self -esteem, their ability to manage strong emotions, develop friendships and further develop their social skills. She works with children individually and in small groups.
We are fully aware that a child’s mental health needs to be good for them to be able to access their education. We will work with you to ensure that there is as much support as possible in place and if you wish, we can access a family support worker (Chexs) to support the whole family if needed.
We have a range of programmes to develop children’s social and emotional skills and a focus on empathy. We teach mindfulness and promote a growth mindset to develop the children’s resilience. We are a Hertfordshire Steps school and have a clear policy to support children to learn to regulate their own behaviour. We have a Behaviour Mentor (Miss James) who is trained to support children and delivers whole school Steps Training along with the Learning Mentor (Mrs Parkyns).
Pupil voice is central to the school ethos, and we have a Junior Governors who meet regularly and contribute to school life. We also have weekly celebration assemblies highlighting children’s achievements. Achievements are also posted on Twitter (with parental permission.
We have an after school club, run by school staff which is open to all children regardless of need. This is fully inclusive, and staff liaise to ensure that any additional needs are met in the same way that they are during the school day. We also have lunch clubs and a nurture group in the afternoon for those children who are finding some aspects of school emotionally challenging.
As well as school-based systems to support the children’s behaviour and emotional wellbeing, we also work with external professionals such as The Phoenix Centre, Rivers and Chexs. These organisations provide support for children and strategies for Teachers to help children develop ways to self-regulate and thrive in class. We also have a counsellor who offers sessions to children who are experiencing emotional difficulties, or who have experienced trauma. All of these have a good impact on supporting children’s emotional wellbeing.
If a child has additional health needs, we will work with you to formulate a Healthcare Plan, which will be reviewed regularly and again we will work closely with you to ensure that your child’s individual needs are met and that everything is in place to support them to be fully included in every aspect of school life.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?
The SENCo co-ordinates provision for children who need to access external services. There are a wide range of services who work closely with the school. These include:
- The Educational Psychology Service
- Communication and Autism Team
- Square One support for teachers
- Chexs Extended Services
- Intensive Families First
- Speech and Language Therapy Service
- Behaviour and Attendance Team
- Educational Support Centre (Rivers)
- Phoenix Centre outreach support.
- Occupational Therapy
- Specific Learning Difficulties Base Outreach (Bonneygrove)
- Advisory teachers for Physical and Neurological Impairments.
- Support in school for children with difficulty managing their emotions.
- School Counsellor
- Play Therapy
- Emotional support from the school nurse
- Specialist Family Support Worker for children with Autism
- Middleton Outreach Support for children with Moderate Learning Difficulties
What training have the staff, supporting children and young people with SEND, had or are having?
Teachers and all support staff access a range of training opportunities both in school and on externally run courses. The SENCo and Head Teacher ensure that staff are given the opportunity to develop the skills that they need to be able to fully support the children with additional needs in their care.
We have an inclusive approach to SEN training and staff share skills and expertise with each other. We have weekly staff meetings in which this takes place. Staff also coach and support each other sharing knowledge and expertise.
All staff have skills in supporting children with autism, literacy and mathematical difficulties, physical needs, social and emotional difficulties and speech and language difficulties. All staff make reasonable adjustments to ensure that children are fully included, can access the curriculum and are making progress.
We work closely with the Specific Learning Difficulties Advisory Teacher we access excellent training courses to enable staff to deliver programmes.
The whole staff have had training in supporting children with Autistic Spectrum.
Additionally, external professionals have delivered staff meetings and INSET days to develop expertise in a range of areas.
All staff had 6 hours training on ‘Hertfordshire Steps’. This is a whole school way of effectively managing children’s behaviour using the same scripts and strategies. The training is updated every year by the Learning Mentor and Behaviour Mentor, who have been on 2-day training (updated yearly) to be qualified to deliver Steps training and ensure that it is followed in school.
How will you help me to support my child’s learning?
Your role as parent is central to your child’s education and we will make every effort to support your family.
In Reception, we conduct home visits so that your child’s education starts with school and home working together.
We encourage you to read with your child every day from Reception and sign their reading diary. We provide homework that is accessible to your child and supports learning. Please feel free to discuss any concerns or difficulties and we will make every effort to offer support.
We are very grateful to parents who volunteer to come in and help in school, with reading or other activities. (When we are covid free) This helps the children immensely, but also gives them the opportunity to develop skills.
How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s education?
There will be meetings with the SENCo, Class Teacher and other professionals. During these meetings, the child’s progress will be discussed and the next steps for learning decided. The voices of the child and parents are central to any decisions that are made.
Any concerns can be raised at these meetings, but we do have an open-door policy and hope that we can address any worries as they arise. We also encourage parents to participate in school events and hope that there is an on- going dialogue so that parents feel supported throughout their child’s time with us.
How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
We will conduct risk assessments before engaging in any school trips. If we are taking a child with a Special Educational Need, we carefully consider what may be needed to ensure that the child can participate fully and safely. For example we may allocate additional adults, or check that the child will be able to manage stairs. We will, of course, seek your advice for the planning process, or may even ask you to come along.
Ratios of adults to children are always set at a higher level than Hertfordshire recommends.
Children with autism or sensory needs have access to devices such as ear defenders. We fully appreciate that some children may need movement breaks, fiddle toys weighted blankets and will need time in the sensory room. We will make any adjustments that we can to ensure that all children can access the school environment and that school is a positive happy experience, whatever their level of need. We are aware that inclusion means providing what is needed and this may not be the same for every child.
Arrangements for the Admission of Pupils with Disabilities:
The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 defines a disabled person as one who has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.
Most children with Special Needs will not be disabled within the meaning of the Act. The admission of pupils with disabilities is considered in the first instance in the same way as non-disabled pupils. Further considerations are made in the light of need and accessibility. It is the Governors Policy to accommodate pupils with disabilities should parents wish and individual needs are planned for to prevent any pupils being treated less favourably than other pupils.
In practice we ensure that classroom and extracurricular activities encourage the participation of all pupils, including those categorised as having Special Educational Needs. Staff organise human and physical resources within the school to increase access to learning and participation by all pupils.
How accessible is the school environment?
The school is accessible to all. We have wheelchair access to the grounds and all classrooms
A children’s disabled toilet, which is fully accessible with a wheelchair
Where children require additional and different equipment, we ensure that this is in place. For example if the child requires special equipment such as a workstation, we ensure that one is available.
We ensure that the environment is highly visual to support those children with English as an additional language. Staff make every effort to ensure that these children feel included and have opportunities to develop their English as well as celebrate and share some of their own culture/language.
The Accessibility Plan on this website explains further the ways that the school ensures that the school environment and the curriculum is accessible to all.
Who can I contact for further information?
You may speak to the office the Class Teacher with your questions, and they will direct you to the SENCos if they cannot answer directly.
Further information and a range of policies are available to view on the website.
The Accessibility Plan
The Behaviour Policy
The Child Protection Policy
The Children Looked After Policy
How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new school or the next stage of education and life?
During the child’s time in school they are offered more and more responsibility.
Throughout year six, children have opportunities to discuss their feelings about their transition to secondary school. We liaise with the secondary schools and arrange visits from Teachers as well as taking the children on visits and to sports events.
If a child changes school during the course of his or her time at primary school, we liaise with the new school and ensure that any relevant information is passed on. We encourage children to visit their new school and new teachers to visit the child while they are still with us.
Additionally we acknowledge that transitions between key stages and classes are smooth and have ‘Meet the Teacher’ days as well as additional visits and class swaps. Paired reading between classes and making transition books including photos of the new class and Teacher is also helpful for children who may find the move difficult. It is very helpful for children to be able to refer to these booklets over the summer so that they are reassured of what will happen in the new school year.
The SENCo will liaise with the SENCo of the new school to ensure that additional transition arrangements are made as needed and that all information and reports are passed on securely.
How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
Pupil progress meetings, parents and Teachers raising concerns trigger SEN support. The schools Learning Support Assistants are allocated to deliver specific programmes of work to children in addition to the time that they spend with the Teacher and Teaching Assistant. A Children with a high level of need may receive High Needs Funding (HNF), which will enable us to provide 1:1 support for them. This is assessed when the child is given an Education Health and Care Plan and can in exceptional circumstances be applied for before this process has been completed.
How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive?
Support is carefully matched to the children’s needs and may be in the form of adjustments to the curriculum, intervention groups, one to one support, or specialist resources. These decisions are made through careful assessment, analysis of pupil progress, SEN support analysis, and observations of children as well as discussion with parents.
How can I find information about the local authority’s Local Offer of services and provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disability?
Hertfordshire County Council’s Local Offer can be accessed online at:
This is an excellent site with a huge range of guidance and resources to support children with additional needs.