How we support children/young people with SEN starting at our school
Our Early Years teacher Mrs Cunningham makes visits to all feeder Nurseries to meet the children who will be starting our school. She spends time working with the children, observing them in a familiar environment and talking to their key workers. We encourage all new children to visit the school prior to starting and this is done through a series of transition days. These are timetabled so that children can have an experience of either end of the school day including lunch. For children with SEND, we would encourage further visits to assist with the acclimatisation of the new surroundings. We would arrange more visits at current nurseries and transition meetings with parents, nursery staff and any appropriate professionals who may be involved in order to provide a smooth and supportive transition.
If your child joins our school during a Key Stage or mid-way through the academic year, systems are in place to aid their transition from their previous school. When you visit our school, the Head Teacher will give you a tour and your child will have opportunities to see their new classroom and meet their teacher. If your child has SEND, our SENCO will liaise with the SENCO from your child’s previous school to ensure that we have the required information to enable us to support your child fully. It would be beneficial if you could discuss your child’s needs with us and share any information you have when you visit.
How we support children/young people with SEN moving between classes in our school
At St Godric’s, transition is treated the same at every juncture and children are given the opportunity to take part in ‘Moving Up’ days in the summer term where children spend time with their new class teacher in their new classroom. During the summer term, staff meet to share information during handover transition meetings to ensure teachers are able to prepare for their new classes. For those children who require provision that is additional to or different from quality first teaching, we make additional arrangements to support these children through the transition. This can include spending additional time in their new classroom, visiting their new classroom with their current member of support staff, beginning transition arrangements earlier in the Summer Term or photographs of their new classroom to take home and talk about with Parents and Carers during the Summer holidays. The support provided is tailored to the needs of individual children and will be discussed with parents and carers and the child.
How we support children/young people with SEN leaving our school
Children with SEND are given an extensive level of support before they leave for their new school. We work closely with parents to help this be as smooth a transition as possible. When children are preparing to leave us for a new school, typically to go to Secondary education, we arrange additional visits. All Durham Secondary schools have transition days where your child can meet their new class teacher and their classmates. They will also have opportunities to participate in sample lessons. As part of our transition package, the SENCO will ensure that all SEND information is passed onto the next school to ensure that they are fully aware of any additional needs your child may have. The SENCO will work closely with families to ensure that the needs of the individual are met to the best of her ability. For example, extra transition visits for both parents and pupils, involvement of SENDIASS (formerly Durham Parent Partnerships) or support around the social or emotional well-being of the pupil.
If your child has complex needs and has an Education Health and Care Plan, then a review will be used as a transition meeting during which we will invite staff from both schools to attend and any other relevant professionals. Their teacher and SENCO will discuss with secondary colleagues how many transition visits can be arranged over and above those offered to children without SEND. These additional visits to the new school will be carried out with the child and Secondary School Staff in the summer term.
If your child leaves St Godric’s before this time, the SENCO will ensure that all SEND information is passed onto the next school to ensure that they are fully aware of any additional needs your child may have.
If you would like to discuss your SEND requirements in detail, please contact the school to arrange an appointment with the SENCO Mrs Sarah Walton.