Special Educational Needs and Disability

Policy Details
Date created09/2019
Date reviewed08/02/2021
Next review date08/02/2022
Date approved22/03/2021
Approved by the LGB

This policy complies with the statutory requirement laid out in the SEND Code of Practice 0-25 and has been written with reference to the following guidance and documents:

● Children and Families Act 2014

● Equality Act 2010


At Co-op Academy Clarice Cliff we aim to:

● Create an inclusive curriculum for all children.

● Create an interesting and stimulating environment which meets the needs of each child. 

● Ensure each child reaches their full potential through high quality teaching and learning.

● Identify the roles and responsibilities of all staff in providing for children’s special educational needs.

● Raise the aspirations of and expectations for all pupils with Special Educational Need (SEN) and provide a focus on outcomes for children and young people.


In order to provide for the needs of children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), we seek to: 

● Work within the guidance provided in the SEND Code of Practice 2014.

● Ensure equal value for all children.

● Ensure the progress of all children through access to a relevant, broad and balanced curriculum.

● Maintain good home/academy links.

● Ensure early identification and assessment of SEN.

● Operate a whole pupil, whole academy; approach to the management of provision of support for special educational needs.

● Maintain links with outside agencies in identifying, assessing and providing for the needs of children with SEN.

● Ensure that policies and provision are monitored and reviewed on a regular basis and are updated accordingly.

Basic Information:

The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) for Co-op Academy Clarice Cliff is Mrs Elizabeth Jones, who is also the Designated Teacher for Looked After Children (LAC), and leads in the areas of Mental Health and Behaviour.

The SEN Governor is Lisa Tomkinson.

Co-op Academy Clarice Cliff is a mainstream primary academy committed to inclusion.  We aim to maintain and extend the academy’s culture, policies and practices of inclusion for all learners.  We achieve educational inclusion by continually reviewing our policy, practice and provision.  We aim to engender a sense of community and belonging, and to offer new opportunities to learners taking into account their needs and experiences.  

We pay particular attention to the provision for and achievement of different groups of learners:

● Girls and boys

● Minority ethnic and faith groups

● Learners with English as an additional language (EAL)

● Learners with special educational needs

● Learners who are disabled or have long term illness

● Those who are gifted and talented

● Those who are looked after by the local authority

● Any learners who are at risk of disaffection and exclusion.

This policy describes the way in which we meet the needs of children who experience barriers to their learning, which may relate to sensory or physical impairment, learning difficulties, emotional or social development, or may relate to factors in their environment, including the learning environment they experience in our academy.

Types of SEN:

Communication and Interaction: This includes children with speech and language delay, impairments or disorders, specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia and dyspraxia, hearing impairment, and those who demonstrate features within the autistic spectrum.

Cognition and learning: This includes children who demonstrate features of moderate, severe or profound learning difficulties or specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia or dyspraxia.

Social, emotional and mental health: This includes children who may be withdrawn or isolated, disruptive, hyperactive or lack concentration.

Sensory and or physical needs: This includes children with sensory, multi-sensory and physical difficulties.

Children with disabilities

Some children in our academy may have a disability and require additional resources.  The academy is committed to providing an environment that allows these children full access to all areas of learning.  All our classroom entrances and designated points of entry are wide enough for wheelchair access.  Teachers modify teaching and learning as appropriate for these children, ensuring that work takes account of their pace of learning and the equipment they use; takes account of the effort and concentration needed in oral work, or when using, for example, vision aids. Teachers also adapt or offer alternative activities in those subjects where children are unable to manipulate tools or equipment, or use certain types of materials; enable them to take part in educational visits and other activities linked to their studies; use assessment techniques that reflect their individual needs and abilities.

Identification and Assessment:

Before a child enters our nursery setting, our staff carry out home visits to find out about the children who are due to start with us.  This includes discussing whether the child has already received any support for their needs.  We also have discussions with any day nurseries if your child has attended a previous setting and this provides details of any outside agency input.

If your child has a special need or disability we will:

  • Talk to you about your child’s difficulties with learning or their disability so we can understand their needs.
  • Make an assessment of your child’s learning so we know which skills they need to learn next.
  • Ask the Special Educational Needs Coordinator to support and advise teachers so that your child can learn in the best way for him/her.
  • Have a range of programmes to help children who need extra support in an area of their learning and/or development.
  • Check on progress at least once a term and invite you to discuss that progress.
  • Ask for advice from an educational psychologist, advisory teacher, speech and language therapist or health colleague if we are unsure how to help your child make progress.
  • Tell you how to get in touch with services such as SENDIASS (The Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support Services) who can offer advice and support 
  • Inform you about how to make a complaint if you are not happy with what we are doing to support your child.
  • Talk to you if we think we need to consider asking the local authority to carry out a coordinated assessment of your child’s needs because more advice/resources are needed to help your child to make progress.

The academy’s graduated approach to teaching pupils with special educational needs:

We provide support for any child who has additional needs applying the ‘assess, plan, do, review’ approach to provision. In the first instance all teachers must provide high quality teaching and differentiation. This is reviewed and, if a child needs further support, the class teacher is initially responsible for planning appropriate intervention.  Again after review, where this does not adequately bridge the gap, they are then timetabled for small group/1-1 intervention from our Teaching Assistants. Parents are involved at all stages to ensure they are instrumental in the planning for the child’s provision.  

Additional support is planned on a termly basis initially, taking into account which other lessons/activities will be missed so that the children get maximum access to a full, broad and balanced curriculum, whilst having their additional needs met.

Parents are invited to attend the review of their child’s additional support at least 3 times a year; this may take the form of a phone call, a virtual meeting via a platform such as Google Meet or a face to face meeting. Parents will be consulted about any additional support that their child may receive. Parents are also asked to support their child with any homework or additional activities that reinforce the support they receive whilst in school. 

We modify our teaching approaches according to the needs of the individual child. Where any outside agency has been involved and any specific requirements have been advised these are shared with all staff working with the child so that they can be incorporated into the teaching.

Monitoring and Evaluation of SEND provision:

Any intervention that is used to support a child’s needs will have before and after success criteria.  This may be in the form of a standardised assessment, a questionnaire, samples of work etc.  The before and after success criteria will be analysed to see where improvements have been made or where an intervention may need adapting.

We carry out standardised tests for the children with SEND to provide a measure of the impact of intervention. The tests used provide measures for ability in reading, comprehension, spelling, numeracy, and receptive language.

All the children and parents are given the opportunity to complete a satisfaction survey each year. The results from these are analysed and impacted upon.

The academy makes reasonable adjustments to ensure that children with SEND are able to access all the facilities. The academy’s Accessibility Plan can be found on the website.

We have a number of bilingual staff in the academy who are able to provide translation for our parents/carers.  If there is a language spoken that we don’t have any support for, we make use of Google Translate and will request a translator through the local authority service.  

Inclusion in activities beyond the classroom:

All of our extra-curricular clubs are available for any child to join and if adaptations need to be made to ensure a child is able to access all elements of the club then these are made accordingly.

There are a number of activities that run at lunchtime – including an indoor lunchtime club with our Behaviour Management Coordinator.  The extra-curricular club provision changes termly but there are a host of clubs. A club letter is sent out at the start of each term for your child to choose what they would like to join. 

All children are encouraged and supported when necessary to enable them to be included in the clubs they have chosen. Their needs are taken into account when planning the activities for the club sessions.

Support for improving the emotional and social development of pupils:

All the staff at Co-op Academy Clarice Cliff pride themselves on getting to know the needs of each of their children – this includes an awareness of their emotional and social development.  Additional to the support provided by the classroom staff, we employ Shane O’Toole, the MIND Counsellor to work at the academy every Wednesday.  He has a caseload of children for whom staff or parents have expressed an unmet emotional or social development needs. In addition to this, we are able to refer to the Mental Health Support Team who can provide cognitive behaviour interventions to pupils in order to help with anxiety, sleep problems, self-esteem issues etc.   

We have a full time Behaviour Management Co-ordinator, Mr Steve Murphy, who is able to offer support both in a supervisory capacity and as someone to listen to your child. This can provide a quiet space and time away from the classroom for your child, should the need arise.

If there are significant concerns about the emotional welfare and needs of your child and the counselling support discussed above has not proved to have significant impact, we can also refer to the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) who can work with the parent(s) and child to try to enable them to move forwards.

We will access support from the Inclusive Learning Service or the Educational Psychology Service if input from further outside professionals is considered necessary.

Medical Support:

We follow the requirements of the latest DFE advice (Supporting Pupils at School with Medical Conditions- December 2015). Any medicines that are required to be taken are kept in the academy office and parents sign a form to detail when and how they need to be taken.  Any toileting or eating needs are managed sensitively and in consultation with the parents to agree the best approach.  

In the case of a medical emergency, an ambulance is called for and parents/carers are contacted.  Any child’s care plan will detail what should happen in an emergency and other pupils will know in general terms, such as informing a teacher immediately if they think help is needed.

If a significant amount of time off is needed to be taken for medical reasons, work will be provided for the child to complete at home once they are able to do so. 

Where a care plan is necessary, staff work with the school nurse and the family to draw up the elements of the plan and then copies are given to all staff working with the child and a separate copy is kept in the medical file.

Including pupils with SEN who are looked after in local authority care:

Children who are looked after by the local authority have the same rights as all children.  It is recognised that they may have additional needs due to attachment issues, early neglect, separation and loss, trauma and many placement moves.  These barriers to learning may affect their educational outcomes and their personal, social and emotional development.  The academy’s Designated Teacher for LAC, Mrs Elizabeth Jones, is also the SENCO and is able to therefore monitor the progress and provision for pupils with SEN who are looked after.

Working together with pupils and families:

We have a full time School Liaison Officer, Miss Sam Hudson, who is available to support families for whatever their needs require. Miss Hudson is also our Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead and works very closely with Mrs Emma Day, our Deputy Head and Designated Safeguarding Lead. We can offer regular informal meetings to discuss a particular issue or concern, or we can invite other professionals to meet with the parents in a multi-agency capacity if there are more wide-ranging issues.  We are happy to carry out home visits if you feel more comfortable with this approach and can help families to access a range of services to meet their needs.  We pride ourselves on our work with our families and like to think that we get to know our families well enough to know when more support may be needed.  We are here to listen and help.

We support families through the Early Help process and work closely with Service Coordinators to ensure our families are getting the right support for their issues.

We also work closely with the social care service in supporting our families who meet the level 4 safeguarding criteria. We have robust systems in place in the academy to ensure all of our children are safeguarded and that any concerns are logged and reported to the safeguarding officer.

Your child will be involved in discussing any additional support that is provided for them. If they have an Individual Support Plan detailing their needs, they will have the chance each term to add their comments and will be involved in the review of their provision 3 times a year. 

Parents are encouraged to contribute to and review the SEND provision in the academy through parent questionnaires and discussions at parent’s evenings.

Agencies working in partnership with the academy:

► School Nurses

► Health Visitors

► Speech Therapy 

► MIND Counsellor 

► Family Support Workers

► PCSO (Police Community Support Officer)

► SEND Advisory Teacher 

► Hearing Impaired Advisory Teacher 

► Vision Impaired Advisory Teacher  

► Educational Psychologist 

► Mental Health Support Team

Parents can contact their child’s class teacher, or a member of the Inclusion Team if they wish to discuss support from other agencies. Alternatively, parents can access the Local Authority’s Local Offer (link provided below) which details services and how to access them. If parents are unsure how to contact any of the agencies, they may contact the SENCO or the School Liaison Officer, who will be able to support with this.  

The SEND Information Report published on the academy’s website can be accessed by clicking on the link here:

The Local Offer from the Local Authority can be accessed by clicking on the link here:


Admission Arrangements:

Visits to our academy can be made by contacting the academy office on 01782 881480.

The intake to nursery is planned to meet the needs of each individual child, following information gleaned from the initial home visits and discussions with day nurseries. The induction for each child is planned carefully and in consultation with parents to ensure a smooth settling in period.

If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan which names our academy, they will be automatically admitted and the support detailed in their paperwork will be planned for and delivered accordingly.

If your child is new to our academy, they will be assigned a buddy to help them become familiar with the building, routines and systems. They will have the chance to meet the staff that they will be working with on a daily basis and will be encouraged to ask any questions they may have. They will be asked about their likes and interests so that we can try to make them feel at home as soon as possible.

When your child moves up to their next class, they will have transition days during the summer term to get a taster of what the next year will be like.  This aims to alleviate any concerns and give the teachers the chance to meet and get to know the children prior to September.   All assessment records are passed up to the next teachers and any information about additional needs are shared so that your child is fully included from day one.

When it is time for your child to move to secondary school, there will be transition days for all children in Year 6 and each of the high schools will put on extra sessions for children with additional needs so that they feel more comfortable and ready for the move in September.  All records and information about your child are passed to the next setting and conversations are held between our SENCO and the secondary schools’ SENCOs to ensure that interventions can be maintained or adapted appropriately.

Training and Resources:

Continuing Professional Development for staff in relation to SEND is identified through staff appraisals and audits.  This identifies the areas for the academy to focus on each year through training from the SENCO or from outside agencies.  Our Teaching Assistants have been trained to deliver a host of intervention programmes to support children with a range of needs.  Where a specialist intervention is required, staff work closely with the agencies involved to gain knowledge and understanding in providing for individual needs e.g. staff work alongside the teachers from the Hearing/Vision Impaired service to ensure provision and practice in fully inclusive for our children with sensory needs.  

We also work closely with Sarah Jimenez-Novoa, Speech and Language Therapist from the Stoke Speaks Out project, who provides speech and language assessments and staff training. 

The SENCO is a Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) specialist teacher and assessor. She is an Associate Member of the British Dyslexia Association and holds a current Assessment Practicing Certificate (APC), which qualifies her to assess for and diagnose SpLDs such as dyslexia. The SENCO also attends the termly SENCO Forums run by the Local Authority to ensure all current local and national information is understood and applied.


If you are not happy about a decision or something that is happening in the academy, please ask to speak to your child’s class teacher initially. If you require further assistance then please request to speak to the SENCO. If the issue is not resolved at this stage, you are able to speak to the Headteacher who will follow the Trust’s complaints procedure as set out in the policy which can be accessed by clicking on this link: https://www.coopacademies.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Complaints-Policy.pdf

Storing and managing data:

All our paper documents are stored in locked, filing cabinets which are only accessible by specific members of staff.  Files are handed over to high schools at the point of transition. Our e-copies of documents are only accessible by relevant members of staff and are transferred to a zip file and sent to the child’s new school or academy once a child leaves Co-op academy Clarice Cliff. Files are stored confidentially by their most recent education provider until the child reaches the age of 25 upon which time they will be destroyed.  

This policy will be reviewed at least annually and will be updated sooner than this should changes occur which require the policy to be altered mid-year.

What other support Is available to parents and how can I contact them?

Support is available from:

Mrs E Jones – SENCo (Clarice Cliff Primary School)
Tel: 01782 881480
Email: office@claricecliffprimary.co.uk

Inclusive Learning Service
Tel: 01782 232538
Email: SEND@stoke.gov.uk

SEND Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS)
Tel: 01782 234701
Email: iass@stoke.gov.uk
Website: www.sendiass-stoke@co.uk

Special Educational Needs Assessment and Monitoring Service (SENMAS)
Tel: 01782 231863
Email: SENMAS@stoke.gov.uk

Agency support can be located on the Stoke on Trent Local Offer website. The link is detailed below: