How we adapt the curriculum and learning environment for children with SEN
At St Hild’s, we aim to offer a curriculum that is broad and balanced; which promotes spiritual, moral, spiritual, cultural, mental and physical development; and which prepares our pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. We have adopted an inclusive approach to teaching and learning and we ensure that all children can access a curriculum that is tailored to meet their individual needs. We follow the formal requirements of the National Curriculum but we also provide a wide range of additional opportunities to enrich the experiences of our children and where necessary, we adapt the curriculum to make it more accessible for pupils with SEN.
Our curriculum also includes the social aspects that are essential for life-long learning, personal growth and development of independence. Some of the actions we may take to achieve this are:
- Help all pupils achieve to the best of their abilities, despite any difficulty or disability they may have.
- Modify the curriculum to meet individual needs.
- Ensure that teaching staff are aware of and sensitive to the needs of all pupils, teaching pupils in a way that is more appropriate to their needs.
- To make suitable provision for children with SEND to fully develop their abilities, interests and aptitudes and gain maximum access to the curriculum.
Quality First Teaching and what this means for your child:
If staff feel that your child is not accessing the curriculum fully, if they begin to experience difficulties or if they are working below the expected level for a child of their age in a particular area of the curriculum, our first step is to begin Early Intervention in addition to our whole school Quality First Teaching approach. Your child will receive additional support in class to address their needs. For example, they may be supported by the class teacher in a small group for a short period of time or they may work with a member of our support staff 1:1 to work on their specific needs.
Specific group work and what this means for your child:
In addition to the in-class support available, our team of support staff also provide group interventions as part of our Provision Map. Once your child's needs have been identified, they will receive additional support in a small group or in a 1:1 setting to meet their needs. Children work in small intervention groups for many reasons and most children in each class will receive this support at some point during the academic year. Some support may take place regularly throughout the year, while other interventions may only be needed for a very short time. If you are at all concerned about the group support your child receives, please speak to your child's class teacher or the SENCO.
Specialist group support from outside agencies:
Some needs require tailored support from trained professionals. When these specific needs arise, we will contact relevant agencies.
We work with the NHS Speech and Language team to address the SLCN needs of several children in school. If we feel that your child would benefit from Speech and Language input, we will contact parents and carers to discuss our concerns. NHS therapists report to parents and carers to ensure that the strategies that are used in school are reinforced at home. If you feel that your child would benefit from Speech and Language assessment, please speak to their class teacher or contact the SENCO.
If children experience social or behavioural difficulties, social groups can be beneficial and we work closely with Behaviour Support and the EWEL team to ensure provision is implemented to meet these needs effectively.
We are also able to make referrals into the Occupational Therapy Service and CAMHS when required.
If we feel that outside agency support would be beneficial, we will contact Parents and Carers to discuss our concerns. Consent from Parents and Carers is required before any referrals can be made.
Specific individual support for children whose learning needs are severe, complex and lifelong and what this means for your child:
If we are unable to meet your child's needs in our current system, it may be necessary to seek additional advice and support. For example, we may need to involve the Educational Psychology Service, Learning Support or other professional agencies. If your child is unable to access the curriculum independently, it may be necessary for us to seek additional support. For example, this may be part of the outreach service or through the employment of additional staff where possible.
If your child has a medical need which prevents them from accessing the curriculum independently, we will work with the relevant medical professionals to ensure that the appropriate medical resources are available to allow us to meet their needs fully.
Range of teaching and learning styles:
All members of staff use a range of teaching and learning styles to meet the needs of the children in their care and to add variety to the activities children complete. Differentiation is used to ensure that all children are able to access learning regardless of their ability. More able children in school are challenged and extended while children who experience difficulties are supported. We have adopted an innovative and supportive curriculum which inspires and motivates children as they move through school.
Our curriculum is adapted as needed. For example, all tasks are differentiated to meet the needs of children in each class, however if a child is working well below the expected level for their age, tasks will be tailored to their individual needs. The learning environment may also be adapted if needed. For example, if children are overwhelmed by sensory stimulation or are easily distracted, individual work stations will be set up within the classroom.
Support for children with English as an Additional Language:
At St Hild's, we welcome children from all parts of the world through our links with Durham University. Children who attend St Hild's who have little or no English on entry are assessed and supported by the EAL and Equalities Team. Our staff work with Advisory Teachers from this team and ongoing CPD is delivered in response to whole school and individual needs.
Will my child sit external exams including the SATs?
As with everything related to your child in our school, the answer is individual, but we find that most children do achieve well when they have been supported effectively.
If we feel that your child is able to access the Year 1 Phonics Screening check, the Year 2 SATs, the Year 4 Multiplication Check or the Year 6 SATs, they will be supported appropriately to access these tests with their peers.
Depending upon their needs, additional access arrangements can be made to ensure that they are able to demonstrate their understanding and ability fully. These could include the use of additional time, breaks to aid their focus and concentration, a scribe, or enlarged texts (we follow the guidance provided by the testing authorities and apply for access arrangements through the DfE).
If your child is not able to access these assessments due to very complex needs, they will not be expected to complete them and their achievements and progress will be measured using school data.
Extra Curricular Provision
At St Hild's we offer a wide range of extra curricular clubs. The clubs we offer change each half term in response to the interests of our pupils. Feedback from parents and carers and pupils are welcomed and questionnaires are sent home annually to enable us to plan our provision for the following academic year.
Our extra curricular provision is available to all of our pupils. If a child with SEND is unable to attend a particular club due to their needs, additional arrangements will be made to overcome these boundaries and aid their participation.
For example, an additional member of school staff may support a child or extra resources may be utilised when needed. We are prepared to seek advice, resources, equipment and training in order to provide high quality experiences for our children, both in school and out of school.
If you feel that your child's SEND needs are preventing them from accessing a particular club, please speak to the member of staff responsible for running the club, the SENCO or the Head Teacher.
More details on how we adapt information, our environment and curriculum can be found in our Accessibility Plan.