We are an inclusive school and we are committed to meeting the special educational needs of pupils. Activities are carefully adapted to help pupils with SEND to achieve well.

How do we know if children need extra help?

Appletree Nursery School is committed to early identification of any children who may need additional support in school. Children are identified through a variety of ways:

  • concerns raised by a parent or the class teacher,
  • the child achieving below the level expected for their age,
  • liaison with outside agencies or medical professionals.

Assessment is part of our day-to-day teaching, with more formal assessments of the Sequences of Learning, taking place termly. The class teacher and SENDCo assess and monitor the children’s progress against their previous achievements and national expectations.

The SENDCo works closely with teachers and the child, when appropriate, to plan an appropriate programme of intervention and support, which may be provided in small groups or individually. Targeted Learning Plans are written for children who require specific targeted support and recorded in a TLP. These targets are shared with parents so that they know what there child needs support with.

Further, more in-depth assessments of children’s learning needs may be undertaken by the SENDCo, a specialist teacher, therapist or an Educational Psychologist to identify specific learning needs.

What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?

Your child’s needs, support and progress can be discussed with their class teacher as part of key worker meetings. We do operate an open door policy and pride ourselves on building positive relationships with parents. If parents have any concerns they can contact their child’s teacher or the SENDCo at any time by telephone or email.

How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

The class teacher will oversee, plan and work with each child with SEND in class to ensure progress is made in every area. Provision and learning tasks are pitched at an appropriate level so that all children are able to access the provision according to their specific needs. The benefit of this type of differentiation is that all children can learn at their level.

How is the decision made about the type and how much support my child will receive?

Appletree Nursery School operates a graduated approach to support children with their additional learning needs.

Initially support will be provided through differentiated tasks and provision within the classroom alongside additional teacher or teaching assistant support to ensure your child is able to achieve. Further support can then be provided through small group activities that are additional to the resources provided for all children. If children require a higher level of support this will be discussed with class teacher and SLT in pupil progress meetings. They will then receive individual support to address their specific learning difficulties. More detailed assessments may be carried out using the SEN Milestones or specialist support. Different children will require different levels of support in order to help them make progress and achieve their potential.

How will the school staff support my child?

The SENDCo oversees all support and progress of any child requiring additional help across the school. The class teacher will oversee, plan and work with each child with special educational needs or disabilities in their class to ensure that progress is made. The class teacher will use the TLPs to set out the support your child is receiving and their progress is recorded and monitored to evaluate the success the interventions. Where a child has an TLP the class teacher, key worker and teaching assistant delivering the intervention will monitor progress towards their targets and will feed back to the SENDCO.

There may be a teaching assistant working with your child either individually or as part of a group, if the class teacher or SENCO sees this as necessary. The regularity of these sessions will be explained to parents when the support starts.

Disabled pupils and those with special educational needs make good progress because their needs are accurately identified and they receive good support to help them learn from skilled teachers and teaching assistants and the learning mentor.

In the case of children with sensory difficulties such as vision or hearing needs or medical needs, specialist support, equipment and training is provided by the local authority Special Educational Needs and Disability team (SEND) and the NHS (school nurse, speech and language etc) Therapy teams.

What training have the staff supporting SEND had or what training are they having?

The SENDCo, Kirsty Birdsall, and Headteacher, Lucy Naylor, both have the SEND Award and have a wealth of experience in Special Educational Needs having over 30 years experience between them. Our Chair of Governors, Eleanor Hick, was a SEND officer and advisor for Lancashire County Council and also has a wealth of experience in supporting chirdren with SEND.

All support staff have completed level 2 TA training and some have completed level 3 TA training in supporting teaching and learning. All staff have received in school training in supporting children with SEN and some have received ‘Moving and Handling’ training to support children with physical disabilities.

Our TAs have been trained to run a wide variety of interventions. All of our TAs in school have received in house phonics training. Some of our teaching assistants have been trained to use the speech and language programmes WellComm and the motor skill BEAM programme. There are also some TAs in school who are experienced and skilled in a range of Autism-specific strategies,

On-going training and support takes place regularly to ensure staff have the necessary skills to ensure children receive the support they need.

What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?

We work closely with external agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs within our school to gain advice and support and when more specific teaching is required. In school we have received support from a specialist teacher, Lancashire SEND Service as and when required, speech and language therapists, Portage and other support services (such as loans of equipment etc).

Other outside agencies we work with may include: Speech and Language therapy, Physiotherapy or Occupational Therapy, GP, Health Visitors, School Nurse, Paediatrician, Children and Family Wellbeing Service and Social Services.

You can access Lancashire’s Local Offer at http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/children-education-families/special-educational-needs-and-disabilities.aspx for more information about these services.

How will you help me to support my child’s learning?

The class teacher will inform parents of any concerns identified at school at the earliest opportunity and enlist their active help and participation. We can offer advice and practical ways that parents can help their child at home.

How will both you and I know how my child is doing?

Pupil’s progress will be discussed at the Autumn and Spring termly meetings. Parents are given their child’s annual report in the Summer term which they are able to discuss with their class teacher or key worker if needed. Additional meetings can be requested at any point by contacting your child’s class teacher or the SENDCo.

TLPs are regularly reviewed to make sure targets are ongoing and relevant and new ones will be set when needed. TLPs are reviewed at least 3 times a year and comments are made against each target to show what progress the child has made by the class teacher and TA supporting the child. Children not making sufficient progress on a target are discussed with the SENDCo and the target may be broken down into smaller steps or a different approach may be tried. Parents will be involved in the review meeting and the setting of new targets if necessary. A copy of the targets will be given to the parent.

Pupil’s progress is monitored throughout the school and progress is tracked termly. A range of support is provided for children not making expected progress to ensure they stay on track. Children may be taken off the SEND register when they have made sufficient progress.

How will my child be included in activities outside the school classroom including school trips?

All children are included in all parts of the school curriculum and we aim for all children to be included on school trips. We will provide the necessary support and any adaptations, having consulted with parents, to ensure this is successful. A full risk assessment is carried out for any trip out of school and any additional requirements that a child may need will be included on the risk assessment. Trips are staffed by teachers and teaching assistants and staff- pupil ratios always meet the county guidelines. In the unlikely event that it is considered unsafe for a child to take part in an activity then alternative activities, which will cover the same curriculum areas, will be provided in school.

What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?

The class teacher has overall responsibility for the pastoral, medical and social care of every child in their class, therefore this should be your first point of contact. If further support is required the class teacher liaises with senior leadership team (SLT) for further advice and support. This may involve working alongside outside agencies such as Health and Children’s Social Care, and/or the behaviour support services.

As a school we have a very positive approach to all types of behaviour with a clear reward and consequence system that is followed by all staff and pupils. After any serious behaviour incidents we will inform you about what has happened. We would then expect the child to reflect upon their behaviour with you; this helps to identify why the incident happened and what the child needs to do differently next time to change and improve their behaviour.

We are an inclusive school and we make every effort to include all pupils in learning sessions with their class. We also take every opportunity to include pupils socially in play. Lunchtimes are supervised by welfare staff and our class teacher supports the staff and arranges groups and different activities for the children. All children have access to continuous provision during lunchtime.

We have an afterschool club ran by trained members of our staff that all children can access.

How does the school manage the administration of medicines and personal care?

All medicine is recorded in a medical file along with details of dosage and frequency and parents sign to grant authorisation to the school to administer to their child. Controlled drugs will only be administered by named staff.

If a child needs a health care plan, this will be drawn up through discussion with the parents, SENDCo and if needed their medical team. A copy of a child’s health care plan is kept in the office and a copy is stored on CPOMS. Any specific issues will also be shared with all staff members to ensure all staff are aware of a child’s specific health needs as necessary.

A list of trained first-aiders is kept in the office and training is kept up to date.

Children who require Speech, Language and Communication Therapy, Physiotherapy or Occupational Therapy will initially be seen at the appropriate clinic but therapy can be provided in school if agreed by the parents and appropriate therapist.

How accessible is the school both indoors and outdoors?

Appletree Nursery School is all on one level, and is fully wheelchair accessible. All doorways and entrances to the school are on a single level and wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair, thereby ensuring all access for pupils and parents. There is a designated disabled parking space, within the car park for use by the public and parents. The school has disabled toilet facilities, fully accessible for wheelchair users (pupils/parents/visitors). The toilet facility has a changing bed for pupil use.

Furniture and furnishings throughout school are relatively new and fit for purpose, allowing easy access and a safe environment. Desks and chairs throughout the school are of an appropriate height; there are a number of adjustable height tables in shared areas in classrooms to be used as appropriate.

Information is made available on the school website and also in letters and newsletters. Support is provided for parents who require/request assistance in accessing written school information, for example office staff or a learning mentor meet with parents to assist.

How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new setting or to the next stage of education?

Starting school

We encourage all new children and their families to visit the school prior to starting with us.

For children with special educational needs or a disability we may facilitate a phased transition to help your child to acclimatise to their new surroundings. We would also visit them in their current setting if appropriate.

Parents are invited to meetings and stay and plays before their child starts school to share information about home and school.

We have transition meetings with all of our feeder schools and any SEND or pastoral needs are discussed with the SENDCo/ Pastoral lead at our feeder schools. Meetings can be arranged with parents as needed.

Who can I contact for further information?

Parents can contact the SENDCo (Kirsty Birdsall) either by phoning the school 01524 64132, through the school office or by e-mailing senco@appletree.lancs.sch.uk

The Lancashire SEND Information, Advice and Support team provide independent advice and support for families. To access the service you must complete a referral form via the website at https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/children-education-families/special-educational-needs-and-disabilities/getting-help/information-advice-and-support/ Or for general SEND support call 0300 123 6706 or email information.lineteam@lancashire.gov.uk