Rode and Norton School Federation is committed to providing the best learning opportunities for all children, including those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. We strive to achieve this by creating a nurturing environment where success is celebrated and all children are encouraged and inspired to reach their potential. As a member of the Frome Learning Partnership we work with other local schools to offer a broadly similar range of provision.
The SEND Code of Practice 2015 requires that all schools publish the SEND Information Report on their website, providing specified information for parents and others.
Our report has been written with advice from our parent Educarers Group (parents of children with SEND in Mells, Beckington and Rode & Norton St Philip School Federation, all of which are First Schools.
You can find a printable version of the full document here
Special Educational Needs and Disabilities are legally defined as ‘a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’’ (SEND Code of Practice 2015). A child is described as having SEND if they have a learning difficulty or disability that means they will need special support at school which is likely to continue in the medium to long term. Difficulties range from relatively mild to severe but each child is unique and requires a personalised approach to support.
SEND is described in relation to the following categories in the SEND Code of Practice.
The SENCO is a specialist teacher who leads the implementation of our SEND policy in school and has oversight of all the children on the SEND register. The SENCO supports the class teachers and teaching assistant in understanding the needs of the child and making appropriate provision, liaises with external agencies, and manages the additional interventions some children need.
Our SENCO is Caroline Corke. She is in school one day per fortnight and you can contact her through the school office. Phone calls can usually be organised between visits if you ask us.
Caroline Corke’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
There are a range of ways in which we might identify possible SEND. The main ones are shown below.
Placing a child on the SEND register is a matter for discussion and agreement. If a parent feels strongly that their child should not be on the register, they do not have to be, but monitoring and support would then be arranged through the class teacher rather than the SENCO.
The termly review meeting is used to identify whether children do or do not need to be on the SEND register.
Like all schools, we receive funding from the Local Authority for SEND pupils as part of our budget. The school SEND budget is derived from data used in relation to a national formula applied to the Local Authority education budget.
The basic SEND funding we receive pays for the majority of SEND provision and is allocated based on our overview of SEND needs in the school at any one time. Our termly SEND pupil review meetings, to which you are invited, are important for allocating available support and provision. Like many schools, our budget is stretched and we have to allocate it as efficiently and as fairly as possible.
We do not have the capacity to provide extensive 1:1 support from children from within the school budget. If children have a higher level of need which is recognised by the Local Authority, they will usually have an Education Health and Care Plan (or this could be applied for). The funding children receive in this case is allocated by the Local Authority based on a banding system and will vary according to need.
It would be extremely rare for full time 1:1 support to be offered, not least because strong evidence from recent research has shown this is often actually detrimental to the child. However, we do look closely at the presenting needs and try to match support accordingly for every SEND child.
The class teacher has the primary responsibility for your child, and this includes ensuring the day to day implementation of any additional support and provision agreed, even when this is not happening directly in the classroom.
This is the support all children get in class as part of being Inclusive. These sometimes small steps can make a very big difference for children so we work hard to get this right.
Some children need additional and different support to meet their needs, which is not necessarily available to or needed by all children. It can happen both inside and outside the classroom, in small groups or one to one. Targeted support is planned for most children with SEND and is mainly based on time limited blocks of intervention that are subject to regular review. You can see examples of the types of interventions we use here. We use interventions with a known track record of success, and we keep a close check to make sure they are working.
Exceptionally a pupil needs more extensive support in order to participate and make progress, and this would usually come through top up funding allocated by the Local Authority as part of an Education Health and Care Plan. In addition to the support described above, the pupil would have provision subject to regular review and adjustment. Every child is unique so the pattern of support would reflect this.
If extensive 1:1 support is required, we would typically use more than one adult to provide it. This is because 1:1 work can become too intense for both adult and child, but also because in the event of staff sickness the child is not left working with an unfamiliar person.
All the staff have regular professional development training in SEND
|All staff||Some staff||The SENCO|
Dyslexia , Dyslexia friendly teaching
Autism Introductory level training.
Team Teach (behaviour)
Supporting pupils with social and emotional difficulties
Dyscalculia and mathematical difficulties
Sensory processing difficulties
Individualised Literacy Interventions
Spelling Detectives (intervention)
Speech and articulation difficulties
Post Graduate Diploma in Specific Learning Difficulties,
Post Graduate Certificate in Special Education in Mainstream Schools
Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA)
Qualified to assess for and identify Dyslexia.
We liaise with a range of external professionals and agencies in relation to individual children. Sometimes this has been organised through a referral sought by parents themselves, e.g. to a Paediatrician. At other times we may, with your agreement, make a referral ourselves..
Here are some of the main services we use:
This team includes Educational Psychologists and Advisory Teachers with specialisms in areas such as autism, visual impairment, hearing impairment, physical needs and disabilities, and learning support.
Family Support Practitioners
Behaviour and Vulnerabilities team
Vulnerable pupils Forest School
We hold School Entry Plan meetings with pre- schools and parents to identify steps we need to take together to prepare children for starting school.
Similarly if appropriate we attend School Entry Meetings, some with parents, at the Middle Schools when children are due to transfer, and share information with the next SENCO.
We plan transition arrangements with input from parents.
When children are moving class we also consider if any special support will be needed.
If children leave at other times we try to ensure we pass on information about the support they need.
When children come into school from elsewhere with known SEND, we make contact with the previous school if appropriate, and we set up appropriate support. Frequently we avoid placing children into targeted interventions outside the classroom in their first term.
We also produce transition photo books and social stories when children need them, and our ELSA runs a transition group in the last part of the summer term for children transferring to middle school which provides opportunities for an additional visit and opportunities to discuss anxieties.
Rode and Norton St Philip Schools have a mixture of Victorian and modern buildings. At Rode all buildings are fully accessible, including accessible toilets in both buildings. In addition, the site has been audited in terms of the acoustic environment and appropriate panels installed in two of the three classrooms.
At Norton St Philip the Year 1 classroom has steps leading into it from the main entrance, however the classroom and toilets are accessible using an alternative route. The Treehouse Classroom, upstairs, which is used as a staffroom, SEND space and library is not currently accessible. The Reception classroom however is in a separate building and is fully accessible.
Both sites has been audited in terms of the visual environment and improvements have been made. In addition, both schools have level and accessible playgrounds and outside areas. An accessible parking bay is available at Rode.
You can read our accessibility plan here
We always aim to include everybody as far as possible. This means that if additional or different arrangements are needed for some pupils we will plan for this, and we would discuss this with you.
If there are particular individual safety concerns we may complete a risk assessment to identify what adjustments would be needed. This might, for example, be because of concerns about unpredictable and/or unsafe behaviours, or a serious medical condition.
Using the risk assessment we can identify what would be required to limit the risks and whether or not we can manage their needs safely. This is not to exclude children, but to ensure we are working in their best interests. We would explore with you what the best options would be in this circumstance.
An auxiliary aid or service is anything a child might need to help them to access the curriculum. The school provides a wide range of simple aids and services ranging from writing slopes pencil grips and recording aids to TA support and bespoke resources to support learning.
We provide detailed assessment reports when there is a clear need for this work. We can also be loaned some equipment in certain circumstances.
When purchasing very expensive items or services for individual pupils we will consider factors such as whether there is a clear and definite advantage for the pupil that could not be managed another way, whether it would have a negative impact on other pupils, eg from a safety perspective, and whether it is a ‘reasonable adjustment’. In practice this circumstance would be extremely rare, would always be considered with external advice, and decisions will rest with the Head Teacher and Governors.
The Somerset Choices website lists the Local Offer, a wide range of services and information available locally, including within the voluntary sector. This is a good starting point for families looking for information and support.
If you can’t find what you are looking for, some organisations listed in adjoining areas may also be open to you, although not everything will be.
Our Educarers Group for parents of pupils with SEND, is run by parents and offers friendly and informal contact with other parents through termly meetings at The Cordero Lounge in Frome. We share information and ideas, sometimes with a theme, but in a relaxed setting over coffee and cake. We welcome you to come to this group, look out for dates in the School Newsletter or ask the SENCO.
We very much hope that any concerns you may have can be resolved by speaking to your child’s teacher, and also that by participating in our termly review meetings, you will feel fully informed about your child.
If you want to make a complaint, make an appointment to meet the SENCO to discuss the issue in the first instance. If this does not resolve your complaint speak to the Head Teacher. If your complaint is still not resolved you can contact the Governing Body (the SEN Governor in the first instance). You can request their contact details through the school office.
Our SEN Governor is Siobhan Thompson