Learning Support Faculty
SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS
Learning Support Faculty
The Learning Support Faculty is here to support all learners at Bishopshalt School. All learners will, at some time, have the opportunity to ask for extra help from a support teacher, to take part in a learning activity out of lesson time, or, to have access to some regular support or tuition in class from the specialist teachers and teaching assistants. Learners are encouraged to take advantage of this extra support.
The Learning Support Faculty follows the guidance and procedures outlined in the ‘Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0-25 years' (2014). A key principle is that all teachers have a role to play in identifying, assessing and meeting the needs of learners who have individual learning needs. Every teacher is a teacher of SEND. As such, many learners will have their learning needs met within the ordinary classroom, without any further support being required, and without being placed on 'SEN support’ on the SEN Register.
For learners who require increased, targeted interventions and possibly support from outside agencies, the Code of Pratice highlights an approach which relies on an effective system of assessing pupils needs, planning and implementing interventions, then reviewing pupil progress to their goals or desired outcomes. This is a continuous cycle of SEN support. For pupils with more complex needs, new Education and Health Care Plans ensure pupils' needs are met. These procedures are set out in the school's 'Special Educational Needs Policy'.
The Learning Support Faculty employs specialist teachers and teaching assistants, who are provided with appropriate support and training to enable the school to meet the individual learning needs of all our learners. The Faculty provides advice, support and training to all teachers in the school, so that the needs of our learners are met across the curriculum. This will help to ensure that learners are provided with work that is at an appropriate level for them, but, that they are also ‘challenged’ and make progress. In addition, we are able to work with a range of professionals from Education to Health and Social Services, towards achieving the five key outcomes for children and young people identified in ‘Every Child Matters’ (2003) – being healthy, staying safe, enjoying and achieving, making a positive contribution, and, achieving economic well-being.
Transferring to Secondary School
Starting at Secondary School is an exciting time, but it can also be a worrying time for children, and for their parents and carers. At Primary School, your child’s class teacher has been a point of contact if they had any difficulties in or out of the classroom. At Secondary School, your child will encounter many more teachers. It can be less easy to find someone to talk to if they are experiencing difficulties in a subject area, or if they have had difficulties in the past, and you need to pass on information or talk to specific teachers.
The Learning Support Faculty can provide that link alongside your child’s Form Tutor and Year Tutor, and we will be keen to make sure that your child’s individual learning needs are met at Bishopshalt School. At this time, regular contact between parents and the school will usually swiftly sort out any problems that arise, and will enable all children to feel secure, to enjoy learning, and to achieve their potential across the curriculum and wider aspects of school life.
Also refer to Year 6 Transition section of our website.
Partnership with Parents
The Learning Support Faculty works closely with parents and carers, and sees this equal partnership as being vital if learners with individual learning needs are to make good progress. Advice is regularly given as to how parents can help to monitor and practically assist with their child’s learning, particularly with spelling and reading activities. Parents are kept informed of progress, and staff are always willing to discuss any concerns that parents or learners may have.
Teachers from the Learning Support Faculty are available for informal discussions at the Year 6 open evening, on the Year 6 intake day before transferring to secondary school, at the Year 7 welcome evening and progress meeting in the first half of the Autumn Term. Teachers from the Faculty will also be available at Parents’ Consultation Evenings for all year groups, and can usually be consulted on these occasions without appointment. At other times, you are welcome to contact the school by telephone, and to request an appointment with the Head of Learning Support if a more detailed discussion is required.
The Learning Support Faculty occupies its own dedicated accommodation, which includes two teaching rooms, a small meeting room, and an office. The Faculty is well-resourced, having two small computer suites, interactive whiteboards, a wide range of curriculum resources, and excellent reading resources provided through funding from ‘Awards for All’ (The National Lottery).
The following points summarise some of the key areas where the Learning Support Faculty provides support for pupils with individual learning needs:
q Assessment of learners’ literacy skills, and general aptitudes and abilities
q Home/school support programmes to develop literacy skills
q Registration reading activities for Year 7, supported by volunteer sixth formers
q ‘Skills Workshops’ for small groups of learners during registration times to develop key skills to support learning across the curriculum
q Lunchtime ‘Reading Workshop’ (Tuesday/Thursday lunchtimes) with teaching assistants and volunteer sixth formers
q Specific 1:1 literacy programmes out of class (for a very small number of learners)
q A supportive ‘transition classroom’ environment in literacy-based subjects for a small group of learners in Year 7
q Teaching Years 7-11 English lessons in small groups
q Teaching programmes to address specific skills devised by specialist teachers/visiting professionals from education & health services, or as detailed on as detailed on an EHC Plan(Education and Health Care Plan)
q Key Stage 3 Learning Intervention Programme for 30 learners in Years 8 & 9 – additional activities to support core literacy and numeracy skills, including the opportunity to use ICT to improve key skills using the SuccessMaker integrated learning programme
q Tuition in smaller teaching groups for learners who have individual learning needs in a number of curriculum subjects, ensuring a greater degree of individual help, and a suitably differentiated curriculum, while maintaining full access to the National Curriculum
q Support from specialist teaching assistants in a range of curriculum subjects
q Key Stage 4 vocational programmes for learners in Years 10 & 11 – a range of options including a reduced number of GCSE subjects, ‘vocational’ BTEC courses, a school-based KS4 Learning Intervention Programme, and, vocational courses at Uxbridge College or other local schools/colleges
q Examination support for learners with individual learning needs in internal school examinations, end of key stage examinations and GCSE’s, in accordance with examination board guidelines
q Setting learning targets using Individual Education Plans, and monitoring and reviewing the progress of learners at informal and formal review meetings
q Monitoring and evaluating the progress of all pupils with individual learning needs
Mrs C Cockcroft
Head of the Learning Support Faculty (SENCo)
(hours: Monday, Tuesday & Thursday - 9.30am - 2.30pm / Friday 8.30am - 2.30pm)
Mr R Hickson
Assistant Headteacher Curriculum (Director of Studies – Learning Support Faculty)