SEND policy 2017/18

Gosforth Central Middle School SEN and Disability Policy


Reviewed 20th February, 2017

Amended: 28th August 2017

Head of Inclusion and Assistant Head: Mr. Rob Leonard

Mr. Leonard is the advocate for SEN on the senior leadership team (SLT). He has been in post since 2012.  He has achieved the National Award for SEN Coordination (NASC).

Contact: rob.leonard

SENCO: Mrs Lisa Proudlock

Mrs Proudlock has been in post as SENCo since September, 2016. Previously,  she was Assistant SENCo (2012 -2016).  She is currently enrolled on National Award for SEN Coordination (NASC) with Edge Hill University.


How the policy was developed, who was consulted and how it was shared with stakeholders, including parents and families

This policy was first written by Mr. Rob Leonard in 2014. This version was updated in February 2017 to reflect the current needs and areas for development within Gosforth Central Middle School and amended in August, 2017.  Improving the provision for pupils with special needs and or disabilities is a key focus of the school improvement plan (2016-17) and as such forms a key element staff professional development this year.

SEN and Disability Policy


Gosforth Central Middle School is a vibrant and diverse school which recognises that every child is equal, valued and unique. We aim to provide an environment where all pupils feel safe and can flourish in line with our ‘CLEAR’ values: caring, learning, enjoying, achieving and respecting. We will respond to individuals in ways which take into account their varied life experiences and particular needs.  Our approach is bespoke and needs based.  We endeavor to ensure that all pupils achieve to the best of their ability and, as a middle school, are committed to providing an education that enables all pupils to become confident individuals through a key time of child development, the transition from child to teenager.  We aim to prepare our pupils effectively for their next stage of education and to equip them with the skills to live fulfilling lives and become valued members of their communities.


  • To ensure equality of provision for pupils with special educational needs (SEN) and disability
  • To take into account legislation related to SEN and Disabilities , including part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014, The SEN Code of Practice 2014, The Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, The Special Educational Needs (Personal Budgets and Direct Payments) Regulations, Section 49, The Order setting out transitional arrangements, Section 137, Equality Act 2010, The Mental Capacity Act 2005, Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013, Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions 2014
  • To provide full access for all pupils to a broad and balanced curriculum
  • To ensure that the needs of pupils with SEN are identified, assessed, planned for and regularly reviewed to improve outcomes
  • To enable pupils with SEN to achieve their potential
  • To ensure parents / carers are fully engaged in decision making
  • To take into account the views, wishes and feelings of pupils
  • To provide advice and support for all staff working with pupils with SEN
  • To provide detailed information about the arrangements for identifying, assessing and making provision for pupils with SEN


Roles and Responsibilities:

Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion – Mr. Leonard is responsible for:

  • advising on the deployment of the school’s delegated budget and other resources to meet pupils’ needs effectively with the support of the SENCO.
  • coordinating provision for KS3 pupils with SEN
  • liaising with parents of KS2 pupils with SEN
  • liaising with potential next providers of education including Gosforth Academy and special educational providers, to ensure a pupil and their parents are informed about options and a smooth transition is planned
  • child protection (designated teacher)
  • pupil premium
  • Looked After Children (LAC) (designated teacher)

Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) – Mrs Proudlock is responsible for:

  • overseeing the day-to-day operation of the policy
  • coordinating provision for KS2 pupils with SEN
  • liaising with Mr. Leonard (Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion) where a looked after pupil has SEN
  • advising on the graduated approach to providing SEN support
  • liaising with parents of KS2 pupils with SEN
  • liaising with educational psychologists, health and social care professionals, and independent or voluntary bodies
  • being a key point of contact with external agencies, especially the local authority and its support services
  • liaising with first and primary schools for transition and potential next providers of education including Gosforth Academy and special educational providers, to ensure a pupil and their parents are informed about options and a smooth transition is planned
  • working with the head teacher and school governors to ensure that the school meets its responsibilities under the Equality Act (2010) with regard to reasonable adjustments and access arrangements
  • ensuring that the school keeps the records of all pupils with SEN up to date.

Learning Support Assistants:

At Gosforth Central Middle School we have a dedicated team of Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) who support individuals and groups of pupils at SEN support level of provision, both in class and through withdrawal for targeted interventions/ programmes. Each of the team has a particular strength / specialist area.

  • Miss Fairbairn
  • Miss Green
  • Miss Heathcote
  • Mrs Ina Ngie – numeracy (delivers Maths ‘Catch up’ programme)
  • Mrs Margaret Rutherford – ASD, MLD
  • Miss Lynne Smith – literacy (Fresh Start programme training), life skills programme

Parent Support Partner – Claire Scott is responsible for:

  • liaising between staff and
  • providing support to parents



The governor with responsibility for SEND is:

Mrs Jane Thorpe


Access to Facilities and Provision:

Please refer to school’s accessibility plans which outlines how we:

  • Increase access to the curriculum for pupils with a disability
  • Improve and maintain access to the physical environment
  • Improve the delivery of written information to pupils
  • The school is fully accessible to wheelchair users (toilets, lift – see access plan). All medicines are stored in the medical room and are managed by one of our admin staff (Mrs G. Lowrey).

Allocation of Resources:

Mrs Webb (Head teacher) and Mr. Leonard (Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion) are responsible for the operational management of the budget for SEN provision. The school will use a range of additional funding including the notional SEN budget and, where applicable, pupil premium to provide high quality appropriate support for pupils with SEN.

Access to the Curriculum

The broad and balanced curriculum is differentiated to enable all children to access the learning. Teachers have high expectations for all pupils. In planning and teaching teachers provide suitable learning objectives, meet the pupils’ diverse learning needs and remove the barriers to learning. For the majority of the week pupils with SEN are taught with their peers in mainstream classes. Teachers are responsible and accountable for the progress and development of the pupils. However, in order to maximize learning, some pupils are withdrawn, individually and in small groups, to take part in targeted, time limited interventions planned to meet particular needs.

Pupils with SEN are actively encouraged and supported to join in and benefit from additional activities and clubs as well as any wider community activities.

Identification, Assessment, Planning and Review Arrangements:

Gosforth Central Middle School follows the graduated approach of assess, plan, do and review as outlined in the Code of Practice (2014). This approach is embedded in whole school practice for all pupils and every teacher is responsible for ‘adapting teaching to respond to the strengths and needs of all pupils’. (Teachers’ Standards 2012)

School assessment data, teacher judgments and, where appropriate, assessments from outside agencies are used to identify pupils who require additional and different provision.

Every pupil on the SEN register has a one page pupil profile which is developed through discussion with the child, their parents, teachers and LSAs. This is provided to all member of staff to advise on appropriate strategies and support that is required for the pupil to access learning most effectively. A pupil support plan outlines all SEN support and is updated each term through meetings with the child, their parents, teachers and LSAs.

The following are not SEN but may impact on progress and attainment:

  • Disability
  • Attendance and punctuality
  • Health and welfare
  • English as an additional language (EAL)
  • Receipt of pupil premium
  • Being a looked – after child
  • Being a child of service personnel

These areas are monitored by Mr.Leonard, the Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion.

SEN support – four part cycle

The identification of SEN is built into the overall approach to monitoring the progress and development of all pupils in school. Half-termly pupil progress meetings support the early identification of pupils who may have SEN. Where concerns are identified an initial concerns checklist is completed and discussed with the SENCO.


The class or subject teacher, working with the SENCO, will carry out a clear analysis of a pupil’s needs. This assessment will be reviewed regularly. Where appropriate, professionals will help to inform the assessment. Parents will be asked to contribute to the assessment.


Parents will be notified by telephone and will be formally invited to a meeting with the SENCO and /or child’s form teacher to discuss the support and interventions that will be provided for their child. A review date will be agreed with staff, parents and pupil (this is usually the following term). Dates of meetings are recorded on the school information system and support plans and pupil profiles are stored electronically on our secure drive at school and as paper copies, held securely. Parents will receive copies of their child’s support plan and one page pupil profile following the meeting.  All members of staff will receive this information electronically.


The class or subject teacher will remain responsible for working with the pupil on a daily basis and retain responsibility for their progress and outcomes. The class or subject teacher will plan and assess the impact of support and interventions with any teaching assistants or specialist staff involved. The SENCO will support the above.


The effectiveness of the support and interventions and their impact on the pupil’s progress will be reviewed on the agreed date. Reviews will be held with parents at least three times per year (usually once per term). The form teacher, working with the SENCO, will revise the support in light of the pupil’s progress. If a pupil does not make expected progress over a sustained period of time school will consider involving specialists. School liaises with the following services – Educational Psychology Service, School Health, School Improvement Service (SIS) SEN support, SEN Teaching and Support Service (SENTASS) and, when appropriate, Social Services and Looked After Children Team. We also purchase the support of specialist external agencies listed below:

    • Anne Pearson (Behaviour Support)
    • Kalmer Counselling
  • Parent Support Partner (Claire Scott)

 Additional Top Up Funding

Where a pupil’s needs exceed the nationally prescribed threshold (currently £6,000) additional funding will be applied for from the local authority.

Education, Health and Care Plans

Where, despite having taken relevant and purposeful action to identify, assess and meet the SEN of a pupil, the pupil has not made expected progress, then school or parents will consider requesting an Education, Health and Care assessment. School will provide the local authority with evidence of the action taken as part of SEN support.

Further details on provision for pupils with SEN can be found in the SEN information document.

 SEN information document

This report can be found on the school website. It was updated in October, 2016. It outlines the provision that Gosforth Central Middle School makes for all pupils with SEN and within the four broad areas of need – communication and interaction; cognition and learning; social, emotional and mental health difficulties; sensory and/or physical.

Transition Arrangements

Transition is carefully planned. In order to ensure successful transition from first school to Gosforth Central Middle School (Year 4 to Year 5) parents and carers are invited to a transition meeting with the SENCO (Mrs Proudlock), usually held during the summer term, at their child’s first school. For some pupils this process may begin earlier and may involve additional visits to middle school, with support assistants, to familiarise them with the new setting and the different routines that occur during the school day.   Similarly, transition arrangements for pupils moving from year 8 to year 9 at the school of choice, are carefully planned and both pupils and parents will be fully involved. Key information about SEN provision will be shared with the next school /setting through the review process.  For pupils transferring to Gosforth Academy, review meetings are held with representatives from their SEN team during the summer term at Gosforth Central Middle School.

Partnership with Parents/Carers:

Gosforth Central Middle School has positive attitudes to parents/carers and values their important role in their child’s education. Parents/carers are always informed when their child is placed on the SEN list and the graduated response, outlined in the Code of Practice, is explained to them. Information and advice is also given, including contact details for the Newcastle Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information, Advice and Support Service. Parents are fully involved in the review process. Interpreters are arranged for parents who require translation during meetings. Written information is in accessible formats and sufficient notice (a minimum of two weeks) is given for meetings to enable parents/carers time to prepare.

The Parental Support Partner, Claire Scott, is proactive in supporting parents in a variety of ways, including home visits, liaising with agencies, assisting in visits to special education schools, organising activities and facilitating and delivering training.

Pupil Participation:

The views of all pupils are valued. Pupils with SEN&D are supported to be involved in decision making and to be able to express any concerns. The pupils meet with their form teachers and /or SENCO to discuss their progress and support, and to identify areas and targets to focus on. Pupil views and comments are recorded on their support plans and one page profile.  This information is reviewed and updated termly as part of the review process.  Pupils are invited, where appropriate, to attend their termly review meeting.  Where this is not appropriate, the pupil’s views and their progress in school may be shared through video recordings, photographs and the comments they shared at their progress and support meeting.

Monitoring and Evaluating the Success of Provision:

A variety of methods are used to monitor and evaluate the provision and achievements for the pupils with SEN:

  • Regular observation of teaching by the senior management team
  • Use of videos (VEO) to record class teaching, interventions, and types of differentiation used in lessons
  • Analysis of assessment data, with high expectations for the progress expected between key stages for all pupils,
  • Assessment records that illustrate progress over time
  • Pre and post assessments for those pupils who are withdrawn for targeted interventions
  • Success rates in respect of individual targets – shown on pupils support plans
  • Monitoring by the governors with responsibility for SEN
  • The views of parents/carers and pupils.
  • Regular meetings between SENCO, LSAs and Assistant headteacher / SENCO, heads of year, and subject leads.
  • Provision Mapping – used as a basis for monitoring the impact of interventions.
  • LA audit to externally validate provision and outcomes for pupils with SEN


Staff Development:

  • The SENCO ensures staff are informed of local and national developments in relation to SEN and Inclusion.
  • Training needs are identified and, where appropriate, outside agencies are used to deliver the training. In October, 2016, an SEN audit of staff training needs was undertaken by Mr. Leonard (Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion). SEN has been identified as a focus for whole school improvement in 2016-17, requiring all staff to identify a target to improve the provision for SEN pupils as part of their performance management. All staff have been given access to training materials through the NASEN website.
  • Newly qualified teachers are offered support and in school training by the SENCO.


Medical Conditions

Gosforth Central Middle School will follow the recommendations of the Children and Families Act 2014 with regard to arrangements to support pupils with medical conditions. Where a pupil also has SEN, their provision will be planned and delivered in a coordinated way with their healthcare plan.


Admission Arrangements:

The school has adopted the criteria set out in the LA’s admission policy. The school welcomes pupils with known special educational needs and disability, as well as identifying and providing for those not previously identified as having SEN.

The Complaints Procedure:

Initially an attempt will be made to resolve a complaint about SEN provision at school level, within one week of the complaint having first been made. The procedure is firstly that the key worker / class teacher / form tutor attempts to resolve matters, then if required the SENCO and /or head teacher becomes involved.

If the complaint is unresolved, then the person making the complaint is advised of their rights under Section 23 of the Education reform Act to make a complaint. The Governing Body will consider the complaint, after which, if necessary the LA will become involved. School will inform parents/carers of the local authority’s commissioned independent disagreement resolution service. Details can also be found in the Local Offer.

This SEN and Disability policy will be reviewed and amended annually.

Date of Policy:          February 2017

Next review:              February 2018

Lisa Proudlock