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A Graduated Approach

Students may be identified as having SEN if their progress:


is significantly slower than that of their peers starting from the same baseline

• fails to match or better the student’s previous rate of progress

• fails to close or widens the gap between them and their peers

• is delayed in wider areas of development such as social skills, independence, emotional wellbeing or self-help skills.


Students may have special needs in the following broad areas:


• Communication and interaction

• Cognition and learning

• Social, emotional and mental health difficulties

• Sensory or physical needs


It is important to note that lack of progress may not be a result of special educational needs, but due to other factors such as learning English as an additional language, lack of attendance or other circumstances.  The SEN Team takes the following graduated approach to determine if lack of progress is caused by a Special Educational Need.


Key: Code of Practice stages of identification of SEN

M- Monitoring  


Some students will have a known or diagnosed condition that will require ongoing classroom strategies or adaptations.  Most students with additional needs make expected progress or better.  Advice is given to teachers about students’ individual needs.  All students with known additional needs or conditions will be monitored by the SEN Team on a termly basis in line with school policy and procedure.

C- Cause for Concern


If a student has not made expected progress in their academic or wider skills (such as social skills) a referral may be made to the SEN Team.  Parents/carers, students, BfL staff, or teachers may raise concerns about a student’s progress.  The SEN Team then gathers more information about the student, their needs and possible strategies.  Advice is given to teachers and progress monitored on a termly basis in line with school policy and procedure.


K- SEN Support


If further intervention is required, the SEN Team may put in place targeted support for the student. At this time the student will be placed on the SEN Register.  An action plan is drawn up, carried out and reviewed.  Plans made may include a Family CAF, Provision Map, Learning Management Plan, Behaviour Management Plan, and/or Risk Assessment. At this stage we are likely to ask for advice from specialist professionals to help make the most of the support we are offering.  This may involve health or social services, voluntary organisations or local authority support services.  The plan-do-review cycle is 12 weeks, or termly.




A very small number of students may still struggle to make expected progress and at that stage a request may be made for a formal assessment of Special Educational Needs.  If a statement is issued, it will outline all the needs of the student and what the school is required to do in order to ensure the student makes expected or better progress.  The Statement is reviewed formally every year and this is called the Annual Review.  Currently at Winterhill we have 9 students with Statements.

E- Education, Health and Care Plan


With the New SEN Code of Practice (Sept 2014) all students with Statements will have their plans converted into EHC Plans in line with the timescales set out in the new Code.  Any new requests for formal assessments will include Education, Health and Social Care planning and are person centred.  If made, the EHC Plan is also reviewed each year formally.

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