Student Welfare and SEND

Student Welfare
Head of Learning Support, Intervention Manager, Child Protection Officer – Mr G Odlin, Assistant Headteacher (

Mrs H Sweatman – PA to Pastoral Support Team
Mrs J Marsh – Attendance & Pupil Services Assistant

  • Year 7
    Mr M Whitmore – Achievement Leader/Head of Year 7
    Mrs M Ridley – Pastoral Support Officer
  • Year 8
    Mr K Lusk – Achievement Leader/Head of Year 8
    Mrs S Hudson – Pastoral Support Officer
  • Year 9
    Mr M Hunnable – Achievement Leader/Head of Year 9
    Mrs L Horn – Pastoral Support Officer
  • Year 10
    Mr G Calvert – Achievement Leader/Head of Year 10
    Mrs L Vardy – Pastoral Support Officer
  • Year 11
    Mr M Stokes – Achievement Leader/Head of Year 11
    Ms S Duala – Pastoral Support Officer

2019 Safeguarding & Child Protection Policy

2019 Special Educational Needs Policy

Coping with Exams – Guide for Students

SEND Report 2019-2020

Learning Support Department

  • Mr G Odlin – Head of Learning Support, Intervention Manager, Child Protection Officer
  • Mrs V Cornish - SENCO
  • Mr Z Shinebourne - Deputy SENCO
  • Mrs T Duncomb - SEN Teacher
  • Mrs E Bates - Learning Support Department Administrator
  • Mrs T Duncumb – Learning Support, English
  • Mr Z Shinebourne - Learning Support, Mathematics
  • Mrs S Rance – Learning Support
  • Ms V Cornish - SENCO/ Lead Teacher SEND
  • Mrs J Cooper
  • Mrs S Medhurst
  • Mrs I Walker
  • Mrs H Colvert (Science)
  • Mrs A Crickmore
  • Mrs K Hamilton
  • Mrs C MacRae
  • Mr R Morgan
  • Ms C Brading
  • Miss L Hollingdale
  • Mrs K Wilson
  • Mrs C Jordan (Mathematics)
  • Mrs K van den Dolder (Science)
  • Mrs J Moulds (English)
  • Ms T Armstrong (Inclusion)
  • Miss Cole - Cover Supervisor/PE Assistant
  • Miss Bridge - Cover Supervisor/PE Assistant
  • Mr N Barton
  • Mrs K Mitchell
  • Mrs K Norman
  • Mrs T Armstrong

DOWNLANDS COMMUNITY SCHOOL – Special Educational Needs Policy

Our Aim
To support pupils who have additional needs and challenges, through their education at Downlands, using an approach of respect, care and honesty.

The importance of self-esteem, for all pupils, is paramount to the ability to take advantage of the learning opportunities at Downlands. We aim to work in partnership with parents, the child and the community to achieve this and to raise their attainment.

Either permanently, or from time to time, some pupils may have significant difficulties in learning. Others may have disabilities, which prevent or hinder them from making use of the facilities provided for our pupils. We will give these pupils individual consideration and make special provision for them, working in partnership with others as necessary. All pupils, whether they have additional educational needs or not, must have an equal opportunity to participate in the full curriculum of the school (including the National Curriculum) and all activities. Pupils with additional educational needs will be encouraged to become independent and take responsibility within the school.

The specific objectives of our SEND policy are as follows:

  • To identify pupils with additional educational needs and disabilities and ensure that their needs are met
  • To ensure that pupils with additional educational needs and disabilities join in with all the activities of the school
  • To ensure that all learners make the best possible progress
  • To ensure parents are informed of their child’s additional needs and that there is effective communication between parents and school
  • To ensure that learners express their views and are fully involved in decisions which affect their education
  • To promote effective partnership and involve outside agencies when appropriate

The success of the school’s SEND policy will be judged against the aims set out above. The Governing Body will ensure that it makes appropriate special educational provision for all pupils identified as in need of it.

The named SEND coordinator for the school is Mrs Vicky Cornish.
The SEND member of the Governing body is Mrs Claire Brittain.

Admissions Policy
The Governing Body has agreed with the Local Authority admissions criteria which do not discriminate against pupils with additional education needs or disabilities, and its admissions policy has due regard for the guidance in the Codes of Practice which accompany the SEN and Disability Discrimination Acts. Parents or carers seeking the admission of a pupil with mobility difficulties are advised to approach the school well in advance so that consultations can take place.

Primary Liaison
The designated Heads of Year work closely with the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator to collect, share and disseminate information on all pupils transferring to Downlands Community School.

The SENCo meets with all SENCos from primary feeder schools and transfer information is shared.

The SENCo is invited to the Annual Reviews of any Year 6 pupils transferring to Downlands Community School.

The SENCo invites parents/carers of prospective pupils with additional needs to visit the school for a separate look around and discussion about the support requirements of their child.

All Year 6 pupils transferring to Downlands Community School receive a visit in their feeder primary school from the designated Achievement Leader for Year 7, Pastoral Support Officer and SENCO.

Three additional visits to Downlands Community School are arranged for pupils who might benefit from extra familiarization with the school and key support staff, as advised by primary SENCOs.

All year 6 transferring to Downlands Community School have a complete day’s induction at Downlands in the summer term.

A ‘Confidential Notes’ booklet is produced by the Achievement Leader regarding the incoming Year 7 for all staff.

The SENCo creates a support register for the incoming Year 7. Primary feeder schools send to the SENCo relevant information, for example, individual learning plans, support programmes, visit records from external agencies.

Identification and Assessment of Special Educational Needs.
The school is committed to early identification of additional educational needs and adopts a graduated response to meeting special educational need in line with the Code of Practice 2002. A range of evidence is collected through the usual assessment and monitoring arrangements. For example, KS2 SATs results, KS2 teacher assessments, literacy, numeracy and Cognitive Abilities. Tests are carried out in the pupil’s first month at Downlands Community School. Throughout a pupil’s time in the school feedback from subject teachers and subject assessments are reported back to the SENCo if they suggest that a pupil is not making the expected progress.

A Graduated Approach
If our assessments show that a pupil may have additional needs, we use a range of strategies that make full use of all available classroom and school resources. It could be that this is a temporary single issue or within a single department at which point the school records intervention as at Monitoring level on the Support Register. When the difficulty is more permanent or evident across the curriculum a pupil is recorded at School Action level. Class teachers will offer interventions that are different from or additional to those provided to other pupils in the class. If the support and intervention provided within the school is proving inadequate and a pupil is making insufficient progress we may seek further advice and support from outside professionals. The involvement of external professionals working with a pupil triggers an increase in status to School Action Plus level. These professionals will be invited to contribute to the monitoring and review of progress. Pupils and parents will be fully involved and kept informed about the involvement of external agencies and proposed interventions. For pupils who have Statements of SEND, their progress and the support outlined in their statement will be reviewed annually and a report provided for the Local Authority. If a pupil makes sufficient progress a statement may be discontinued by the Local Authority.

All the additional needs information on pupils that is appropriate for dissemination, for example, categories and level of need, screening results, SATs results, strategies for individual pupils, school based and external interventions are recorded for staff on the School Support Register. This is an Excel document that is available to staff only, and is located on both the school’s SIMS network and Storage ‘R’ drive. Some of this information is also on class teachers SIMs mark sheets.

The class teacher’s responsibilities:

  • To be familiar with the Support Register
  • To be familiar with the additional needs and suggested strategies for assisting pupils in their classes
  • To assist in the identification of pupils with additional educational needs and feedback to the SENCo
  • To plan inclusively for pupils with additional needs in their classes
  • To differentiate appropriately for pupils with additional needs
  • To teach pupils across the ability range including all levels of The SEN

Code of Practice
To supervise any helpers in the classroom, for example, teaching assistants, who are involved in the learning of their pupils
To assesses and record pupil progress

Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator’s responsibilities:

  • To oversees the school’s special needs policy.
  • To plan and organise the implementation of support, both within class and for pupils being withdrawn from class.
  • To manage and direct Teaching Assistants and Learning Support Teachers.
  • To provide teachers and support staff with relevant information on the additional needs of pupils in their classes.
  • To advise teachers on how pupils might meet planned learning objectives.
  • To co-ordinate provision for pupils with additional needs.
  • To maintain the school’s Support Register and oversees the records for all pupils with additional educational needs.
  • To liaise and work in partnership with the parents of children with additional educational needs.
  • To contribute to the training of staff and governors.
  • To liase and work in partnership with external agencies, including the Educational Psychology Service, Sensory Support Service, Behaviour Support Service, Child Protection Service, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service, Speech and Language Support Service, Educational Welfare Service, Parent Partnership Service, Locality Primary and Secondary SENCo Groups, Family Resources Team, Connexions Careers and Intensive PA Services and other medical services.

Head teacher responsibilities:
Has overall responsibility for management of the school and its policies. This includes the provision for pupils with additional educational needs. Any complaints about general or specific provision will be referred to the head teacher in the first instance.

Special Facilities

  • The school has either flat or ramp access to it’s buildings.
  • There is a lift to transport pupils and staff with movement difficulties between the ground and other floors in the Maths block and the new Rose Hetherton building.
  • There are disabled toilets and changing facilities in the PE block.
  • The food technology rooms are only accessed by a flight of stairs and alternative food technology education facilities have been and will be provided for pupils that are unable to access these rooms.
  • The school has a Learning Support Department area which consists of a purpose built nurture classroom with ten computers, a counselling/exam assessment room, a SENCO office, an Assistant Headteacher office, a Learning Mentor classroom, a cooking area and SEN lunch club room.
  • The Learning Mentor has a well resourced room with 5 school networked computers and a variety of musical, artistic, and creative equipment to assist with his work.

Allocation of Resources
The Governors, through the Finance Committee, will allocate funds to appropriately support pupils with additional educational needs. At the meeting of the governing body, which approves the budget, the Finance Committee will draw the attention of governors to the amounts delegated to the school by the LA under special needs headings in the Section 52 Statement, and to the amounts allocated for Special Needs in the proposed school budget. The head teacher in consultation with the SENCO will manage the funds allocated by the governors to support the pupils in the school with additional educational needs.

The governors require the Head teacher and Special Educational Needs Coordinator to ensure that optimum use is made of resources. It is expected therefore that every opportunity will be taken to use equipment and staff time for the benefit of other pupils, providing there is no disadvantage to the pupil to whom they are nominally allocated.

In-service training of staff and training for governors In drawing up the staff development and training programmes, the head teacher will give consideration and appropriate priority to the needs of all teachers with regard to special educational needs. The school’s in-service training plans for special educational needs will be reported to the governors, and will include details of training for class and subject teachers, the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator, Learning Support Assistants and other ancillary staff.

The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator will assist in the provision of training for teaching and non-teaching staff. In particular they will form links with the LA and other schools to devise and share training opportunities.

The governors will consider training on special educational needs responsibilities, assessment and provision when drawing up their own plans
for governor training.

The Learning Support Department staff have regular meetings and discuss issues on a daily basis but the following meetings are timetabled:
The SENCO meets with the Learning Mentor, Assistant Learning Mentor and Pastoral Assistant every week;
The SENCO meets with the Teaching Assistants fortnightly;
The SENCO meets with the Learning Support Department teachers fortnightly.

Downlands Community School SEND Report 2018-2019

Accessibility Plan 2017 – 2020

Year 6 SEND Transition Booklet 2020


MS 365