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Plympton St Mary CofE VA Infant School

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SEN Information Report - September 2019


1. What is SEND?

‘A pupil has SEND (Special Educational Needs) where their learning difficulty or disability calls for special educational provision, that is provision different from or additional to that normally available to pupils of the same age.’ (SEND Code of Practice 2015 p.82)


We are an inclusive school and aim to support all children and meet their individual needs within the limitations of our school budget.

The SEND Code of Practice identifies 4 broad areas of need:

  1. Communication and interaction
  2. Cognition and learning
  3. Social, emotional and mental health difficulties
  4. Sensory and/or physical needs


For more information about our approach to special needs including the identification and assessment of pupils with special needs, please see our SEND Policy.


2. What are the school’s admission arrangements for pupils with SEN or disabilities

At our school, we welcome all children. Where a child has a recognised disability we will make all reasonable adjustments to accommodate their needs in school. This will include the availability of resources and accessibility of the school building and site. We will make every effort to ensure that children with Special Educational Needs or disabilities maintain their entitlement when they enter the school.


Information about our admission arrangements can be found on our school website


The school holds open mornings in the autumn term where prospective parents can visit the school and talk informally with key members of staff, including the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) and Head Teacher. Prospective parents of children with SEN or disabilities are encouraged to arrange further visits to get a feel for the school and to find out more about our provision.


Once a place at the school is confirmed, the SENCO works closely with the relevant class teacher to provide a supportive transition to the school. This may include additional visits, transition books, visits to nurseries/preschools or other school settings, and home visits. Throughout the process, we work closely with the parents, current setting and other involved agencies to ensure that we are able to fully support the child and their parents in the transition process. Transition programmes are fully personalised to meet the needs of the child.


3. How does the school assess the progress of pupils and what would they do if my child is falling behind?

Pupil progress is regularly assessed by the class teacher as part of daily teaching. If it is felt that a pupil is not making the progress they should the class teacher will try teaching them in different ways to help them learn, seeking support from the SENCO where appropriate.

Every pupil’s learning and attainment is reviewed regularly with the Senior Leadership Team, SENCO and the class teacher. These meetings are called pupil progress meetings. The progress of pupils with special educational needs, together with any additional support of intervention they receive is discussed at these meetings. If different or additional support is needed, an intervention programme will be put in place to meet a pupil’s specific needs. The SENCO may seek advice from other professionals to support a child’s learning if appropriate. Parents would always be consulted first before other professionals are approached.


For children with identified special needs, multi-agency meetings such as Early Help Assessments or Team Around Me meetings may be held every term. This provides an opportunity for the child’s family and any involved professionals to meet, review progress and set targets.


4. How accessible is the school environment?

The school is on a level site, and is accessible to all pupils with a disability.  There is a car park available adjacent to the school making it straightforward to gain access to the school buildings. There is a ramp for people with reduced mobility.


There is an outside play space for the EYFS accessed through doors which can be hooked open to enable the children free access. An adult is always available in this play space to support the children. Access to the level playground area is through this outside play space.


The children’s toilets have hand dryers at child height and lever or push button taps which the children can use independently. There is a shower room available for medical use and a disabled toilet.


All children are encouraged to take a full and active role in the life of the school. The school assesses each child’s individual access needs and makes adjustments where necessary, supported by parents and outside agencies. School trips are risk assessed and arrangements put in place to ensure that all children can participate if at all possible.


5. Where can I find information about the school’s approach to pupils with SEND?

The school’s approach to pupils with SEND can be found in the current school SEND policy and is available to read on the school website.


Further information can also be found in our current OFSTED report. This can also be found on the school website.  Alternatively, you are welcome to contact Mrs Ottewell, our SENCO, who will gladly discuss any questions that you might have.


6. Who is the person responsible for children with SEND?

Mrs Suzie Ottewell is our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) and our Headteacher. The SENCO is the person responsible for ensuring the appropriate support is in place and meets the needs of the child. Help and advice is given to teachers and parents as and when required.

Class teachers are responsible for those pupils with SEND in their class and plan their day to day learning opportunities.  Class teachers are usually available to speak to parents at the start and end of the school day or appointments can be arranged to speak to them if needed. The Headteacher has overall responsibility for all the pupils in the school. Mrs Ottewell is the Headteacher of our school.


7. How do I contact the person responsible for SEND or arrange to meet them?

The school has an open door policy and the best way to contact the school is to arrange a visit. Class teachers, the SENCO and Headteacher can all be contacted as follows:


Plympton St Mary C of E Infant School
8 Market Road


01752 337912


8. What training or specialist expertise does your staff have around SEND?

Mrs Ottewell completed the National SENCO Qualification in October 2016. She also holds a Level 3 qualification in Elklan supporting children's communication and language. 


Several Teaching Assistants have completed the Emotional Literacy Support Assistant course and are available to provide advice on the emotional, mental and social development of the children.  School staff have been trained to provide a variety of specialist support. Should a training need arise because the expertise not present, the school is committed to addressing the gap promptly wherever is possible.

The school buys in services from the Plymouth Excellence Cluster, through the Multi Agency Support Team (MAST). This enables us to access training and additional services that benefit our staff, children and families. Where a whole school need for training is identified, we aim to accommodate training on-site, for example training in recent years has included autism training, Makaton training and training on assessing children who may require further support in their learning.

9. What can the school provide for children with SEND?

The school can provide a range of support for children with SEND. This would often mean carefully targeted group or 1:1 support or intervention, which will be detailed in the child’s One Page Profile.  Each child’s progress and wellbeing is regularly monitored by the class teacher and/or SENCO and adjustments are made when necessary. The school may need to purchase specific resources to cater for a particular need. The school will, as a matter of course, seek advice and support from external agencies where necessary in order to meet the needs of a child and can access a range of resources through the SEND team and MAST team.


10. What further external support can the school access and when would this happen?

The school has access to a range of professionals and agencies that can provide additional support for needs identified by the parents and/or school. These professionals might include: Educational Psychologists; Speech and Language Therapists; Advisory Teachers from the Communication and Interaction team; teachers from the Sensory Impaired support agency who support children who may have a visual or hearing difficulty or impairment; and the School Nurse. The school subscribes annually to the Multi Agency Support Team (MAST) which provides a range of services for our children and their families, incorporating educational psychology, but including counselling and therapy services.

Further information about external support available locally can be found in the Plymouth Online Directory for families within the Local Offer.


11. Who can I contact to provide additional advice and support for my family?

Advice can provided by the school/SENCO.



Telephone:      01752 337912


The Plymouth Online Directory for parents also provides support and help for parents wishing to seek advice on a range of concerns. Topics might include, challenging behaviour, sleeping, eating, and bereavement. Whatever the difficulty the school will endeavour to be available to help and support in any way they can.


12. How are the parents/carers and children with SEND supported to share their views and concerns and work alongside the school?

The school values its strong relationships with parents. Teachers are available to speak to at the end of the school day should a parent/carer wish to discuss their child. A home/school link book is sometimes provided which can be a valuable link between the child and home. Regular parent consultations take place to discuss learning and progress and a summative individual school report is provided during the final school term of the academic year.


Children are encouraged to be active and independent learners and discuss their own targets, progress and next steps with their class teachers. Tapestry online learning journey has been successfully used in the EYFS and is valued by parents of children with SEND as they can view their child’s individual steps of progress and contribute their own observations and comments.

13. If I’m not happy with the provision at the school, how can I share my concerns or make a complaint?

We hope that you will be happy with the provision for SEND at our school. However if you are not, there are several ways to resolve this. Please contact the class teacher, or SENCO/Headteacher, to share your concerns.


If you wish to make a complaint please contact the school office who will direct you to the appropriate procedure to follow. The Complaints Policy is on the school website


14. Where can I find information about the Local Authority’s Offer to children with SEND and their family?

The Local Authority Offer can be found at This contains a directory of services available to parents and children and provides information regarding SEND support in Plymouth.


If you require any further information about our school and the opportunities we offer, please refer to our website or contact us on 01752 337912.


15. Where can I seek further advice and support?

Plymouth Information, Advice and Support for SEND (PIAS) provides information, advice and support relating to Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) for parents, carers, children and young people within the Plymouth Local Authority area.


PIAS provides parents, carers of children and young people with SEND and also the children and young people independently with:

  • support at meetings
  • support around education and training issues.


Information provided is impartial and confidential. PIAS can be contacted on
01752 258933. Their website is at:


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