Here at Rochester Riverside, we strive to support all children to enable them to achieve their full potential not only on their learning journey but as an individual and a member of our caring Christian community.
At Rochester Riverside we recognise that all children are unique and have individual learning styles. All teachers are teachers of SEND and when additional needs are identified we work together with parents and outside agencies to enable each child to overcome learning barriers and help create a pathway to success.
Ms Jennifer Dexter (SENDco):
"I am responsible for the ongoing development of the Special Educational Needs and Disability provision across three of the schools within The Pilgrim Multi Academy Trust, including Rochester Riverside. I co-ordinate the specific provision made to support individual children with SEND. I liaise with staff, families and professionals to support all children identified with SEND and help identify newly identified needs, recommend appropriate interventions and any further needed referrals."Rochester Riverside's Graduated Response Procedure
What is the Local Offer?
The Local Offer was first introduced in the Green Paper (March 2011) as a local offer of all services available to support disabled children and children with SEND and their families. This easy to understand information will set out what is normally available in schools to help children with lower-level SEND as well as the options available to support families who need additional help to care for their child.
What will it do?
The Medway framework will allow the Local Offer to provide parents/carers with information about how to access services in their area, and what they can expect from those services. With regard to Education, it will let parents/ carers and young people know how school and colleges will support them, and what they can expect across the local settings. The Local Offer Steering Group has developed questions for schools, and trialed them with a small number of settings. Questions were devised in consultation with parents/carers and other agencies, which reflect their concerns and interests. These will be answered by agencies, schools and colleges to provide information to parents and carers to enable them to make decisions about how to best support their child’s needs.
Rochester Riverside's Responses to the Local Offer Questions
1. How does Rochester Riverside know if a child needs extra help?
- Concerns may be raised by parents, carers, teachers, teaching assistants, the pupil’s previous school or by the pupil themselves. Identified using the four main areas highlighted in the SEND Code of Practice (2015) - Communication and Interaction, Cognition and Learning, Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties and Sensory and Physical Needs.
- There may be a lack of progress and/or low attainment.
- There may be a change in the pupil’s behaviour or learning in school or at home.
2. What should I do if I think my child has a special educational need?
If you have concerns please speak to your child’s teacher in the first instance. If your concerns continue please arrange a meeting with Ms Dexter (SENDco).
3. How will I know how Rochester Riverside will support my child?
- Support is given through Rochester Riverside's Graduated Response Procedure which is detailed above.
- School-based plans will be planned by the class teacher. It will be differentiated accordingly to suit the pupil’s individual needs and include any professional recommendations or targets. This may include additional general support or interventions needed by the teacher or teaching assistant in class.
- The length of intervention will vary according to need but will generally be for a term. (12 weeks) The interventions will be regularly reviewed by all involved to ascertain the effectiveness of the provision and to inform future planning.
- School-based plans will be reviewed 3 times a year and shared with parents. o Class teachers will recommend children that are not making appropriate progress with their SBP to be discussed at the in school review meeting (ISR). ISR are held 3 times a year and parents will be advised of the ISR recommendations.
- When additional support from outside agency is required a meeting with parents will be arranged and referrals made with their consent.
- The Governors of Rochester Riverside are responsible for entrusting a named person to ensure that the school is as inclusive as possible.
4. How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?
- When a pupil has been identified with special needs their work will be differentiated by the class teacher to enable them to access the curriculum more easily.
- Teaching Assistants may be allocated to work with the pupil 1:1 to meet personal targets or in a small intervention group if appropriate.
- Specialist equipment will be offered to pupils e.g. writing slopes, concentration cushions, pen/pencils grips or easy to use scissors if recommended or if deemed a suitable support.
5. How will I know how my child is doing?
- You will be able to discuss your child’s progress at Parents Interviews.
- Your child’s class teacher will be available for a short time, at the end of each day, if you wish to raise a concern. Appointments can be made to speak in more detail to the SENDco by contacting the school office firstname.lastname@example.org or Ms Dexter directly on email@example.com .
- Every pupil has a reading/contact book in which messages can be exchanged between adults working with your child in school and yourself.
- School-Based Plans (SBP) for children who have Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities are completed and given to parents three times a year. Targets are set by the class teacher and shared with the pupil. Parents/carers are encouraged to contribute their input to be included on the School Based Support Plan.
6. How will you help me to support my child’s learning?
- The class teacher/SENDco will make suggestions of ways of supporting your child’s learning at home and supply support materials if appropriate.
- We may meet with you to discuss strategies to use if there are problems with a child’s behaviour/emotional needs.
- If outside agencies have been involved suggestions and programmes of study are normally provided that can be used at home.
7. What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?
- The school offers a wide variety of pastoral support for pupils who are encountering emotional difficulties this can be through; the class teacher, teaching assistants, the SENDco and the pastoral care manager. These people are readily available for pupils who wish to discuss issues and concerns.
- We have a play therapist in school.
- Social skills groups and nurture groups are run when needed.
- Our Sanctuary is available to all children and we have other lunch time clubs available.
- If a pupil has a medical need then a detailed Care Plan is compiled by the SENDco and class teacher in consultation with parents/carers. These are discussed with all staff who are involved with the pupil.
8. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school? Outside agencies used by the school include:
- Autism Support through the Marlborough Outreach Team
- Behaviour Support through the Bradfields Fortis Trust Outreach Team
- Educational Psychologist (will attend ISR to give advice.)
- CAMHS (Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service)
- Play therapy
- Medway SEN team / Inclusion Officer
- SENDIAS Medway (Special Educational Need and Disability Information and Advice Service)
- Attendance Advisory Practitioner
- Social Services
- Early Help
- Child Protection Advisors
- Children’s Therapy Team (Speech & Language/Occupational Therapy)
- MAGIC (Medway Autism Group & Information Centre)
- Medway Community Healthcare MCH (Paediatricians)
- School Nurses
- Parenting referral support.
9. What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND had or are having?
- SENDco has completed the National Award for SEND qualification and attends SENDIF meetings and the annual Medway SEND conference to update staff of local and national changes.
- SENDco has completed training for initial stage screeners for identifying dyslexia and infant Speechlink and Language link training for assesses initial SALT needs.
- All staff offered a range of SEND courses with the Skills Network Programme and other providers.
- We have teachers who have completed the Hopscotch core level standards Bronze level, the TQUK Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Working with Individuals with Learning Disabilities, the CACHE Certificate in Understanding dyslexia and the TQUK Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Autism.
- Marlborough Outreach have provided PDA / ASD training for TAs and Teaching Staff.
- Sensory/Fine motor skills training for TAs.
- Staff receive ongoing training for many topics including child protection, child exploitation, child neglect, bullying, peer on peer abuse, forced marriages, trafficking, FGM and online safety.
10. How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
Risk assessments are carried out and procedures are put in place to enable all children to participate. If a health and safety risk assessment suggests that that an intensive level of 1:1 support is required a parent or carer may also be asked to accompany their child during the activity in addition to the usual school staff.
11. How accessible is the school environment?
As a school we are happy to discuss individual access requirements as we are a split levelled site.
Facilities we have at present include:
- Slopes into school to make the building accessible to all.
- A toilet adapted for disabled users.
- Wider doorframes in most parts of the building.
- A lift to the different levels within the building.
12. How will the school prepare and support my child when joining Rochester Riverside or transferring to a new school?
Rochester Riverside understands what a stressful time moving schools or even year groups can be, therefore many strategies are in place to enable the pupil’s transition to be as smooth as possible.
We can offer:
- Contact between the previous or receiving schools prior to the pupil joining/leaving.
- Home visits for nursery and foundation stage children.
- Stay and play sessions for parents/carers.
- Introduction meetings for new parents to meet staff and support workers.
- Additional visits are also arranged for pupils who need extra time in their new school.
- SENDco meetings with parents/carers prior to their child joining the school.
- SENDco meeting with secondary school SENDco to share information.
- Where a pupil may have more specialised needs, a separate meeting is arranged with Ms Dexter, the secondary school SENCO, the parents/carers and where appropriate the pupil.
13. How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
- The SEND budget is allocated each financial year. The money is used to provide additional support or resources dependant on an individual’s needs.
- Where a child’s requires additional support or specialist assessment then an application for top-up funding can be made.
- The additional provision or interventions may be added or adjusted by the class teacher.
- Where a pupil qualifies for Pupil Premium, payments are used to support that pupil’s learning.
14. How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive?
- When the children join the school, support is allocated according to the information provided by the feeder school or nursery.
- Each academic year SLT arrange support for each class depending on the current level of SEND need in that year group. This will take into account the percentage of SEND and amount of EHC plans in that class.
- Parents/carers will be consulted about the support their child is receiving and encouraged to contribute their views.
- All interventions and support is recorded on the child’s school-based plan that is an ongoing document that shows all support given throughout the child’s time at Rochester Riverside.
15. How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s education? All parents are encouraged to contribute to their child’s education. This may be through:
- Discussions with the class teacher.
- Parent’s evenings.
- Discussions with the SENDco or other professionals.
- Contributing to their child’s school-based plan.
16. Who can I contact for further information?
If you wish to discuss your child’s educational needs or are unhappy about something regarding your child’s schooling please contact one of the following:
- Your child’s class teacher
- Ms Jennifer Dexter – SENDco
- Or the school office on – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Outside agencies offer support and guidance including SENDIAS Medway (Special Educational Need and Disability Information and Advice Service)
If you are still unhappy with the provision being provided for your child after speaking to your child’s class teacher and Ms Dexter, further advice can be sought from Mrs Mepsted who can direct you to our SEND Governor and/or an appropriate contact on the local authority.
We hope these have answered any queries you may have but do not hesitate to contact the school if you have further questions.