St Damian’s Governing Body Report:

RSNMrs R Seddon is our SENCo and in collaboration with the head teacher and governing body, plays a key role in helping to determine the strategic development of the SEN policy and provision in the school to raise the achievement of pupils with SEN.

Pupils with special educational needs often have a unique knowledge of their own needs and their views about what sort of help they would like to help them make the most of their education will be ascertained.  They will be encouraged to participate in all the decision- making processes and contribute to the assessment of their needs, the statutory review and transition processes. This will take place through conversations with relevant Learning Support staff and pupil voice throughout the academic year.

Partnership with parents plays a key role in enabling children with SEN to achieve their potential.  The school recognises that parents hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs and the best ways of supporting them.  All parents of children with special educational needs will be treated as partners and supported to play an active and valued role in their children’s education. All parents of pupils with special educational needs will be invited into school termly to discuss their child’s provision and progress with the SENCo. Parents are actively encouraged to contact the SENCo should they have any concerns about the progress their child is making or the provision they are receiving.  Please take a look at our SEN Information Report here.

SEN Policy

Our SEN policy details how this school will do its best to ensure that the necessary provision is made for any pupil who has special educational needs and those needs are made known to all who are likely to teach them.  The school will do its best to ensure that teachers in the school are able to identify and provide for those pupils who have special educational needs to allow pupils with special educational needs to join in the activities of the school, together with pupils who do not have special educational needs.

The school meets the requirements of the Department for Education SEND Code of Practice; 0-25 Years (2014) when carrying out its duties toward all pupils with special educational needs and ensure that parents are notified of a decision by the school that SEN provision is being made for their child.  St. Damian’s also implements Tameside MBC policy ‘Matching Provision to Needs’ and guidance on SEN and Assessment and Education, Health and Care Plans for parents and carers.

SEN Local OfferSEN Local Offer

As part of the new SEN Code of Practice and as a Catholic school, inclusion is at the heart of all we do at   St Damian’s and therefore, it is critical to us to ensure that learning and teaching strategies are matched  to pupils’ individual needs.  For further information which details our local offer please click here.  Tameside Local Authority local offer can be found here.

Admission Arrangements for pupils with SEN or Disabilities

Full admission arrangements can be found in the ADMISSIONS section.

If the school is named in a Statement of special educational needs, the Governing Body has a duty to admit the child to the school.  The duty to apply these arrangements rests with the Governors of the College. All preferences listed on the Local Authority Preference Form will be considered on an equal basis with the following set of over-subscription criteria forming a priority order where there are more applications for admissions than the college has places available.

Criteria 8 of the Admissions Arrangements state that: ‘Other children with exceptional medical or social needs.  Where evidence is provided from a child’s doctor or other agency that he/she has exceptional needs which mean that admission to a particular school is essential, reference will be made to the Community Health Physician, Social Services, or Educational Psychologist, as appropriate. A panel of governors will make a decision as to whether to admit a child under this criterion using the evidence provided. All information provided will be treated in the strictest confidence.’

Equality Act 2010

The full accessibility plan in accordance with paragraph 3 of schedule 10 to the Equality Act 2010 can be found under the EQUALITY ACT information here.  A summary is that this can relate very closely to the disability elements of the equality objectives in Section 10 of the Equality Act 2010, except that it covers pupils only whereas the equality plan includes all members of the school community.

Actions are focused on outcomes rather than processes include:
i. improvements in access to the curriculum

  • Appropriate differentiation for all, access to all aspects of curriculum at Key Stage 3 and 4 to reflect inclusive practice. All pupils must have 8 specifically adapted work to meet the requirements of all subjects and GCSE courses they are following. Including specific Fieldwork and visits.
  • Enrichment Activities.
  • Curriculum – planning to include all (PE) VIP CLUB.
  • Disabled pupils are included in the displays, photo’s etc.

ii. physical improvements to increase access to education and associated services

  • St Damian’s School has access for all. We will continue to monitor and refine those areas that do not meet the continuing needs of pupil. Parent and staff.

iii. improvements in the provision of information in a range of formats for disabled pupils

  • Computer monitors and Key boards for visually impaired children.
  • Access to alternative formats of information for parents ie leaflets
  • Provision for deaf and/or blind parents
  • Reception duties – include disabled pupils