The first person to speak to about concerns is the class teacher. If necessary, they will adapt the learning environment by providing focused learning experiences and different approaches to help children overcome barriers to their learning.
When concerns remain despite this support, the class teacher will liaise with you and the SENCo to agree next steps. This may include observing the child, looking at work samples, completing detailed checklists, group booster sessions and making recommendations based on this. A one page profile is put together outlining strengths, needs and strategies which will be shared with you. Your child’s progress will continue to be monitored to see if these strategies are helping. Some children may be given more specific targets and expected outcomes. These are reviewed regularly.
Where a child’s progress remains a concern after two or more of these reviews, discussions between the parent, class teacher and SENCo would consider placing the child on the school’s Special Educational Needs list. Further analysis of difficulties may be carried out. This continues and formalises the approach begun above. Targets would be reviewed with parents.
If despite specific, targeted support a child’s progress remains a concern, the school will consider seeking external advice. This may be from a range of professionals including an Educational Psychologist, Specialist Teaching Team, Occupational Therapist etc. There are clear thresholds based on needs, which the school must use when considering this step. The class teacher will meet for a consultation and advice will be given through a written report which will be shared with parents. Professionals will not work with children directly.
If the consultation advice does not show impact on learning, then an Early Help Assessment (EHA) form would be completed with parents to seek direct involvement from external professionals.
Some children, whose progress falls a long way behind their peers – or who have a severe medical condition – may have an Education and Health Care Plan (EHC Plan) to support their needs. There are strict guidelines on the attainment levels required to apply to the local authority for an EHC Plan. The family and child are central to the planning of this support, which may include some additional funding to support your child’s learning. The EHC plan is formally reviewed every year by the school, in conjunction with other professionals involved. The report from this meeting is sent to the Local authority who will decide whether to maintain the EHC plan for another year.