Learning Support (SEN)

The Learning Support Department endeavours to promote an inclusive environment where each pupil can grow and achieve. Students may need extra support due to a variety of reasons and here at Saint Bede's we aim to help remove any barriers to a student's learning by using a variety of intervention. 

We recognise that provision for students with SEN is the responsibility of the whole school and we are ambitious for young people with SEN whatever their needs and whatever their level of study at Saint Bede’s. We focus on supporting all students so that they can progress and reach positive destinations in adult life. These destinations include higher education, further training, employment, independent living, good health and participating in the community. At Saint Bede’s we are dedicated to ensuring that all students follow a coherent study programme which provides stretch and progression in order to achieve the best possible outcomes. 

Our students will strive to attain high levels of academic achievement and personal development. All staff will unfailingly reassure students that by working together there are no barriers that they cannot overcome to achieve their full potential. Students will leave Saint Bede’s with the skills, confidence and drive to achieve their future aspirations and to make a lasting contribution to the communities in which they live.  

Mrs Abberley is the SENCO. She can be contacted by telephoning the school on 01253 737174.

How are your child’s needs identified?
Primary Liaison

Feeder primary schools are contacted and visited prior to transfer.  Any student who is highlighted as SEN Support, has an Educational Health and Care plan or a Statement of Need is referred to the SENCO.  The SENCO then visits the schools, the students and where possible parents.

In the spring of Year 6, the local authority will notify the school about which students are coming to us with an Statement of Need or Educational, Health and Care plan.  Where practicable, the SENCO attends their Annual Review to ensure a smooth transition is made.

Admission arrangements for SEN pupils

Students with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) will be admitted to Saint Bede’s in line with the schools admissions policy. The school is aware of the statutory requirements of the SEN and Disability Act and will endeavour to meet its requirements. We work closely with parents to ascertain whether a child has been identified as having a special educational need through induction meetings, attendance at primary reviews, through liaison with primary or previous schools and other agencies. As soon as we are alerted to the fact that a child may have a special or additional need, relevant information is collected which is then used to plan an inclusive, relevant and differentiated curriculum.     

Access to the curriculum 

Saint Bede’s provides access for students with Special Educational Needs to a balanced and broadly based curriculum by:  

  • Ensuring teachers and teaching assistants are aware of an individual’s specific needs through the regularly updated SEND register; CPD; pupil passports and group/individual information.
  • Full access to mainstream lessons with differentiated teaching and support from a designated teaching assistant.
  • Personalised planning done with effective liaison between the expertise of the teaching assistant and subject teacher specialism.
  • Withdrawal of small groups or one to one support lessons for literacy; numeracy; speech and language and social skills.
Access to activities

The School ensures that students with Special Educational Needs engage in the activities of the school with those students who do not have Special Educational needs by: 

  • Appropriate differentiation by teachers.
  • Peer group support.
  • Other activities such as sports teams and clubs, music (including playing instruments and visits to musicals) and drama/dance (including theatre visits) and involvement in school productions, school trips and visits and a wide range of extra-curricular activities.
Access to the school buildings

Saint Bede’s will make reasonable adjustments to enable disabled pupils with SEN to access learning, in terms of the layout of the buildings.  
This will include: 

  • Lift access in the main building to allow learners to access the first floor.
  • Ramps or low door thresholds to ensure access is easy both inside and outside the building.
  • Disabled parking accommodation close to the main entrance.
  • The science and technology building, along with the Sports Hall are on one level and are fully accessible to all learners.  
  • The Drake building is spread over two floors and disabled students are taught on the lower floor as the building does not have a disabled lift
  • An audit of the auditory environment has shown good acoustics in the majority of classrooms which are carpeted and have window blinds and wall displays.
  • There is one toilet with disabled access.
  • There are adjustable height chairs available around school. 
  • In the Science and Technology classrooms there are height adjustable tables.
Identification in other year groups

In the first instance, a concern may be identified by the subject teacher, Year Leader or parents/carers.  Saint Bedes is able to use a range of nationally recognised tests that allow us to identify specific needs in handwriting, spelling, reading, comprehension and specific learning difficulties (dyslexia).

The intervention and support we offer is varied and may include:

  • Close liaison with parents of pupils with SEN
  • Teaching assistant support (in-class and in withdrawal sessions)
  • Individual pupil passport.
  • Access arrangements for GCSE examinations
  • Access to Room 3 at break and lunchtime – supervised by teaching assistants
  • IDL intervention programme for developing reading and spelling – IDL Website
  • Social skills groups
  • Transition support for Yr 6 pupils with Statements of need or Education, Health and Care plans.
  • Specialist dyslexia teacher on site.
  • Handwriting support.
  • Touch typing lessons.

The varied role of a teaching assistant at Saint Bedes’ includes:

  • Development of positive relationships with pupils which assists their progress and attainment
  • Assisting in the development of varying skills that support pupils’ learning
  • Support pupils as part of a planned Inclusion Programme
  • Under the clear guidance of the class teacher implement and structure learning activities and assist individual / group of pupil(s) to complete tasks
  • Liaison with parents through home/school book where appropriate

For further information, please follow the links below or contact Mrs Abberley, SENCO, at school.