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Little Fishes SEND Information Report

SEND stands for Special Educational Needs and Disability. The term ‘special educational needs’ has a legal definition. Children with SEND all have learning difficulties, additional needs or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children of the same age. These children may need extra or different help from that given to other children of the same age. Many children will have SEN of some kind at some time during their education. Pre-school groups, schools and other organisations can help most children overcome the barriers which their difficulties present quickly and easily. But a few children will need extra help for some or all of their time as they learn. SEN could mean that a child has difficulties with: •all of the activities on offer at Little Fishes •understanding information •expressing themselves or understanding what others are saying •making friends or relating to adults •behaving appropriately •organising themselves •some kind of sensory or physical needs •any medical diagnosis which has an impact on their learning. E.g. ADHD, Autism. ible text is great for longer section titles and descriptions. It gives people access to all the info they need, while keeping your layout clean. Link your text to anything, or set your text box to expand on click. Write your text here...

Support for SEN

At Little Fishes we place great importance on identifying special educational needs early so that we can help children as quickly as possible. We are a fully inclusive group, delivering high quality teaching, activities and learning opportunities through play and we are committed to the equal inclusion of all pupils in all we do. We recognise diverse and individual needs and welcome all children of all different levels of ability. We recognise that children make progress at different rates and have different ways in which they learn best. Our staff take account of this by looking carefully at how we plan activities, the learning environment, the topics chosen, the materials used and the way that we help the children to learn through play. This enables us to consider a number of options and choose the most appropriate ways to help each child learn from a range of activities. This is often described as ‘differentiating the curriculum’. By differentiating activities we ensure children of all abilities are challenged in their learning to help them to progress – so, different children will be doing the same activity but with different levels of learning. For example, an activity in the sand tray could include •Sensory play – the children are exploring through their senses •Container play – children are tipping from one container to another •Fine motor development – children are learning to use different sand tools such as sieves, scoops, funnels, tongs •Learning about concepts such as wet & dry, heavy & light, full and empty etc •Number skills – objects hidden in the sand can be counted, added, subtracted etc •Language skills – children are encouraged to describe what they are doing, feeling, remembering from playing in sand elsewhere •Social skills – children are learning to share and take turns And there are many other activities which could be taking place, simultaneously, to ensure that each child is learning at an appropriate level for their abilities. However, some children may need extra help as they have a SEND issue that may slow their down their progress if they do not receive the correct support. The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (Senco) The Senco has day-to-day responsibility for the operation of the SEND policy and co-ordinating of specific provision made to support individual pupils with SEND including those who have EHC plans (see later), working closely with staff, parents and carers, and other agencies. The Senco provides professional guidance to colleagues to ensure high quality teaching for children with SEND, and works with professionals providing a support role to families to ensure that pupils with SEND receive appropriate support and high quality teaching. The Little Fishes Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (Senco) is Annette Cook.

Assessment of Children

We assess each child’s abilities and skills when they join the group, building on information from parents (eg on the ‘All About Me’ forms), through discussion or an initial visit, and any previous support or assessment the child may have received where appropriate. We also consider if a child may have a disability under the Equality Act 2010 and, if so, what reasonable adjustments we may need to make for them. All children are assessed on an ongoing basis in line with the Early Years Foundation Stage and this information is shared with parents/carers in their child’s online learning journal on Tapestry. How can I ensure Little Fishes will identify children who need extra help? Children are identified as having special educational needs through a variety of ways including the following:- •If a child performing well below age expected levels •Concerns raised by parents/carers •Concerns raised by key workers or other staff based on observations and professional judgements regarding the child’s wellbeing •Liaison with external agencies e.g. Speech and Language Service, Physiotherapist etc •Health diagnosis through a paediatrician, Health Visitor etc

What should parents/carers do if they think their child may have Special Educational Needs and Disability?

Please come and talk to us. In the first instance please speak to your child’s key worker, the Senco/Manager (Annette) or another member of staff . This could be an informal chat, face to face, by email ( or by arranging an appointment on 07796 108411. You will be able to talk over your concerns and find out what we think. The SENCO will be able to explain what happens next. Working together with us will often help to sort out worries and problems. The closer you work with our staff, the more successful any help for your child can be. What happens if my child is identified as having a potential SEND need? Your child’s wellbeing is very important to us. We will always discuss any decisions to be made regarding SEND provision with parents / carers. The first thing we will do is to discuss our thoughts with you. This will not be during a session but in a private, quiet space. If, together, we feel your child may need extra help or have SEN then we will begin to put processes in place to support them. Children making slower progress or having particular difficulties in one area may be given extra help or different approaches in order to help them succeed, and this may include other kinds of support. We do not assume, just because a child is making slower progress than expected or the teachers are providing different support, help or activities in class, that the child has SEN. Children with potential special educational needs should have access to the EYFS curriculum by a step-by-step or ‘graduated approach’. The graduated approach recognises that children learn in different ways and can have different kinds or levels of SEN. So increasingly, step by step, specialist expertise may be brought in to help with the difficulties that a child may have. We will discuss with parents as soon as we identify that a child may need extra or different help. Initial help for children with SEN will be through similar activities and in the same environment and as the other children, sometimes with the help of other adults and occasionally with outside specialists. The extra or different help could be a different way of teaching certain things, some help from an extra adult, perhaps in a small group or 1:1, either within the group or in a separate room, depending on the activity, or use of particular equipment. Help may be needed through the graduated approach for only a short time or for many years, perhaps even for the whole of their education. Parents will be made fully aware of the planned support and interventions and, where appropriate, these plans will need parental involvement to reinforce or contribute to progress at home. We will talk to parents regularly to set clear outcomes and review progress towards them, discuss the activities and support that will help achieve them, and identify the responsibilities of the parent, and Little Fishes staff. Parents will also be involved in reviews of support provided to their child and have clear information about the impact of the support and interventions, enabling them to be involved in planning next steps. There are four broad areas of need and support which give an overview of the range of needs that are planned for. We regularly review how we provide support across these areas. They are: •Communication and interaction •Cognition and learning •Social, emotional and mental health difficulties •Sensory and/or physical needs We also link closely with the Early Years SEND team, speech therapists and specialist teachers (e.g. Teacher for Visually Impaired children), when necessary, who ensure that the environment and learning strategies are personalised for individual needs. Only a few children will need interventions which are additional to and different from the differentiated curriculum provided for all pupils. This forms part of the Graduated Response.

How we decide whether to make special educational provision

In deciding whether to make special educational provision, the staff and SENCO consider all of the information gathered about a child’s progress, alongside expectations of progress in the EYFS. Where a child is identified as needing extra help, we take action to remove barriers to learning and put effective special educational provision in place. This SEN support takes the form of a four-part cycle (assess, plan, do, review) and this support process will involve assessing the child's needs, planning support, providing that support and then reviewing the impact of that support. AssessLooking at a range of work from across the curriculum, assessments will be made to see the levels your child is working at. Observations will be made by Little Fishes staff and the Senco. PlanSMART targets (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time based) will be set from evidence collected by assessment. The EYFS Curriculum, or the Early Years SEN Assessment Tool, will be used to support the target setting, along with advice from outside agencies where they are involved. DoA range of different strategies will be put in place to support the individual targets of your child. This will take place in or out of the main room activities. The child’s key worker will work with your child to deliver the interventions. ReviewYou will be invited to your child’s review once every full term. At the meeting targets will be reviewed and achievements discussed. Information from home is shared. New targets are set and further strategies suggested. This is the graduated approach. It draws on more detailed approaches, more frequent review and more specialist expertise in successive cycles in order to match interventions to the SEN of children. We really value the importance of having a good relationship with parents and work hard to involve parents in every aspect of their child’s learning with us through daily informal contact and more specific formally organised meetings.

Involving specialists

Where a child continues to make less than expected progress, despite evidence-based support and interventions, we will consider involving specialists. This could include, for example, speech and language therapists, specialist teachers for the hearing or vision impaired, occupational therapists or physiotherapists. Parents will always be involved in any decision to involve specialists. The involvement of specialists and what was discussed or agreed is recorded and shared with parents and teaching staff supporting the child in the same way as other SEN support. Those giving the specialist support will often ask to meet with parents too. The SENCO and Key Worker, together with the specialists, and involving the pupil’s parents, will consider a range of teaching approaches, appropriate equipment, strategies and interventions in order to support the child’s progress. Outcomes and support will be agreed, including a date by which progress will be reviewed.

Requesting an Education, Health and Care needs assessment

SEN support is adapted or replaced depending on how effective it has been in achieving the agreed outcomes. Where, despite our staff having taken action to identify, assess and meet the SEN of the child, they have not made expected progress, the Senco or parents will consider requesting an Education, Health and Care needs assessment. To inform its decision the local authority will expect to see evidence of the action taken by the school as part of SEN support. An Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) is a legal document which is established to describe the needs, detail the provision and name an educational placement for a child. It will be reviewed at least every 12 months. An EHCP is important as it directly affects your child, because this is the best opportunity to voice concerns, propose amendments, ask questions and ensure your child has the support they need.

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If you have any concerns or questions about any issues in this document, please speak to the SENCO, your child’s key worker or another member of staff. We will be happy to talk with you and help in any way we can.

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