Special Educational Needs & Disabilities
The purpose of a local offer is to enable parents and carers to see clearly what services are available for children with SEND in their area and how to access them. The following questions and answers form our local offer and show how we provide for children with special educational needs and disabilities.
What is it like for children with SEND at Woolpit ARC?
At Woolpit ARC each child has a designated key-person. Their role is to develop a trusting, sensitive relationship with children and parents to enable all parties to work cooperatively; sharing information and strategies to support individual needs. Depending on your child’s needs, their key-person may be allocated to provide one to one support to enable your child to access the many opportunities within the Preschool environment.
Our practitioners are welcoming and friendly, providing an inclusive, sensitive and positive approach. They provide good role models for positive behaviour and are consistent in the day to day care of all our children. We are flexible in our routines to provide a positive environment for your child’s needs and personal care. The Preschool environment is adapted to meet all children’s individual needs.
Personal health plans can be adopted if necessary and staff will be trained in giving the appropriate medication for your child if required. Should your child require regular prescribed medication then you will be required to complete and sign a Record of Medicine Administered form and you will be informed when the medicine has been given and be asked to sign the form in accordance with our Administration of Medicine policy.
How will the staff at Woolpit ARC be able to identify any concerns about my child’s development?
All members of staff attend relevant and on-going SEND training, as well as being qualified in Early Years child development. All members of staff are supported in SEND by our Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO), Hayley Clifton. Our SENCO will offer support and advice to your child’s key person and other staff within the setting as well as liaising with other professionals to seek advice and support in identifying individual needs if necessary. With your permission, the SENCO can seek support and advice from the Early Years Team at Suffolk County Council.
Before starting at Woolpit ARC, we will invite you and your child to a taster session and you will be given a Welcome pack, which details the aims of our preschool and how we support all our children to develop and learn through a wide range of activities; indoors and outdoors. Your child will also receive a ‘look what I can do’ booklet to fill in with you, which will help us to share information regarding your child’s strengths and needs.
If you have any concerns about your child’s development you can discuss these in the first instant, with your child’s key-person. There will be opportunities to share information regarding your child’s needs on their Enrolment form and/or during their taster session. At the taster session you will be able to discuss any concerns or requirements your child may have with the Preschool leader and/or our SENCO. If you feel you would like to discuss your child’s needs in further detail, please telephone to make an appointment.
How will Woolpit ARC support my child?
Ongoing observational assessments are made of all our children and are linked to the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) ages and stages of development. This in some cases identifies individual needs. These observations will be discussed with our SENCO and with yourself to plan the appropriate support for your child’s learning and development.
Observations, assessments and evaluations all contribute towards an Individual Education Plan (IEP) and your child’s key person will oversee the targets on the IEP.
Our SENCO will support your child’s key person to identify individual needs, write their IEP and plan next steps, accessing additional support from other professionals where necessary.
In addition to the IEP, all children have an on-line Learning Journey called Tapestry. Your child’s key person will make regular observations along with photographs which are up-loaded to your child’s Tapestry. They will make assessments based on The EYFS development matters. You will be able to add comments to these observations as well as add your own observations from home. Both documents support staff in assessing and planning to help your child progress to their next steps.
Your child’s key person and our SENCO will work together to make sure that the environment, routines and activities support your child’s needs, and during staff meetings they will communicate with the rest of the staff to provide consistency and understanding within our team.
How will I be involved in planning for my child?
We will work with you to support your child, listening to both you and your child. Our SENCO will explain how children’s individual needs can be met by planning support using an Individual Education Plan (IEP). Advice from our Early Years Team Area SENCO and other professionals involved ie. Portage worker, Speech and language, Health visitor will also be included on the IEP. Reports from health care professionals, such as health visitors, speech and language therapists, will identify your child’s individual needs. We welcome parents and professionals sharing these reports in order to plan appropriately to meet these needs.
We will work in partnership with you, reviewing the IEP targets, and planning new ones together as well as give you ideas to use at home to support your child.
How does Woolpit ARC adapt the routines and environment to meet children’s needs?
Activities will be adapted to ensure your child is able to interact fully with the environment, and visual strategies, such as a visual time table is used to help them understand our routines. If needed your child’s key person will become their one to one support as they access the activities on offer. We have a quiet area for your child to relax if they become tired.
If you are a parent/carer whose first language is not English, you can nominate a representative who speaks English, or we can arrange for an external interpreter.
Signs and posters around the setting are used with pictures to help children identify equipment and play areas.
We provide multi-sensory activities as part of our planning. We will endeavour to seek out suitable equipment or adapt equipment and facilities to support children with special educational needs.
Policies are updated at least once a year and are available for parents to view, in the setting. We are working towards our main policies being available on our web-site.
Any trips or visits include all our children. We will endeavour to include parents/ carers in the planning of the visit offsite to identify the needs of your child. A risk assessment would be carried out prior to any trip/ visit. We would also take your child’s aides or medication as identified.
How will I know how my child is developing?
We constantly monitor every child through observations and play. Assessment systems are in place such as the 2 year progress review and your child’s Learning Journey (Tapestry).
We have regular Parents Meetings enabling us to share information regarding your child’s development and build relationships that support you and your family.
At the beginning and end of your child’s session there will be opportunities to tell us how your child is progressing and gives opportunities to build two way communication between us.
What support does Woolpit ARC offer for my child’s social and emotional development?
We are aware that some kinds of undesirable behaviour may arise from a child’s special need. We will refer to our Behaviour Management Policy and work with you and your child to provide a consistent and planned approach to improve behaviour. All staff promote positive behaviour in their everyday practice.
How will we help you to support your child?
You are involved in identifying needs, information sharing identifying targets and next steps to focus on at home and in the setting and reviewing progress towards these targets.
Ongoing partnerships with you, other professionals and ourselves will support the decision making process. Together with our SENCO you will support the process to plan targets on your child’s IEP. Through regular observations we can track your child’s progress.
Who else do we work with?
We receive support from Suffolk county Council Early Years Team: our Local Council. The Team has designated Area SENCO’s who support our practitioners through visits to help assess any child we may have a concern with. The Area SENCO will suggest strategies to support the child during their session to target their specific needs.
Your permission will be gained before we involve outside agencies.
We also work with health care professionals such as Health Visitors, Speech and language therapists and physiotherapists etc.
We also have links with our local Children’s Centre at Thurston and can sign post you to support which can be accessed there.
How will Woolpit ARC prepare my child to start the setting or move on to a new setting or school?
Our Preschool offers an introductory session for you and your child prior to your child’s start date, when there will be given the opportunity to discuss any requirements. This session gives us the opportunity to meet you and your family, and provides the opportunity for you to share with us details of your child’s needs and the involvement of other professionals. We can then agree with you a consistent approach to ensure the continuity of care for your child.
We have a flexible settling in period, should your child have difficulties settling in. Please refer to our Settling in Policy.
When transferring to another setting or moving on to school, our Manager will provide relevant information regarding your child’s needs and all your child’s paperwork including their Learning Journey, Tracking document and IEP’s will be forwarded to the new setting giving them time to make the necessary plans for any changes required. Support will be given by our Manager/ SENCO when transferring from one Council’s professionals to the other Council, if required.
If you choose for your child to move on to Woolpit Primary Academy they will benefit from our strong transition links. During the Summer Term at Preschool the ‘School Leavers’ are prepared for the transition into school as they participate in weekly visits into the Reception Class.