SEN Diary and news Autumn 2018

  • Do you want your child to be the best they can be? click here for information on Triple P Primary Discussion groups on managing fighting and aggression (16/10) and developing good bedtime routines (14/11).



Graduated Approach

EHC Plans


The Four Areas of SEND

Outside Agencies



Provision in school to support children with SEN

How Can Parents Help At Home?

Link to SEND Policy


Safer Parenting Portsmouth

Healthy Young Minds from CAHMS


As a school we offer a wide range of support for children with special needs.  This provision goes beyond the differentiated approaches and learning arrangements normally provided as part of high quality personalised teaching. The following links will guide you through the provision offered in this school and how we can seek further support if we feel we are unable to meet the needs of your child.  The local offer will show you what the City of Portsmouth and surrounding areas can offer your child and your family.

Local Offer

Local authorities must produce a local offer about provision for children with SEND, including those for children without EHC plans.

  • It should also include information from outside the local area which are likely to be used.
  • The local offer will also include arrangements for providing top up funding.
  • Information about how to request EHC assessment for an EHC plan

For more information please go to the following website:


A child or young person has SEND if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them. A child of compulsory school age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if they:

(a) have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age; or

(b) have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions.

Graduated approach

Provision in Westover Primary School is following advice laid out in the Portsmouth Ordinarily Available Provision Document (2015).

Wave 1 – Quality first teaching through differentiation in Maths and English.

  • Wave 2 – Small group support for those who are achieving below age related expectations. Groups are closely monitered and reviewed on a half-termly basis.
  • Wave 3 – Focused individualised programmes for children working well below below age related expectations following programmes of work provided by outside agencies.
  • EHC plans.

EHC Plans

  • The majority of children and young people will have their SENDneeds met within school.
  • School, parents or a young person over 16 can request an EHC plan.
  • The whole assessment and planning process must take no more than 20 weeks.
  • If LA decides not to issue a EHC plan this notification must take place within 16 weeks of the initial request.
  • Parents/young person have right to request a school.
  • A personal budget will be identified in order to deliver the plan.
  • The personal budget can include funding from education, health and social care.
  • EHC plans can be reviewed in whole or in part if outcomes have been achieved before annual review is due.
  • A local authority can cease a plan if it decides provision is no longer needed.

SENDCO (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Coordinator)

For all children a transition programme is put into place which include visits to their new school and meetings to discuss individual needs, however, at Westover we recognise that for children with SEND this can be a particular difficult time and so the following has been put in place:
Transfer from Nursery to School
In order to make the transition into Westover Primary School as smooth as possible for a child with SEND school staff will take time to visit the Nursery/Pre-school to see the child in their current provision.  They will also be an opportunity for agencies and staff to meet to discuss strategies in place to support the child and any outcomes they are currently trying to achieve. We have transition books which are given to children, when needed, which include pictures of staff, toilets, classrooms and playgrounds to look at over the summer.  When necessary extra visits are organised to help the child adjust or part time timetables can be used.
Transition to KS3 can also be a worrying time for children and particularly for children with additional needs.  Again extra visits to secondary schools can be arranged and transition meetings are held to discuss any plans in place and strategies which enable a child to access their mainstream class.

I am available to meet with parents to discuss any concerns the may have about their child.

I can be contacted by email:


Four areas of SEND

1) Communication and interaction 

Children and young people with SEND may have difficulties in one or more of the areas of speech, language and communication. These children and young people need help to develop their linguistic competence in order to support their thinking, as well as their communication skills. Specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia or a physical or sensory impairment such as hearing loss may also lead to communication difficulties.

Those with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) cover the whole ability range. They find it more difficult to communicate with others. They may have problems taking part in conversations, either because they find it difficult to understand what others say or because they have difficulties with fluency and forming sounds, words and sentences. It may be that when they hear or see a word they are not able to understand its meaning, leading to words being used incorrectly or out of context and the child having a smaller vocabulary. It may be a combination of these problems. For some children and young people, difficulties may become increasingly apparent as the language they need to understand and use becomes more complex.

Provision for children and young people with communication and interaction difficulties should reflect their likely need for support in developing social relationships and their increased risk of emotional or mental health problems. It may also cover support in making progress in related areas of learning such as literacy. Interventions might include creating rich oral language environments, individual support and augmentative and alternative means of communication.

Children and young people with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), including Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism, have difficulty in making sense of the world in the way others do. They may have difficulties with communication, social interaction and imagination. In addition they may be easily distracted or upset by certain stimuli, have problems with change to familiar routines or have difficulties with their co- ordination and fine-motor functions. Interventions will need to take account of their individual sensory needs and requirements. Seeking the insights of parents, carers and young people themselves about their particular sensibilities can be especially important to achieve this.

2) Cognition and learning 

Children and young people with learning difficulties will learn at a slower pace than other children and may have greater difficulty than their peers in acquiring basic literacy or numeracy skills or in understanding concepts, even with appropriate differentiation. They may also have other difficulties such as speech and language delay, low self-esteem, low levels of concentration and under-developed social skills.

Children and young people who have a learning difficulty need more detailed differentiation and the curriculum set out in smaller steps. They may need more practical activities than their peers to support the development of abstract concepts. They may require specific programmes to support their progress in developing literacy and numeracy skills. The level of support required will depend on the severity of the child or young person’s cognitive difficulty and any associated needs that compound their difficulties in accessing the curriculum, such as physical impairments or communication difficulties.

Children and young people with a learning difficulty are at increased risk of developing a mental health problem. They may need additional support with their social development, self-esteem and emotional well-being. This may be through small group work on social skills, through peer group support and through regular and positive feedback on their progress.

Children and young people with severe learning difficulties (SLD) have significant intellectual or cognitive impairments and are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum. They may have difficulties in mobility and co-ordination, communication and perception, and the acquisition of self-help skills. Children and young people with SLD are likely to need support to be independent. Those with profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) have severe and complex learning difficulties as well as significant other difficulties such as a physical disability or a sensory impairment. They are likely to need sensory stimulation and a curriculum broken down into very small steps. These children and young people require a high level of adult support, both for their educational needs and for their personal care.

A child or young person with a Specific learning difficulty (SpLD) may have difficulty with one or more aspects of learning. This includes a range of conditions such as dyslexia (difficulties with reading and spelling); dyscalculia (maths); dyspraxia (co-ordination) and dysgraphia (writing). A discrepancy between achievement and general intellectual ability may indicate that a child or young person has a SpLD, although they can occur across the whole ability range. Poor behaviour prompted by particular activities (such as avoiding reading or writing) can also be an indicator of SpLD.

Children and young people with specific learning difficulties may need support in sequencing and organisational skills and appropriate IT equipment and software to support the development of their literacy skills.

3) Social, mental and emotional health

For some children and young people, difficulties in their emotional and social development, can mean that they require additional and different provision in order for them to achieve. Children and young people who have difficulties with their emotional and social development may have immature social skills and find it difficult to make and sustain healthy relationships. These difficulties may be displayed through the child or young person becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as through challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour.

A wide range and degree of mental health problems might require special provision to be made. These could manifest as difficulties such as problems of mood (anxiety or depression), problems of conduct (oppositional problems and more severe conduct problems including aggression), self-harming, substance abuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Some children and young people may have other recognised disorders such as attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), attachment disorder, autism or pervasive developmental disorder, an anxiety disorder, a disruptive disorder or, rarely, schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Schools, colleges and early years providers should identify clear processes to consider how they will support such children, as well as how they will manage the effect of any disruptive behaviour so it does not adversely affect other pupils. Many schools and colleges offer pastoral support, which may include access to counselling sessions, to help their pupils and students with emotional, social or mental health difficulties. This should be described in their published SEND policy and schools should ensure a solid evidence base for any interventions offered. Staff may need training and support to understand the nature and extent of problems that require more specialist intervention. Where more specialist provision is required, schools, colleges and early years providers should have clear arrangements in place with local health partners and other organisations for making appropriate referrals to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS). This might include schools and colleges commissioning specialist CAMHS directly. It is best practice for CAMHS to offer a ‘triage’ service to identify and provide for children and young people who specialist need provision very quickly. Where needs are less urgent, this service can signpost them to appropriate sources of support whether provided by CAMHS or other services.

4) Sensory and/or physical needs 

There is a wide range of sensory and physical difficulties that affect children and young people across the ability range. Many children and young people require minor adaptations to the curriculum, their study programme or the physical environment. Many such adaptations may be required as reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act 2010. The Department publishes guidance on these duties and further details can be found later in this section.

Some children and young people require special educational provision. It is this group that should be identified as having a SEND.

Children and young people with a visual impairment (VI) or a hearing impairment (HI) may require specialist support and equipment to access their learning. Children and young people with a Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI) have a combination of visual and hearing difficulties, which makes it much more difficult for them to access the curriculum or study programme than those with a single sensory impairment. Some children and young people with a physical disability (PD) require additional ongoing support.

Outside Agencies

All of the following agencies are currently being used by children in our school.  Referrals can be made by school, parents or GP.

Barnardo’s Family Improvement project
MABS Multi Agency Behaviour Support Team
CAMHS Child and Mental Health Team
School Nurse
Physio/Occupational Therapy Team
Families Moving Forward Lottery-funded to support families with a variety of needs
EP Educational Psychologist
VI Visual Impairment Team
HI Hearing Impairment Team
SALT Speech and language Therapy


·     How does Westover know if your child needs additional support?

Children are identified in a variety of ways depending upon the need.  English and maths needs tend to be identified through regular assessments.  All children are tracked and monitored on a half termly basis with progress meetings for children who are not making expected progress which may lead to additional support being offered.  When Beam is offered it may be that a child is struggling in PE or may have poor handwriting skills and again this is identified by the class teacher.  When it comes to children’s Social and Emotional needs it may be identified by the class teacher or a parent and when possible, in line with Portsmouth Ordinarily Available Provision (2015), we try to meet the child’s need through, SULP, Literacy or Numeracy Club, or Talking and Drawing depending upon the type and level of need.

·     What should I do if I think my child has special needs?

Talk to the Class Teacher about your concerns as we value your opinions and appreciate that you know your child best.  They may have already put in some Wave 1 support (in class support) and they may arrange a meeting with the SENDCO to discuss further intervention if possible.  Sometimes children have blips which with a little extra support in class they are able to overcome.

  • How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

All teachers are teachers of children with SEND. All teachers plan to include everyone in their lessons and work is provided at the appropriate levels for children to access their learning and make good progress. The quality of teaching and learning is monitored closely by the Senior Management Team.

  • How accessible is Westover Primary School?

We make every reasonable adjustment possible.  School is on one level and there is a disabled toilet.  We are able to access other equipment through Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Service in order for us to ensure ease of access and safety for all.


SPTO  School Pupil Tracker
SA+  (School Action Plus) is a child with outside agencies involved.  All of the following agencies are currently being used by children in our school.  Referrals can be made by school, parents or GP.  This will no longer be in place as of Sept 2014.
MABS  Multi Agency Behaviour Support Team
CAMHS  Child and mental health team
School nurse
Physio/Occupational therapy team
Families Moving Forward  A lottery funded to support families with a variety of needs.
EP Educational Psychologist
VI Visual Impairment Team
HI Hearing Impairment Team
SALT Speech and language Therapy
SA School have identified a need and are carryout intervention and additional assessments. This will no longer be in place as of Sept 2014
Statements These children have been recognised as having long term and complex needs and the LA will recognises this by setting objectives these children must meet, having annual reviews and detailing the amount of hours of 1:1 support these children should receive.  This will change in September 2014 to EHC plans.
TAs Teaching Assistants
CAF Common Assessment Framework.  This form is used when there is a multi-agency approach to detail the child from birth until now and gather information about family to see what support we can offer them.  In some cases we are directed to complete a CAF by social care.
TAC Team around the child, these meetings are carried out if a need is identified through the CAF to tackle any issues and are carried out on a 6 weekly basis.
DST/DEST Assessment tool to identify areas of weakness and identify if a child is at risk of dyslexia.

Provision in school to support children with SEND

Provision in Westover Primary School is following advice laid out in the Portsmouth Ordinarily Available Provision Document (2015) and is delivered by TAs who are trained in the delivery of this provision by outside agencies.

SULP – Social Use of Language Programme

These groups are used to support any children who may be having any social or emotional difficulties.  For example they may be quiet and withdrawn in the classroom or the playground.  They may find it difficult to know when to share an idea or how to engage children in a game or conversation. A child may find it difficult to understand their own or others’ emotions.  These children are usually identified by class teacher or the recommendation of an outside agency.

SALT (Speech and Language Therapy)

Speech and Language programmes are made at the recommendation of the Speech and Language Therapist.  They provide school with programmes which are followed.


BEAM is a programme designed to promote balance and postural stability in young children.  These sessions are tailored to the children’s needs with either the focus on fine or gross motor skills or both if they have needs in the two areas. The sessions are usually 15 – 20 minutes long.

Drawing and Talking

Drawing and Talking sessions are a gentle non–intrusive method of working with children who need a little help to support their emotional and learning needs.  A trained adult works for one 30 minute session every week for twelve weeks.  Drawing enables a symbolic and safe expression of worries and feelings.

Maths Intervention

Maths intervention can be individual or group and supports children through tackling any gaps which may have been identified through a gap analysis or areas of weakness identified through class assessments/teaching.  Children are usually identified through class assessments.

Reading Intervention

The way reading intervention looks can vary according to the needs of the child.  For some children a simple top up is needed and they may receive additional guided reading (reading in a group) or 1:1 reading. Where a child may become disillusioned or find understanding a text difficult, it may be an adult reading to individuals or groups to try and build their passion and their understanding/comprehension of a text.

BR@P (Boosting Reading at Primary)

  • A 10 week course consisting of 3 20 minute sessions per week
  • Aimed at increasing reading levels by 2-3 bands
  • Not to be used on pupils who have not attained yellow reading band or above
  • Helping pupils to read for understanding, checking reading and aiming to repair reading problems, increase confidence
  • Reading and introducing a wide variety of reading texts (eg. non fiction).

One particular pupil, who started on yellow and wasn’t a confident reader, finished BR@P on green band and became a very confident reader.


ELSA will work with your child on emotional issues/self-esteem/managing feelings/friendship issue. This will be for one session each week for 6-8 weeks.

How can parents help at home?

Developing fine motor skills

To download a PDF of this, please click here.



Developing gross motor skills

To download a PDF of this, please click here.



Memory games

To download a PDF of this, please click here.



PASN (Portsmouth Autism Support Network)

Safer Parenting Portsmouth


Healthy Young Minds

Click on the links below to find past newsletters from CAMHS.

Healthy Young Minds anger management newsletter Aug 16

Healthy Young Minds Resilience part 1

Healthy Young Minds Resilience part 2

Video Games leaflet