Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Information Report
Provision at The Hurst Community College.
What type of educational setting is The Hurst Community College?
The Hurst Community College is a mainstream setting for 11 – 16 year olds. We are an inclusive school where a range of special educational needs and disabilities are catered for. We also liaise closely with the local primary schools and colleges to support pupils during times of change, whether they are joining or leaving us.
How does the school know if children/young people need extra help?
The Learning Support Department liaise with the feeder primary schools in the summer term when children are in Year 6 to gain information on the individual needs and support that may be required or continuation of provision already in place.
Within the first few weeks at The Hurst, Year 7 pupils complete Cognitive Ability Tests (CATs) which help to identify any issues with verbal and non-verbal communication and processing skills. Pupils also complete the Hodder Group and Salford Reading Tests together with the Vernon Spelling test. These tests are recommended by Hampshire County Council and are widely used in many schools. The results will help us to identify pupils who may have a special educational need and indicate the type of provision that may be required e.g. reading/ spelling support.
Throughout Key Stage 3 and 4 (from Year 7 to 11) pupils are identified in a number of ways:
- Parents may raise concerns about their child’s progress.
- All teaching staff are responsible for the progress of SEN pupils under the Teaching Standards and have received training on identifying and supporting these pupils. Any continued concerns are passed to a member of the Learning Support Department.
- A range of assessments may be carried out if there are concerns regarding memory, processing or literacy skills; this helps to identify areas of weakness and may lead to the identification of a Specific Learning Difficulty.
- Progress data is used to identify pupils who are not making expected progress. This may indicate that some intervention is needed to help the pupil catch up.
- Medical issues may lead to a health diagnosis through a paediatrician.
What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?
If you have concerns regarding your child then you can contact your child’s tutor who will know your child best. You can also speak to the Learning Support staff. Both can be contacted using the school contact number (0118 9817474), or the appropriate staff email contact details found on our website Members of staff will be pleased to return your call/ email if they are unavailable for immediate contact.
Once identification of SEN has been made or if further support is required after discussion with parents, contact with outside agencies may be made. These include the Educational Psychologist, CAMHs, Communication and Language Team (CAL), Young Persons Information Service (YPI-counselling), the Early Help Hub for families or the Specialist Teacher Advisory Service. The school then uses the reports / guidance from these specialists to provide appropriate support for your child.
How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?
The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) will oversee all support and progress of any child who requires additional support.
A progress report is produced three times a year showing attainment and effort across subjects. There will be a Parents Evening where you will have the opportunity to discuss your child with their subject teachers but if you have concerns or questions before this, please discuss with your child’s tutor in the first instance.
Email is our preferred method of communication (staff emails are available on the website). As a school, we have introduced ‘Edulink’; this is an online portal that allows parents and pupils to see what homework has been set, along with achievement and behaviour points given across the curriculum. It is available on desk top, tablet and mobile devices and we encourage all of our pupils to use it where possible.
For pupils with an Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP) there will be an annual review at which progress and support requirements of your child can be discussed and reviewed.
How will the school staff support my child?
All staff will be made aware of your child’s needs. Staff have regular training on the latest strategies and intervention available to support SEN needs. As we gather information, teaching staff will be provided with personalised strategy sheets for individual pupils that include information about the child’s needs, suggested strategies, specific targets and their latest reading and spelling scores.
Each teacher will plan, oversee and work with each child with a special educational need or disability in the class to ensure progress is made.
There may be a teaching assistant working with your child, either individually or in a group if this is seen as necessary.
Rooms will be made available at break and lunch times for our more vulnerable pupils who need a quiet space. We also have a ‘well-being’ centre on site which caters for the most anxious pupils.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s / young person’s needs?
All staff have received training on differentiation so that all children can access the learning. Staff training is held on a regular basis so that staff are able to support our pupils in the most appropriate ways.
Where teachers have recognised that a pupil has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority they can request further support from the Learning Support Department.
Timetables may be adapted to include the following interventions:
- TA support within a classroom
- Tutor time intervention to support Numeracy and Literacy skills
- 1:1 intervention for English and Maths
- Phonics intervention
- AcceleRead,/AcceleWrite (reading and spelling intervention)
- Catch –Up Groups for English and Maths for selected pupils in Year 7
- Literacy support in the place of a foreign language
- ELSA (emotional literacy support)
- EFA ( emotional first aid)
- Adapted and personalised Key Stage 4 Curriculum, including Access Arrangements being put in place for exams.
How is the decision made about the type and how much support my child will receive?
The Learning Support Department will analyse pupil progress data and after discussion with Heads of Department and communication with parents, the type of support, intervention and duration will be decided.
How will my child be included in activities outside the school classroom including school trips?
Staff are available after school, by prior arrangement, to support homework. A special need does not exclude a pupil from attending extra-curricular activities, clubs and off site visits. A risk assessment is carried out prior to offsite activities to ensure the health and safety of all will not be compromised. Teaching Assistant support will be provided where necessary.
What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?
We have a vertical tutoring system, (mixed ages from Year 7-11 in each tutor group) which enables the tutor to form a positive relationship with each pupil with the intention that the tutor is the first point of contact for your child. There are four houses and each Head of House is responsible for following up pastoral concerns where appropriate. There is a Pupil Support Department which includes the management of medical and attendance issues. To further support pupils with emotional, behavioural and social issues, we have a ‘well-being’ centre.
Who should I contact for SEN concerns?
Head of Learning Support (SENCo) - Mrs D. Morgan (General SEN concerns, Dyslexia screening and Access Arrangements, Annual Reviews)
Intervention Manager – Mrs C. Lee (all interventions, including Literacy Studies, the Alternative Curriculum in Year 7 and 1:1 tuition)
Please use the school phone number 0118 9817474 or the relevant staff email found on the website.
We will return your call/ email if we are unavailable for immediate contact.
What training have the staff supporting SEND had or what training are they having?
Within the Learning Support Department there are three qualified teaching staff and ten Teaching Assistants (TAs) with a range of expertise between them.
Our Teaching Assistants have received training to support reading, spelling, speech and language support and take part in whole staff training events with teaching staff.
The Learning Support Teaching staff have over 30 years combined experience of teaching pupils with SEN, which has included a range of provisions including primary schools, secondary schools and pupil referral units.
Between them they have acquired:
- SENCO accreditation (National Award for SEN Coordination)
- Post Graduate Diploma in Special Education and Inclusion
- Certificate of Psychometric Testing, Assessment and Access Arrangements – registered with the British Psychological Society and Dyslexia Action
- SpLD training (dyslexia training)
- Dyscalculia recognition and support.
How accessible is the school both indoors and outdoors?
The school is separated into 8 blocks some of which have two storeys. There are no lift facilities due to the age of the buildings. However, there are some ramps to the lower levels with facilities for disabled parking and toilet facilities in the main block. We would seek advice from the appropriate agencies according to pupil disabilities to accommodate need where possible.
How are parents involved in the school? How can I get involved?
There are many opportunities throughout the school year for parents to meet staff and get involved with their child’s education and progress.
Questionnaires and evaluation feedback may be asked for following an intervention that your child has received.
Who can I contact for further information or advice?
- The first point of contact is always your child’s tutor who can be contacted using the school number: 0118 9817474 or the relevant staff email address as publicised on the school website.
- You could arrange to meet one of the Learning Support teachers.
- You could look at the SEND policy on the school website
- Parent voice –Support4SEND staff have moved to Hampshire SENDIASS.
You can contact them in different ways:
Phone: 0808 164 5504
- You could get advice from the Basingstoke and Dean team of educational psychologists: Telephone 01252 814835
- You can look on the Department for Education website.
Will my child be consulted about their special educational needs?
Pupils will have the opportunity to discuss their progress with their subject teachers at regular intervals. Pupils receiving specific interventions will be closely involved in discussing subject specific difficulties and strategies to support their needs.
Pupils with an Education, Health Care Plan (EHCP) will be invited to attend their Annual Review to express their views.
Pupils with special educational needs may be asked for feedback on the support they receive.
How do I contact the Governing Board?
The Chair of Governors is Prof. N. Godfrey and maybe contacted c/o The Hurst Community College.
How does the governing body get involved in the needs of pupils’ with SEN?
The governing body monitor the interventions provided and the curriculum delivered on a regular basis. SEN staff attend governors meeting to demonstrate the latest range of strategies used to support children with special educational needs and disabilities.
How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new setting or to the next stage of education or life?
During the summer term, the Learning Support teachers collect information from the local primary SENCo’s. Individual meetings with parents may be held for some pupils with more complex needs.
During June, we invite a selection of vulnerable Year 6 pupils to attend a series of visits to become familiar with our setting and meet some of the key members of staff.
In July, Year 6 parents will be invited to attend an evening meeting to discuss transition.
In Year 9 and throughout Key Stage 4, GCSE option and career advice is available and the local colleges are visited. The Learning Support staff liaise with the local colleges in the summer term regarding support that SEN pupils may be need in the future. This includes access arrangements that have been put in place for exams.
Where can I find the local authority’s ‘local offer’?
The Hampshire County Council website has details of all the providers in the local area. www.hants.gov.uk
Updated November 2019