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Primary Academy

SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities)

Please contact:

Lianne Vickers, Assistant Principal and SENDCo, at


SEND Report September 2023


At Didcot Primary Academy, we recognise that all children have a right to a broad, balanced relevant and differentiated curriculum.  We aim to create a happy, educationally exciting and positive environment in which all pupils can develop to their full potential.  We recognise that children are individuals, that each one has needs special to them.


We aim to:

  • Ensure that our curriculum is responsive to all children, whatever their individual need
  • Promote positive attitudes and individual confidence
  • Ensure all children experience success
  • Identify, assess, record and regularly review pupils' special educational needs
  • Encourage parents/guardians to be involved in planning and supporting at all stages of their child's development using person centred planning
  • Make effective use of support services


The Oxfordshire County Council Local Offer for Children with SEND and disabilities can be found here. This sets out the local support which is on offer for children and how to access it. It includes contact details for SENDIASS who are an independent support service for parents of children with SEND who can provide guidance and support.


Definition of SEND

A child has a learning disability if they:

  • have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or
  • 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.

(Code of Practice DfE 2014)


DPA can cater for children with all types of SEND whose needs can be met by the facilities provided in a mainstream setting through reasonable adaptions of the environment and curriculum.


Our admissions policy for children with SEND.

If there are more applications received than there are places, any children for whom the school is named in an Education Health & Care Plan will take priority over other applicants when being offered a place.


Information and Guidance - Points of contact

Who should I contact to discuss concerns or needs of my child?

DPA is committed to working in partnership with parents and will listen to any concerns parents may wish to raise.  Please contact the school to arrange a meeting.

  • Class teacher is the first point of contact.  They monitor the progress of each child and liaise with key staff about interventions needed if necessary.
  • The SENDCO (also the Inclusion Manager) deals with concerns which cannot be dealt with by the class teacher. An appointment can be made through the main office.
  • The SEND governor, oversees SEND provision and contact can be made through the main office if you wish to discuss the provision given by the school.
  • Please follow the school complaints policy (on the website) if you have concerns that have not been resolved by contacting the class teacher and SENDCo.


Assessment, planning and review/ Partnerships for Progress

How does the school know how well my child is doing?

  • Targets are set in reading, writing and maths for each pupil which are monitored termly.
  • Class teachers attend a pupil progress meeting each term with the Principal to discuss the progress of each pupil. The rates of progress are monitored and those pupils not making the expected progress are identified.
  • Ongoing teacher assessment strategies are used to determine progress and attainment.
  • Regular review meetings are held with the class teacher, SENDCo and Principal to track progress towards outcomes and evaluate interventions.
  • Diagnostic marking is used in literacy and maths and provides feedback to pupils.
  • More specialist assessments and monitoring is put into place to evaluate children’s progress against individual outcomes outside the main curriculum if required
  • Learning Plan/EHCP targets and review meetings monitor progress towards individual areas for development for children on the SEND register.


How will I be kept informed about how well my child is doing? 

How regularly will I be updated on my child's progress? How can I be involved in planning for my child?

  • Parents are invited to 'Learning Reviews' at least twice a year to discuss progress, attainment levels and expected outcomes with the class teacher.
  • If your child is on the SEND register you will have three additional review meetings each year. These will be with the class teacher but the SENDCo will attend if parents/ teachers ask her to. These are referred to as Learning Plan meetings (formerly known as Pupil Profile meetings).
  • EHC plans are reviewed termly and each year will include a formal annual review where all professionals involved and parents are invited so that the EHC plan can be updated and outcomes assessed.
  • An annual report to parents/carers is written by the class teacher which details the achievements, strengths and areas of development in the different curriculum areas.  A settling in report and mid-year summary report is also distributed to all parents.


Will I know if my child is not making progress and what will happen?

  • If a child is not making expected progress, after some short term additional support and ongoing quality first teaching, then the possibility of SEND will be discussed. Class teachers will meet with parents to discuss any concerns they may have and complete a SEND concern form. If a SEND need is still a possibility, the Oxfordshire County Council SEND descriptors are used to identify need and the SENDCo completes an observation of the child in class. If SEND needs are apparent, parents will be invited as part of a Learning Plan meeting and the child will be added to the SEND register.
  • Strategies will be put in place in order for the identified pupils to reach their expected outcomes. These will be regularly evaluated.
  • Learning Plans will outline the strategies which are used to support the child. These are reviewed each term and shared with parents three times a year, taking into account the view of the child, parents and staff.
  • These Learning Plans will contain outcomes specific to your child’s needs and the support given to help them progress. Parents will be involved in contributing to the Learning Plans so that all knowledge about the child is captured.
  • Additional support may be provided after discussions with key staff, parents/carers, pupils and where relevant, external agencies.
  • The school identifies the needs of SEND pupils on a provision map.  This identifies all support given within school and is reviewed regularly with changes made as needed.  In this way the needs of the children are met and resources are deployed as effectively as possible.
  • The school will seek external support for children continuing to experience significant difficulty - this may involve an application for an Education Health and Care Plan assessment.  
  • School staff may informally discuss progress with parents/carers as needed.


Curriculum and Teaching Methods (Including groupings and interventions)

What is the curriculum and how is it taught? How will the curriculum be adapted to meet the needs of my child? How flexible can teachers be in meeting the needs of my child? Is there any additional support available to help my child reach his/her expected outcomes?

  • The school will be using the National Curriculum as a basis of our learning.
  • Class teachers are responsible for the learning of ALL children in their class and they ensure that all children receive 'quality first teaching' - keeping children working with their peers for the majority of the time.
  • Teachers are skilled at adapting and differentiating the curriculum to take account of individual pupil needs. We have high expectations for all children, including those with SEND, and make the necessary adaptations for children to meet those high standards.
  • Teachers are able to take into account different learning styles and use them to ensure that they meet the needs of all the children in their class.
  • Additional staff training takes place throughout the year to provide for individual children’s needs, ensure skills are up to date and make sure that the latest information and research is disseminated.
  • First hand experiences through visits are explored when topics are planned.  Grouping arrangements are organised carefully to maximise the learning opportunities for all.
  • Support and reasonable adaptations can also be put in place to enable children with SEND to access extra-curricular activities if required.
  • Additional adults may be used to support groups or individuals, but being on the SEND register does not necessarily mean that your child will be allocated one to one support as independence must also be fostered. Children may be identified as benefitting from intervention programmes or individual resources within the classroom. Children may receive support within class time or at unstructured times, such as lunchtime, if deemed necessary.
  • Progress within these programmes is carefully monitored and the impact of the intervention evaluated. This is done through data tracking, meetings with staff and provision mapping.
  • A range of intervention programmes in the areas of literacy, numeracy, language, social, emotional and motor skills are available to support individuals and groups and there are staff trained to deliver them.
  • The use of intervention programmes is monitored by assessing their impact both at an individual and group level.
  • Intervention programmes are continually under review. The individual interventions and strategies used, and the impact they have, are tracked through the Learning Plans and regularly evaluated and adapted as needed to meet children’s needs.
  • Advice from educational agencies such as Educational Psychology, Communication and Interaction Team, health agencies such as speech and language therapy, occupational therapy and CAMHS may be sought if your child is on the SEND register. Parent opinions will be sought before external help becomes involved.


Access to learning and the Curriculum

Are there any special features or strategies to help children learn? How do I know my child's particular needs will be met? How are children’s opinions taken into account?


  • Children are involved in their own learning and are able to feed their opinions into the topics taught.
  • Children are made aware of their targets and next steps and their opinions are sought regularly on what supports them best. This is done both informally and through formal ‘pupil voice’ such as questionnaires.
  • They receive feedback on progress through discussions with teachers and diagnostic marking.
  • Self-evaluation is also encouraged.
  • In EYFS and Year One, daily phonics lessons are taught using Read, Write Inc. This may be supplemented by individual sessions if required.
  • Lessons are differentiated where appropriate.
  • Learning walls in the classrooms support the learning of literacy and mathematics.  
  • ICT is used to support learning, including computer programmes.
  • Some classes/ identified pupils may be allocated support staff and have access to guided group work.
  • External agencies can provide advice and may offer individual or group tuition depending on a pupil's individual need. Advice is incorporated into pupil profiles.
  • All classes have a visual timetable on display which details the daily planned activities.  Some pupils have their own visual timetable or other visual supports.
  • The school's physical environment is accessible to all learners including those with disabilities.
  • Reasonable adjustments are made to help pupils to learn.  For example, some pupils may use special equipment such as pencil grips, sound amplification systems and sloped writing desks.
  • Children may be identified as benefitting from social skills groups and the use of social stories.
  • School has access to a range of screeners and diagnostic tools to identify specific needs and ensure the appropriate support is in place.
  • The SENDCo provides daily advice and support to staff to meet the specific needs of children in their classes.


Test and Assessments - Access Arrangements

What arrangements are available for pupils to access tests and assessments? How will I know if my child qualifies for additional support or time to access tests?


  • Year 6 pupils may be assessed to determine whether individuals qualify for additional time or other access arrangements.
  • Some pupils for statutory tests (Year 2 and 6) access them in a smaller environment and support for reading of tests or writing for pupils may be requested as appropriate and to comply with test guidelines.
  • The school adheres to current access arrangements for Key Stage 1 and 2 Statutory tests.
  • Class teachers will inform parents/carers whether their child qualifies for additional support or time to access tests. Learning Plans will include any support children will receive during tests.
  • Booster and target groups are run throughout the school year.


Social and Emotional support

How does the school help my child to feel comfortable and safe and manage social situations? How does the school help develop my child's social and emotional skills? What is the school's policy on bullying?

  • All classes follow a structured PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economical) education programme.
  • Teachers identify children who would benefit from small group interventions to develop their social and emotional skills.
  • Behaviour support strategies, developed with teachers, learning support assistants and the Principal, help children to manage their behaviour.
  • Home/school liaison, including a family support worker, enables close partnerships.
  • Strong ethos of pastoral care
  • Anti-bullying policy and procedures are available on the website. Bullying is not tolerated in any form.
  • Transition preparation supports children to be emotionally ready for the next phase of their education.
  • The school has a trained ELSA (Emotional literacy support assistant) who runs nurture groups, individual and group session to help develop emotional literacy skills.
  • The school has a SLT mentoring scheme to support children who find social situations difficult.
  • Pupil voice is gathered regularly, and includes questions about bullying, to ensure all children feel safe.


Accessibility to Premises and Facilities

What facilities are in the school to assist children with disabilities move around the building and take part in all lessons? How do I know my child will be able to access all lessons?

  • The building and play areas are accessible to wheelchair users.
  • Disabled toilet
  • Awareness of sensory issues
  • Reasonable adjustments are made by staff to ensure children with disabilities can access all lessons and whole school activities.
  • Trips will be planned taking into account the needs of children with disabilities.
  • The accessibility plan is available on the website and ensures the equipment and facilities are suitable for children with SEND.
  • Regular monitoring and audits by the SLT ensure disabled pupils are not treated less favourably than other pupils.


Working with others 

Who does the school work with? How does the school work with other agencies? How will I be informed?

DPA works with a number of services including:

  • Educational psychology services
  • SEND Support Service 
  • The Early Years SEND Team
  • Communication and Interaction advisory teachers
  • Speech and Language Service
  • SENDIASS (Parent support service)
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Complex Needs Team
  • School Nurse
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
  • The Special Educational Needs Casework Team
  • Voluntary organisations, such as AFSO or Seesaw.
  • The SENDCO liaises with class teachers, leadership team and parents to prioritise referrals to these services.
  • Referrals to services may also come about following pupil review meetings.  This will be discussed with parents/carers.
  • Parents views will be sought and they may be invited or can request to meet with the service.
  • Reports and recommendations are shared with parents and expected outcomes and strategies to meet those outcomes are planned.
  • The school is fully supportive and provides any requested information for social or health care bodies. We work in partnership with parents to ensure access to these services is available when required.



How will the school help my child settle with confidence and manage change as they move between schools and year groups?


Early years Transition

  • The class teacher generally attends transition meetings for pupils with SEND making the transition from Pre School to nursery or reception easier.
  • Class teacher visits child in setting or home.
  • Parents are invited to a pre-admission meeting.
  • The Early Years SEND team provide additional transition support to children who have severe SEND needs.
  • An individual transition is planned as needed.


Moving on at Year 6

  • Key staff and often some year 7 students from the secondary school will visit DPA and speak to the year 6 pupils transferring to their school.
  • All pupils in Year 6 are invited to a familiarisation at their secondary school.
  • Children are prepared for the visit and given information in advance as necessary.
  • Additional visits to the secondary school may be arranged for individuals or groups as needed.
  • Transition arrangements are planned at Year 5 and 6 Education, Health and Care Plan reviews.
  • Secondary schools are invited to attend EHCP reviews.
  • SENDCO attends Year 6 to Year 7 SEND transfer meeting.
  • Information transferred in advance of move.


Moving schools

If your child is moving to another school we will:

  • Contact the school SENDCo and ensure that he/she knows about any special arrangements or support that need to be made for your child.
  • Make sure all records for your child are passed on as soon as possible.

If your child joins us from another school we will:

  • Contact the school SENDCo to find out about any special arrangements or support that needs to be made for your child.
  • Meet with parents to discuss any concerns and plan any support


Moving classes

  • Transition visits to new classes are planned in the second half of the summer term.
  • Identified pupils may have a number of additional visits to the new class and individual transition preparation.
  • In the summer term, parents of children with SEND will meet with the current teacher to write a new Learning Plan to support transition to the next class.






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