SEN Information Report July 2019

Aims and Objectives: ‘Every teacher is a teacher of SEND’.


  • Provide every child with access to a broad and balanced education. This is in line with the SEND Code of Practice.
  • Promote independence, equality and consideration and respect for others.
  • Ensure that we celebrate a wide range of success.
  • Support all students by offering multiple pathways for progression.
  • Create an ‘open-door’ ethos for parents/carers.


  • To ensure that referral information is detailed and that the needs of students are identified as early as possible.
  • Monitor progress of all pupils to ensure full potential.
  • Make appropriate provision within school to overcome barriers to learning. This will be co-ordinated by Senco but monitored and delivered by all staff to ensure targets are met and progress made.
  • Include parents and carers to gain the best understanding of the student, involve them in all aspects of their education and feedback regularly on progress made.
  • Work with, and in support of, outside agencies when extra help is needed such as Educational Psychology, ELCAS or Speech and Language services.
  • Encourage students by offering the opportunity to voice their own opinions and encourage positive relationships with peers and staff.
  1. What kinds of special educational needs do we make provision for in our school?

The Heights is an Alternative Provision Free School. We cater for young people at KS3 and KS4 needing to be re- engaged with education by providing a predominantly practical and vocational range of courses underpinned by English, Maths , Science and Functional Skills. We are committed to to an inclusive education and aim to provide personalised learning to meet the needs of individuals and developing personal progress.

The Heights houses a Nurture Provision for KS2 and KS3 pupils which provides a short term intervention strategy addressing barriers to learning arising from social, emotional and / or mental health issues.

2. How does our school know if your child needs extra help?

We liaise closely with our referring schools to find out as much background information as we can about your child, their individual needs and any issues, academic or personal, that they may experience.

The Senco is responsible for coordinating all support for pupils with SEND to ensure that all pupils have access to an appropriate curriculum.

We know when pupils need help if

  • concerns are raised by subject staff, parent or pupil
  • limited progress is being made
  • behaviour patterns suggest that the pupil is struggling.

On arrival at school, a number of assessments are carried out, including WRIT, WRAT 4, TOWRE  and Digit Memory, all of which highlight potential strengths and discrepancies in the pupils’ learning.

Nurture provision undertake a Boxall Profile and a Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire.


3. Who can you speak to at our school if you think your child may have special educational needs?

If you have concerns about your child, you can come and discuss them at any time. You can talk to any of the following people:

  •  Head of School – Gary Holding
  • Special Educational Needs Coordinator – Nicola Graves
  • Manager of Nurture Provision – Tina Hulme

4. How do we know what progress your child is making and how will we keep you informed?

Monitoring progress is an integral and essential part of teaching and learning at The Heights. Pupils, staff, parents and governors are involved in reviewing the impact of interventions and learning. Progress data for all learners is collated by the whole school and monitored by form tutors, subject staff, the Head of School and Governors.

We encourage an ‘open door’ policy providing parents with the opportunity for face-to-face discussion or to phone for information and/or support.

We hold regular celebration assemblies and parents’ evenings throughout the year.

5. How will our school support your child and how will teaching be adapted to meet their needs?

We are committed to giving your child every opportunity to achieve. Using the results from early testing, support will be put in place in the classroom and individually if necessary, to help your child make the best possible progress. Access to our dedicated Link room is always available if extra support is needed on a short or longer term intervention. Access arrangements can be put in place for external exams if necessary.

6. How are decisions made about the type and extent of support my child will receive?

Teaching is differentiated to match the needs of the pupil. Following the assessment process recommendations are made to the relevant teaching staff.

Class sizes are small to ensure that all our pupils are given maximum attention and support. Targets are set and reviewed regularly. Dedicated learning support is available and additional provision such as a Dyslexia specialist, Educational Psychologist or advice from the Inclusion Support Servicemay be necessary.

If, through discussion with yourself, the Senco and other staff in the school, it is agreed that the school cannot meet your child’s needs through existing resources, an application may be made to the Local Authority for an Education, Health and Care Plan. This process can be found on the local offer website.

7. How will our school help you to support your child’s learning?

We actively encourage you as a parent to be involved with your child’s learning. Staff are always available to discuss your child’s programmes of study and work is available for your child to undertake at home. For further details, contact the school.

8. What specialist services and expertise are available or accessible through our school?

We work closely with and have access to the following agencies to support your child’s needs:

  • Access to ISS and Educational Psychologist if appropriate
  • Careers advice
  • Specialist teacher of Dyslexia
  • Catch up programmes for Numeracy and Literacy
  • Pastoral Support
  • Access to School Nurse
  • Brook
  • Lifeline
  • Anger Management

9. How are staff in school supported to work with children with special educational needs and what training do they have?

We have an ongoing programme of training and development available in our school for all staff. Our Senco, Nicola Graves, holds the National Award for Special Educational Needs Coordination qualification and is a specialist Dyslexia teacher. All staff undertake training in relation to safeguarding, behaviour management and disability awareness and we have a number of Mental Health First Aiders in school.

10. How will our school ensure that your child is included in activities outside the classroom, including physical activities and school trips?

Activities and school visits are available to all pupils in our school and may be connected to subject area, for example Outdoor Education and Drama, or as part of our Reward Trip scheme at the end of a term or half-term. A risk assessment will always be carried out and procedures put in place to ensure that no child will be unable to participate. Physical activities are included as part of the curriculum and cover a wide range of sports and exercise. Extra-curricular activities take place on selected days after school.

11. How will our school support your child’s overall wellbeing?

We have a very robust pastoral system beginning with form tutors who are responsive to any issues in the first instance and a strong PSHCE curriculum addressing the needs and questions of many of our young people. We have a robust SEMH policy and staff qualified as Mental Health First Aiders and strong links with many external agencies including Brook, Lifeline and Engage.

School runs Pupil Voice whereby all opinions can be shared and discussed and we have a rigid Anti-bullying policy.

12.  How accessible is our school both indoors and outdoors for children with special needs?

Our school is fully accessible and compliant with the Equality Act of 2010, with dedicated disabled parking bays and ramp access to the school. Internally we have lifts and specialist changing rooms and toilet facilities. We have interactive technology used throughout the building.

13.  How will our school prepare and support your child when joining our school and when transferring to a new school?

Before your child joins our school, parents and pupils are invited for an informal tour of the building and to discuss any concerns that you may have. This is a good opportunity to meet staff and pupils and discuss subjects, timetables and any issues arising, such as any support the young person has received or may need while at school.

When pupils move on, a holistic and multi-agency approach is employed to ensure that the best decisions are made for the young person and their plans for the future, incorporating parental input.

We have close contacts with colleges and knowledge of courses. We encourage and support our pupils to visit colleges to find out what is available and also support them through the interview process.

If the pupil is KS2 or KS3 and on a short term stay at the Nurture provision, a home visit will take place and discussion with the feeder school. Pupils returning to mainstream will undergo their own transition with a key worker from their mainstream school.

14. Who can you contact for further information?

If you have concerns relating to our school provision, please speak to the Headteacher or Senco. The formal complaints procedure can be accessed on our website.

Blackburn with Darwen’s local offer sets out a range of support and services available to you and your child and can be accessed at

Nicola Graves

July 2019