Support for Learning Policy Principles One of the National Priorities is “to promote equality and inclusion and help every pupil benefit from education, with particular regard paid to pupils with disabilities and special educational needs…. ”. We hope to implement the key characteristics of inclusion within our Support for Learning policy. “Inclusive education requires the presence of all learners in one shared educational community since the exclusion of a single individual diminishes the integrity of that community”. John Hall- Special Children 1992) Learning and Teaching is at the heart of the education process. Throughout the learning process from early childhood, through schools and further education into lifelong learning, all learners require at some stage, support in the learning process.
Support for Learning seeks to ensure that the barriers to learning, be they educational, social or emotional are overcome. Aims: To ensure all pupils receive an education that helps to develop their personality, talents and mental and physical abilities to their fullest potential • To promote an inclusive approach which will meet the needs of all pupils and in turn contribute to raised levels of achievement, self-esteem and lifelong learning • To develop cultures, climates and a curriculum that fosters inclusion for all • To help establish and maintain effective and appropriate learning opportunities for all pupils through an appropriate curriculum. • To establish an inclusive network of provision for all
Principles of inclusion We endeavour to recognise and respond to the diverse needs of our learners within our existing Support for Learning provision taking account of the principles of inclusion for all. We aim to provide a climate for inclusion through enhancing our positive school ethos to establish improved partnership and co-ordinated approach to meet the needs of all pupils in our school community. ”Mainstream schools with an inclusive orientation are the most effective means of combating discriminatory attitudes and providing education for all. ” – (Salamanca Statement UNESCO 1994)
The key principles of inclusion are: • Entitlement • Inclusion • Partnership • Participation Entitlement Under the ‘Education Act 2000 there is a presumption of inclusion for all children within the educational setting. In most circumstances this will be inclusion within the local mainstream school. Inclusion Inclusion is not merely physical ‘integration’ with a school, it is an attitude that affects our thinking and practice within our own school. This will involve an on-going development to restructure our school in response to the needs of every pupil. Partnership
This is about using a ‘joined up’ approach or collaborative approach to planning and reviewing the needs of pupils involving a range of bodies from relevant sectors of Social Work, Education and Health etc. This of course will involve close partnership with parents/carers and pupils themselves. Participation This involves increasing participation of pupils within all aspects of school life and decreasing marginality of individuals or groups because of ability, race, culture, age, disablement etc. We need to involve all the pupils in decision–making in the school and we need to plan to structure the increasing participation of all pupils.
The concept of ‘inclusion’ requires us all to be continually reflective on our practice and work together to create the best for all our learners. The principles for inclusion and strategies for its implementation will feature on our School Development Plan over the next few years. General Guidance on supporting all pupils within the school As a school team we are committed to developing and promoting interdisciplinary, multi-agency working to meet the needs of learners within the school on an equal opportunities basis. The role of the class teacher is to meet the needs of all the pupils in his/her class.
The role of the multi-agency support for learning team is to collaborate with the class teacher in meeting these needs. The involvement of parents and pupils is embedded in this process. Five Roles of Support for Learning: ? To act consistently with other members of staff. ? To work co-operatively with class teachers for the benefit of all the pupils in their classes. ? To provide direct teaching and support for groups and individuals in class where appropriate. ? To collect and collate information regarding children giving cause for concern, prior to liaison with parents, internal and external agencies. To contribute, as part of the school team, to staff development programmes. Roles and responsibilities: Support for learning is the responsibility of the whole school team with the class teacher having the central role. The Head Teacher is responsible for overviewing all aspects of Support for Learning. The Support for Learning Teacher and the Head Teacher are responsible for collating materials and record keeping relative to Support for Learning. All Support for Learning Staff have job descriptions that clearly identify their role within the Support for Learning framework.
The job descriptions of the Learning Support Teacher, Leaning Support Auxiliary and Classroom Assistant are reviewed annually to take account of changing priorities/needs. All Support for Learning staff are members of Area Learning Support Team under the team leader Lena Ballantyne. Other support services for the school are provided by: • I. T. /S. E. N. Service • Speech and Language Therapist • Deaf Education Service • Vision Education Service • School Doctor and Nurse • Educational Psychologist • Occupational Therapist • Physiotherapist • Voluntary organisations • Autism Outreach Workers English as an Additional Language • Gypsy/Traveller Development Teacher Referral to the above should be monitored by the Head Teacher. Access to other specialist services can be made through the Support for Learning Team Leader and Head Teacher. Accommodation The building is equipped with facilities to cater for the needs of children with physical difficulties. Parents/Carers One of our school aims is to: “To work in partnership with parents for the benefit of all pupils”. Partnership with parents/carers is especially important in the area of Support for Learning.
This is particularly important for the education of a pupil with special educational needs. Parents and the school will establish clear working links to ensure meaningful participation. All staff should actively encourage parents/carers to be partners in their children’s learning in a variety of ways – in homework, classroom activities, participation in out-of-school visits and other extra-curricular activities. Through close working partnership with parents/carers we should endeavour to identify family/home needs and refer to appropriate agencies. Parents/Carers are welcome to discuss any concerns with Support for Learning
Staff, the Class Teacher and/or Head Teacher, by making an appointment, so a mutually convenient time can be set to meet. Similarly we can request a meeting with parents/carers whenever an issue arises or we would like to update them of pupil progress. Parents/carers will be consulted at every step of the referral process and the school values contributions the parents can make to setting and reviewing I. E. P. s. Parents/carers receive copies of short-term targets set for their child which indicate how these will be met, the support that will be put in place and the criteria for the successful meeting of these targets.
Transition Issues In order to support transition from key stages of home to primary, primary to secondary the following arrangements have been put in place. These arrangements include a three year cycle where relevant issues are identified in relation to: • Provision of appropriate equipment and accommodation needs (3 years before transition) • Relevant significant staff training and development needs e. g. in relation to Autism service provision (2 years before transition) • Detailed transition arrangements in relation to the management of individual cases (the year before transition).
This will ensure that appropriate arrangements are made for pupils well in advance of their transfer to the next stage in the learning process. Multi-disciplinary meetings will take place in the school prior to the transition of pupils with high levels of needs. Support for Learning Procedures Termly and weekly consultations Time will be identified during Collective Activity Time at the beginning and end of each term enabling each Class Teacher and the Support for Learning Teacher to meet. Weekly consultations will be timetabled with Class Teachers, either before or after class, or during assembly practices.
Support for Learning Team Meetings The Head Teacher and Support for Learning Teacher will meet weekly to update the records and discuss matters arising. A longer meeting will be held at the beginning and end of each term. The meeting at the beginning of each term will be to consider Support for Learning Requests, pupil/school priorities, and to set a skeleton timetable prior to planning meetings with the Class Teachers. Request Forms can be filled in at other times if the need arises, e. g . the arrival of a new pupil. The meeting at the end of the term will be to evaluate progress of I. E. P. targets.
The Teaching Staff and Support Staff will meet at the beginning of each term to discuss and set up a timetable for support during that term. These timetables can change termly according to priorities and needs within the school. The Support for Learning Teacher, Auxiliary and Classroom Assistant will consult where appropriate. The Auxiliary and Classroom Assistant will liaise closely with Class Teachers on a daily and weekly basis. Planning The beginning of term planning meeting during a Collective Activity session, will set the broad aims for the session and will be fine- tuned during the weekly consultations.
Each class teacher will be given a copy of the Support for Learning termly/weekly plan which will include consultation times. The Support Auxiliary and Classroom Assistant have timetables drawn up in consultation with Support for Learning Teacher and class teachers. These indicate where the support will take place, the main activities to be undertaken, consultation times and times allocated for resourcing/preparation of materials. The Support for Learning Teacher will keep a daily Record of Work. Planning/reporting/recording forms
Copies of all forms necessary for planning/recording/reporting Support for Learning measures are kept in a folder in the Learning Support filing cabinet. Many of the forms including I. E. P. s are now completed and updated on the computer through I. E. P. writers. End of Teaching Block Evaluation The end of teaching block meeting will be used to evaluate the work completed and set the next steps for the planning meeting. This meeting can also be used to complete the Support for Learning Request Form. Staged Referral System We have a staged referral system which puts the pupils needs in priority categories.
These categories do not remain static for all pupils and pupils can move from one stage to another as their needs change. At all meetings, a record will be kept and a review date will be set to evaluate input, strategies, etc. A decision will then be made as to whether or not the support provision is appropriate and what course of action to take next, e. g. continue at this level of support or return to the stage of support below or move on to the next stage above. Stage 1: Procedure for Class Consultations Staff present: Class/Nursery Teacher and Support for Learning Teacher.
Concerns are aired and discussed and appropriate support is put in place e. g. learning strategies, differentiated resources, direct support from Learning Support Teacher/Auxiliary etc. These pupils are put on a monitoring list. Stage 2 Procedure for Internal Review Staff present: Head Teacher, Class/Nursery Teacher and Support for Learning Teacher and Support for Learning Auxiliary/Classroom Assistant (if appropriate) and members of other agencies involved within the school, e. g. the Speech and Language Therapist. Input by other agencies may be met by a written report.
Concerns are aired and discussed, short-term targets are set up, previous steps and targets are reviewed and next steps are decided. These targets are shared with parents, pupil and Learning Support Auxiliary, if appropriate. This stage may involve referral to an outside agency as well as in- school provision. The Head Teacher co-ordinates outside referrals. Stage 3: Multi-Disciplinary Meeting Stage 3 meetings involve pupils who have a Record of Need or other significant needs. These meetings will be called by the Head Teacher, and may contain parents, members of the wider network of support e. . medical staff, social worker psychologists, etc. Meetings of this type may also be called by the external agencies, e. g. Educational Psychologist as part of a Record of Needs Review. The onus would then be on these agencies to circulate a record of the meeting to all appropriate parties. These meetings will involve all concerned reporting on assessments etc. carried out and summarising recommendations for future. Records kept by school A record is kept of pupils at Stage I of referral, and this record is transferred to next classroom teacher and held in the pupils P.
P. R. files. A separate file for each pupil with an I. E. P is held in the Support for Learning filing cabinet. Records of Needs are held separately in a confidential file in the school office. All records will be updated and amended by the Support for Learning Teacher or the Head Teacher. Individualised Educational Programmes Individualised Educational Programmes (I. E. P. s) will be drawn up for those pupils with special educational needs who require significant, planned intervention, e. g. those with a Record of Needs and those at Stage 3. See Appendix 2 in section 1:Principles, Issues and Advice in ‘Success for All’ for deciding on whether pupils should have I. E. P. S). All forms/information relating to this along with an individual I. E. P. overview are held within individuals I. E. P. folders. The Individual Educational Programmes will be drawn up in collaboration with class teacher, other agencies and parents and evaluated within our normal planning and evaluation system. An overall overview of I. E. P. s is kept by the Head Teacher. Timetabling procedures for implementing and reporting of I.
E. P. s To attempt to address the requirements of I. E. P. s and meet Scottish Office deadlines, the following format should be followed: Procedures: 1. OCTOBER – Review short-term targets and long term targets set for previous period August to June with classteacher and management 2. DECEMBER – Review/set new short term targets with class teacher and management 3. MARCH – Review/set short term targets with class teacher and management 4. JUNE – A copy of long-term I. E. P. targets is issued to parents in June along with pupil reports – I.
E. P. s of primary 7 pupils are forwarded to Secondary School in late May/June 5. SEPTEMBER – Head Teacher completes Scottish Office returns on I. E. P. targets in collaboration with Support Teacher. In effect the I. E. P. year runs October to October Records of Needs All copies of Records of Need are held in a confidential file in the school office. They should not be removed without the permission of the Head Teacher and should only be viewed by Staff directly working with pupil and with parents/guardians permission.
When a pupil with a record leaves the school, the record should be forwarded to the Area Education Office, it should not be passed directly to the transferring school. Collective Activity Time and Inset Commitments As we share our Learning Support teacher with another school, the above days are attended on a pro-rata basis in line with Highland Council Policy and prioritised according to the School Development Plan and Teachers Forward Planning sessions. Members of the Support for Learning Team also attend six Inset afternoons in the Area Support Base. Resources
Most of the resources required for implementation of Support for Learning are available throughout the school, but specialist resources and professional references are held in the Learning Support Base. A list of Support resources is held in all classrooms. The use of I. C. T. has an important role to play in supporting pupils with identified needs and we have a variety of computer software packages and aids to support pupils with learning difficulties. Monitoring and review Support for Learning and its practice throughout the school is reviewed as part of the cycle of School Development planning.
Monitoring is on-going as part of the Quality Assurance and monitoring procedure. (See whole school Quality Assurance, monitoring and Review Policy) Staff Development and review Areas for Staff Development are identified at Staff Development and Review meetings in conjunction with whole School Development Planning. Staff training for’ inclusion’ will have a high priority over the next few years to enable us to undertake the steps in becoming a truly inclusive’ school where we are able to support all pupils the best we can. (See attached appendices 1-4 for Support for Learning Forms) Appendix 1a, Appendix 1b, Appendix 2, Appendix 3, Appendix 4