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Special Educational Needs

We are a primary academy, and we admit pupils aged 4 to 11 years.  
We are an inclusive school. This means we provide for children with all types of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). The areas of need that are described in the SEND Code of Practice are: 

  • Communication and interaction – this includes children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) and those with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) including Asperger’s syndrome.  
  • Cognition and learning – this includes children and young people with moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD) and profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD). This also includes children and young people with specific learning difficulties (SpLD) such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.  
  • Social, emotional and mental health difficulties – social, emotional and mental health difficulties may manifest themselves in many ways including becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. Other children and young people may have disorders such as attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder.
  • Sensory and/or physical needs – this includes children and young people with visual impairment (VI), hearing impairment (HI), multi-sensory impairment (MSI) and physical disability (PD) 

Children and young people with any of these needs can be included within our academy community, as long as the attendance of the child would be compatible with the efficient education of others and use of resources. Whilst these four categories broadly identify the primary areas of need for children and young people, our academy will consider the needs of the whole child or young person and not just their special educational needs. 

We follow an ‘assess, plan, do, and review’ cycle to ensure that we meet the needs of children with special educational needs.  
Where a child makes less than expected progress, the class teacher, in conjunction with the special educational needs coordinator (SENCo), assesses whether the child has special educational needs (SEN). Where a pupils is identified as having SEN, the academy will plan (in conjunction with the pupils and parent/carer) the child’s teaching by identifying the outcomes that are being aimed for, and by identifying and planning the provision needed to meet the outcomes. The resulting SEN support plan will then be implemented, and regularly reviewed, at least three times a year.  
The ‘assess, plan, do, and review’ cycle helps everyone to work together to continually improve the support so that the child makes good progress in mainstream classes. 

When a child is making smaller steps of progress in our specialist facility class, they have an individual learning plan specific to their needs, which is reviewed termly. 

Doves Class - Special Facility for Both Physical Disability and Moderate Learning Difficulties

We have a dedicated class for children with both a physical disability and moderate learning difficulty. All children accessing this classroom have an education health and care plan (EHCP) and have the placement named within this. The EHCP must specifically name the ' specialist facility at West St Leonards' and not just 'West St Leonards Primary Academy'.

This class has an experienced SEN teacher and support staff. We offer a flexible and well resourced learning environment. Children will experience personalised learning and higher staff to pupil ratio than in the mainstream classes. Afternoon sessions are spent within the mainstream environment where the children access a differentiated curriculum along with their peers of the same age, allowing them to broaden their social and learning skills, not only with children in the Doves class but also with children who are the same age as them in the mainstream class. Our physically disabled pupils with a moderate learning difficulty must be able to access the mainstream classes in order to be offered a place.

We work closely with external agencies to provide programmes of support for individuals. Where appropriate, we aim to incorporate advice from therapists into the children’s everyday timetables. 

Before expressing a parental preference on an EHCP, please visit the school first to ensure the provision is correct for your child's needs.

Please address your concerns to Ms S. Oberheim, Inclusion Lead to the office email

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