How we identify children with SEND within our setting:
When a child first starts at our setting we liaise with the child’s parent/carer to gather information regarding the child. If the child has been identified with having additional needs, we support that child using information and liaising with any professional already involved with support e.g. Speech and language therapist or Health visitor.
For the children who have not already been identified with additional needs:
Additional needs and those children who need extra support, are identified by staff getting to know the children and families by having a key person system, where the children are observed and their progress tracked and recorded in their learning journal. We also ask the parent/carer to complete a Unique child book, which gives us lots of information regarding, eating, sleeping, Health, development, likes, dislikes. Every Child a Talker (ECaT) audits are regularly carried out to help early identification of any Speech and Language (SAL) delays
If there are any concerns the setting’s Special Educational Needs and Disability Co-ordinator (SENDCo) is aware and the appropriate professional will be contacted in order to support the child/children.
We are supported by our Early Years Support Teacher and Area SENDCo, whom we can contact at any time for advice and support.
The setting SENDCo also ensures that strategies and Individual Education Plans (I.E.P’s) are in place. For each child that may need additional support, the setting SENDCo will liaise with parent/carers to gain any permission needed, also keeping them informed and updated.
We continually track children’s progress and development, with the guidance of the Early year’s foundation stage statuary and non-statuary framework.
We have a named and dedicated SENDCo, whose role and responsibility is to ensure that children identified with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), are supported by their key person, this also applies to children who have English as an additional language. The SENDCo’s role is also to offer direct support for the staff and liaise with appropriate professionals for support.
Every child within the setting will be allocated a Key Person.
We work as a team and every member of staff supports every child within the setting, this way the child does not become too reliant on the key person and hopefully will still thrive and enjoy the setting if their allocated Key person is absent or leaves the setting.
However if we know beforehand that your child needs extra support if possible 1-1 support will be given for as long as needed.
If there are other professionals involved with your child, we will work closely with them and use their advice to support your child. We would also appreciate any advice from you as the parent/carer.
If a Speech and Language therapist has more than 2 children from the same setting assigned he/she will come into the setting to observe and then give feedback and advice to each child’s Key Person, the speech therapist will also give you feedback on your child’s progress.
If you have any concerns and feel that your child requires extra support which may be undertaken within our setting, we work closely with Early Years Support Teachers who will advise on strategies to support your child. They can also apply for additional funding and will make referrals to other professionals on your behalf.
The children who attended our setting are continuously monitored through observation, assessment and planning. The children are tracked termly and a discussion with key person and Lead/SENDCo takes place to ensure that any areas of development that show up as risk of delay are addressed and these areas are also included within the child’s next step provision. Your Key Person will discuss your child’s development on a regular basis. At our setting we try to include every child within our curriculum, remembering that every child is an individual so planning cannot be set in stone. Planning may need to be flexible so that it can appropriately be altered and adapted to suit the child’s individual needs, age, and stage of development.
Individual next steps are planned for each child by their key person, to ensure that each child is supported throughout the seven areas of learning.
Some children may have an IEP, the plan is discussed with the setting SENDCo, key person and child’s parent/carer, the IEP will be regularly monitored and updated when needed.
We ensure that Parent/ carers have regular access to their child’s updated records. We have open evenings and end of term meetings, although parent/carers may discuss their child at any time not just on a termly basis. Parent/carers are asked to contribute to their child’s Learning Story, we still use hard copies, a learning journal that also has photos, and some of the child’s work inside too. Looking through previous journals can show progress over time, especially forming letters and making meaning to marks as well as physical changes. The parents are also given a unique child book to complete so we can obtain knowledge of the child outside of the setting.
If a child has an IEP, the plan will be shared with parents on a regular basis, time shared depends on what targets have been set and on the progress of the child.
We are happy to help parent/cares with information and strategies that can be used at home.
We have all appropriate policies and procedures in place at the setting which are regularly reviewed by the staff and management committee. Policies are updated to ensure that any important information and changes are made. All staff and students are given copies of our policies and procedures, staff are made aware of any changes or updates to policies.
All staff have been DBS (previously known as CRB) checked and any new member of staff will need their DBS and two written references in place before their employment with us commences. When we interview for staff, a person who has had training in safer recruitment sits on the interview panel.
In line with polices and guidance we have a medication record book, accident and incident books and a children’s dietary and allergy list which is kept updated.
We ensure that children are kept safe at our setting, by completing regular risk assessments and practicing emergency evacuations at every session each term for one full week. Most of our staff are paediatric first aid trained, and there always at least 8 first aid staff on duty every session.
Children are supported and encouraged to be independent where ever possible and all children will be supported in order for them to achieve e.g. snack time – wash hands, pour own milk/water, cut and peel fruit (with child friendly knives).
Parent/carers are made aware of any management behaviour practice which may relate to their child, parent/carers are invited to participate and discuss any strategies that may need to be planned and put in to practice at the setting and at home
As well as structure there are lots of opportunities for children to free flow and make their own choices.
Our main source of support is through the settings appointed Early Years Advisory Teacher (EYAT). The EYAT support and specialise in early year’s education and children with SEN. The EYAT will also offer advice and support with Children who have English as additional language. The EYAT offer support in a range of areas from general advice and guidance to making referrals to appropriate specialists such as:
- Speech and language therapy
- Occupational Therapy
- Educational psychologist
The setting SENDCo has had relevant training and completed “the role of the Early years Special educational needs co-coordinator”
The SENDCo attends termly inclusion conferences run by the EYAT. We feel it is important to attend these meetings as this ensures that the staff and setting are kept up to date with legislation, good practice and any new training. Information from these meetings will be shared with the staff at staff meetings. We also have staff that have recently attended “working with children with Autism in early years” training.
We plan and differentiate activities so every child may have the opportunity to participate whether the activity is planned indoors or outdoors. Some activities must be risk assessed and may need to be adapted to suit individual children. We have annual trips to the public library and post box, we ensure that on these trips we have a 1 adult to 2 children ratio, appropriate risk assessments are carried out and more than one first aider will always be present on these outings. All parents/carers are requested to participate with offsite trips to country or theme parks. The Parent/carers (management committee) choose the annual offsite trip.
Key Person, Lead/Deputy practitioner is always available to answer questions or discuss concerns at any time.
We consider each child when planning an offsite outing and if for any reason the trip is a risk or not suitable for a particular child we make adjustments or alternative arrangements.
Our building has wide doorways with no steps on entrance or exits, also :
• Our building is fully wheelchair accessible
• The setting has disabled toileting facilities
• If needed we would try our best to have an interpreter come into the setting to translate and support parent/carers with EAL
• Nappy changing facilities
• We plan and differentiate activities so every child may have the opportunity to participate whether the activity is planned indoors or outdoors.
Preparation before children start at the setting:
• Parent/carers and their child/children are invited to an open day at the setting to meet the staff and have a look around
• Parent/carers and their children are also invited in for a visit to the setting
• Parent/carers are asked to complete a Unique child book and give information regarding their child to include likes, dislikes and an overall view of their child.
• Children and their parents are invited to a taster day before they start
• Parent/carers are made aware of the settings settling in policy and this is discussed with them
Transition to school
• Setting SENDCo will have a meeting with the School SENDCo to hand over and discuss any relevant information regarding children with additional needs so that any strategies/plans can be put into place for the child/children
• Learning Stories and summaries are completed and handed to the children’s relevant schools
• The setting have activities and stories based around school for the children within the setting, the staff also talk to the children and ask them how they feel about starting their new school.
• Children have school taster sessions
• For children who will be starting our onsite linked school, with written permission we will take them to their school taster session
• For those children who will attend different schools we liaise with that school and try to arrange a visit to the setting with their new teacher
Our setting is a voluntary organisation run by a parent/carer management committee, we rely on government funding for the children. We have ample and age appropriate resources for all children. Southampton City Council has supported some children with SEND although funding needs to be applied for. Some children and families may be entitled to financial help and funding through an integrated assessment process. There is 2 year funding available for children who meet the criteria, this funding starts the term after the child’s 2nd Birthday,
Also some children who meet the criteria will receive Early Years Pupil premium support.
After observing the children, staff will plan for each of their Key children, the staff take guidance from the Early Years foundation stage and plan to ensure their age, stage and development are on track. Children enjoy free flow and making their own choices. We also add structure to our sessions by planning group focused activities which link in with the key person’s next steps provision for their allocated children. We also have a narrative group to support children with their understanding, listening, social skills, communication, speech and language.
We receive advice, ideas and support from ECaT meetings, Inclusion conferences and Continuous curriculum training. Staff attend regular safe guarding training.
Parents/carers are invited in to the setting to discuss their child’s/children’s progress on a termly basis, and are asked for their knowledge and input because as parents they are the first and main educators of their children. Any concerns we have, we will discuss with parent/carers if we seek support or advice from other agencies including EYAT we will ask for parental permission first.
We are supported by parent/carers through our pre-school committee, any parent can join and have a say in how the pre-school is run. DBS and OFSTED checks must be carried out on all committee members.
We have fun days/open days also stay and play sessions where parents are invited in to the setting to see how their children learn through play.
Open evenings for formal discussions along with a friendly flexible approach which invites parent/carers to discuss, ideas, concerns, at any time.