This page provides information about Special Educational Needs and Disabilities support available for students attending the Goodwin Academy.
Information about Kent’s Local offer can be found here https://www.kent.gov.uk/education-and-children/special-educational-needs. This includes information about all the support they offer for SEND children and families. Goodwin Academy key contacts include:
SENCO: Mrs K Davies
Assistant Principal (SEN/AEN) Mrs D Bradford
1) How does the school know if young people need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?
On entry and other points of transition, Goodwin Academy (GA) liaises very closely with primary schools and other providers to ensure that our information is up to date and relevant. Where necessary, highly individualised arrangements can be put in place for students who may be vulnerable over this period. Detailed plans and interventions will already be in place for young people whose needs are already identified on entry. If a teacher or parent/carer perceives that there may be a difficulty which has not been previously identified, they can speak to the SENCo by arrangement. The SENCo will then examine the most recent learning data, speak to all of the relevant staff and may undertake or commission additional assessments/ investigations. The views of parents and carers are important to us and vital to this process.
Teaching staff may identify a student with a developing need within their classroom, in which case they will inform the Wellbeing Manager to trigger the Team Around the Child (TAC) Tier 1 (internal stakeholders) process. This will involve a round robin being sent to all class teachers to gain an insight in to the student’s progress, once all the information is gathered a TAC meeting will be held. All staff who are involved with the student will be invited, along with the SENCo where agreed strategies will be recorded. Progress will be reviewed after two weeks, if progress is made support will continue. If progress is not made, monitoring and observation by the SEND Team will be used to obtain information across the curriculum, leading to specific assessments as appropriate and a Tier 2 (internal and external stakeholders) TAC if necessary.
Using a graduated approach, specific areas of difficulty are pinpointed to identify barriers to learning and the information is collated for each year group. Heads of Year are also involved in this identification process, liaising with classroom teachers, Curriculum Leaders and Wellbeing teams, so that a complete picture may be obtained.
2) How will GA staff support my child?
GA staff will deliver quality first teaching, monitored by middle and senior leaders as part of the regular review and observation cycle. The SENCo is also responsible for ensuring that interventions impact positively in terms of outcomes for the student and represent best possible practice and value for money. Heads of Key Stage, Heads of Year, Wellbeing staff or the SENCo are available to meet parents/carers by appointment. We never assume that “one size fits all” and will always aim to ensure a bespoke provision where needs warrant.
Planning LSA deployment involves members of the SEND team, English and maths subject leaders, and the appropriate Heads of Year. Crucially, members of the SEND team meet regularly with Heads of Year and the Wellbeing Team to exchange information leading to identification and assessment, to monitor progress and to evaluate impact of interventions carried out by any of the teams and in the classroom on a daily basis, enabling co-ordinated provision.
Students with an existing statement of SEND or Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) will have provision allocated according to the objectives within the document. The support for these students will be a balance of approaches and will be based on data about student’s academic progress, personal development and welfare. It will be focused on promoting learning and will be reviewed three times a year, in the light of student progress. There will be a range of interventions driven by evidence of impact and these will be focused on the need to promote student independence, choice and ownership of learning. However, class teachers retain ownership of the learning and progress of all children they teach and the protection of students from harm, including those with a statement of SEND or an EHC Plan.
3) How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?
Students will be grouped so that learning needs may be met in individual, small group or whole class contexts.
There are three clear pathways of learning to ensure the curriculum caters for all students across all ability ranges, this is due to the range of abilities of students entering the Academy and to support students with high levels of SEND:
- Accelerate (Grammar) pathway – is designed for our more able students who achieved a standardised assessment score of 105-107+ in a suitability assessment, offering the traditional EBacc pathway with additional stretch towards Triple Science and GCSE Statistics. The pathway allows learners to pursue a wider range of academic subjects beyond KS4.
- Aspire pathway– is offered to students with the core EBacc subjects as a spine, however languages are not compulsory at GCSE. Students, who excel, have the opportunity of transferring to the Accelerate pathway allowing access to the additional stretch and challenge required. Pupils are able to choose GCSE subjects that best suit their future study plans.
- Achieve pathway– is a bespoke pathway offered to students who require additional learning support, such as literacy and/or numeracy. At GCSE, the emphasis is placed upon selecting subjects in which students are likely to succeed and support future career aspirations.
The three curriculum pathways are designed to ensure each child is enabled to achieve according to their strengths. Teaching styles and groups will reflect this approach. Curriculum tasks and activities may be broken down into a series of small and achievable steps for students who have marked learning difficulties. Physical difficulties do not present a barrier to progress in Performing Arts or Physical Education or in any practical subject where there is manipulation and movement required such as Design and Technology, Science or Art. Student needs are accommodated on an individual basis where this arises, in consultation with parents, young people and relevant health professionals. This may require combinations of adapted equipment, differentiated resources and tasks and student-focused groupings to be part of the classroom planning.
Additional interventions and resources in place include laptops, tablets and Dictaphones and aids for OT requirements such as writing slopes, ergonomic stools and cushions.
There are designated quiet, supervised rooms for lunchtime including a Film Club and dedicated after-school homework clubs, one of which has additional support exclusively for students with SEND.
In order to maximise attainment in external examinations, we liaise regularly with examination boards to implement appropriate access arrangements
4) How will I know how my child is doing?
All students are provided with a home-academy contact book with capacity for shared communication between home and school. It contains key contact details, key dates in the school calendar. Student achievement data is gathered, collated and monitored for all students at least twice a year and outcomes are shared with parents/carers over the course of the academic year. This data will also be used to identify concerns around progress and interventions implemented. The subsequent data will be used to measure the impact of intervention. Other measures are routinely used to gauge progress against other needs e.g. attendance data and other scales of emotional well-being and engagement. Parents will have regular opportunities to discuss progress with their teachers at scheduled consultation events or informally by appointment, telephone or email to individual teachers. In addition, written feedback is provided as per the calendar.
5) What Support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?
The Learning Support Centre offers the capacity for improving the emotional, mental and social development of students with SEND, delivered in conjunction with the Wellbeing Team as part of a holistic programme to remove barriers to learning. The SEND team also supports students in developing resilience and independence by promoting self-esteem and personal growth through its use of internal expertise and depth of knowledge of the students.
All young people have access to a range of facilities to support overall wellbeing. These can be internally arranged, such as time with our in-house counsellor or with one of our Wellbeing Officers. Alternatively, the Academy may deem it more appropriate to involve a specific external agency (whether through an Early Help Care (EHC) Plan, Early Help Notification (EHN) or separately). The arrangements for the appropriate support will be made in conjunction with the staff in the Wellbeing Centre as appropriate. The SEND department also accesses support from the Specialist Teaching Service and from our local special schools through the Local Inclusion Forum Team meetings which are held termly.
Goodwin Academy regularly accesses Speech and Language therapists, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy support, in addition to specific agencies such as Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. These are supplemented by our local School Nurse team. Wellbeing staff will signpost families to other agencies if necessary or arrange an EHN meeting if this is the access route to the provision.
If a young person has a medically-related need, a care plan will be drawn-up in advance and reviewed and updated regularly with Mrs Taylor (Wellbeing Manager). Staff have a duty to administer medicines where appropriate and are also trained for the administration of personal care needs. There are separate policies governing these activities.
6) What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed at or by the school?
In addition to the above, we have an excellent relationship with NELFT (CAMHS) and regularly seek advice and guidance from The Educational Psychology Team and Social Care.
7) What training has the staff supporting young people had?
The SENCo holds the The National Award for SENCOs.
Staff have undertaken specific training on strategies to support students with specific learning difficulties, communication and interaction and autism and ADHD.
Colleagues from external agencies provide workshops and discussion groups to support specific students on a regular basis. The SEND department has received training that updated skills for supporting students and in delivering access arrangements effectively and most have received Team Teach training on de-escalation techniques. They have also benefited from training on precision teaching and literacy programmes. Most importantly, they have received training in supporting students whilst developing and maintaining independence and this was extended in the last academic year.
The SEND department has organised training for staff from an Educational Psychologist that focused on resilience and its importance to learning. Training for all staff was undertaken that focused on the effective use of the LSA or additional adult in the classroom, with special reference to the Teachers’ Standards. We have also received de-escalation and restorative processes training and specific strategies for meeting the needs of young people with attachment issues.
8) How will you help me to support my child’s learning?
We welcome the support and involvement of parents in their children’s learning. Parent/carer liaison is routinely managed through the student planner/contact book. Parents/carers are encouraged to contact staff directly by telephone or by email. All staff are very happy to be very flexible in their liaison with parents to ensure that the appropriate support is in place for students both at home and in GA.
9) How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s education?
We aim to develop close and mutually supportive relationships with parent/carers from the point of transition. Where students have SEND, transition is usually extended, enhanced and bespoke and we aim to involve parents as a source of expertise around the needs of their child. There are regular opportunities to engage with subject and pastoral teams to review progress and set new targets. There will also be other opportunities to discuss your child’s learning during annual reviews and SEN Profile reviews. Parents and carers are represented on the governing body.
10) How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
We actively seek to ensure that ALL students are included in all activities including trips. All activities outside the classroom are individually risk assessed and where necessary resourced and supported to maximise the engagement in and the impact of the activity on all the young people who are participating. Trips are regularly used to enhance social skills or subject knowledge and are seen as a valuable element of the curriculum.
11) How accessible is the Goodwin Academy?
The Academy is fully-accessible with lifts and access to all areas.
The site is very clearly sign posted and there are visual timetables for students who need them. Teachers are accustomed to utilising technology to enhance the visual and auditory environment and bespoke arrangements can be implemented where appropriate. In order to facilitate good communication with parents whose first language is not English, we are able to access interpreters through the Trust, wider community or local authority.
12) Who can I contact for further information?
Routinely, the first point of contact is the form tutor or subject teacher, further clarification or involvement is needed, the Curriculum Leader, the Head of Year, The Head of Key Stage or SENCo can always be available on request.
13) How will Goodwin Academy prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new school or to the next stage of education?
We aim to ensure that transitions are positive and will implement a bespoke package where needs warrant this. We involve all other appropriate agencies at other points of transition to ensure that the processes run smoothly and with good outcomes. We are always guided by the views of parents/carers and aim to ensure that the transition is a positive experience for them as well as the young person.
14) How does the school know if children need extra help? What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?
We routinely use information provided for us by parents/carers, primary or previous schools and professionals from other agencies to plan interventions. In addition, classroom teachers, Heads of Year and the Learning Support team regularly monitor attendance, learning data and other wellbeing indicators to ascertain the need for additional support. If you feel that your child has not received sufficient help, it is always possible to visit the school and share your concern which will always be thoroughly investigated.
15) How are Goodwin Academy resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
We regularly review and update groups and individual provision maps which are costed and evaluated for impact and to ensure value for money and the efficient deployment of resources. We implement KCC’s banding system for SEND which is scrutinised by the local authority and which can be subject to external and independent moderation. We are flexible in this process and never attempt to ensure that “one size fits all”; our focus is to maximise engagement, achievement and enjoyment in learning for ALL of our students
16) How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive?
A decision about how much support is allocated is dependent on the level of need and impact of interventions. If a young person is the subject of an Education and Health Care Plan, we always ensure that statutory requirements are met (as a minimum). We also seek and follow guidance from other professionals working with the child/ family and take on board the wishes and feelings of the young person and parents/carers. The student and his/her parents and carers are consulted and informed when planning interventions and are informed about the impact and outcomes of support and of next steps.
17) What should I do if I have a complaint about the support my child has?
Any complaints about the provision made to the Principal or Governing Body will be treated in accordance with the Complaints policy. Such complaints will be acknowledged within three working days and if deemed appropriate, a detailed investigation into provision for student needs will be undertaken as part of the process. A meeting will be arranged as quickly as possible between the SEND team, Head of Year and Wellbeing Team, if relevant and the parents or carers of the student to obtain resolution.
18) Where can I get additional support and guidance from?
South Kent – 03000 420889
Kroner House, Eurogate Business Park, Ashford, Kent, TN24 8XU
|Tel: 03000 42 08 89 or email: SENSouth@kent.gov.uk or firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Information, Advice and Support Kent (formerly Kent Parent Partnership)
(Speech, language, communication SLCN)