Accrington Academy is an Inclusive school, we aim to create a learning environment which is flexible enough to meet the needs of all members of the school community. We shape and develop provision for all of our learners ensuring achievement for all. We work to create an inclusive culture and aim to be responsive to the diversity of children’s backgrounds, interests, experience knowledge and skills. The Academy works closely with many specialist support providers who are able to work with us in supporting student access to learning. Students who are experiencing medical or personal problems are fully supported to enable them to integrate quickly into school life and their curriculum.
Miss S. Blades
Director of Inclusion | Safeguarding Lead | Child Looked After Lead | SENCO
I studied PE and Sports Science at Loughborough University and have worked in Outdoor Education and as a teacher of PE in secondary education. I hold a masters degree in School Leadership and Management and currently lead a large team of staff dedicated to a strong inclusive ethos. My move into Inclusion was for me a natural progression from inspiring students through physical activity into an area where I could influence their success through provision of something a little different in their curriculum. I have a passion for learning in the outdoors through adventurous and environmental activities.
At some stage in a students educational career they will experience times when they need additional support with their learning. Accrington Academy places an emphasis on strong support for students with additional needs. These needs may be learning, social, emotional, behavioural or medical.
We provide individual, small group and classroom support for all students that require extra help to be successful and make progress with their learning.
The learning of these students is monitored carefully and intervention strategies are put in place quickly to ensure students make the progress they are capable of. Students are supported with strategies that will help them in their classroom and around school.
Access around the school site is very good with ramps provided as alternatives to steps and lifts so that all floors are accessible.
Lancashire County Council SEND Website
How will the Academy know if my child needs extra help?
At the Accrington Academy, the assessment of educational need is centred around the learner ensuring their parent/carer and their teachers are fully involved. Early identification of students with SEND is a priority and it is often the learner, the parent/carer or their teacher who is first to notice a difficulty with learning. The Director of Inclusion and SENCo support the identification of barriers to learning. We use a range of professionally accredited assessment tools to help identify specific student ‘needs’ and in some instances we will seek advice from specialist teams and partner agencies such as Clinical and Educational Psychologists, the Child and Mental Health Team and the Local Authority Inclusion Disability Service as required. Discussions about support take place with parents/carers either in the evenings or at a mutually convenient time during the day.
If you think your child may have SEND please telephone the school on 01254 304300 and ask to speak to either the Academy Director of Inclusion or the SENCo who will be happy to discuss this with you.
How will the Academy support my child with SEND?
Students identified as having a Special Educational Need and/or Disability will be provided with support that is ‘additional to or ‘different from’ a normal differentiated curriculum. The type of support provided for a learner is dependent on individual learning needs and is intended to enable access to learning and is described on the Academy Provision map. The support and interventions will be selected to meet the outcomes identified for the pupil based on reliable evidence of effectiveness and will be agreed in advance with parents/carers and the learner.
In line with the Code of Practice 0 – 25 (2014) a person centred approach is adopted at all times. The ‘All About Me’ document, prepared with all students on our SEND record detail ‘ a life story of the student, including their aspirations and how the student feels they can best be supported in school.
The Learning Support Team works with parents, students and subject staff to provide quality learning opportunities for all our SEND pupils. Students identified as requiring more specific support are given additional time from members of the Learning Support Team to supplement the various approaches to learning adopted by subject staff.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child's needs?
Teachers adapt the curriculum, plan and deliver differentiated lessons that are accessible and challenging for all students. All teachers and support staff who work with students identified with Special Educational Needs will be made aware of their needs, the support provided and any teaching strategies or approaches that are required. They work closely with teaching assistants and any specialist staff involved to plan and assess the impact of support and interventions. Our teachers use a variety of strategies to adapt access to the curriculum such as:
- ‘All About Me’ Student profiles
- Provision Maps
- iPads, laptops or recording devices
- Writing frames
- Visual timetables
- Peer buddying systems.
Students identified as requiring more specific support are given additional time from members of the Learning Support Team to supplement the various approaches to learning adopted by subject staff.
Social, emotional and medical needs support for SEND is provided by the school pastoral staff. Administration of any medicines and personal care is detailed in the student’s Care Plan which is updated annually with parents/carers.
How will the school know if my child is progressing and developing?
The monitoring of progress is an integral part of teaching and leadership at the Accrington Academy. Parents/carers, students and staff are invited to attend termly review meetings to discuss progress and review the impact of interventions for learners with SEND. At Accrington Academy we follow the ‘assess, plan, do, review’ model and ensure that parents/carers and pupils are fully involved in each step. Before any additional provision is put in place to help a child, the SENCo, teacher, parent/carer and the learner agree what they expect to be different following the intervention. For learners with Education Health Care Plans (EHC) or a conversion is underway, the EHC Plan will also be formally reviewed annually.
How will the school support my child to join the school and then move in to the next stage of education?
Transition is a part of life for all learners. This can be transition to a new class in school, having a new teacher, or moving on to another school, training provider or into employment. Planning is an integral part of our provision for all learners with SEND. In the Summer term of year 6, staff of the Academy will discuss transition with pupils, parents and carers, to ensure time for planning, preparation and a smooth transition into the Academy. Once at the Academy, any change of class or ability set for any subject will always be discussed in advance with the learner and their parent or carer. Accrington Academy works closely with schools and training providers to ensure a positive transition to the next stage of learning.
Do you have any specialist staff?
With respect to the new SEND Code of Practice the following staff have been identified as having specific roles and responsibilities.
- Sue Blades – Director of Inclusion – SENCO – Safeguarding Lead – Child Looked After Lead
- Michaela Robbins – SENCO – Strand Lead – Cognition and Learning
- Sharon Carabine – TA Strand Lead – Communication and Interaction
The department has a team of teaching assistants who are trained in the needs of students in accordance with the SEND Code of Practice 0-25 years 2014.
Who to Contact?
If you think your child may have SEND please telephone the school on 01254 304300 and ask to speak to either Miss Blades the Academy Director of Inclusion/SENCO, who will be happy to discuss this with you.