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Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)

Mrs Weightman, our Deputy Headteacher, is the SENDCO for our school and can be contacted via the school office.

The Rotherham Local Authority SEND offer can be found by clicking on the link.

The accessibility plan approved by governors can be accessed by clicking here.

Through communicating regularly with parents, at Blackburn School we aim to work together to identify any SEND need as early as possible and take appropriate action to support pupils. Parents will be informed if there is a concern around their child’s progress, usually at a Parent’s Evening or before if thought necessary.

The school is committed to early identification of Special Educational Needs and adopts a graduated response to meeting the needs of children with SEND in line with the 2014 Code of Practice.

Identification and Assessment

Every child in school has their progress closely monitored through

 teacher observation/ assessment.
 standardised screening or assessment/diagnostic tests

The Senior Leadership Team (which includes the SENDCo) meet with teachers on a termly basis in “Pupil Progress Meetings.” Here children who are not making expected progress are highlighted and interventions or additional support are discussed and provision is mapped.

In consultation with parents, additional need may be identified through specialist assessments using the outside agencies that support our school e.g. Specialist Inclusion Team, Educational Psychology Service, and through referral to Speech and Language Therapy. If the child is in the Foundation Stage, the school, working alongside the parents will decide if a referral to the Child Development Centre would be beneficial.

Where required, the school will support parents/carers and pupils in an application for a statutory assessment in submitting a request for an Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP).

At Blackburn Primary school we currently provide for pupils with a variety of needs including: autism, dyslexia, speech and language difficulties, moderate learning difficulties and those with medical needs. In the past we have also provided for children with dyscalculia, hearing and visual impairments and physical needs. 

Blackburn Primary Schools SEND Coordinator is Mrs Sarah Weightman.

Our SENDCo is responsible for the co-ordination of specific provision made to support individual children with SEND. She will liaise with staff to monitor the pupils’ progress and help co-ordinate interventions where progress is slower than expected. She will have regular contact with a wide range of external agencies that are able to give more specialised advice and will refer children to these services where and when needed.

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 makes it clear that all teachers are teachers of pupils with special educational needs. At Blackburn Primary School we value the abilities and achievements of all our pupils.

The school’s curriculum intent statement is at the heart of everything that the school offers.

“At Blackburn Primary School we provide a curriculum that inspires excellence, nurtures well-rounded children and through carefully thought out schemes of learning supports our children to go on and make a positive contribution to society.”

Our curriculum is designed to:

-Inspire excellence and be ambitious for all
-Nurture children who are interested in learning and therefore who are interesting to talk to because of their deep conceptual knowledge

In line with the 2014 SEND Code of Practice, the school follows a graduated response to SEND and pupils will be supported in a variety of ways:

Wave 1 Whole class teaching
In the first instance, the school promotes quality first teaching in class. The teacher teaches to the curriculum designed by the school and uses strategies written in school policies to support all children e.g. working walls and scaffolds to support all children.

Wave 2 Small group targeted teaching
Here effective teaching strategies are applied in a small group setting with a more intense focus on a smaller number of learning goals

Wave 3 1-1 specialist
When a pupil continues to make less than expected progress, despite evidence-based support and interventions that are matched to the pupil’s area of need, the school involves specialists, including those secured by the school itself or from outside agencies to work with the child, school and parents/carers.

Education Health and Care plan are requested for children and young people aged up to 25 who need more support than is available through special educational needs support. EHC plans identify educational, health and social needs and set out the additional support to meet those needs.

Where a child has an Education and Health Care Plan, support is provided in line with the recommended provision.

The Graduated Response, works within our curriculum which has been designed to support all children by;

-Being sequential and progressive, building learning over time. This approach allows children to revisit and embed learning and make connections with what they have learnt.
-Having reading at its heart, supporting children to be literate, numerate and choose to read because they love it! This approach ensures children will have full access to a broad curriculum where they can apply their reading ability in other areas of the curriculum to enrich their knowledge of the subjects taught.

- Allowing the children to be creative because of the solid foundations in learning that they have; ensuring children have the skills and understanding to be autonomous learners.
-Providing the knowledge and cultural capital the children need to understand their place in the world and make a positive difference to it; where children can identify and recognise their own personal qualities and beliefs and how they can affect change.
-Preparing children for later life - where they can live a healthly, independent, happy and successful

The curriculum is designed to meet the needs of all our pupils. Adaptations are made in line with the graduated response and the four areas of SEND need, ensuring that any barriers to learning are addressed through quality first teaching or wave 2 or 3 intervention. In the same way, the display policy reflects the research around working walls and the benefits of these, especially for those children with SEND who need
visual prompts and scaffolds. All classroom displays are backed in colours which support learning and capture work that supports the child’s learning.
When needed, we ensure that we work closely with pupils, parents/carers and medical professionals to ensure the learning environment is adapted to meet the specific needs of children with SEND. This is particularly important for those children with sensory and / or medical difficulties. Where appropriate, children may have access to special equipment including: pencil grips, writing slopes, move ‘n’ sit cushions, personal visual timetables, personal workstations, sound recording devices, laptops and more.
The school works closely with parents and medical professionals to ensure that all pupils with special educational needs are able to engage in all the activities of the school; ensuring adaptations are made where and when necessary. The school will follow advice from external agencies. This may include, but is not limited to;
 amendments to classroom layout and seating arrangements for pupils with visual or hearing
 the facilitation of physiotherapy exercises
 appropriate adult support given to those who need it while moving around school.
Sometimes it may be necessary to complete risk assessments to enable all children to participate. Here,
parents/carers and any required medical professional will be fully consulted.
The Governing body consults with the SENDCo regarding provision available for those children that need it including that from health and social services bodies, local authority support services and voluntary organisations, in order to meet the needs of pupils with special educational needs and in supporting the families of such pupils.
The school building is fully accessible for wheelchairs and walking frames.
For more information please see the school’s Accessibility Plan
The school is also able to provide a supportive area for pupils who need relaxation time and a space to learn about managing their emotions. This is assessed on a needs basis via our Learning Mentor Mrs Burley (The Beehive room). Here the children also have access to sensory equipment and intervention where and when needed. 

Staff training

All staff as part of their professional development receive training to assist in supporting pupils of all abilities. Different members of staff have received training related to SEND.
These have included sessions on:
- How to support pupils on the Autistic Spectrum.
- How to support pupils with social and emotional needs.
- How to support pupils with speech and language difficulties.
- How to support pupils with physical and co-ordination needs.
- Specific Interventions designed to accelerate progress in core subjects; e.g. phonics

We have a Learning Mentor along with other members of staff who have been trained and are highly skilled in supporting pupils in a variety of interventions associated with Social, Emotional and Mental Health. The SENDCo (Mrs Weightman) has been awarded the National Qualification for Special Needs Coordination.

Specialist services and expertise

The school recognises the important contribution that external support services make in assisting to identify, assess, and provide for, SEN pupils. A graduated response will be taken to support children with SEND. When it is considered necessary, colleagues from the following support services will be involved with SEND pupils:

  • Educational psychologists

  • Speech therapists

  • Occupational Therapists

  • Hearing impairment services

  • Visual impairment services

  • School Nurse

  • Social Services

  • CAHMS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service)

  • SIT (Specialised Inclusion Team)

  • Other services may also be recommended.

  • With Me In Mind

Termly meetings are held with parents/ carers, teachers and wherever possible representatives from SIT and EPS in order to review the previous term’s targets via the “Working In Partnership” document, the LSP (Learning Support Programme), a “Support Plan” or and “EHCP” (Education, Health and Care Plan).

The targets that the children are set are reviewed on a termly basis at review meetings (see below). Each child’s progress is discussed at termly pupil progress meetings and planning meetings with external services. Through reviews and pupil progress meetings, the school can analyse the effectiveness of the provision provided for children with SEND needs in the school. This, hand in hand with monitoring the delivery of the intervention via the Senior Leadership Team and external services, allows provision to be adapted quickly
where and when necessary to ensure maximum impact.

At Blackburn Primary School we believe in working in partnership with parents and carers.
The school recognises that parents have a unique overview of their child’s needs and how best to support them, and that this gives them a key role in the partnership. 

All parents/carers of children with an identified SEND need will have a termly review with the SENCo, Class Teacher and any involved agencies where and when needed.

This meeting is detailed on a “Working In Partnership” document.

Here the child’s SEN journey across the year is recorded, including details of
 attendance
 the child’s area of SEND need
 any care needs
 any external service involvement since the last review
 attainment
 wider curricular involvement
 the child’s attitude to learning
 the child’s qualities and strengths
 how to interact with the child
 the child’s dislikes and triggers
 a review of any targets set,
 targets set for the child for the term
 the provision that the school is putting in place to help the child meet these targets
 suggestions for how parents/carers can support with these targets.
 parental comments

All the meetings are collaborative, where updates are provided from school and parents including any external agencies when necessary. Any additional actions to support the child are identified and then followed up by either the school or parents/carers. The meetings are usually held in school time but there is some flexibility to meet with the needs of parents/carers.

Parents and carers can request additional meetings at any time.

Prior to the “Working In Partnership” meeting the children are asked to give their opinions on their learning with an appropriate adult, in order to ensure their views are voiced during the review process. This is shared at the meeting with the parents and other agencies and it is ensured that the targets / provision is reflective of the child’s response as far as possible.

As the children progress through school, they are invited to their review meetings (especially pre secondary school transition) as this allows them to be fully immersed in the process of their own target setting; especially in preparation for the next stage in their school life.

The children’s targets are reviewed as detailed above during the Working In Partnership meetings.

The targets set on these plans have measurable “success criteria” which the targets are reviewed against.

The number and type of targets set is bespoke to the need of the child. The targets are based on the child's prime area of need and secondary area of need where needed.

The assessment of the targets set will be dependent on the target. It may be through classroom assessments or observations or through more formal assessments.

The Designated Teacher for looked after children is Mr M Bennett.

Where and when needed, Mr Bennett works closely with the SENDCo to ensure that the implications of a child being both looked after and having SEND are fully understood by relevant school staff.

Where a looked after child is being assessed for SEND the school ensures it takes account of information set out in the Care Plan. SEND professionals would work closely with other relevant professionals involved in the child’s life as a consequence of his/her being looked after. These include the social worker, Designated Doctor or Nurse, Independent Reviewing Officer (IRO), VSH and Designated Teacher in school. The child, their carers and, where appropriate, their parents are also involved in the planning process.

For pupils arriving at our school in Foundation Stage, the school works closely with the previous settings to make sure the transition is as smooth as possible. If needed, the school arrange transition visits, and / or the SENDCo will visit the setting.

If pupils join us from other settings, the school will consult with parents/carers about any SEND provision required and strive to obtain any relevant information from the previous school.

In transition to Key Stage 3, it may be appropriate for some pupils to access enhanced transition which begins before the pupils begin Secondary School. In addition to this, representatives from the local secondary school and any other comprehensive setting to which our pupils may move on to, are invited to attend the SEND reviews for pupils in Y6 and the Annual Reviews for pupils with an EHCP where it is seen to be appropriate.

The pupils themselves also attend these reviews.

The SENDCo will complete the necessary transition documents and arrange the transfer of all relevant documentation.

The school prides itself in the support it offers to all our children regarding their mental health and wellbeing. In the Summer of 2021 the school was awarded “The School Mental Health award”. 

The RSHE curriculum is designed to support the children in their personal development and presents opportunities to raise awareness of issues like bullying and the measures that the school has in place to prevent this.

Our Learning Mentor (Mrs Burley) is employed in school 4 days a week where she is able to provide a wide range of pastoral support including provision for children who are on the register with Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs.

The school ensures the Graduated Response to Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs is in place. Children are encouraged to seek additional support should they need it. Parents/carers are encouraged to contact the school should they have concerns around their child’s mental health and wellbeing.

Any intervention is tailored to the need of the child / children and can come from outcomes of termly wellbeing surveys completed by the children, as a result of a parental concern or as an identified target as part of a Working In Partnership meeting. Provision is also reactive and responsive to the need of the child.

Support in place for children can be
 individual support
 group support
 paired work.
Currently there are yoga, gardening and sensory groups in place amongst others.

Where and when needed, school will refer to external services such as CAMHs and signpost families to support. The school also works closely with the Early Help Team when such support is needed for families. School will communicate this support to families, where it is believed it would be of value and will support the families in accessing this support.

The Local Offer was first introduced in the Green Paper (March 2011) as a local offer of all services available to support disabled children and children with SEN and their families.

This easy to understand information will set out what is normally available in schools to help children with lower-level SEN as well as the options available to support families who need additional help to care for their child. Please follow the link below for more information about the local offer. 

If you wish to discuss your child’s educational needs or are unhappy about something regarding your child’s schooling, please contact the school office to arrange a meeting with your child’s class teacher or the SENDCo. You may also wish to contact our SEND Governor via

There are a wide variety of sources of information for parents/carers available online. This includes
The School Website
The Local Offer
The Government guide to SEND for Parents
For information on admissions

If you have any concerns regarding SEND matters do not hesitate to contact the SENCo

SENDCo: Mrs Sarah Weightman

Contact: 01709 740412

Via the office email:

SEND governor: Ms Sarah Philips 

Contact: 01709740412

Via the office email: 

A pupil has SEN where their learning difficulty or disability calls for special educational provision that is additional or different from that provided for pupils of the same age. (COP)

At Blackburn Primary School, we pride ourselves on our inclusive nature and ethos. We will make every reasonable adjustment possible to include pupils and parents/carers in our school.

The four categories of SEN are outlined as follows in the SEN Code Of Practice 2014

Communication and interaction

Children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) have difficulty in communicating with others. Children and young people with ASD, including Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism, are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication and imagination, which can impact on how they relate to others.

Cognition and learning

Support for learning difficulties may be required when children and young people learn at a slower pace than their peers, even with appropriate differentiation. Learning difficulties cover a wide range of needs, including moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD) and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD). Specific learning difficulties (SpLD), affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This encompasses a range of conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.

Social, emotional and mental health difficulties

Children may experience a wide range of social and emotional difficulties which manifest themselves in many ways. These may include becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. These behaviours may reflect underlying mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression. 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

Some children have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided. These difficulties can be age related and may fluctuate over time. Many children and young people with vision impairment (VI), hearing impairment (HI) or a multi-sensory impairment (MSI) will require specialist support and/or equipment to access their learning, or habilitation support. Children and young people with an MSI have a combination of vision and hearing difficulties. Some children and young people with a physical disability (PD) require additional ongoing support and equipment to access all the opportunities available to their peers


Some children with SEND may have needs in more than one of these areas.

At Blackburn Primary school have experience of providing for pupils with a variety of needs including: autism, dyslexia, dyscalculia, speech and language difficulties, moderate learning difficulties, visual and hearing impairments and physical needs.


Attention Deficit Disorder


Attention Deficit & Hyperactivity Disorder


Autistic Spectrum Disorder


Common Assessment Framework


Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service


Child Development Centre


Code of Practice


Child Protection


English as an Additional Language


Educational Psychologist


Free School Meals


Hearing Impairment


Key Stage


Looked After Child


Local Education Authority


Learning Support Service