Special Educational Needs and Disability Information - Local Offer

At Downsbrook we strive to support ALL children to be the best that they can be .

As a school we pride ourselves on being inclusive and working with families to secure the best outcomes for our children.

In order to do this many steps are taken to support them through their learning journey.

Quality teaching is vital; however, for some children there are occasions when further additional support may be needed to help them achieve their targets.  

Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) is Mrs Carina Reid
Pastoral and Welfare Support is Mrs Claire Maynard


Our Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) is responsible for the operation of the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Policy and coordination of specific provision made to support individual children with SEND including the More Able child.

The Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) will liaise with staff to monitor the pupil's progress and plan further interventions where progress is slower than expected and will have regular contact with a wide range of external agencies that are able to give more specialised advice.

If you have any concerns regarding SEND matters do not hesitate to contact the school. The school telephone number is 01903 230467.


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 .’


The West Sussex framework will allow the Local Offer to provide parents/carers with:

  • Information about how to access services in their area, and what they can expect from those services. With regard to education, it will let parents/carers and young people know how school and colleges will support them, and what they can expect across the local settings.
  • There are 16 questions, devised in consultation with parents/carers and other agencies, which reflect their concerns and interests. The answers will provide information to parents and carers to enable them to make decisions about how to best support their child's needs.


What is Pupil Premium?

The Pupil Premium was introduced in April 2011 and is allocated to schools to work with pupils who have been registered for free school meals (FSM) at any point in the last six years (known as 'Ever6 FSM'). Schools also receive funding for children who have been looked after continuously for more than six months, children of service personnel and those adopted from care in the UK.

Why has it been introduced?

The Government believes that the Pupil Premium, which is additional to main school funding, is the best way to address the current underlying inequalities between children eligible for free school meals or who have been ‘looked after’, adopted from care or are children of service personnel and their peers, by ensuring that funding to tackle disadvantage reaches the pupils who need it most.

Who decides on how the money is spent?

In most cases the Pupil Premium is paid directly to schools and allocated to them for every pupil who receives free school meals. Schools decide how to use the funding, as they are best placed to assess what their pupils need.

How are schools accountable for the spending of Pupil Premium?

They are held accountable for the decisions they make through:

  • The performance tables which show the performance of disadvantaged pupils compared with their peers;
  • The new Ofsted inspection framework, under which inspectors focus on the attainment of pupil groups, in particular those who attract the Pupil Premium. 


1. How does Downsbrook Primary School know if children need extra help?

We know when pupils need help if:

  • concerns are raised by parents/carers, teachers or the child;
  • limited progress is being made;
  • there is a change in the pupil's behaviour or progress.

2. What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?

  • The class teacher is the initial point of contact for responding to parental concerns;
  • If you have further concerns then contact Mrs Reid who is our Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion)

3. How will Downsbrook Primary School support my child?

  • Each pupil's education programme will be planned by the class teacher. It will be differentiated accordingly to suit the pupil's individual needs. This may include additional general support by the teacher or teaching assistant in class.
  • If a pupil has needs related to more specific areas of their education, such as spelling, handwriting, numeracy and literacy skills, then the pupil may be placed in a small focus group. This will be run by the teacher or teaching assistant. The length of time of the intervention will vary according to the need. The interventions will be regularly reviewed by all involved to ascertain the effectiveness of the provision and to inform future planning. This intervention will be included in the child’s Target and Provision Plan (TAPP) Assessment of the progress towards these targets is on-going and is shared with parents during Parent’s evenings.
  • Occasionally a pupil may need more specialised support from an outside agency such as the Speech and Language service or a paediatrician. A referral will be made with your consent, and forwarded to the most appropriate agency. After a series of assessments, a programme of support is usually provided to the school and parents/carers.

4. How will the curriculum be matched to my child's needs

All work is differentiated to meet the needs of every child. A full and balanced curriculum is in place and teachers meticulously plan to ensure that all children have access to all subject areas.

  • When a pupil has been identified with special educational needs their work will be differentiated by the class teacher to enable them to access the curriculum more easily.
  • Teaching Assistants (TAs) may be allocated to work with the pupil in a 1-1 or small focus group to target more specific needs.
  • If a child has been identified as having a special educational need, they will have a Targets and Provision Plan (TAPP) that addresses their need. This need will fall under one of the following 4 categories: Cognition and Learning, Communication and Interaction, Emotional and Social, Sensory and Physical. These will be monitored by the class teacher and the Assistant Head Teacher (Inclusion) and shared with parents at parent’s evenings.
  • Specialist equipment may be given to the pupil e.g. writing slopes, concentration cushions, pen/ pencils grips or easy to use scissors, if this helps the child realise their potential.

5. How will I know how my child is doing?

Teacher assessment is carried out at least termly and the progress of all children is carefully monitored. Teachers meet with the Senior Leadership Team every term to discuss the progress of all children.

  • Parent’s evenings are held in the Autumn and Summer terms, with children’s Annual Reports being sent home during the Spring term. These show both attainment and effort.
  • Class Teachers are available most evenings after school to meet with parents.
  • SEND coffee mornings are held termly, which give an opportunity for parents of children on the SEND register to meet with the Assistant Headteacher and the Pastoral co-ordinators to discuss progress on specific programmes.
  • TAPPs are continually reviewed and copies are shared with parents during parent’s evenings. Again these show progress towards individual targets. The TAPPs also contain suggestions on how to support your child.
  • If a child is diagnosed as having a Specific Learning difficulty such as Dyslexia, we have information and support leaflets to share with parents.
  • At the beginning of each term parents/carers are sent a termly letter for each year group, specifying the learning that is planned in each subject area. This can also be found on our website under ‘Year Groups’.

6. How will you help me to support my child's learning?

  • The class teacher through the Target and Provision Plan (TAPP) will suggest ways you can support your child.
  • The Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) may meet with you further to discuss how to support your child with strategies if either party feels this would benefit the child.
  • If outside agencies or the Educational Psychologist have been involved suggestions and programmes of study are normally provided that can be used at home.

7. What support will there be for my child's overall well-being?

The school offers a wide variety of pastoral support for pupils who are encountering emotional difficulties. These include: Members of staff such as the Class Teacher, Teaching Assistants and Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) all being readily available for pupils who wish to discuss issues and concerns. Where appropriate mediation sessions are carried out.

Pupils with Medical Needs

  • If a pupil has a medical need then a detailed Care Plan is compiled with support from the school nurse in consultation with parents/carers. This is discussed with all staff who are involved with the pupil.
  • Staff receive Epipen training delivered by the school nurse
  • Where necessary and in agreement with parents/carers, prescribed medicines may be administered in school as long as staff have been trained to administer that particular medication. (New regulations came into force from 1st September 2014)
  • All staff have basic first aid training, and some staff have full first aid training.

8. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?

We currently have access to the services of:

  • Educational Psychologist
  • Inclusion Support Team
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Speech and Language Therapist
  • Learning Mentors
  • Counselling – Play or Drama Therapy
  • Family Link Worker
  • School Nurse
  • Child Development Clinic
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services
  • Police Community Support Officer services

9. What training are the staff supporting children with SEND had or are having?

Our school currently holds the award for being an ‘Autism Aware School’. This has involved all staff attending training around identification and support of children with Social Communication difficulties. We have also held the award for Dyslexia Awareness. Teaching Assistants have a meeting every fortnight with the Assistant Headteacher where a whole range of difficulties, strategies and interventions are discussed. Staff meetings are often given over to SEND and recently the new SEND code of practice and using Target and Provision Plans were covered.

10. How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?

School visits and other activities away from school are an important part in enhancing any child’s learning experiences, and we will always endeavour to ensure all children are able to benefit from these, wherever possible. We will meet with parents with any concerns beforehand to discuss your child’s needs and how they can be best met. Risk assessments are carried out and procedures are put in place to enable all children to participate. Children for whom the school receives Pupil Premium may ask for school trips to be paid for by the school.

11. How accessible is the school environment?

As a school we are happy to discuss individual access requirements. Our building has been designed to be wheelchair friendly on ground level with an accessible toilet available for parents and children.

12. How will the school prepare and support my child when joining Downsbrook Primary School or transferring to a new school?

Many strategies are in place to enable each child’s transition to be as smooth as possible. These include:

  • Discussions between the previous or receiving schools prior to the pupil joining/leaving;
  • All pupils attend Transfer day where they spend some time with their new class and teacher;
  • Additional visits are also arranged for pupils who need extra time in their new school;
  • Our Headteacher and Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) are always happy to meet parents/carers prior to their child joining the school;
  • Secondary school staff visit pupils or vice versa prior to them joining their new school
  • Our Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) will liaise with the SENCO/Inclusion Managers from the previous or receiving schools to pass on information regarding SEND pupils.

13. How are the school's resources allocated and matched to children's special educational needs?

The SEND budget is allocated each financial year. The money is used to provide additional support or resources dependent on an individual's needs. Each child’s need is looked at on an individual basis, and the Assistant Headteacher (inclusion) in consultation with the Senior Leadership Team will then allocate support from our available resources. Resources may include deployment of staff depending on individual circumstances.

14. How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive?

These decisions are made in consultation with class teacher, Assistant Headteacher (inclusion) and Senior Leadership Team. Decisions are based upon termly tracking of pupil progress and as a result of assessments, if appropriate, by outside agencies. If further concerns are identified due to the pupil's lack of progress or well-being then interventions may change.

15. How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child's education?

All parents are encouraged to contribute to their child's education. This may be through:

  • discussions with the class teacher;
  • parent’s evenings;
  • discussions with our Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) or other professionals;
  • termly coffee mornings for parents of children on the SEND register

16. Who can I contact for further information?

At Downsbrook Primary School, we pride ourselves on being a very open and accessible school. If you would like to contact us for more information please either speak to your child’s class teacher or you can speak to the Assistant Headteacher (Inclusion) or Head Teacher, who can be contacted directly through the school office (01903 230 467)

If you have any further questions or concerns, West Sussex Parent Partnership can be contacted on their Helpline: 0845 075 1008, Monday to Friday during office hours.

There are many SEND terms that are abbreviated which can lead to confusion (even for us!)

Below is a Glossary of the most used SEND Terms.


SEN Code of Practice
EHC Plan

Target and Provision Plans
Special Educational Needs
The legal document that sets out the requirements for SEN
Education, Health, Care Plan
Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities
Speech and Language Therapist
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service
Educational Psychologist
Special Educational Needs Coordinator
Autistic Spectrum Disorder
Attention Deficit Disorder
Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder
Early Help Care Plan
Child Development Clinic
English as an Additional Language
Child Looked After
Specific Learning Difficulty
Teaching Assistant
Team Around the Family
Visual Impairment

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