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Schools and SEN information:
Under the special educational needs and disability (SEND) reforms each schools is required to provide information for parents on how they support children and young people with SEND.
There are two main sources of SEND information that parents can access from a schools website:
- SEN Polices
- SEN Information reports
A schools SEN Information Report and SEN Policy are intended to be two distinct documents.
What’s the difference between an SEN Policy and an SEN information report?
SEN Policies contain technical information and detail. The law says all schools must have policies that say what they do. SEN policies are just one of the policies a school will have. They should be based on a shared understanding of the schools mission, values, vision and aims. They should include information about the laws and rules that shape the day to day processes of the school.
A policy should include:
- A brief statement referring to relevant local guidelines, national regulations.
- A list of groups, individuals and documents consulted when making the policy.
- Cross-references to other documents – links to other policies where helpful
- Roles and responsibilities of staff
- Monitoring and evaluation arrangements – what evidence is used to show progress has been achieved.
- Date the policy was established by the governing body and a date for review.
- Signature of Chair of Governors or Chair of Committee
SEN information reports:
SEN information reports are intended to tell you how the school's SEN policy is used. How help and support for pupils with SEND works in that setting. What happens and how not what they aspire to. The SEN information report should be written in a way that makes the information clear and meaningful for parents.
Where can I find them?
Both these documents should be available on each schools website. You can also ask the schools office to give you a printed copy of their SEN information report.
What if I can’t find it?
We cannot tell you exactly where to find each report because each schools website is slightly different. We understand this is frustrating so we have looked through the school websites and put these links together in two articles. Please see the following links:
You can also tell the school that it was difficult for you to find this information on their website and they will want to make sure that it is made easier in the future.
Sometimes schools use a different name for their SEN information report.
- School SEN Offer
- Local Offer
- SEN information
Although this can be confusing it is highly likely that an official document with SEN in the title and without policy next to it is the schools version of their SEN information report.
So what is a Local Offer?
When people say "local offer" they mean what is on offer for people who live in the local area.
You are using Hackney’s Local Offer now. The borough’s Local Offer website is a required source of information on services and support specifically for families of and children and young people with SEND aged 0-25.
Hackney’s Local Offer website is run by the local authority. It provides information on local SEND provision across education, health and social care. Schools do not run the boroughs Local Offer website although they must cooperate with providing information for it. They must also make parents, carers and young people aware of it.
Do all schools SEN information reports look the same?
Each schools can decide what their SEN information report looks like but all schools must say what they do under each point made in the SEND Code of Practice 2015. Please see the relevant section below:
Publishing information: SEN information report
6.79 The governing bodies of maintained schools and maintained nursery schools and the proprietors of academy schools must publish information on their websites about the implementation of the governing body’s or the proprietor’s policy for pupils with SEN. The information published should be updated annually and any changes to the information occurring during the year should be updated as soon as possible.
The information required is set out in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014 and must include information about:
• the kinds of SEN that are provided for
• policies for identifying children and young people with SEN and assessing their needs, including the name and contact details of the SENCO (mainstream schools)
• arrangements for consulting parents of children with SEN and involving them in their child’s education
• arrangements for consulting young people with SEN and involving them in their education
• arrangements for assessing and reviewing children and young people’s progress towards outcomes. This should include the opportunities available to work with parents and young people as part of this assessment and review
• arrangements for supporting children and young people in moving between phases of education and in preparing for adulthood. As young people prepare for adulthood outcomes should reflect their ambitions, which could include higher education, employment, independent living and participation in society
• the approach to teaching children and young people with SEN
• how adaptations are made to the curriculum and the learning environment of children and young people with SEN
• the expertise and training of staff to support children and young people with SEN, including how specialist expertise will be secured
• evaluating the effectiveness of the provision made for children and young people with SEN
• how children and young people with SEN are enabled to engage in activities available with children and young people in the school who do not have SEN
• support for improving emotional and social development. This should include extra pastoral support arrangements for listening to the views of children and young people with SEN and measures to prevent bullying
• how the school involves other bodies, including health and social care bodies, local authority support services and voluntary sector organisations, in meeting children and young people’s SEN and supporting their families
• arrangements for handling complaints from parents of children with SEN about the provision made at the school
Page last updated:25/05/17