Monitoring development and making interventions
The Education Acts and the SEN Code of Practice provide frameworks for settings to identify and meet any additional educational needs. The Education Act 1996 states that a child or young person has special educational needs if “he or she has a learning difficulty which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her”.
Children with special educational needs all have learning difficulties and/or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most other children of the same age. These children may need extra or different help from that given to other children of the same age.
The extra or different help could be a different way of teaching certain things, some help from an extra adult, or the use of a particular piece of equipment like a computer or a desk with a sloping top. Children may require extra or different help because they suffer from one or more difficulties such as: Physical or sensory difficulties Emotional and behavioural problems
The aim of any intervention is to provide as much help as is required, but
not to intervene more than is necessary. The three levels of support that are set out in the Code of Practice are: 1. School Action (or Early Years Action for younger children) 2. School Action Plus (or Early Years Action Plus for younger children) 3. Provision outlined in a statement of SEN
Once practitioners have identified that a child has special educational needs, the setting should intervene through School Action (or Early Years Action for younger children). At this level of support the class teacher, the school’s special educational needs coordinating officer (SENCO), a Home Learning College.
Learning Support Assistant (LSA) or another member of the school’s staff gives the child extra help. The child has an Individual Education Plan (IEP) which gives details of the targets the pupils must work towards and the action/support that is required to help them to achieve those targets. IEPs will usually be linked to the main areas of literacy, mathematics, behaviour and social skills. The parents must be consulted and involved so that they too can help their child at home, in line with what the school is doing. The aim of School Action is to make it possible for the child to progress to the point where they no longer need extra help. School action plus
If the intervention made as a result of School Action is not helping the child to meet his/her targets, the SENCO may need to seek advice and support from external sources, such as teaching support services and other agencies. An Educational Psychologist might be consulted to plan what forms of intervention might best help the pupil achieve the targets set out in his/her Individual Education Plan (IEP). This kind of intervention is referred to as School Action Plus (or Early Years Action Plus for younger children). The aim of School Action Plus support is to enable a child to progress so that they move from School Action Plus to School Action, or no longer need any extra help at all. Individual Education
Children who are recognised as having SEN are entitled to an Individual Education Plan (IEP) as part of the School Action or School Action Plus
process. An IEP should record what is different from, or additional to, those arrangements that are in place for the rest of the group or class. An IEP is written by the class teacher to help the parents and the school identify the child’s needs and to target areas of particular difficulty. Typically they focus on three or four targets that match the child’s needs.