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Nottingham Girls' Academy

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

This page provides full details of the provision we make for pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) at Nottingham Girls' Academy. This information is referred to as the SEND Information Report.

SEND Information Report

Updated 12 February 2021

Hello and welcome to the SEND Information Report for Nottingham Girls’ Academy.

We have tried to cover all areas but Zoe Scholtz (our SENDCo) and the SEND Team will be happy to answer additional questions should you wish to contact the academy.

 

SEND Provision Overview 

The SEND Team at Nottingham Girls’ Academy aims to help all pupils with SEND experience achievement and success. Pupils in need of SEND Support fall within 4 categories (as laid out in the in the SEND Code of Practice 2014) and as such, are recognised as requiring additional to or different from teaching and / or interventions. The team recognises that different pupils require different support and we work alongside families, teaching staff and outside agencies to move pupils with SEND towards increased independence in preparation for adulthood.

Additional information outlining the support offered to pupils with SEND can be found by clicking on the relevant sections below.

Please note that the support described in the Social, Emotional and Mental Health section is offered to pupils when school determines it would be beneficial. For example, a student with dyslexia or autism may at times also receive emotional support from the school counsellor or ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant).

SEND Code of Practice Definitions
 

At Nottingham Girls’ Academy we adhere closely to the definition of pupils with SEND:

“A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be provided for him or her”

“A child of compulsory age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if he or she:

  • Has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or
  • Has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions”

SEND Code of Practice, 2014

Learning Support Faculty Staff 

Our SENDCo is Zoe Scholtz and she is also Head of Learning Support.

The SENDCo is responsible for allocating the specific roles and responsibilities to the SEND mentors according to the needs of the pupils with SEND on roll. The current roles are:

  • Alison Scotney: Deputy SENDCo and Alternative Provision Coordinator
  • Danni Harper: SEMH Coordinator & qualified ELSA
  • Katie Cox: Literacy curriculum coordinator
  • Doreen Harvey: Supporting Learning and Cognition needs and transition for pupils with SEND.
  • Lucie Ching: Supporting communication and interaction needs
  • Noreen Saddique: Supporting Learning and Cognition needs
  • James Hardy: Supporting SEMH needs

The SENDCo makes regular changes to support timetables in accordance with the changing needs of pupils.

 

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities are categorised into 4 areas in the SEND Code of Practice.

The sections below explain what needs are encompassed within each category, how we identify or understand the needs of pupils whose need might fall into each category and the range of support we can offer pupils with these needs.

Communication and Interaction 
Speech. Language and Communication 

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

Children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) have difficulty in communicating with others. This may be because they have difficulty saying what they want to, understanding what is being said to them or they do not understand or use social rules of communication. The profile for every child with SLCN is different and their needs may change over time. They may have difficulty with one, some or all of the different aspects of speech, language or social communication at different times of their lives.

Identification 

Step 1: Assessment of speech & language needs

Once the SENDCo is made aware of concerns that a pupil’s language and communication skills are preventing academic progress, she will review available academic and assessment data. This may include:

  • KS2 SAT results
  • Year 7 assessment data (CATs, in particular the Verbal score)
  • Most recent reading test result
  • Subject based academic attainment
  • Information from teaching staff
  • Attendance information
  • Additional language assessment such as the British Picture Vocabulary Scale test

Step 2: Plan to meet learning need

The SENDCo will contact parents when:

  • Pupils are offered specific support such as an intervention 
  • Pupils are being removed from the SEND list as their learning is in line with peers.
  • SENDCo requires additional information from the family to support the identification of learning needs.
  • SENDCo wishes to refer the pupil for additional support or assessment from the Inclusive Education learning Support Team or Educational Psychology Service.
Support 

Support for pupils within mainstream lessons includes:

  • Working in a guided small group within lessons.
  • Visual supports for language. (The SEND Team uses Widgit software to create word lists, visual timetables etc.)
  •  Weekly small group Language for Thinking intervention to widen pupils’ range of expressive language.
  • 1-1 support to work on targets set by Speech Therapists
  • Consultation with staff to share targets and strategies set by speech therapists.
  • Support from an academic mentor to support with work organisation, study skills and time management.
  • Literacy curriculum – 3 lessons per week for KS3 pupils with a heavy focus upon language and reading comprehension.

Alternative Curriculum

Pupils with EHCPs may be eligible for our Alternative Curriculum provision.

Autism and Asperger's Syndrome 

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

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.

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by:

  • difficulties with communication and interaction
  • repetitive behaviours
  • sensory overload
  • highly focused interests or hobbies
  • extreme anxieties
  • emotional outbursts or shut downs

If you think your child may have autism and would welcome advise and information, the below links may be helpful.

 

 
 
Identification 

If your child is struggling in school and you feel she has characteristics of autism, please contact the SENDCo who offers:

  • Support with identifying your child’s needs (through observations, pupil voice and teacher liaison.)
  • Suggestions of reasonable adjustments that may help your child to feel safe and comfortable in school.
  • Support through the process of referring for a diagnosis.
  • Consultation with the Autism branch of the Inclusive Education Service for more specialised advice and support. 

Click here for a link to the Inclusive Education for Autism service  

Support 

Not all pupils with autism are the same and at Nottingham Girls’ Academy we aim to work closely with pupils, families and the Inclusive Education Service for Autism to identify the most appropriate support and provision on a pupil by pupil basis. The below list outlines support that is available should a need be identified.

Support available for pupils with communication difficulties & ASD:

  • Pupil voice session with Miss Ching, our keyworker who specialises in supporting pupils with autism & communication differences. This session is to identify the pupil’s thoughts and views so we can plan reasonable adjustments and additional support (with communication boards for those who struggle to interact verbally).
  • Meet and Greet to support transition from home to school.
  • A quiet, supervised place at break and lunch times.
  • In class adult support to identify environmental issues and to support learning needs.
  • Visual timetables can be provided.
  • Support with transitions (primary school to secondary or secondary to college).
  • Short term weekly small groups to support well-being such as social skills and managing anxieties.
  • 1-1 or small group weekly Zones of Regulation programme   The Zones framework provides strategies to teach students to:
    • become more aware of and independent in controlling their emotions and impulses,
    • manage their sensory needs, and
    • improve their ability to problem solve conflicts.  
    • Click here to find out more:
  • Implementing reasonable adjustments in classrooms such as a preferred seating place, advanced warning of any changes, removal from cover lessons, use of sensory or concentration aids.
  • Increased communication with home through home / school communication book, phone calls or emails to exchange information about events that may impact on your child’s day to day school experience.
  • Referral to support from the Inclusive Education Service for Autism if more bespoke support is needed.
Cognition and Learning 
Moderate Learning Difficulties, Developmental Delay, Literacy Learning Difficulties 

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

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), where children are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum and associated difficulties with mobility and communication.

*In line with Nottingham City, students are categorised as having moderate learning difficulties if they are working at half (or less than) half their chronological age.

Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dyspraxia 

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

Specific learning difficulties (SpLD), affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This encompasses a range of conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.

Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a learning difference which primarily affects reading and writing skills. However, it does not only affect these skills. Dyslexia is actually about information processing. Dyslexic people may have difficulty processing and remembering information they see and hear, which can affect learning and the acquisition of literacy skills. Dyslexia can also impact on other areas such as organisational skills.  

It is important to remember that there are positives to thinking differently. Many dyslexic people show strengths in areas such as reasoning and in visual and creative fields.

Information taken from: www.bdadyslexia.org.uk

Dyscalculia

Dyscalculia is a specific and persistent difficulty in understanding numbers which can lead to a diverse range of difficulties with mathematics. It will be unexpected in relation to age, level of education and experience and occurs across all ages and abilities.

A person with dyscalculia/mathematical learning difficulties may:

  • Have difficulty when counting backwards.
  • Have a poor sense of number and estimation.
  • Have difficulty in remembering ‘basic’ facts, despite many hours of practice/rote learning.
  • Have no sense of whether any answers that are obtained are right or nearly right.

Information taken from: www.bdadyslexia.org.uk

Dyspraxia

Dyspraxia, a form of developmental coordination disorder (DCD) is a common disorder affecting fine and/or gross motor coordination in children and adults. It may also affect speech.

Children may present with difficulties with self-care, writing, typing, riding a bike and play as well as other educational and recreational activities. 

Many people with DCD also experience difficulties with memory, perception and processing. While DCD is often regarded as an umbrella term to cover motor coordination difficulties, dyspraxia refers to those people who have additional problems planning, organising and carrying out movements in the right order in everyday situations. Dyspraxia can also affect articulation and speech, perception and thought.

A person with dyspraxia:

  • May not be able to run, hop, jump, or catch or kick a ball although their peers can do so
  • Has difficulty in keeping friends; or judging how to behave in company
  • Has little understanding of concepts such as ‘in’, ‘on’, ‘in front of’ etc
  • Has difficulty in walking up and down stairs
  • Poor at dressing
  • Slow and hesitant in most actions
  • Appears not to be able to learn anything instinctively but must be taught skills
  • Falls over frequently
  • Poor pencil grip
  • Reacts to all stimuli without discrimination and attention span is poor
  • May have trouble with maths and writing structured stories
  • Experiences great difficulty in copying from the blackboard
  • Writes laboriously and immaturely
  • Unable to remember and /or follow instructions
  • Is generally poorly organised

Information taken from: www.dyspraxiafoundation.org.uk

Identification 
For Year 7 Pupils

Step 1: Assessment of Learning Needs

In the first half term, all Year 7 pupils undertake the below assessments and the SENDCo uses the information to identify pupils who may require additional assessment or learning support.

  • CATs (Cognitive Assessment Tests)
  • a reading test
  • a dyslexia pre-screening test
  • Subject based baseline tests
  • Additional specialist assessment such as a Dyslexia Screening Test

Step 2: Plan to meet learning need

The SENDCo will contact parents when:

  • SENDCo requires additional information from the family to support the identification of learning needs such as dyslexic tendencies.
  • Additional assessment has indicated a learning need such as dyslexic tendencies.
  • A pupil passport (Profile) has been created.
  • Pupils are offered specific support such as a learning intervention. 
  • Pupils are being removed from the SEND list as their learning is in line with peers.
  • SENDCo wishes to offer the pupil a place in the Alternative Curriculum
  • SENDCo wishes to refer the pupil for additional support or assessment from the Inclusive Education learning Support Team or Educational Psychology Service. 
For Other Year groups:

Step 1: Assessment of Learning Needs

Once the SENDCo is made aware of concerns with a pupil’s academic progress, she will review available academic and assessment data, including:

  • KS2 SAT results
  • Year 7 assessment data (CATs, dyslexia pre-screening test)
  • Most recent reading test
  • Subject based academic attainment
  • Information from teaching staff about the pupil
  • Attendance information
  • Pupil focussed lesson observation to better understand the barriers to learning

Step 2: Plan to meet Learning Needs

The SENDCo will contact parents when:

  • Pupils are identified for additional assessment such as Dyslexia or Dyscalculia screening tests, exam access testing (KS4 pupils).
  • A pupil passport (Profile) has been created.
  • Pupils are offered specific support such as a learning intervention or change in curriculum due to extensive learning needs. 
  • Pupils are being removed from the SEND list as their learning is in line with peers.
  • SENDCo requires additional information from the family to support the identification of learning needs such as dyslexic tendencies.

SENDCo wishes to refer the pupil for additional support or assessment from the Inclusive Education learning Support Team or Educational Psychology Service.  

Support 

Not all pupils with cognition and learning needs are the same. The cognitive issues faced by pupils with dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia are on a continuum (or spectrum) spectrum meaning no two students will be the same.

At Nottingham Girls’ Academy we aim to work closely with pupils, families and the Learning Support Inclusive Education Service to identify the most appropriate provision on a pupil by pupil basis.

Where possible pupil needs are met in the classroom. Teachers will scaffold learning barriers by following the guidance from Individual Pupil Passports (Profiles) to develop and incorporate Quality First Teaching strategies. If needed, individual and small group interventions are also available.

To support reading

  • 1-1 catch up literacy intervention
  • Words First reading intervention
  • Language for Thinking Intervention
  • 1-1 Toe by Toe – phonics intervention
  • Precision Teaching to build up sight vocabulary
  • Wordshark games
  • Accessibility aids: reading overlays, scanning reading pens, Widgit symbols to support written text

To support spelling

  • 1-1 Stareway to Spelling Intervention
  • ACE dictionary tutorials

To support numeracy

  • 1-1 catch up numeracy intervention
  • Numbershark games
  • Accessibility aids: numicon and other manipulatives
  • 1-1 Plus One Maths Practice books
  • Life Skills tuition including money and telling the time
  • Touch Type Read Spell

To support fine and gross motor skills

  • Handwriting pens, rubber grips
  • Touch Type Read Spell tuition for touch typing
  • Clicker 7 software to support independent writing
  • Support with fine motor skill task such as using scissors & strengthening hand muscles
  • Use of alternatives to writing e.g. laptop, a scribe,  
  • Supervised rest breaks

Classroom based support

  • Reasonable adjustment advice to teachers to compensate for processing, working memory & specific difficulties
  • Additional adult support may be available for some classes
  • KS3 Literacy Curriculum (dependent upon KS2 and Y7 baseline data)
  • In some cases, pupils will be referred by the SENDCo for additional, specialised assessment and personalised equipment such a laptop with accessibility software may be provided

Differentiated Curriculum

  • Literacy Curriculum
  • Alternative Curriculum Group
Sensory and Physical 

Hearing and Visual Impairments

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

Some children and young people require special educational provision because they 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.

Physical Impairments

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

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.

Understanding Needs 

Step 1: Assessment of Needs

Primary or previous school SENDCos and Nottingham City’s Inclusive Education Sensory Team liaise with NGA’s SEND Team to ensure your child’s specific needs and requirements are understood before your child joins the school.

Please contact Zoe Scholtz, the SENDCo directly if you feel a conversation would be helpful or if you have concerns that liaison between schools has not happened.

All Year 7 pupils (other than those joining the Alternative Curriculum) undertake the below assessments and the SENDCo uses the information to identify pupils who may require additional assessment or learning support.

  • In addition to the below, for pupils with sensory and/or physical needs, specialist reports and requirements will be implemented and families may be consulted.
  • CATs (Cognitive Assessment Tests)
  • a reading test
  • a dyslexia pre-screening test
  • Subject based baseline tests.

Step 2: Plan to meet learning need

The SENDCo will contact parents when:

  • Pupils are identified for additional assessment
  • A pupil passport (Profile) has been created.
  • Pupils are offered specific support such as an intervention   
  • SENDCo requires additional information from the family to support the identification of needs and appropriate support.
  • SENDCo wishes to offer the pupil a place in the Alternative Curriculum

SENDCo wishes to refer the pupil for additional support or assessment from the Inclusive Education learning Support Team, Sensory Team or Educational Psychology Service. 

Support 

If needed, your daughter will have access to:

  • Portable visual CCTV visual aid to significantly enlarge print.
  • In-class support to identify barriers and support learning through adjustments
  • Catch up sessions for core subjects if needed
  • Reasonable adjustment advice for teachers to scaffold learning differences such as: helpful seating, note taking, working speed, preparation of adapted and / or modified resources
  • Accessibility aids such as support chairs, foot stools and recommended adapted equipment
  • Training for staff with using Radio aids (KS3&4)
  • Access to lift in both school buildings
  • Access to quiet corridors when moving between lessons
  • Ramp access to Reception
  • Teaching sessions from the Inclusive Education sensory team who can support with language, communication & sign language 
  • Additional transition support to meet the SEND support team and to become familiar with the school buildings.
Social, Emotional and Mental Health 

The SEND Code of Practice 2014 explains that:

Children and young people 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, self-harming, substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Other children and young people may have disorders such as attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder.

Identification 

NGA is working with members of the Educational Psychology Service (EPS) and Behaviour Support Team (BST) to implement the city wide Routes 2 Inclusion (r2i) framework.

This framework is a graduated response enabling the identification, assessment and intervention of children presenting with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs. Find out more here:

Support 

Please note, we work closely with and respond to advise for individual pupils from external professionals such as CAMHs to individualise support as and when needed.

Available support:

  • Keyworker support providing pupils with a familiar adult in school.
  • School counsellor  1-1 sessions with Claire Redding, school therapist. 
  • 1-1 or small group ELSA support (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) offering short term intervention programmes to help promote resiliency and emotional literacy. Find out more here:

 

  • 1-1 or small group Zones of Regulation Programme. The Zones framework provides strategies to teach students to:
    • become more aware of and independent in controlling their emotions and impulses
    • manage their sensory needs improve their ability to problem solve conflicts. Click here to find out more:

 

  • Transition support:  NGA Support staff liaise with primary schools and offer small visits ahead of the National Transition days to ease anxieties and to give children a chance to meet the support Team and walk around school. We also work with colleges to support the transition of our Y11 pupils into college or other next steps.
  • Referrals for additional support or diagnosis.  Zoe Scholtz, the SENDCo can support you with this. For more information as to how parents / carers can refer, please follow the below links:

 

 

Reasonable Adjustments

  • Safe space: Adult supervised area at break and lunch times
  • Homework support
  • Visual Timetable
  • Access to concentration and sensory regulation tools to support learning e.g. fiddle toys, chair bands, wobble seats, visual timers, time timer
  • In class support to scaffold concentration, relationships with peers and teachers, positive communication and self regulation.

 

Further details on how we plan for the inclusion and support of pupils with SEND are outlined below:

Arrangements for the Admission of Disabled Pupils 

The admissions arrangements for all pupils are in accordance with national legislation, including the Equality Act 2010.

Nottingham Girls' Academy is an inclusive school. SEN and disability are not used as a reason to refuse admission.

For any pupil without an EHC plan, the normal admission policy applies. This can be found here

For pupils with an EHC plan, a consultation process will be commenced by the Local Authority. As part of this, the SENDCo will liaise with families and current schools to determine whether Nottingham Girls' Academy is able to meet the needs of the child.

Preventing Disabled Pupils from Being Treated Less Favourably Than Others 

At Nottingham Girls’ Academy, disabled pupils are enabled through additional support and/or reasonable adjustments, to fully participate in education and the full use of the facilities so they are not put at a substantial disadvantage to non-disabled peers (unless it is judged to be unsafe for the pupil or others).

Further details can be found in the accessibility plan:

Adapting the Curriculum
 

As much as possible, pupils will have full access to the National Curriculum, though at times, small group teaching, one-to-one sessions or alternative provision might be provided if this better suits the learning needs of the student.

Nottingham Girl’s Academy has:

  • Literacy curriculum at KS3 (3 lessons per week rather than Spanish)
  • Alternative curriculum for pupils working at KS1 Age Related Expectations in KS3
  • Alternative Curriculum for pupils working towards Foundation Learning qualifications in KS4
  • Smaller classes for main stream lower ability sets following the National Curriculum
  • Shared in-class support when a need is identified by teaching staff or a pupil receives HLN (Higher Level Needs funding)
  • Social and emotional support and mentoring
  • Specific subject interventions targeted around achievement and progress
  • Personalised timetables for pupils with specific strengths and weaknesses combining mainstream subjects with interventions and Foundation Learning
  • Each learner identified as having SEND is entitled to support that is ‘additional to or different from’ a normal differentiated curriculum.  This support is recorded, monitored and tracked by the SEND Team and shared with staff and families through Pupil Passports.
Evaluating the Effectiveness of SEND Provision 

The SENDCo is responsible for evaluating the effectiveness and success of SEND provision. Practice will be deemed successful if we see pupils gaining confidence, self-esteem, making progress and showing increased independence.

In order to grow, develop and improve the provision at Nottingham Girls’ Academy, the SENDCo uses:

  • feedback from staff, pupils, parent/carers and external support agencies
  • attainment and other assessment data to monitor the impact of particular interventions and support strategies
  • lesson & pupil observations

The SENDCo will use this information to:

  • inform the deployment of SEND staff
  • inform training needs for teaching staff and SEND staff
  • develop resources by investing in new accessibility software and aids
  • introduce new interventions to meet the 4 areas of SEND need
  • contribute to the teaching & learning policy to support quality first teaching 
Trips and Activities 

All students are included in all parts of the academy curriculum and this is the same for trips or visits off site.

A risk assessment is carried out prior to any off site activity to ensure everyone’s health and safety will not be compromised. When needed, a member of the support team will accompany a student to enable their inclusion.

A range of extra-curricular activities are offered during the school day and students with SEND are encouraged to take part according to their individual interests. If pupils are interested but anxious in attending, the SEND team are able to support initially. The support team runs two inclusion clubs at lunchtime for students with SEND who may find break or lunchtimes difficult as well as a homework club after school twice a week.

Wellbeing
 

Nottingham Girls’ Academy recognises the importance of emotional wellbeing and good health for pupils. More detailed information about the specific support that is offered can be found in the Social, Emotional and Mental Health section above..

As an overview, please see below:

  • Teaching and support staff have knowledge and understanding of the pupils in their care.
  • Pupils with high levels of SEND have a named key worker from the Support Team who will liaise with home and teaching staff regularly
  • Pupils can be signposted to external agencies for additional support  
  • Pupils may be offered in-school interventions to support with academic or social and emotional inclusion
  • Routes 2 Inclusion framework to support the early intervention of SEMH difficulties.
Medical Needs 
  • Pupils with medical needs are addressed in accordance with the statutory guidance on supporting pupils in schools with medical conditions, and medicines are administered in line with the academy’s Medicine policy
  • Pupils with Care Plans are supported by pastoral Teams. The Care Plans will be updated in annual review meetings between school and home.
Contacting us about SEND 

Getting in Touch

If you have any questions about our provision for pupils with SEND, please do not hesitate to get in touch:

SENDCo: Mrs Z Scholtz

email: zscholtz@nottinghamgirlsacademy.org

telephone: 0115 7483410

 

SLT Link for SEND: Mrs V Brierley

Principal Mr D Tungate

Complaints

Despite our best endeavours, we understand that things may not always happen in the way you would like.

We  always appreciate the opportunity to listen and respond to your concerns and queries before they escalate and become worse. Please contact us using the above link and ask to speak to th SENDCo or Member of the Senior Leadership Team as appropriate.

However, if we have been unable to resolve something to your satisfaction please find a link to the Trust's complaints procedure (and other policies) below: