About Us

SEN Information Report

Mission Statement

At St. Thomas of Canterbury School we encourage in all members of the community a shared sense of awe and wonder as we grow closer to God.  We foster creativity and inquiring minds, learning through collaboration and interdependence to become motivated, lifelong learners.


The following report provides information on how St Thomas of Canterbury School caters for the needs of those children identified as having Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).  For further details on this, please refer to the school's SEND Policy.

How does the school know if pupils need extra help?

At St Thomas of Canterbury, inclusive quality first teaching happens in each classroom, every day.  This means that all children's needs are addressed through appropriate work, questioning and support for learning.  Learning builds on prior knowledge and every teacher has high expectations of pupils' achievements.  Progress for all children is closely monitored each half term using information from continuous assessment and the teacher's understanding and knowledge of every child in his/her class.

If a child is not making as much progress as the class teacher expected, then the child will have support put in place to close any gaps in learning.  This could include accelerated learning in  a booster group, opportunities in a small group to pre-learn key vocabulary before its introduction within a class lesson or/and opportunities to consolidate learning and practise skills learnt to ensure that new learning is secured and retained.  Again, progress from this is closely monitored. 

Some children may require more specific interventions to develop particular aspects of their learning such as reading comprehension, speaking and listening skills, understanding of number and writing skills.  The class teacher will discuss additional needs of any pupils within his/her class with parents and the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), where necessary.

What should I do if I think my child has SEN?

We encourage parents to speak to the class teacher if they have any concerns about their child's learning or social and emotional development.  Teachers are available both before and after school to speak with parents.  The information from this discussion may then be shared with the SENCo.  If necessary, the SENCo will then follow this up by contacting parents to arrange a meeting to discuss these concerns further.  This helps to clarify any concerns and discuss any appropriate action which may need to be taken.

How will I know that the school will support my child?

The school follows the requirements in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice (2014) and will use our best endeavours to ensure that a child with SEND gets the support they need to make progress.  We have a designated teacher (SENCo) who is responsible for co-ordinating the SEND provision across the school.  The SENCo and class teacher will communicate with parents to ensure they are fully involved in discussions about support for their child.

How will the curriculum be matched to meet my child's needs?

High quality, inclusive teaching in every classroom means that at St Thomas of Canterbury, learning tasks and activities are matched to the child's needs and reasonable adjustments are made to ensure every child has the right environment in which to learn to their potential.  For our more complex learners, the curriculum is adapted to enable these children to learn at their own pace, with highly focused and individualised learning opportunities, supported by input and advice from a range of outside professionals such as speech and language therapists, physiotherapist and occupational therapist.

How will I know how my child is doing?

There are 2 parents' evenings each year (October and January), where parents can discuss their child's progress with the class teacher.  Longer appointments are given within these evenings for those parents whose children are on the SEND register (at the SEN Support stage) to allow for a detailed discussion of their child's progress and needs.  Parents of these children will also have a review with the class teacher and SENCo at least once during the year.  However, parents are encouraged to make an appointment to speak to the class teacher should they have concerns about their child's progress, at any point in the year.  A report for every child in school is also written at the end of each term so that parents are able to keep up to date with their child's progress.

For those children with an Education Health and Care Plan (EHC Plan), reviews are held termly with parents, class teacher and Senco.  One of these review meetings will involve the Annual Review of the EHC Plan.  Outside professionals working with your child may either attend the review, or write a report/update.

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

Parents are invited to attend parents' evenings and review meetings where they can gain information on how to support their child's learning.  Parent workshops and information events are held throughout the year on how to support your child with learning, based on the approaches used in school.  Parents are welcome to email their child's class teacher should they have any specific questions, or need further advice. Regular homework is set for each class to support learning within the classroom.  The school also runs a homework club.

What support will there be to support my child's overall well-being?

At St Thomas of Canterbury School, we understand the importance of emotional well-being.  Raising self-esteem and encouraging a positive self-image  is important for children to feel good about themselves and help them to become resilient in the face of difficulties.  Our school positive behaviour policy promotes rewards (stickers and certificates) based on a range of positive behaviours which support the development of these skills.

In school we have a Learning Mentor who supports children with their emotional and social development.  This includes 1-1 mentoring sessions and lunchtime pastoral support ('Bubbletime') to help with friendship and social issues.

We recognise that children may experience difficulties at any point in their lives due to a change in personal circumstances.  In school we run a peer support programme (Rainbows), which supports children in coping with a bereavement or other painful and significant  loss in their lives (ie divorce/separation).  This is facilitated and co-ordinated by trained staff in school.

What specialist services or expertise are available at, or accessed by, the school?

School is able to access expertise and advice from a range of professionals.  For children on the SEN register, this can include the Autism Team, Speech and Language Therapists, and the Hearing Impaired Service.  Additionally, for children with a EHC Plan, this can also include Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, Visually Impaired Service, Healthcare professionals and the Educational Psychology Service.  The Educational Psychology Service provide termly consultation meetings where appointments are available with staff and/or parents.  The school has internal expertise in learning assessment and support through Mrs Hutchings, SENCo.  We also endeavour to meet all needs through the use of commissioned services (those which the school itself buys into) such as a Clinical Psychologist within an independent consultancy practice.

The SENCo  co-ordinates provision with a range of professionals (including professionals from Ryegate Children's Centre, NHS, CAMHS or MAST) in order to effectively meet a child's needs within school.

What training have staff supporting pupils with SEND had, or receiving?

 All staff (class teachers and TAs) have received training, and have experience in a wide range of  SEND. Some of the training is given to the whole staff (eg Dyslexia, new SEND Code of Practice, use of ipads/ICT, visual difficulties) in order to support whole school practice.  Other training is more specific to individuals (CTs and TAs) or groups (eg TAs) on areas such as Autism, speech and language/communication development, specific intervention programmes to support reading, writing and maths skills, pump training, manual handling, use of ICT such as ipads, communication aids and Clicker software.

How will my child be included in activities outside of the classroom?

All school trips are carefully considered to ensure all children can participate.  Careful risk assessments are conducted to ensure the health and safety of the children for such trips.  Staff (through planning) and children (through play and planned activities) are encouraged to make use of all the school grounds, including the play and woodland areas.  A range of after school activities is offered  and these are often accessible for SEN children, with the correct amount of expertise, support and supervision.  Our most complex learners are encouraged and supported to access as wide a range of experiences as possible through specific trips and activities outside of the mainstream classroom, planned within their provision, in order to enhance their learning, life skills and ensure full engagement and participation.

How accessible is the school environment?

The school is on one level and is therefore fully accessible for all children, including those with physical difficulties and wheelchair users.  The building includes ramps, a disabled toilet and a sluice with a wall mounted hoist.

How will the school support my child starting school and moving on?

Reception staff make home visits to parents and children in the summer term before starting school.  They will also attend any review meetings at pre-school and nursery, with the SENCo, to ensure relevant information about a child's SEN is shared prior to starting school.  Upon starting school, children build up their time in school over the first 3 weeks to ensure staff get to know the children quickly, and the children make a positive start.  Parents of SEND children will have a review meeting with the class teacher and SENCo in October, once the child has settled into class. This review may also include someone from the Early Years Inclusion Team.

For secondary transition in Y6, the class teacher meets with staff from the receiving secondary school and completes detailed information about every child.  For those children on the SEND register, a transition meeting is held in the summer term with the class teacher, parents, primary SENCo and secondary school SENCo.  This meeting allows information to be shared and questions from all those involved to be asked (and hopefully answered!) around transition and support.  Children with SEND are offered extra visits to the receiving secondary school to allow them to become more familiar with the new school, and meet staff who may be supporting them on transition. They can take photographs and information about the school to discuss when they return to school and to share at home.  This information can also support worries and anxieties in the summer holidays prior to starting secondary school.  The child's SEN files are passed over to the secondary SENCo so that the receiving school has all the information about your child.

For a child with complex needs who may require specialist provision at secondary school, or to ensure that the receiving secondary school can appropriately meet the child's needs, parents are encouraged to visit a range of schools.  Mrs Hutchings, SENCo will support parents in accompanying them on any visits, as necessary.

How are decisions made about how much support my child will receive?

Decisions about the level of support a child should receive are made on the basis of need which may change and vary over time.  Information is gathered about the needs of children throughout the school with SEN and analysed by the by the Head Teacher, SENCo and class teacher.  Each class teacher is responsible for writing a Provision Map (in consultation with the SENCo) which identifies the children who require additional or different provision within the class.  Resources and support are then allocated accordingly. This is evaluated and reviewed each term and updated according to a child's progress.  Information from this provision is discussed with parents through review meetings, parents' evenings or summary reports.

Decisions regarding support and provision for children with an EHC Plan are discussed with parents at the termly review meetings.

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

Parents are involved in the review meetings with the class teacher and SENCo.  Within these meetings, parents' views are sought and desired outcomes and actions are discussed and agreed.

Who can parents contact for further information?

Mrs Hutchings, SENCo, can be contacted at the school to discuss any queries you may have about your child in relation to SEND.  Parents are also very welcome to make an appointment to come and look around the school.

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