Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)

If you have any queries or concerns regarding SEND, please email the SEN team at sensupport@acacias.manchester.sch.uk.

Please SEND policy and Inclusion policy (available here (SEN) and here (Inclusion) or at the school office) for more information on our SEND policies and practices. Our SEND Information Report can be downloaded here and details of our accessibility plan are here.


Article 2: Your right to be treated equally, no matter what!

Article 12: You right to use your voice and be listened to.

Article 23: You have the right to special education and care if you have a disability or special needs so that you can live a full and independent life.

Article 28: Your right to an education.

Article 29: Your right to be the best that you can be!


At Acacias Community Primary School, we work hard to provide a caring, stimulating and inclusive environment where every child can reach their full potential.

We recognise that you know your child best and you may feel that they need some additional help or support for some or all of their time at school. The information included here is to inform you of the types of support available for your child at Acacias. It will help you to understand who can help and how this support can be accessed.


How does the school identify a Special Educational Need?

All pupils in school receive quality first teaching. This means that a range of teaching and learning styles are used and that appropriate learning objectives are set for all children with a curriculum matched to their needs. All classes are supported by teaching assistants and pupils are also frequently offered additional small group work or interventions where needed. Where necessary, reasonable adaptations are made to learning environments to support children in their education.

If a child continues to have difficulty, has a high level of difficulty when they join us or as they change during their school life, they may be considered to have a special educational need or disability (SEND). Progress is monitored closely to help inform any decisions around special educational needs, with concerns from parents/carers and school staff being used to initially identify a possible need. If you think your child may need additional support then you can speak with either your child’s class teacher or Mrs Riley (Inclusion Manager and SENDCo).

Children with SEND have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children of the same age. They will need extra or different help.  Schools and other external agencies can help most children overcome their difficulties quickly and easily.  A few children will need extra help for some or all of their time in school.


What are the different stages of support?

The Special Educational Needs Code of Practice gives guidance to schools in meeting the needs of pupils.  It sets out how help should be given in a step by step approach.  You will be consulted at all stages of this graduated approach and staff will inform you of the additional work they do with your child. Class teachers will assess your child to identify their strengths, needs and the extra help they require.  If they need extra or different support than most children their age they may get extra support in the form of:

School Support

This may involve:

  • Extra help from a teaching assistant in class
  • Small group or individual support out of class
  • Alternative resources such as specific ICT programmes or visual prompts.                    

If your child continues to have difficulty even with this support, we may look at offering support through our Inclusion team in school or talk to you about asking for advice from people outside school such as a speech and language therapist, hearing impairment teacher, health professional or educational psychologist.  Your child would continue to get a high level of extra support in school guided by the advice of these professionals.

Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC)

If your child’s needs are complex or severe we may suggest that we ask the Local Authority for a statutory assessment.  This may result in your child having an ‘EHCP’ which describes your child’s SEND and the special help they should receive.  EHCP’s usually involve the Local Authority recognising the extra resources needed to help your child, although the school continues to fund a significant proportion of this. Additional resources often include staff time, specialist support and/or equipment.


How do we adapt the curriculum for children with SEND?

All pupils access the same curriculum, and in foundation subjects are meeting the same objectives, with adaptations put in place to ensure it is accessible and achievable for children with SEND, whilst challenging all. This works, because what works for pupils with SEND will benefit all. 

We base our adaptations, through our high quality teaching, around the ‘5 a day’ principles (from the Education Endowment Fund). 

     1. Explicit Instruction – we make sure that explanations are clear. We use visuals and concrete objects to support this as needed, alongside word banks. Key children may have a vocabulary pre-teach (which our EAL interventions focus on). We question pupils at an appropriate level (based on Blanks level questioning) to check understanding. 

     2. Cognitive and metacognitive strategies – we ‘chunk’ learning to make it manageable, teaching the children using a ‘bit at a time’ approach. Opportunities are given throughout the lesson, and units of lessons, to rehearse and repeat the learning to ensure it is remembered.  

     3. Scaffolding – where needed, scaffolds are used, alongside resources such as taskboards to break the learning process down for specific pupils. Resources are also adapted as needed, with additional or fewer resources being given to support. 

     4. Flexible grouping – the Kagan strategies that we use across the school lend themselves to flexible grouping, enabling children of differing abilities to support and enhance one another’s learning 

     5. Using technology – for specific pupils, technological aides are used to support their learning, particularly in terms of alternative methods of recording. This could be done through the use of Clickr docs or Clickr sentences, through speech to text programmes or through applications such as immersive reader which can read a text to a pupil.  

Particular resources may also be provided that are bespoke to a specific child’s needs. 


How else might my child be supported?

We offer a wide range of interventions to support the different areas of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. The areas of need, as set out in the SEN Code of Practice, are: Cognition and Learning needs; Speech, Language and Communication needs; Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs; and Physical and/or Medical needs.

We regularly inform parents/carers about the intervention and support that their child is receiving. You are also welcome to make an appointment to meet with either the class teacher or Inclusion Manager to discuss your child’s progress and any concerns you may have. Our specialist staff can also offer advice and practical ways that you can help your child at home.

Across the year we run a number of workshops on how to support children with Special Educational Needs at home (please look on our calendar for details of these). The inclusion team have also produced a number of leaflets designed to enable parents to support their children at home. We currently have the following leaflets available to download:

If any of the leaflets refer to resources you do not have, please speak to a member of our team and we will be able to help you and hopefully provide you with the resources needed.


The Inclusion Team

Our SENDCo is Rebecca Riley, our Inclusion Manager. She leads our dedicated Inclusion team, having a strategic overview of the needs of our pupils with inclusion needs and the interventions that are in place to support these needs, and managing inclusion on a day-to-day basis to ensure the provision is in place to allow children to access their learning. Alongside the SENDCo/ Inclusion Manager we have;

·         Jamie Sadat – SEN teacher,

·         Susan Whittaker - Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) teacher, 

·         Sian Bradley-Byrne – Numbers Count teacher, 

·         Sanam Stanley – EAL teacher. 


The Inclusion team forms just part of the highly experienced team of staff who may be involved in supporting your child at Acacias. Support will also be given by your child’s teacher, who will always make sure that tasks set are appropriate and accessible for your child, Teaching Assistants (TAs), who support all pupils in class and Learning Support Assistants (LSAs), who help and support individual children with their learning.

We also, when necessary, seek support from external agencies. We have close links with: our link school nurse, who we can contact to advise on and assess any medical needs; Speech and Language Therapists, who can assess and support children with speech and language difficulties and refer them for support at clinic when needed; our Educational Psychologist. Our School Governor for SEND is currently Mrs Zaidi.

Please ask at the school office if you wish to speak to any member of the Inclusion team.


How is the support, and the impact it has on learning, assessed?

Before any intervention is begun, a pre-intervention assessment is carried out, with different assessments for each intervention (including ongoing assessment within the classroom, as part of Quality First Teaching). This allows us to identify the specific needs that need to be met through the intervention, and to set targets for the intervention and the individual pupil. At the end of the  intervention, a post-intervention assessment is undertaken. This allows us to see the impact that the intervention has had on the pupils’ learning or ability to access their learning. It also allows us to plan for further intervention and support that may be required.


How are parents/carers involved in the support that their child receives?

In order to ensure that intervention and support has the maximum impact, it is important that school and home work in partnership. We can offer advice and practical ways that you can help your child at home. We regularly offer workshops on supporting children across the curriculum, and our Inclusion team are available to give further support. All pupils with a Special Educational Need have a One Page Profile, detailing their strengths, areas of difficulty and how they are best supported. These are written in conjunction with the pupils, and are sent to parents. These are reviewed at least twice a year.  Parents of children with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC) will also be invited into school to participate in the annual review. 


If a parent has any concerns regarding the support being given, they can contact the SENDCo/Inclusion Manager, Mrs Riley, or the governor for SEND, Mrs Zaidi.


Where can I find further information?

Please see our SEND policy and Inclusion policy (available here (SEN) and here (Inclusion) or at the school office) for more information on our SEND policies and practices. Our SEND Information Report can be downloaded here and details of our accessibility plan are here.


If you want advice from professionals outside school you may find the following contacts helpful:

Information, Advice and Support Service (IASS): 0161 209 8356

School Admissions: 0161 245 7166

Manchester Families Service Directory: http://manchester.fsd.org.uk

Manchester's Local Offer: www.manchester.gov.uk/sendlocaloffer



You may also find the following documents, produced by the Department for Education (DfE), useful: