SEN support in nurseries, schools and colleges is based around the specific needs of each child or young person. The staff, equipment, resources and support that help your child has are decided using something called the graduated response. This is an ‘assess, plan, do, and review’ cycle. That means if your child special educational needs, the school or college should:
• assess what support they need
• plan the support
• do the support set out in the plan and then
• review how well it’s working
Information about your child’s needs, support and goals should be written down in a plan, which is used by staff and updated regularly. Schools and colleges use all kinds of plans, so your child’s plan may look different from one for a child from a different school. What’s important is that your child has a clearly written plan which lists all their needs, support and goals. For most children and young people with SEND the support the school gives works and they make progress.
But sometimes the support for a child isn’t enough or isn’t right. Your child may not make the progress that’s expected and start to fall behind other children their age. Or their difficulties in school get worse not better, and their behaviour at school or home becomes more challenging.
If things aren’t going well for your child and they’re not making progress, your first step is to ask for a meeting to review their nursery, school or college plan. At the meeting you can talk about the support they’re getting, what may need to change and how you’ll know if any new support is working.
If reviewing the plan and making changes to the support doesn’t make a difference, you can ask whether a needs assessment for an Education Health and Care (EHC) plan should be the next step.
You can find out more about the support that’s available in schools on the Devon SEND Local Offer pages.