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How do we identify and assess children with SEN?

SEN Provision - How do we identify and assess pupils with SEND?

Most children and young people will have their special educational needs met in mainstream schools through good classroom practice. This is called Quality First Teaching.


At Catchgate Primary School we follow a graduated support approach which is called “Assess, Plan, Do, Review”.  This means that we will:

  • Assess a child’s special educational needs
  • Plan the provision to meet your child’s aspirations and agreed outcomes
  • Do put the provision in place to meet those outcomes 
  • Review the support and progress


As part of this approach, we will produce a SEN Support Plan that describes the provision that we will make to meet a child’s special educational needs and agreed outcomes.  Parents and carers will be fully involved in this process.


A small percentage of children and young people with significant learning difficulties might need an assessment that could lead to an Education, Health and Care Plan.  Full details can be found on the Local Offer website.

It is important that any are picked up as early as. We track pupil progress really closely to ensure that this happens.


School provides support for children with learning needs through

  • Flexible grouping arrangements.

  • Differentiation of activities and materials.

  • Differentiated questioning.

  • Use of visual, auditory and kinaesthetic approaches.

  • Providing resources and displays that support independence.

  • Simplified level/pace/amount of teacher talk.

  • Alternative forms of recording routinely offered and used e.g. oral presentation, posters, sound buttons, mind maps, matching labels to pictures, sorting into categories.

  • Ongoing opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific outcomes with reinforcement in whole class activities to aid transfer of skills.

  • Implementing in the classroom advice from Outside Agencies e.g. Educational Psychologist, SEND team.

  • Multi- sensory approaches to learning.

  • Pre tutoring to enable the pupil to engage with learning in the classroom

  • Enhanced opportunities to use technological aids.

  • Use of visual reminders, timers, resources and rewards.

  • Time limited proven interventions that are matched to pupil need and delivered by suitably trained staff.

  • Use of small group or 1:1 programmes planned by the teacher and delivered by a TA to address specific difficulties.

  • Providing opportunities for skill reinforcement / over learning / revision / transfer and generalisation.

  • Adaptation to National curriculum.


School provides support for children with physical needs through

  • Structured and evaluated fine motor programmes (It’s in the bag, etc.)

  • Structured and evaluated gross motor programmes usually provided and overseen by an Occupational/Physiotherapist.

  • Differentiating and modifying some learning tasks e.g. P.E. tasks.

  • Giving individual children more time to complete tasks and that equality of access may mean that they need to do some things differently.

  • Providing a range of alternative equipment e.g. chunky pencils, adapted scissors, writing desks, cushions.

  • Giving individual children rest breaks and opportunities to sit down.


School provides support for children with speech, language and communication needs through

  • Flexible grouping arrangements.
  • Some differentiation of activities and materials.

  • Differentiated questioning.

  • Use of visual, auditory and kinaesthetic approaches e.g. pictures, story sacks.

  • Resources and displays that support independence.

  • Giving individual increased time to offer verbal responses.

  • Pre-teaching and over learning of key vocabulary and concepts.

  • Time-limited small group interventions as appropriate e.g. Time to Talk, Language link and Elklan activities.

  • 1-1 speech programmes provided by Speech and Language therapists or Speech Link.


School provides support for children with hearing impairment through

  • Providing a quiet area for individual and small group work.

  • Seating the pupils in a position where other speakers can be observed quickly.

  • Reducing background noise, move noisy equipment, seat away from busy areas of the building and external sounds.

  • Use of assistive listening devices.

  • Regular meetings with the teacher of the Deaf.


School provides support children with social, emotional and mental health difficulties through

  • SEAL materials and interventions.

  • Providing planned opportunities to learn and practice social and emotional skills during structured activities.

  • Restorative Practices (RP) Approaches.

  • Personalised reward systems covering targeted lessons / activities.

  • Routinely addressing anti-bullying so that pupils are confident in reporting incidents.

  • Use of consistent rules and expectations across staff.

  • Considering classroom organisation, seating and group dynamics.

  • Nurturing approaches.

  • Opportunities for small group work based on identified need. E.g. self-esteem, anger issues

  • Access to quiet withdrawal area when needed

  • Home-school communication diaries and behaviour charts and behaviour contracts.

  • Scheduled meetings with parents / carers on a regular basis.


School provides support for children with English as an Additional Language through

  • Involving EAL service to help assess child’s needs, offer support and help set targets.

  • Supporting child’s individual needs in the appropriate SEN area.(As above)


School provides support for looked after children with SEND through

  • Regular LAC meetings.

  • Personal Education plans.

  • Supporting as above according to the child’s individual need.


We do this by tracking your child’s progress through:

  • Information from parents/carers/health visitors
  • Collecting evidence from  teacher observations/Learning Journals assessments
  • National curriculum testing.
  • Other tests e.g. phonic tests.
  • Tests to identify any specific problems e.g. movement difficulties
  • Records from other schools your child has attended
  • Individual targets
  • Differentiated learning activities
  • Multi-sensory opportunities
  • Incorporation into planning of any advice or guidance provided by external professionals supporting individual pupils.
  • CAF referrals to external agencies/social care as required
  • Coordinated planning between class teacher and teaching assistant for pupils of SEND
  • Regular assessment of progress and achievement against national expectations and individual targets
  • Regular pupil progress meetings
  • Monitoring of individual targets
  • Teacher and TA observations
  • Analysing data through in school tracking system


We recognise that parents/carers might be the first people to identify that their child has a learning difficulty and we would encourage you to contact school if you have any concerns.

If we have concerns about the progress a pupil is making, we may refer them to other professionals for assessment.

These might include:

  • Health professionals e.g. CAMHS
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Educational Psychologist
  • Learning Support Service – a service who can carry out assessments for a range of SEND


Click on the link below to return to the SEND Offer main page.

Contact Details and Useful Links