SEND Report (September 2021): Information and Local Offer
The Birmingham City Council "Local Offer" sets out a wealth of information about support services available to support children and young people with special education needs.
You can find the Birmingham Local Offer here: https://www.localofferbirmingham.co.uk/
The 'Local Offer', helps families understand what services they and their child can expect from a range of local agencies.
Victoria School is a community special school for children and young people with physical disabilities and/or complex medical needs, together with learning difficulties. Many of our learners have Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities (PMLD). Victoria School also has a regional Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI) Unit for children who are deaf-blind.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
1) What is the special needs provision at Victoria School?
Types of need
Examples of support in our school
How we check it is working
Regular assessments of personal targets.
Physical Difficulties and PMLD (Profound Multiple Learning Difficulties)
Support for physical difficulties, provision of physiotherapy services and support for motor programmes.
Regular review of communication targets.
Complex medical needs
Experienced staff team.
On site NHS Physiotherapy team.
Support for feeding difficulties.
Ongoing CPD (Continuing Professional Development) for staff.
Paediatric First Aiders.
Personalised targets and planning for individuals.
Review of Education, Health and Care Plans - EHCP.
Sensory difficulties including
MSI (Deaf Blindness)
Staff experienced and trained in Visual Impairment (VI), Hearing Impairment (HI), or MSI (Multi-Sensory Impairment - deaf/blindness).
Personalised targets and planning for individuals.
Our pupils may have any combination of the above.
2) How does the School identify and assess Special Educational Needs?
All our pupils have SEND and an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). Occasionally we are asked to admit pupils who are still in the process of receiving an EHCP assessment.
3) How does the School know how much progress is being made with pupils with Special Educational Needs?
We have robust systems of baseline assessments, recording data, target setting and tracking of progress in place. Targeted intervention is in place for all pupils who we feel are making less than expected progress. Our targets are set in discussion with families and other external professionals and based on our knowledge of the whole child. Regular parents evenings/review meetings take place and parents are able to arrange meetings at other times to discuss progress.
4) What extra-curricular activities can a pupil with Special Educational Needs access at School?
We run a variety of extra-curricular/enrichment activities for our pupils, some of these are held at lunch time, for example signing choir and dance club. We also have an after School Club: Club Vic, which offers a programme of activities across the school year. In the summer term we offer "stay and play" sessions for families to join their child and use our exciting outdoor facilities.
In addition we also offer a range of residential visits for pupils during the time they are with us.
5) Does the School have a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO)? If so, who are they and how can someone get in touch with them?
Victoria School's SENCO is Gary Coffey (Executive Headteacher). Initial contact for further information should be made via phone or email (see below for details). All class teachers are available to speak to families throughout the year, should class specific information be required.
6) What training do the staff in school have in relation to pupils with Special Educational Needs?
Many of our teachers and support staff have a great deal of experience working with children with SEND. For staff who are new to the school, we offer induction and training including Manual Handling and Communication. We have a schedule of training across the year for all staff to complete. Some teachers have trained as SEN specialists and some TAs have qualifications in supporting special educational needs.
7) How does school get more specialist help for pupils if they need it?
Within school we have access to a team of professionals who can offer specialist advice. These include NHS nurses, physiotherapists, orthotics, speech and language therapists and dieticians. We work very closely with all professionals, as well as families, to ensure we offer the best provision. When necessary, we also work with other agencies such as Forward Thinking Birmingham, Social Care and Health, Educational Psychologists and the Communication and Autism Team.
We also have staff who are experienced in supporting Hearing Impairment and Visual Impairment and, in some instances, have qualifications in these areas.
8) How are parents of children and young people with SEND involved in the education of their child?
We are happy to meet with parents as often as necessary to ensure that they are happy with the education their child is receiving.
There are a range of opportunities, both formal and informal, for families to come into school. These range from parents' evenings, Annual Review meetings and special assemblies. Class teachers are happy to speak to parents regularly on the phone and pupils have a home school book to assist in communication. We are also happy to arrange meetings with parents at any time of the year. Our website and the associated App and email messaging services are also primary means of communication.
9) How are pupils with Special Educational Needs involved in their own education?
Wherever possible we will include our pupils in their education by encouraging then to participate in review meetings, whether that is by talking with them outside of the meeting to ascertain their views or by them taking part in the meeting itself.
We also have a student council. Pupils are voted onto this each year in the autumn term by their peers. They meet regularly and have the opportunity to influence decisions.
10) If a parent or a child with SEND has a complaint about the school, how does the governing body deal with the complaint?
We have a complaints policy that we will follow in any instance of a complaint being raised. You will find this within the Policies tab (top of page). In the first instance, we would encourage parents to contact the School Office, who will put you in touch with the most appropriate person to help to resolve your complaint.
11) How does the Governing body involve other people in meeting the needs of pupils with special educational needs including support for their families?
A Family Worker is employed to support and signpost families to other agencies for support. A team within Victoria School facilitates a programme of support for parents and carers to attend throughout the year.
12) What support services can help families with pupils who have special educational needs?
Birmingham SENDIASS is available to help parents through the assessment process and can also help facilitate school visits and offer advice. SENAR is the department within the LA who manage the EHCP assessment process and school placements.
13) How does the school support pupils with SEND through Transition?
The arrangements for transition vary depending on the stage of each pupil's education. On entry to school, the transition is planned on an individual basis with you and your child. Often a pupil will start at Victoria with one or more visits to the school. This is usually into a full time placement, however we are happy to plan a detailed and longer transition, if necessary.
If a pupil is coming to us from a different school, we will always try to visit them in their current setting and if possible attend their final review.
Secondary Transfer – whether your child is moving up from our Primary Department or are new to Victoria School you will be invited to a parents' meeting. This enables you to meet some of our nurses and physios as well as Key Stage Managers and class teachers. There will also be a morning when your child will visit school and spend time in class. We can arrange for extended transition in the term prior to September if necessary and this will be planned in conjunction with you and your child’s current school.
Transition into adulthood – When you child is in Year 9 discussions will begin about your child’s future after school and their hopes and aspirations for the future. Many pupils stay at Victoria into the 6th form and then transfer into a variety of College placements. You and they will be given advice and guidance by ourselves and an Independent Careers Advisor. There will also be opportunities to visit a variety of colleges during the last couple of years at Victoria.
14) Linked documents include:
• Complaints Policy
• Anti-Bullying & Harassment Policy
• Supporting Children With Medical Conditions Policy
• Safeguarding & Child Protection Policy
• Special Educational Needs & Disability Policy
• Equality Policy
15) Monitoring and updates
This report will be monitored throughout the year and ratified by the Governing Body every September. Amendments will be made as appropriate to changes in local provision, or statutory guidance.