All staff, including teaching assistants, have regular training and guidance to meet the needs of our children. Our senior leadership team (SLT) has a responsibility to arrange and provide this training. We make sure that teachers and TAs:
- have an awareness of the different special educational needs and disabilities of children in our school
- are able to plan and teach/support lessons which meet the needs of all children
- understand the social and emotional needs of children with SEND
Every year we do an audit of staff training needs – this includes knowledge and expertise about different SENDs. Every other year we run a Disability Awareness Day and the children attend special assemblies and workshops aimed at raising awareness and understanding of disability issues. Our staff handbook provides written guidance about the different SENDs in our school. The glossary provides a brief explanation of each area of need:
- Communication and interaction
- Cognition and learning
- Social, emotional and mental health difficulties
- Sensory and/ or physical needs
We know that children will frequently have a range of needs. We provide training for all of our teaching assistants who are working with children with particular SENDs, for example, slow progress in reading, number and communication. We access specialist training opportunities in Camden for teachers and teaching assistants who support children with the most complex needs – for example moderate learning difficulty, hearing impairment and autism. Members of our SEND team attend training sessions run by national and local organisations. We use the eight national Teaching Standards to develop the knowledge, skill and confidence of all of our Teachers as part of their professional development.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (Skills and Expertise of staff)
Q. How do you make sure that staff new to the school are able to meet my child’s needs?
A. All staff new to the school have an induction programme which includes a meeting with the SENDCo. We provide detailed information about the range of pupils in her/his class, personal support and detailed guidance on how to provide high quality teaching and support. We use the knowledge of parents/carers to do this.
Q. Will there be someone in the school who understands my child’s needs as soon as she starts?
A. As soon as we know that a child is coming to our school with particular needs, we review our provision and provide relevant ongoing training. We will provide relevant training and guidance for your child’s class teacher on meeting his/her needs.
Q. Will my child with an Education Health and Care Plan have a key worker – what does the key worker do?
A. Yes. We will allocate a key worker at the start of the school year or when a SEN support programme is put in place. The key worker will coordinate provision and monitor the achievement and well-being of your child. The amount and type (1:1, small group) and location (in-class or pull-out intervention) of support will be discussed with you to create a plan that best supports each individual child’s learning while promoting his/her independence. At Brookfield, we follow the recommendations outlined in Education Endowment Foundation’s Guidance Report ‘Making the Best Use of Teaching Assistants’, providing training and support to teaching assistants to enable them to scaffold pupils’ learning with an aim to enable all children to participate in independent learning acitivities.