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Cottesmore Millfield Academy

SEND Information Report 2016-2017


What is the Local Authority Local Offer?

From September 2014 Local Authorities and schools are required to publish and keep under review information about school services they expect to be available for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities aged 0-25.  This is called the ‘Local Offer’.

This document is intended to give you information regarding the ways in which we ensure we support all our pupils, including those with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities.



  1. What types of Special Educational Needs do we provide for?

At Cottesmore Millfield Academy we recognise that all pupils are entitled to a quality of provision that will enable them to achieve their full potential.  Our school is a unique and fully inclusive school where every child matters; we ensure we address all individual’s needs and support their development in the most appropriate way possible.  We celebrate effort as much as achievement, regardless of gender, ethnicity, social background, religion, sexual identity, physical ability or educational needs.

Additional and/or different provision is made for children with a range of needs at Cottesmore Millfield Academy.  There are now four broad areas of Special Educational needs and/or Disabilities, these are:

  • Communication and Interaction

This area of need includes children with Autism Spectrum Condition and those with Speech, Language and Communication needs.

  • Cognition and Learning

This includes children with Specific Learning Difficulties, such as dyslexia and dyspraxia.

  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties

This includes any pupils who have a social, emotional or mental health need that is impacting on their ability to learn.

  • Sensory and/or Physical Difficulties

This area includes children with hearing impairment, visual impairment, multi-sensory impairment and physical difficulties.


2. How do we identify and assess pupils with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities?

Our school’s Assessment Policy is available on request and outlines the rage of assessments regularly used throughout the school.  Additional and different assessment tools maybe required when children are making less than expected progress, which can be characterised by:


  • progress which is significantly slower
  • progress fails to match or better the child’s own previous rate of progress
  • progress fails to close the attainment gap between the child and their peers
  • progress widens the attainment gap


Progress in areas other than attainment is also considered e.g. where a child needs to make additional progress with social needs in order to be fully integrated into school life or make successful transition to secondary school.  If behaviour is causing concern, it is always considered whether there are any underlying difficulties; if there are none, the class teacher would speak to parents/carers about anything that might have happened at home.  The class teacher/SENDCo would gather information about incidents occurring, at what time of day, during which lessons and behaviour checklists may also be used to analyse and consider patterns of behaviour.  Observations would be conducted in class and on the playground to record behaviours, considering involvement of other peers and environmental factors and an intervention devised taking into account all the information gathered.  See our SEND policy for further information relating to behaviour support.


Parents are always informed if school staff considers that their child has an additional need and parents and children, where appropriate depending on age and capability, are involved in the planning to meet the identified need.  We often recommend initially that eyesight and hearing are checked to discount these aspects as possible underlying causes of learning issues.  We will also ensure we use information from parents and carers and records from the child’s previous school(s).


At Cottesmore Millfield Academy a range of specific, more specialist tests may be used, usually by the SENDCo, to assist in the identification of an individual child’s needs in order to plan targeted programmes for them and to use as a benchmark for measuring the impact of subsequent interventions.


To obtain further understanding of a child’s learning difficulties, we may use:

· Salford Sentence Reading and Comprehension Test

· Dyslexia Portfolio

· Grays Oral Reading Test

· Visual Stress Assessments

· Speech and Language school initial screening too


Other specialist assessments which may be used in school to identify barriers to learning include:

· Social, emotional and behavioural checklist – e.g. Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire

· Observations e.g. for behaviour, concentration and attention


In addition Cottesmore Millfield Academy commissions the services of a Specialist Teacher for Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) Mrs Allyson Ford.

3. Our school’s policies for making provision for children with SEND, whether or not they have an Education, Health and Care Plan.

a) How we evaluate the effectiveness of provision for children with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities

  • Use of a provision map to track and measure progress and achievement.
  • Evaluation of individual education plans – Passport to Success at least 3 times an academic year.
  • Use of assessment information/progress rates – pre and post interventions.
  • Use of attainment and progress data for children with SEND across the school which is part of whole school tracking of children’s progress in terms of National Curriculum stages – at least three times yearly.
  • Use of pupil/parent questionnaires.
  • Monitoring by SENDCo


b) Our arrangements for assessing and reviewing the progress of children with SEND

At Cottesmore Millfield Academy we follow a graduated support approach which is called, ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review.’  This means we will:

  • Assess a child’s Special Educational Needs and/or Disability
  • 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 through consultation meetings

As part of this approach, we will produce a SEND support plan which we call a Passport to Success.  This plan describes the provision that we will put in place to meet a child’s SEND and agreed outcomes.  Parents/Carers and children will be fully involved with this process.  Further information can be found in our Assessment Policy.


Other arrangements include;

  • Tracking progress in term of National Curriculum Stages
  • Progress of children with speech and language needs is assessed and reviewed regularly throughout the year by Speech and Language Therapy (SALT) services
  • A cycle of consultation meetings takes place throughout the year for children involved with the Educational Psychology Team.
  • When children are assessed by the SENDCo or by external agencies, meetings take place with parents/carers and the class teacher to discuss the findings and jointly decide how best to address need and meet outcomes.
  • When assessing children with SEND, consideration is given to recording needs e.g. a reader, a scribe, additional time or rest breaks may be necessary.
  • Initial concerns about a child’s progress are discussed with the SENDCo and parents/carers, and possibly followed by referrals to external agencies and/or placement on intervention programmes as deemed appropriate.


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 (EHC Plan).  If your child has an EHC Plan then an annual review will be held, interim reviews can also be arranged throughout the year if deemed necessary.  Full details with regards to this can be found on the Rutland County Council website


c) What is our approach to teaching children with SEND?

The fundamental aim of Cottesmore Millfield Academy is to enable each child to aspire to achieve their own full potential.  Unlocking and removing barriers to learning is a firm commitment of our school and to help us achieve this we work in partnership with all our families and external agencies where appropriate.  We take specific action to create effective learning environments, secure children’s motivation and create positive mind sets, provide equality of opportunity, use appropriate assessments and set individualised outcomes for learning.


Cottesmore Millfield Academy endeavour to ensure quality first teaching is taking place in all classrooms with the setting of high expectations and the provision of opportunities for all to achieve.  We believe that provision for children with SEND is a whole school matter and all teachers are teachers of SEND.


Children with SEND will receive support that is additional to or different from the provision made for other children.  Our teachers take account of individual needs in their planning and assessment, they provide appropriate support for additional needs, they plan to enable all children to take full part in learning, including physical and practical activities, they help children to manage their emotions and behaviour in order to take part in learning effectively.


At Cottesmore Millfield Academy we aim to identify children with particular needs as early as possible, see section 3b for details on assessments which may be used.  In completing assessments to consider the whole child, we acknowledge that gifted children often require additional resourcing to extend and fully develop their potential.  Children who speak English as an additional language may also require additional modified programmes and differentiation of the curriculum.


We acknowledge that not all children with disabilities necessarily have special educational needs.  All our teachers take action however, to ensure that children with disabilities are able to participate as fully as possible in the curriculum and statutory assessment arrangements.  Potential areas of difficulty are identified and assessed at the outset, with possible support from Rutland SEN support team, without the need for disapplication. 


d) How do we adapt the curriculum and learning environment?

The curriculum is scaffolded and differentiated to meet the needs of all our children.  Differentiation may occur through grouping, e.g. small group, 1:1 and ability.  It may also occur within the content of the lesson, teaching style, lesson format, pace of the lesson, provision of alternative recording methods, outcomes expected from individual children, materials used and provision of alternative location for completion of work.


Cottesmore Millfield Academy always act upon advice received from external agencies and this may include the following examples; enlarging print, coloured paper and/or overlays, positioning in the classroom, use of laptops and ipads, use of brain breaks and the use of weighted blankets.


We endeavour to ensure all classrooms are dyslexia friendly including the use of labelled resources, word mats, use of dyslexic dictionaries and visual clues etc.  We also aim to ensure our classrooms are Autism Spectrum Condition friendly, including the use of visual timetables, personalised timetables, quiet workstations and areas of retreat.  We work closely with the Inclusion Team at Rutland County Council to continue to develop our provision as and when necessary.


Children with speech and language difficulties are supported with visual cues, ‘chunking’ of instructions, additional processing time and where appropriate the pre-teaching and over-learning of vocabulary.  We implement individual speech and language programmes generated by SALT, who also provide training, support and advice to staff.


Currently we have a number of areas within school which can be used as quiet work areas for 1:1 and/or small adult supported group work.


e) What additional support for learning is available for children with SEND?

There are currently 199 children on roll at Cottesmore Millfield Academy, although this number fluctuates across the school year due to the unique nature of our school where 100% of children are from service families or ex-service families. 


We have 12 teaching assistants employed in school, providing a higher staff to pupil ratio which maximises learning potential for all children and most TAs are trained to deliver a number of intervention programmes across the school.  Some TAs are deployed in classes to support children on a 1:1 or small group basis.  We also have a high ratio of teaching staff to pupil, and this enables the majority of our classes to remain small in number further maximising learning potential for all children.


A significant number of intervention programmes are in place for children who require additional support e.g. precision teaching, Numicon, Socially Speaking – a social skills programme, Teodorescu’s Perceptuo-Motor Programme, Toe-by-Toe, Power of Two, Plus One, Colourful Semantics, additional support during unstructured times through our ‘Bluey Club’ and Sensory Integration Circuits.  These interventions are subject to change and additional interventions may be included to meet the needs of children as and when they arise.


For children with specifically identified or diagnosed needs, we work closely with the external agencies to ensure that the best possible support is in place, for example, educational psychologists, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, SEN inclusion team at Rutland County Council and specialist teachers.


f) How do we enable pupils with SEND to engage in activities with other pupils who do not have SEND?

All extra-curricular activities are available to all our children, usually on a first come first served basis.  There is currently a breakfast club which is available to all our children, although this is run by an external company and therefore there is a cost involved on the parent’s behalf.  All efforts are made to ensure any residential trips are accessible to all our children. 


We have a ‘Bluey Club’ available to all our children which runs at lunchtimes to support the children’s emotional well-being, particularly if there is a member of the family who is on detached duty or active service, often overseas.  Children can also be identified by staff as needing additional adult support during unstructured times and therefore will be given priority access into Bluey Club.


We are in the process of establishing a playground buddy programme during playtimes, led by the children for the children, and this will be available to all our children to participate in.


g) How do we support pupils with SEND to improve their emotional and social development?

Cottesmore Millfield Academy will take on board and use advice from; Inclusion Officer for social communication/interaction difficulties, Educational Psychologists, colleagues at CAMHS.  Identified children will be placed in social skills intervention programmes such as Socially Speaking and staff will be made aware who to support during unstructured times throughout the day.   The SENDCo undertakes on-going professional development with all members of staff. 


As a whole school we explore our core values of resilience, respect, responsibility, compassion, enjoyment and independence, through assemblies.  Work is then continued back in the classrooms developing all children’s emotional and social development.  This is further enhanced through our PSHE curriculum called ‘Jigsaw.’


We currently have a Family Support Advisor working with us once a week, Sarah Rodgers.  Mrs Rodgers role is to support both children and their families by exploring emotional and social development, and this may include: individualized plans, small group work and bereavement support.


In 2017 the SENDCo and two TAs will be undertaking the ELSA (emotional literacy support assistant) training in order to further develop our provision for all children identified as having and emotional and/or social development difficulty.


Also see the school’s anti-bullying statement and behaviour policy which can be found on our website.


h) How do we support children with SEND when moving, either to the next phase of their education within school or to another school?


Cottesmore Millfield Academy experience significantly high mobility rates, for example in 2016 the in year mobility was 48.9%.  Our higher than average mobility is as a direct result of the community we serve; that of the Armed Forces.  Due to our unique context we have extensive experience in supporting children when moving to the next stage of their education, whether that be with us or another school.


We use bespoke transition plans for children with SEND and work closely with parents/carers, external agencies and professional colleagues in other schools to ensure every transition is as trouble-free and comfortable as possible.  These plans may involve additional time spent in the new classroom/school before an intended move and this is carefully managed by the Senior Leadership Team.  Transition books are made to support the children by providing pictures of their new environment, enabling the children to become familiar with the environment in a safe and familiar place.


At the end of each school year teachers hold meetings with the class’s teacher for the new academic year to discuss SEND information.  This will be supported by the SENDCo for children with more complex SEND.

4. Who is our special educational needs and disabilities co-ordinator (SENDCo) and how can they be contacted?

Our SENDCo is Mrs Sarah White and she is contactable through the school office on 01572 812278 or

5. What is the level of expertise and training of staff in relation to children with SEND and how will specialist expertise be secured?

Our SENDCo, Mrs Sarah White, has 6+ years of experience in the field of SEND, having been a teacher for 17 years.  She has worked in a range of schools across three different local authorities and has completed the National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators.


Our team of eleven teachers and 12 teaching assistants have a range of extensive experience and training in planning, delivering and assessing intervention programmes, as discussed in section 3.  All staff are trained on a continuous needs based programme on the needs of current children and new children joining the school, this can include training from specialist agencies or consultants, including health services, as well as from our SENDCo or other staff with relevant expertise.


The SENDCo is a member of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and is therefore continuously working with the other members of SLT to review and plan the training, guidance and advice that staff across the school need to ensure they meet the additional learning requirements of the children.  The SENDCo is also the Inclusion Team Leader, Designated Teacher for Looked after Children and Designated Safeguarding Lead, hence able to combine a number of areas of school life which may impact upon children with SEND.


A number of staff are trained in a national training programme called Team Teach, which is aimed at the promotion of de-escalation strategies to support teaching, learning and caring


Any specialist information gained through research and training is disseminated via staff meetings, reports or organised staff training sessions.  During the Autumn term 2016 the SENDCo attended a train the trainer conference on Teaching for Neurodiversity and training will be delivered across the Spring and Summer terms to all staff.  The SENDCo holds regular surgeries for all staff to attend as an arena to discuss concerns, understanding and possible strategies for use within the classroom.  The SENDCo holds a mainly non-class based role, meaning she is available to support staff with regard to the implementation of specific programmes, creation and monitoring of Passports to Success and the tracking of children with SEND.  Particular support is given to newly qualified teachers, recently qualified teachers and other new members of staff.


As specific needs arise the SENDCo approaches specialists from a range of external agencies to seek advice about raising awareness of and to enhance all staffs knowledge about a specific type of SEND.  Should a pupil with a specific need be admitted to the school, then the SENDCo will pursue relevant training, in the first instance, for the class teacher and support staff concerned.  Staff may also request training and this will then be discussed with SLT.

6. How will we secure equipment and facilities to support children with SEND?

Cottesmore Millfield Academy will participate in discussions with specialist agencies involved, parents/carers, the school’s Head Teacher.

Equipment and facilities to support our children with SEND are non-negotiable and whatever they require, within reason, they get e.g. an area of quiet retreat for identified children, provision of coloured overlays and/or coloured paper, provision of equipment such as weighted blanket and the implementation of strategies such as brain breaks.  It is the schools duty to make reasonable adjustments, such as the provision of a piece of equipment, additional staff assistance for disabled children and readers for children with visual impairments.

7. How do we consult parents of children with SEND and involve them in their child’s educations?Throughout the year there are two parents’ evenings and all children receive an end of year annual report in July.  This enables the school to invite parents to review their child’s Passport to Success a minimum of three times a year.  These plans are evaluated with parents/carers and recommendations for new outcomes discussed alongside suggestions for supporting the child within the home setting.


Parents are also encouraged to arrange appointments with the class teacher as and when concerns arise.  There is an ‘open door’ policy whereby the SENDCo is easily contactable via the school office and telephone.  Parents may be invited into school to discuss their child’s progress at any time and additional meetings are set up as required or requested by parents/carers to discuss particular aspects of a child’s SEND and we particularly welcome information from parents about how their child learns best in order that it can be shared with the relevant staff.


Progress and outcomes are also discussed during consultation meetings with the Educational Psychology Team, Speech and Language Therapist, Inclusion Officers and specialist teachers.  Parents will receive a report and discussion takes place regarding the outcomes of any assessments and/observations.


The progress of children with an EHC Plan will also be discussed at their annual review.  At a Year 5 annual review transition to secondary provision is considered with discussion involving parents and the LA.  At Year 6 annual reviews the SENDCo of the receiving secondary school is usually invited to attend.


Parental questionnaires are used annually to obtain parents’ views about their child’s SEND, support in place to address needs and any modifications to this support which parents may feel appropriate.

8. How do we consult children with SEND and involve them in their education?

Any outcomes set are done so with the children, if appropriate i.e. appropriate age and understanding, and then reviewed with them.  Children’s self-evaluation is actively encouraged throughout the school and children are supported where necessary to think of areas for development and how best to develop in these areas in school and at home. We endeavour to ensure children are aware of their progress and the challenging outcomes set to support their development.


Pupil voice is gained at reviews and at other points throughout the year to obtain children’s views about their SEND, support in place to address needs and any modifications to this support which children feel may be helpful for them.

9. What are the arrangements made relating to the treatment of complaints from parents of children with SEND concerning the provision made at school?

It is in everyone’s interests for complaints to be resolved as quickly and at as low a level as possible and our SEND complaint procedure is as follows:

  • The complaint is dealt with by the class teacher and the complainant needs to feel that they have been listened to and that all points raised have been addressed. 
  • If the matter remains unresolved the complaint is dealt with by the SENDCo.
  • If there is still no resolution the Head teacher will become actively involved.
  • If the matter is still not resolved, the complainant must put their complaint in writing to the Chair of Governors, Mrs Sarah Bysouth.
  • The Governing body will deal with the matter through their agreed complaint resolution procedures, the policy can be found on our website.
  • In the unlikely event that the matter is still not resolved, the parent can then take the complaint to the Local Authority or request an independent disagreement resolution and the school will make further information available about this process on request.

10. How will we secure specialist expertise?

School commissions the services of Mrs Sarah Rodgers, a Family Support Advisor, to work directly with children and their families if appropriate and to provide support and advice to staff.  School also commissions the services of a specialist teacher, Mrs Allyson Ford, to provide learning sessions and support for staff with regards to dyslexia.  External agencies play an important part in helping school identify, assess and make provision for children with SEND.  The speech and language therapy and occupational therapy services (NHS) involved with individual children support school in the implementation of specific programmes and contribute to the assessment and monitoring of progress and reviews of children.

Cottesmore Millfield Academy maintain close links with child health services, children’s social care services, education welfare services and army unit welfare services to ensure that all relevant information is considered when making provision for children with SEND.  Our school nurse is available for advice and can attend meetings in school on request following referrals to the service made by school. 

Liaison meetings are held between Little Bloomers Nursery and Cottesmore Village Pre-School are held in the summer term before children enter our Reception classes.

The Local Authority’s CAF (including Early Help support) are adhered to by the school whereby help and support is offered to children and families when low level issues emerge.  This allows regular Team Around the Family (TAF) meetings to be held, engaging appropriate agencies to ensure positive outcomes for the children and families involved.

11. Who can young people and parents/carers contact if they have concerns? What support services are available to parents/carers?

Any concerns regarding your child’s additional needs and their provision can be addressed in the first instance by Miss Sarah Bradley and/or Mrs Rachel Thomas.  However, Rutland County Council provides a number of services to support parents and carers and these can be found by following the link below.


There are also some independent advice and support services available for young people and/or parents to contact.  These services offer independent information and support to families and young people who need help finding their way through the Education, Health and Care (EHC) assessment and planning process.  They can be found at:

CEAS are part of the MOD’s Directorate Children and Young People (DCYP) and are a small dedicated team, who are experienced in advising service parents on a wide range of issues regarding the education of service children in the UK and overseas.  More information on the service can be found at the link below:


12. Where can the LA’s local offer be found?