Special Needs Policy

Rational for Policy:

As the needs of all pupils are ongoing and the special needs of pupils are always a concern this policy is the final part of a review of Special Needs provision in our school.

Characteristic Spirit of School:

The aims of our school are to:_

  • Foster and develop Christian attitudes in all pupils.
  • Create an ordered and orderly environment in which pupils can develop self discipline, feel secure and make progress in as many aspect of their development as possible.
  • Create a friendly, secure and happy environment for learning.
  • Pass on an agreed body of knowledge in all areas of the curriculum.

Aims of St. Rynagh’s Primary School in relation to Special Needs:

We hope

  • To enable pupils of all abilities to avail of an appropriate education in as far as we can in a mainstream setting.
  • To have a clear enrolment policy for special needs.
  • To outline our system for identifying and teaching children with special needs.
  • To assist parents making a decision on where to enrol their child, through clarifying what service we can provide.
  • To establish a framework of communication so parents of S.E.N. pupils are aware of what instruction their children receive.

Enrolment of Children with identified S.E.N.

We have an enrolment policy for S.E.N. which can be found under enrolment.

Staged approach to meeting the needs of pupils with S.E.N.

Our staged approach to meeting the needs of pupils with Special Educational Needs.

Stage 1

The class teacher or a parent is concerned about a pupils progress.  The concern may relate to the child’s academic, physical, social behavioural or emotional development.

Action taken – The class teacher notes the area of concern and monitors the child’s progress in the noted area.

Stage 2

The class teacher/or principal remains concerned about the pupil.

Action taken – The child is referred to the learning support teacher for diagnostic assessment.  If diagnostic testing and or the teachers concerns deem it appropriate supplementary teaching is arranged for the pupil in learning support/resource.  Permission should be sought from parents for both diagnostic assessment and attendance in learning support.

Stage 3

The class teacher and learning support teacher or the principal think additional support is needed for a pupil.  This support involves a specialist outside the school.

Action taken – The school commissions an Individual Psychological Assessment for a pupil.  The school in cooperation with the parents endeavours to use the assessment to address the needs of the pupil.  As each psychological assessment is an individual assessment the actions taken by the school will vary greatly but may involve attendance in learning support or resource, programmes to be followed by the parents with the child additional follow up by other relevant supports such as Speech and Language Therapist, Occupational Therapist etc.

The school is conscious that in any given year a limited number of psychological assessments can be commissioned.  The school will, therefore, have to prioritise for assessment.  Priority will be given to cases where the school fees that an assessment will most affect the success of a child in accessing the curriculum.   Appeals in relation to prioritising pupils for assessment can be made to the Board of Management by parents.

Drafting and Implementing an Individual Profile & Learning Programme (I.P.L.P.)

Why have an I.P.L.P.

The I.P.L.P. exists to effectively plan and deliver the support we can give S.E.N. pupils in St. Rynagh’s Primary School.

Creation and Coordinating I.P.L.P.’s

The I.P.L.P. will be laid out by the learning support/resource teacher in cooperation with the class teacher.

The overall coordination of I.P.L.P. and distribution of S.E.N. pupils to the different learning support/resource teachers will be done by S.E.N. Team in cooperation with the Principal.

Additional Resources

If the I.P.L.P. identifies resources that we cannot provide in the mainstream setting this will be brought to the attention of the S.E.N.O. by the Principal.

Classroom Teachers

Classroom teachers through contact with learning support teachers and/or through I.P.L.P. can familiarise themselves with the work being done by S.E.N. pupils from their class in Learning Support.

Inclusion

The vision of our school is one of inclusiveness among other values.  Class teachers and leaning support teachers work in harmony to ensure that attending learning support does not exclude S.E.N. pupils from other activities as far as possible.  We would also seek to include all children with S.E.N. that may exclude them from certain physical activities in as far as possible in S.P.H.E. and P.E. or to offer an alternative activity that is positively regarded.

Record Keeping

Record keeping for pupils with S.E.N. will be in line with our separate policy on record keeping.

Collaboration and Communication

Our stage approach to identifying and addressing the needs of S.E.N. pupils allows for good communication between the school and parents as permission is sought for children to receive diagnostic assessments to receive learning support and to receive a psychological assessment.

At parent teacher meeting time the learning support team will be available to meet parents of S.E.N. pupils.

The learning support team will also be available to meet parents of S.E.N. pupils during the year should a parent request a meeting.   The learning support teachers may also request a meeting with a parent if they feel it is necessary.   As with all pupils the homework journal is a method of daily communication between school and home.

Deployment of Staff

The deployment of staff to S.E.N. will be reviewed annually in the context of our needs and the resources available from the D.E.S.

Resources

Resources are managed by the learning support teachers.  New resources will be acquired annually where they can be afforded.  Resources that ate needed and for which there are particular grants will be applied for by the Principal.  Equality of access to resources and facilities within the school is always given consideration.

Transfer to Post Primary

Our school will identify pupils with S.E.N. to the Post Primary sector.  With the permission of the parents of the pupils with S.E.N. we will hand over relevant reports.