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Our Lady & St. Gerard's

R.C. Primary School

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Special Educational Needs & Disabilities

What is SEND?








SEND = Special Educational Needs & Disabilities

According to the Code of Practice 2014:

 A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her.

A child of compulsory school age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if he or she:

• has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or

• has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions


The Code of Practice is statutory guidance for organisations which work with and support children and young people who have special educational needs or disabilities.

SEND Policy 

Our SEND policy sets out the aims, policies, procedures and ethos for SEND.  Our SENCo is Mrs. R.E Cowell  If you would like to speak to Mrs. Cowell about your child's needs, please contact the school office 01772 335025 or email   

Broad Areas of Need


There are four Broad Areas of Need.  Click any icon for further information from the Code of Practice about this area of need. Some children may have needs which fall into more than one category.  The categories are not used to define children but are instead used to plan the correct support/provision. 


Children and young people with Autistic Spectrum Disorders/Conditions are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication and imagination, which can impact on how they relate to others.  They often have sensory difficulties which can impact on their learning.


Provision for children with SEND will vary from child to child and sometimes from day to day.  Some children need particular support with certain subjects, whilst others have needs which may affect all areas of learning.  Children's needs are not linear - the needs may change over time and therefore provision may change too.


The Education Endowment Foundation have research highly effective strategies for supporting pupils with SEND.  We aim to use these strategies to enhance our provision for pupils with SEND.  Key strategies used are:

  • Dual coding - Dual coding is the idea of using different types of stimuli to help learners encode information in their brains more effectively, enabling it to be more easily retrieved later on. In the classroom, the main two types of stimuli that are used are visual and verbal.
  • Retrieval practice - Retrieval practice boosts learning by asking pupils to recall information previously learnt.  This allows pupils to make links with prior learning and recall knowledge.  This includes overlearning key vocabulary.
  • Consider working memory - Working memory is the retention of a small amount of information in a readily accessible form. It facilitates planning, comprehension, reasoning, and problem-solving.
  • Reduce Cognitive overload - Cognitive overload is a situation where the teacher gives too much information or too many tasks to learners simultaneously, resulting in the learner being unable to process this information. In this situation, the language processing demands of an activity go beyond the language processing limits of the learner. It produces anxiety and stress, as well as affecting learning.
  • High leverage teaching – teaching which has a strong knowledge focus with no activities which distract from that main focus.
  • Flexible grouping – Groups can be flexible and change according to need e.g. group pupils to work collaboratively, to receive explicit instructions etc.
  • Metacognitive & Cognitive strategies – Teachers model own thinking, set challenges to encourage resilience, promote metacognitive talk, teach pupils to organise and apply their learning.  Use of graphic organisers – used to express concepts and ideas e.g. Venn diagram, semantic map etc.
  • Explicit instruction – teacher-led approaches e.g. I do, we do, you do (Teacher demonstration, guided practice, independent practice).  Common aspects are teaching in small steps, using examples and non-examples, anticipate and plan for misconceptions, highlight essential info and remove distraction.
  • Use of technology – apps, word processor etc. can all be effective tools for SEND.
  • Scaffolding – temporary support which is then removed.  Can be verbal, visual, written and all aimed at promoting independence.

Support for pupils is effective through this quality first teaching (universal support).  Interventions may be required to support children further.  This may be small groups or 1:1 support depending on needs (targeted).  Where children have needs which require specialist input, school can refer to other agencies (specialist) for support.


Our Provision Map shows the Universal, Targeted and Specialist Support that is accessed by our pupils.

Special educational needs and disabilities - local offer

It is the responsibility of the Local Authority to produce a Local Offer.  The local offer brings together information for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.  

The SEND local offer is:

  • information, advice, support and services
  • provided by education, health, Lancashire County Council (the local authority) and voluntary organisations
  • local to Lancashire
  • for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) aged 0-25
  • available in one place on the Local Offer website- click the image to access the Local Offer



This team can support parents in a variety of ways.  Further information can be found at  


They have produced some handy leaflets about their service.

The Lancashire SEND Partnership brings together all the agencies in Lancashire which provide special educational needs and disability (SEND) services for children, young people, their parents and carers, with representatives from those who use the service.

The SEND Partnership was formed following the Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) joint inspection of SEND services in our local area.  Click the image to access the SEND Partnership pages.

Click the image above to find out about the Family Information Network Directory.  From this link you can access the FIND newsletter which is packed full of useful information and guidance about SEND.

Some children have a special educational need, which may be a learning difference, a physical/sensory need, a communication need or social, emotional or mental health difficulty. Provision is made for children with special educational needs to accommodate their needs and give them access to all aspects of the curriculum. The school works within the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code Of Practice: 0-25 years (2014).


For more information please see the Special Educational Needs Policy and the SEND Information Report.


SEND Coordinator: Mrs. Ruth Cowell

SEND Governor: Mrs. Rachel Ballard