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The Role of the SEND Governor

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1 The Role of the SEND Governor
WELCOME The Role of the SEND Governor House Keeping Introduce my-self and my role Ask who is a new governors (split tables) Ask who has been to meeting Go through Induction Pack

2 Agenda What are Special Educational Needs and Disabilities?
Recent changes to SEND – Children and Families Bill 2014 Child at the centre Role of the SENCo Governing Body responsibilities SEND Governor role What Questions should you be asking? How the governing body can support the SEND Governor Reports to Governors from school Reports to Parents / Carers from Governors Word of warning

3 A learning difficulty or disability is defined as the child:
The Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice (2014) states:- 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 learning difficulty or disability is defined as the child: 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 Children with SEN may also have a disability under the Equality Act 2010:- a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities What are Special Educational Needs and Disabilities? Further definition of Disability from Equality Act 2010 This definition provides a relatively low threshold and includes more children than many realise: ‘long-term’ is defined as ‘a year or more’ and ‘substantial’ is defined as ‘more than minor or trivial’. This definition includes sensory impairments such as those affecting sight or hearing, and long-term health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, and cancer. Children and young people with such conditions do not necessarily have SEN, but there is a significant overlap between disabled children and young people and those with SEN. Where a disabled child or young person requires special educational provision they will also be covered by the SEN definition. SEN links into access plans, disability discrimination, medical conditions policy etc

4 Recent changes to SEND – Children and families Bill 2014
Pupils and families at the centre Planning and assessment more accessible At 16 years old, young peoples views take precedence over parents Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP) replace statements and LDA From sept 2014 Transition from existing statements and LDA’s to EHCP’s will take place over 3 years, usually at point of KS transition The Local Offer LA has to publish information about all available provision and how to access it New single-category SEN support School action and school action plus replaced by “SEN support” Schools using a graduated approach and following a 4 stage cycle. Schools using provision maps and “waves” 4 stage cycle of plan assess, plan, do, evaluate See handout.

5 Child at the centre

6 Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo)
Role of the SENCo Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) The SEND code of practice 2014 states:- Governing bodies must ensure that there is a qualified teacher designated as SENCO for the school. The SENCO has an important role to play with the headteacher and governing body, in determining the strategic development of SEN policy and provision in the school. The SENCO, headteacher and governing body should establish a clear picture of the resources that are available to the school. They should consider their strategic approach to meeting SEND in the context of the total resources available, including any resources targeted at particular groups, such as the pupil premium. The SENCO should work with the headteacher and school governors to ensure that the school meets its responsibilities under the Equality Act (2010) with regard to reasonable adjustments and access arrangements . See page 108 of CoP for full details of SENCO role.

7 Responsibilities of the Governing Body
Taken from the Dfe Gov handbook Jan 2015 In summary, schools have the following legal duties under the Children and Families Act 2014 and the governing body has a responsibility to ensure this is happening. To establish a SEND policy which is publicly available and can be easily understood by parents. take account of the ‘SEND Code of Practice’ when carrying out their duties towards all pupils with SEN; to ensure that the necessary special education provision is made for any pupil who has SEN; ensure that parents or young person are notified when special educational provision is being made for their child, that the teachers in the school are aware of the importance of identifying pupils who have SEN and of providing appropriate teaching; ensure that there is a qualified teacher designated as special educational needs co-ordinator (SENCO) for the school and that they have the necessary SEN qualification. where a local authority or names a maintained school as the school the child will attend on an SEN statement or Education and Health Care Plan, the governing body must admit the child to the school. Before naming a maintained school on a statement the local authority must consult the governing body of the school To cooperate with the local authority in developing the local offer; ensure the school produce and publish online its School SEN Information Report ensure the school has arrangements in place to support children with medical conditions A newly appointed SENCO must be a qualified teacher and, where they have not previously been the SENCO at that or any other relevant school for a total period of more than twelve months, they must achieve a National Award in Special Educational Needs Co-ordination within three years of appointment;

8 The SEND Governor Role The majority of governing bodies have delegated some of these responsibilities to a named SEND Governor who reports back to the governing body on a regular basis Table Discussion: What should the SEND Governor do and report?

9 The SEND Governor What should the SEND governor do?
Raise awareness of SEN and disability issues at GB meetings Ensure that the governing body is well informed about SEN and inclusion issues Give up to date information to the GB on quality and effectiveness of SEND provision in the school Monitor any parts of School Development Plan relating to SEND Ensure any budget for pupils with SEN is appropriately allocated Help review SEND policy Ensure school has regard to SEND code of practice Visit the school to talk to SENCo and others about provision Ensure school publishes “local offer” H

10 What Questions does SEND Governor need to ask?
The sort of issues you might discuss or ask with the SENCo and other school staff will include: current numbers on the SEND list at the different stages (but not their names); identification procedures for pupils with SEND; staffing arrangements for pupils with SEND; staff training and the impact; use of resources and the impact; how pupils with SEND are included in curriculum planning to ensure equality of access to the curriculum and equality of learning opportunities at an age and ability appropriate level; How confident are you that money for pupils with EHCP (or statement) is being used efficiently and effectively – How do you monitor this? Handout with more detail

11 What skills will you need?
an interest in special educational needs; good communication skills, with a willingness to report back verbally at meetings or to provide a brief written report; time and availability – in particular to meet regularly with the SENCO, to visit the school and to take advantage of relevant briefing and training opportunities; a willingness to participate in the development and review of the school’s SEND policy and reporting.

12 How do you start? It is important that you develop a working relationship with the SENCo. You are encouraged (under the SEND Code of Practice) to visit at least once a term; and in order to make the best use of these visits - plan the focus in advance. Ask for information to be sent to you a week in advance – then you can be prepared for the conversation. Keep notes of the meeting – these will form your report to the governing body; always agree your report with the Head and SENCo before it goes to the full governing body. Be informed about links with other schools and agencies. Consider how the school can best communicate with parents.

13 take an informed interest in special educational needs issues;
How can the Governing Body support the SEND Governor? The governing body will need to establish the responsibilities the SEND Governor should undertake and provide support for the role take an informed interest in special educational needs issues; monitor, evaluate and review the Special Educational Needs policy on a regular basis; ensure that all the other school policies fully support the principle of inclusion for all pupils including disability discrimination provide an opportunity for any outgoing SEND Governor to pass on information and relevant paperwork; ensure appropriate time is on the governing body meeting agenda.

14 Reports to Governors from School
What information about SEND should governors expect to receive? An update on the schools move to new SEND system (EHCP) How the school identifies pupils with SEND Pupil progress against outcomes agreed on EHCP or IEP (objectives on a SEN statement) Academic attainment and progress of SEND pupils as a group and where appropriate individually. SEND funding Staff development Work with external agencies and internal staff (Impact) How many pupils with SEND have been excluded? Does the discipline committee take account of SEND when considering an exclusion? Has the school policy changed as a result of such reviews?

15 Reports to parents / carers from governors
The SEND code of practice says governing bodies must publish information on their provisions for pupils with SEND which should be easily accessible by parents. This should include:- Information on identifying and assessing SEND Teaching and Learning in relation to SEN Health, Emotional and social development of SEND pupils How to raise concerns and make complaints Arrangements for supporting looked after pupils with SEND Information on where the Local Offer is published The CoP says this information should be reviewed annually and any changes to the information should not wait for the review, but be updated as soon as possible. Handout with more detail

16 Words of warning Keep a strategic overview and do not be drawn into issues relating to any individual child Whilst you are not responsible for the day to day management of special needs provision in the school, you may on occasion have access to sensitive information about the circumstances of individual children, particularly in smaller schools. It is essential that the SEND Governor respects the confidentiality of such information.

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