Provision for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)

All of our pupils are assessed as individuals and their unique needs are planned for at St. Helen’s Church of England School. 

St. Helen’s Church of England School believes everyone has the right to be educated and to be part of our school community. We are committed to the promotion of equality and diversity. In so doing, we realise the valuable contribution, that all members of the school community make to our school.

In recent years approximately 15% of children within our school have been deemed to have a special educational need or disability of one kind or another. Children have a special educational need if they have a learning difficulty, which requires additional or specific provision to be put in place for them.


The curriculum and learning environment

Every child at St Helen’s Church of England School will access high quality teaching which takes account of pupil’s differing needs. We are proud of our creative curriculum throughout the school which allows children to learn in a variety of ways, become independent learners, thrive in areas of strength and gain confidence in areas they need to develop. Where appropriate, the curriculum will be adapted and reasonable adjustments will be made to meet the range of special educational needs and disabilities in our school. Where children are in need of additional support, this will be provided within the classroom setting to allow for full inclusion. It may also be given through small group sessions in addition to their usual classroom provision. Teachers will provide a tailored and personalised approach in line with a child’s EHCP (Education, Health and Care Plan) and/or My Plan. As a school we will endeavour to secure the special educational provision required by the child.

Additional support may include: 

  ~  Differentiated tasks 

  ~  Support in a small group 

  ~  Personalised learning programmes 

  ~  Adapted resources for learning

School trips are an important part of a child’s education and we make every effort to provide these opportunities to every child in our school. Where necessary we will seek the support of parents or other appropriate adults to support children with SEND to take a full and active part in school trips, as well as extra-curricular activities. Arrangements will be made to ensure all children can fully contribute to every aspect of school life.

Trips to look forward to may include 

Theatre visits     Dartmoor    St. George’s Activity Centre

The Big Sheep          Beach visits / Cliff walks       Science days

Accessibility of our school

As a relatively newly built school, we are blessed with an accessible building. Our school has no stairs into the school building and is set on one level throughout, we have large doorways accessible by wheelchairs. We have a large changing and toilet facility as well as an accessible parking bay. Should any additional equipment or services be required, the SENDCo and Headteacher work together to ensure this is put in place. Our outdoor area is largely accessible to people with a range of special educational needs and disabilities.

At St. Helen’s we have a high proportion of pupils who are hearing impaired. These children have access to high quality Soundfield systems and radio aids to ensure they can access all the learning. Adults receive training to support these pupils. 

Disability is not always visible and this is certainly true for our pupils with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or those with social, emotional and mental health needs (SEMH).

St. Helen’s provides a calm, consistent environment where these pupils are nurtured through situations that may cause them to become dyregulated. Pupils have access to safe calming areas where they can regulate and then return to their classroom when they are ready.

Supporting the overall well-being of children with SEND

Happy confident children is our goal for all our pupils. 

Children’s emotional well-being is vital to great learning in the classroom. All staff at our school work hard to support the well-being of every child. Within each classroom we have a ‘reflective area’ where children can have a moment to themselves, to reflect, pray, share concerns and worries with their peers or members of staff. We also ensure we develop caring and honest relationships with all children and ensure there are opportunities for children to talk to adults for support. Our staff are available every day to support parents in helping their children at school. The SENDCo will, where appropriate, share information with staff to ensure an holistic approach for children and parents.

Children in Care 

At St. Helen’s Children in Care (CiC) and Previously Looked After Children (PLAC) often need additional emotional support. 'Looked after children' or 'children in care' are children under 18 years of age who do not live with their parents or family. Many have suffered Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) or Trauma. The staff at St. Helen’s give these pupils extensive support and guidance. 

The SENDCo is the Children in Care lead teacher and coordinates data and support for Children in Care, working closely with social services and foster families.

Social Emotional and Mental Health Issues can include:

    ~    Forming and maintaining relationships

    ~    Bereavement trauma

    ~    Attitudes to attainment

    ~    Attendance

    ~    Self-esteem

    ~    Life outside school

All students at St. Helen’s can access:

    ~    Quality first teaching (with appropriate differentiation and support)

    ~    Assessment for identification of significant needs

    ~    Character Education

    ~    Whole school policy for behaviour and relationships

    ~    Transition support into new classes or settings

    ~    Anti-bullying policy

    ~    Dedicated and caring staff who ensure all children feel 'known and loved'

Support for targeted groups or individuals may include:

    ~    Transition support 

    ~    Intervention groups

    ~    In-class support

    ~    Mentoring

    ~    Bereavement support

    ~    Outside agency support (e.g. Educational Psychologist, 0-25 Team, CAMHS)

Extra support for Children in Care …

    ~    Reducing Exclusion in Devon Schools Team – REDS

Parental Involvement

The role of parents and carers is vital and we seek to support the partnership between school and home. Parents are encouraged to become involved in their child’s learning in a variety of ways, including:

  • Learning at home
  • Meeting with the class teacher about targets and progress
  • Meeting with the SENDCo if appropriate
  • Attendance at, and contributions to, review meetings
  • Volunteering to support on school trips 

External Agencies 

Working in partnership with other agencies is very important for our pupils with SEND. Many agencies work in our school to provide support for the pupils and give additional guidance to the staff. The SENDCo will make referrals following consultations with parents. 

Agencies regularly working with St. Helen’s include:

    ~    Deaf Advisory Teacher 

    ~    Educational Psychologist 

    ~    School Nurse  

    ~    Speech and Language Team 

    ~    Early Years Portage advisors 

    ~    CAMHS 

    ~    Early Help advisor 

Local Offer within Devon

St Helen's Church of England School is committed to ensuring all children have the best possible start to life. Some children may need additional support through their education. To support schools and parents in Devon, the County Council provide a ‘Local Offer’ which can be found via the link below. The Local Offer website provides information and access to a range of services for children and young people between the ages of 0-25 years.

The Devon Local Offer

Devon’s SEND Local Offer is the education, health and social care services and support for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) from birth to 25.

Who can I contact for further information?

Headteacher: Mrs Rebecca Northcott

SENDCo: Mrs C. Dickinson