To view Our Local Offer click here.

Our Approach:

At SFX we seek to nurture the skills, strengths and talents of all students.  In keeping with the college’s mission statement of ‘life in all its fullness’ the SEN department endeavours to support the full inclusion of all students of the college, regardless of need.

In relation to the SEN Code of Practice 2014, the provision within our college follows the graduated approach cycle of: Assess, Plan, Do, Review.  Teaching staff within the college are primarily responsible for the students in their care, including those with special educational needs.  As a college we regularly liaise with the students and their parents to decide on appropriate provision.  This provision could be provided by college staff or from an outside agency.

As a college we may support at any time students whose difficulties fall into the four areas of need as referred to in the SEN Code of Practice 2014.  The students that we have supported within the college during academic year 2015-16 have included those with cognition and learning difficulties, sensory impairments, communication and interaction difficulties and social, emotional and mental health difficulties.

Intervention and support

SEN Departmental Support

Students with a special educational need are supported through the work of the SEN Department and the teaching staff of the college.  There is a robust system in place for assessing students which helps identify those who may have a Special Educational Need.  This has included the analysis of Key Stage 2 data, information received from the Primary Transition Forum, baseline testing within subject areas, testing of reading and spelling on entry and at subsequent times during the school year and half termly progress review reports.  Where necessary the Educational Psychologist or specialist teachers have been used to provide more specific types of assessment.  The SEN Department has provided interventions to support the learning of students with SEN, such as small group intervention lessons or 1:1 sessions for literacy or numeracy.  The department works closely with local Outreach providers such as Childwall Abbey School (literacy); Abbot’s Lea (ASC); Hope (behaviour); Nugent Care (counselling); CAMHS/Alder Hey and the ADHS Foundation.  As of September 2016, we have secured a team of 15 volunteers from within the local community to come in and support our students with literacy and/or numeracy difficulties.  Most have a teaching background and provide an outstanding service to the college.  Most students with SEN are taught in a reduced class size (about 12) which is, generally, also assigned a Teaching Assistant.

The SENDCO is involved in liaison with primary schools regarding transition to Year 7 and also with parents of Year 6 students with an EHCP.  The SENDCO attends transitional review meetings and is involved in all stages of planning for a smooth transition.  SENDCO and Assistant SENDCO attend the Transition Forum in order to meet with primary colleagues, which is held in June each year.  Following this, we organise taster visits for groups of boys and have also deployed our own Teaching Assistants into primary school to assist with the transition process and answer any questions the children may have.  This happens throughout the summer term.

The transition between key stages and when students move on is also closely monitored.  The SENDCO works with the college’s careers adviser to ensure that there are clear pathways for students and also ensures that FE colleges have the relevant information in order to carry on meeting the young person’s needs.

SEN Support

High quality first teaching and additional interventions are defined through our person-centred planning approach across the school contributing to our provision management arrangements. These processes help us to regularly review and record what we offer all children or young people in our care and what we offer additionally.  These discussions also serve to embed our high expectations amongst staff about quality first teaching and the application of a differentiated and personalised approach to teaching and learning. We make it a point to discuss aspirations with ALL our learners. This is a whole-school approach and this report will promote how we underpin this practice across our classrooms, pastoral care and support arrangements.

All teachers are responsible for every child in their care, including those with special educational needs. At St Francis Xavier’s, ’High quality teaching, differentiated for individual pupils, is the first step in responding to pupils who have or may have SEN.’ (Code of Practice, 2014)

Assess:  In assessing a young person, school will carry out an analysis of the pupil’s needs, drawing on teacher assessments; reading and spelling scores; the experiences of the pupil; previous progress and levels of attainment. The individual’s progress is compared to that of peers and national data is also used in this initial assessment period. Pupil and parental views are sought, as are those of outside agencies who are involved in the assessment process. Any parental concerns are actively listened to and recorded. Assessments are reviewed every term in school.

Plan: We recognise that we must formally notify parents if their child is being provided with SEN support, despite prior involvement or communication. The teacher and SENCO agree, in consultation with parents and pupil, the adjustments, interventions and support to be put in place, as well as expected impact on progress (outcomes). A clear date is set for review.

Do: The school’s SENDCO supports the class or subject teacher in problem-solving and advising on the effective implementation of support and in further assessments. The teacher remains responsible for working with the child and, where the interventions involve group or one to one teaching away from the teacher, they remain responsible for overseeing this and working closely with Teaching Assistants or specialist staff to plan and assess the impact of support and how they can be linked to classroom teaching.

Review: Reviews are carried out on an agreed date. Some children have an EHCP (Education, Health and Care Plan) which has replaced the Statement of Educational Need. These must be reviewed by the local authority in partnership with the school, at least annually. These reviews are arranged at school and are part of the SENDCO’s role. When we review, we evaluate the impact and quality of the support and take into account the views of the parents and pupils. This feeds back into the analysis of the pupil’s needs. The teacher working with the SENDCO will revise the support in light of the pupil’s progress and development and any changes to support and outcomes will be made in consultation with the parent and pupil. We strive to provide clear information to parents about the impact of support and interventions provided, thus enabling them to be involved in planning next steps.

Having consulted with children, young people and their parents, all our additional provision (internal or external) is based on an agreed outcomes approach and these are discussed with the professionals that offer the support to your child/young person and hold both our internal/external providers and ourselves to account.

Different SEND needs/support
Children and young people’s SEN are generally thought of in the following four broad areas of need and support:

1.    Communication and interaction

How this is supported at St Francis Xavier’s:

  • ·         Lunch time Games Club to encourage and develop communication skills
  • ·         Talkabout sessions to develop social and communication skills
  • ·         Outreach Support(e.g, via Abbot’s Lea Outreach Team)
  • ·         Staff and Teaching Assistants have received high-level training
  • ·         A library of resources in SEN area, giving strategies to support students with difficulties in this area
  • ·         Involvement of other outside agencies( e.g, The Educational Psychology Service; Speech and Language Service)
  • ·         Access to Teaching Assistants

2.    Cognition and learning

How this is supported at St Francis Xavier’s:

  • ·         Literacy Intervention Programmes: pupils are assessed in reading and spelling six times per year.  If they fail to demonstrate sufficient progress following a particular programme, a review meeting is called to plan ‘next steps’
  • ·         Numeracy Intervention Programmes
  • ·         Access to Teaching Assistants
  • ·         Small class sizes
  • ·         Referral to external agency( e.g, The Educational Psychology Service)
  • ·         Literacy support via Childwall Abbey School Outreach Team

3.    Differentiated equipment according to need (e.g coloured overlays; use of tablet).

4.    Social, emotional and mental health

How we support at St Francis Xavier’s:

  • ·         Work with outside agencies(e.g, CAMHS-Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service; Educational Psychology Service; ADHD Foundation)
  • ·         School Counsellor( Nugent Care Society)
  • ·         Buddy mentoring
  • ·         Teaching Assistant support
  • ·         Social story sessions
  • ·         Break and lunch-time passes (LRC; Games Club)
  • ·         Time Out passes (access to a ‘safe place’ within the SEN base)
  • ·         Outreach Support(e.g Hope Outreach Team)

5.    Sensory and/or physical needs

How we support at St Francis Xavier’s:

  • ·         Staff and Teaching Assistant training
  • ·         Enlarged copies of texts
  • ·         School Occupational Therapy Service
  • ·         Sensory Outreach Services
  • ·         School Physiotherapy Service
  • ·         Use of ICT

As of  September 2016, we have 180 young people receiving some form of SEN support.

  • Staff development and Qualifications
    We are committed to developing the ongoing expertise of our staff.  We have current expertise in our school:
    S McDonald (English/SEN) – B.A(Hons) English; PGCE; National SENCO Award
    L.Grace (SEN) -B.A (Hons) Learning, Development and Support; Post-graduate certificate in Special Educational Needs(award pending)
  • This year, we have put in additional training into supporting students with Autism Spectrum Condition (Abbot’s Lea School); Manual Handling to support our students with physical disabilities (St John Ambulance); ADHD Training(Liverpool ADHD Foundation-to be completed January) and training on how to support students with dyslexic-type literacy difficulties. Our SENDCO also attends the School Improvement SEN Briefings in March and November.

    Staff deployment/development
    Considerable thought, planning and preparation goes into utilising our support staff to ensure children achieve the best outcomes, this includes for them to gain independence and are prepared for adulthood from the earliest possible age.

    Our support staff (Teaching Assistants) are deployed, in the first instance, to support students with an Education, Health and Care Plan (Statement of Educational Needs). Teaching Assistants are also assigned to set 4 classes throughout school. Each year group has a set 4 class, which is a small, nurture group of a substantially reduced size. The average size of these classes is 12 students. Teaching Assistants work closely with subject teachers in these classes to ensure the students are given sufficient 1:1 support and attention in order to increase the rate of progress.

    Teaching Assistants have been trained to deliver the Literacy Support Programme and have also received training via Abbot’s Lea (ASC); the ADHD Foundation and also safeguarding training.  The SENDCO has attended local authority SEN briefings; Provision Mapping and attended Liverpool’s SEND Conference.

    External Partnerships
    This year, we worked with our feeder partners to welcome 58 children and young people with special educational needs or disabilities and we supported 32 children and young people transition to the next phase in education or employment.

    Our approach involved: Teaching Assistants spending time in our feeder primaries in the summer term; meetings with parents; additional transition visits for young people transferring; careers interviews for students moving on to education, employment or training; liaison with colleges and sixth forms and  mentoring for Year 11 students.

    We closely monitor children and young people’s destination data.

    Our notional SEN Budget this year is £582,261.37 and the expenditure breakdown of that income is as follows:

    •        Support staff = £152,315

    •        Commissioned external services = £5500 (CAMHS)

    •        Additional teaching resources = £10,656

    •        Training = £3000

    •        School Counsellor = £7371

    •        Staff salaries for small class teaching (set 4) = £183,510

    •        SENCO and Asst SENCO = £97,571

    •        Intervention for literacy and numeracy = £21,000

    •        Curriculum support = £21,000

    •        Contribution towards revision materials = £20,000

    •        Subject specific support = £10,000

    •        Provision of ICT equipment = £5500

    •        Outside provisioin = £37,708

    •        GEMS initiative = £6080

    •        CATS testing = £5000

    Our complaints procedure is available via the school website.

    This year we have 0 SEN complaints that were dealt with following our schools policies and procedures.

    What has worked well over the last year   
    ·         Employment of tutors to deliver additional literacy and Maths classes in order to narrow the gap between pupils identified as SEN Support and their peers

    ·         Capturing pupil voice to demonstrate that children and young people feel supported and happy in their setting

    ·         The proportion of students at SEN Support and with Statements/EHC Plan making and exceeding expected progress

    ·         The proportion of young people identified as SEN Support who have continued into education and employment placements after leaving their present educational setting

    ·         The proportion of pupils identified as SEN Support participating in extra- curricular activities

    ·         The  proportion of pupils identified as SEN Support represented in specific groups e.g. School Council)

    Further development
    Our plans for developing and enhancing SEN provision in our school next year include:

    ·         Planned lesson observations

    ·         Team teaching to support subject teachers

    ·         Learning walks

    ·         Further evaluation of data

    ·         Further development of pupil and parent feedback and how this impacts on development.

    ·         Continued professional development for Teaching Assistants, SENDCO, Assistant SENDCO and staff


    Relevant school policies underpinning this SEN Information Report include:

    The SEN Policy; Teaching and Learning Policy; Marking Policy; Equal Opportunities Policy

    Legislative Acts taken into account when compiling this report include:

    ·         Children & Families Act 2014

    ·         Equality Act 2010

    ·         Mental Capacity Act 2005

SEN SFX Documentation can also be found here.