Topcliffe’s SEND information report


Our offer is based on our School’s values, to enable all our children to be:







Point of contact

Many parents worry about their children’s learning and progress at school.

Start by talking to your child’s class teacher about your child. The class teacher may suggest that you talk to the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (often called the SENCo).

  • Miss Taylor is Deputy Head and Lead SENCo at Topcliffe Primary School.
  • Ms Quickenden is SENCO for the Resource Base provisions
  • Mrs McElroy –Stringer is SENCO for the mainstream.

They lead a team of people who support children who have all kinds of difficulties. All SENCos will speak to you confidentially about your child.

As well as supporting children with special needs in mainstream we have our own specialist provision for children with Education Health Care Plans (EHCP’s) for specific Speech and language impairment and for children with ASD. Please see additional Resource Base information in the SEN tab on the website.

  • You can contact all our SENCo’s by going to the school office to ask for a meeting or by telephone, 0121 675 6296.

We operate an open door policy and you are welcome to come into school.

If we think your child needs extra support, we will always talk to you about this.We will make all the information we need to share with you clear and easy to understand.

  • You can read our Special Educational Needs & Disabilities Policy. This policy explains how we identify and assess children who we think might have special educational needs/ disabilities and how we support them.

Our governing body has a governor who is responsible for special educational needs. Her name is Beverley Walters.


The Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice (2014) states that “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” (Department of Health and Department of Education, page 4)

The four areas of special educational needs are:

  • Communication and interaction
  • Cognition and learning
  • Social, mental and emotional health
  • Sensory and/or physical

What do these areas mean?

Communication and interaction needs:

Children may have a delay or disorder in one or more of the following areas:

Attention / interaction skills: May have difficulties ignoring distractions. Need reminders to keep attention. May need regular prompts to stay on task. May need individualised motivation in order to complete tasks. Difficulty attending in whole class. Interaction will not always be appropriate. May have peer relationship difficulties. May not be able to initiate or maintain a conversation.

Understanding / Receptive language:  May need visual support to understand or process spoken language. May need augmented communication systems.  Frequent misunderstandings. Repetition of language and some basic language needs to be used to aid their understanding.

Speech / Expressive Language:  May use simplified language and limited vocabulary. Ideas / conversations may be difficult to follow, with the need to request frequent clarification. Some immaturities in the speech sound system. Grammar / phonological awareness still fairly poor and therefore their literacy can be affected.

Cognition and Learning:

May have difficulties with the skills needed for effective learning such as use of:

  • Language, memory and reasoning skills
  • Sequencing and organisational skills
  • An understanding of number
  • Problem solving and concept development
  • Fine and gross motor skills
  • Independent learning skills
  • Exercising choice
  • Decision making
  • Information processing

Children may have a specific learning disability such as dyslexia or dyscalculia.


Social, mental and emotional health

May have difficulties with social and emotional developments which may stem from:

  • Social isolation
  • Behaviour difficulties
  • Attention difficulties (ADHD)
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Attachment disorders
  • Low self esteem
  • Information processing

Sensory or Physical

These pupils may have a medical or genetic condition that could lead to difficulties with: 

  • Specific medical conditions
  • Gross / fine motor skills
  • Visual / hearing impairment
  • Accessing the curriculum without adaption
  • Physically accessing the building(s) or equipment
  • Over sensitivity to noise / smells / light / touch / taste
  • Toileting / self-care


 Identifying needs

  • School will assess every child’s skills and levels of attainment on entry and build upon information from previous settings where appropriate.
  • We will look at any evidence that a child may have a disability under the Equality Act 2010 and if so, what reasonable adjustments need to be made for them.
  • Class teachers make regular assessments of progress and well-being for all of their pupils. Where pupils are falling behind they will be given extra support. The class teacher or SENCo will involve you in any decisions about your child’s education.
  • If a pupil continues to make poor progress, despite high-quality teaching in their areas of weakness, the class teacher with the SENCo will assess whether the child has a significant learning difficulty. While evidence is being collected we will continue to provide extra support where required.

Once a potential special educational need is identified, a graduated approach called SEN Support will be put in place.

For some children SEN can be identified at an early age, for others difficulties only become evident as they develop. We will listen if you have a concern about your child’s development. We will also listen if any concerns are raised by you.


Teachers are responsible for the progress and development of all of the pupils in their class. They are trained to provide high quality, inclusive teaching within their classrooms. Teachers are skilled at planning activities to develop learning.

  • Where appropriate, additional support is provided through high quality small group teaching delivered inside or outside the classroom. Teachers expect that these learners will be back on track to meet expectations by the end of the year.
  • In addition to this we also provide high quality one-to-one teaching for children where needed. These very structured programmes run over a set period of time and aim to accelerate and maximise progress.

Once a child has been identified as needing SEN support we will look closely at their needs. This will include:

  • examining information from all the adults, including outside professionals, who work with your child about their progress, their attainment and their behaviour.
  • This assessment will be reviewed regularly to make sure the support and interventions provided for your child are matched to their needs.

We believe that all staff should be involved in supporting pupils with special educational needs, disabilities and medical needs so we make sure that staff have training to help them do this.

Staff training needs are reviewed on a regular basis dependent on the needs of our children and whenever a need arises. This will include training sourced from outside agencies, such as from the communication and Autism team, Pupil and School Support (PSS) or behaviour support. We are trained every two years in Team Teach, including de-escalation techniques. Relevant staff have also been trained in interventions such as clicker 7 ( a literacy toolkit), Precision teaching and pocket folders.


The school has a range of SEN Interventions in place. These include:

  • Phonic reading schemes – Dandelion, Words First, Rapid Readers, Wellington Square
  • Toe by Toe
  • Numicon
  • Precision Teaching (reading / writing / maths)
  • Pocket folders
  • Clicker 7
  • IDL (Dyslexia intervention)
  • SALT (Speech and Language Therapy) intervention for groups in Resource Base and Mainstream
  • Lego therapy
  • OT (Occupational Therapy) for identified mainstream and Resource Base children
  • Pre and post tutoring
  • Access and liaison with the Physiotherapist
  • Access and advice with Sensory Support
  • Sensory room
  • Access and liaison with the educational psychologist/pupil and school support/ behaviour support/ communication and autism team/ Occupational Therapist/ Speech and language therapist.
  • Outdoor education to support children’s learning and boost confidence
  • Consistent use of visual aids to support all areas of the curriculum eg. communication in print
  • Social interaction groups

Each term we will look at your child’s progress to identify strengths and weaknesses. This tells us the support your child will need over the next term.

Every year the SEN team evaluates the effectiveness of our school’s SEN provision. This helps us to make sure we have the right support available for your child the following year.

Individual targets are set to show what the child needs, which will be shared with the parent. Advice from a specialist support teacher or other professional will be called upon if required. Support can be tailored to a child with particular needs upon consultation with the class teacher and SENCo.

Parental involvement                               

We ensure we have a close working partnership with parents of pupils with SEND. Your knowledge of your child is key in helping school understand and support your child’s needs. Parents are invited to meetings to review and write individual targets which are agreed together, in mainstream classes these are incorporated into the children’s one page profile. In Resource base, these are recorded on IEP’s and as outcomes within their Education Health Care plans (EHCPs). These are reviewed annually with parents and pupils and any relevant outside agencies involved.

Parents are encouraged to take an active role in supporting their child.

Pupil involvement

It is our aim to involve pupils as much as possible when setting targets and also reviewing how they have got on.

The SEN team will talk to your child regularly to review progress, set new targets and talk about the support they will receive. Staff will listen to your child’s views and use this information to help plan future support. A record of these conversations will be kept.

If your child has more complex needs, then we may review your child’s progress and needs through a Person Centred Review.  This approach very much values the views of the child, the parents as well as the school’s.


To ensure your child has the opportunity to participate and achieve across all areas of school life:

  • We provide a balanced curriculum for all pupils both in and outside of the classroom, including play and interaction at mealtimes and playtimes, Outdoor Education and extending to extracurricular activities (clubs) and school day trips and residential visits.
  • We practice teaching methods that will suit the needs of your child.
  • We promote an inclusive ethos throughout school and encourage all children to develop social responsibility and understanding.
  • If your child requires any medical support adaptations to the environment and/or a differentiated curriculum this information is shared with appropriate staff. This will be recorded in care plans or one page profiles, which will identify how your child will be supported to succeed and make progress.

The SEN team have a responsibility to ensure that these reasonable adjustments are made.


The school has a range of specialist SEN facilities in place. These include:

  • Spacious Personal Care room including shower, adjustable changing bed, grab rail, and alarm cord
  • Lift to access PE, dinner and assembly halls and a lift to access playground
  • Specialist PE equipment
  • ‘Help Hands’ in every room
  • High-visibility markings around the site for children with visual impairment
  • Sound-field systems in some classrooms
  • Building is wheelchair accessible
  • Sensory room
  • Low arousal classrooms for children with ASD
  • Calm corners in each classroom


Other professionals involved in supporting children with SEND at Topcliffe

Parents will always be involved in any decision to involve outside agencies and your consent is always asked for.

School will involve specialists to advise us on early identification of SEN and effective support and interventions. Recommendations raised will be shared with you and teaching staff supporting your child.

Specialist services used at Topcliffe include:

  • Access to Education:
    – Educational Psychology
    – Pupil and School Support
    – Sensory Support
    – Communication and Autism Team
    – Wilson Stuart Outreach
  • Behaviour Support
  • Speech and Language Therapy Service
  • Occupational therapist
  • Health Services:
    – School Nurse
    – Health Visitors
  • Physiotherapists
    – Occupational Therapists
    – Birmingham Children’s Hospital
  • Social Services

Support for parents

Your views are very important. It is essential that you are involved in discussions and decisions that are made about your child’s individual support. We will support you in contributing your views.

  • As part of our open door policy the class teacher is regularly available to discuss your child’s progress or any concerns you may have and to share information about what is working well at home and school so similar strategies can be used.
  • The SENCo or senior leaders are available to meet with you to discuss your child’s progress or any concerns/worries you may have.
  • All information from outside professionals will be discussed with you.
  • Your child’s provision will be reviewed with your involvement each term.
  • Homework will be adjusted as needed to your child’s individual needs.
  • A home/school contact book may be used to support communication with you, when this has been agreed to be useful for you and your child.
  • We will signpost you to parent support groups.
  • If you felt your child’s needs were not being met or if you had other concerns about your child, please contact the school office. The office staff will pass on the message and a member of the SEN team will get back to you as soon as possible. You can also contact a school governor to raise any concerns by leaving a message with the school office.

For further information, please read: SEND – A Guide for Parents/Carers (pdf) from the DfE.

Supporting children with SEND at key transition points

  • To support transition, we will share information at the end of each year making sure that all new teachers are aware of your child’s needs. If your child is moving to another school a member of the SEN team will talk to you about the information that needs to be passed on to the receiving school to ensure a smooth transition.
  • If your child has an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP), Secondary choices will be made during the summer term of Year 5. Parents will be involved in a series of meetings within school to support with this process. A review meeting will be held when your child is in year 6 and a member of staff from their allocated Secondary school will be invited along in order for information to be shared.
  • Transition arrangements are made with allocated secondary schools to take place in the summer term before your child leaves us. This is done with careful consideration to the needs of your child.
  • We welcome your involvement in this process.


By law, Birmingham Local Authority has to provide information on a website detailing all services available in Birmingham for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. This information is called The Local Offer.

The Birmingham Local Authority’s local Offer can be found at: