Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) – Local Offer

Little Barn Owls Nursery and Farm School values the abilities and achievements of individual children, and is committed to providing for each child the best possible environment for learning and development.

How does the setting know if children need extra help and what should I do as a parent/carer if I think my child may have special educational needs/disabilities?

We will assess your child within the first month of them starting at the nursery. We will plot them onto a progress review, which will enable us to identify if your child requires additional support. A discussion will be held with you by our Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO). If we feel your child may need some extra help we will take steps to ensure we fully support your child with their needs.

How will the setting staff support my child?

The needs of your child will be discussed at length with the SENCO and the child’s key carer. An action plan will be developed with elements that may include: a play plan (with small goals to work towards); liaison with other professions (e.g. health visitor, physiotherapist, speech and language experts, the West Sussex County Council (WSCC) Facilitating Inclusion through Reflection Support and Training (FIRST) team; regular meetings with you to ensure good communication and working together to achieve the best for your child. The nursery SENCO will work closely with your child’s key carer and will support this throughout your child’s time at nursery. If required we will source additional staff training and qualifications.

How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs how will you help me support my child’s learning?

We believe in an enquiry based learning approach, which develops each child’s love for learning. This puts the child at the centre of their own learning. All children need to have their learning enhanced and we will accommodate this to your child’s individual needs. We will start from their interest and recent enquiry and extend this using their confidence, eager to learn attitude and positive outlook. We consider the process to be more important than the end output. We work in small groups throughout the day with an adult present to support your child’s learning. Your child’s learning will be uploaded to our online learning journey programme (Tapestry) regularly and you will be able to securely see this online. If your child does not speak good English we use visual timetables to help children understand the structure of the day.

How will both you and I know how my child is doing?

All children’s progress is monitored through Tapestry, so any gaps will be highlighted and talked through with the key carer and the parents. We have detailed handovers every day and may also have a home to nursery communication book if required. We have two parents evening per year and there will be regular meetings in place if required to keep fully up to date with your child’s learning.

What support will there be for my child’s overall wellbeing?

Overall support is dependent on the child’s needs. We can administer medication if required as long as it‘s been prescribed by a doctor. If we felt that extra help is required we may apply for extra funding as your child may benefit from 1:1 sessions. We may also contact the FIRST team to acquire extra support.

What specialist service and expertise are available at or accessed by the early years setting?

We have staff members who use sign language (Makaton and British Sign Language). All staff undertake numerous training courses throughout their time here at nursery and we are very keen to up-skill our practitioners in all areas of development. New staff members undergo a two week training period whereby they can learn our policy and procedures and have numerous training sessions on enquiry based learning and the EYFS. Also on site we have three Pedagogical Coordinators spread across all age groups and our outdoor environment. The Pedagogical Coordinators are responsible for monitoring all project work and work closely with key carers on each child’s learning and development. We also have an in-house artist who supports project work and helps the children to express themselves through a variety of media. All permanent nursery staff are either qualified to at least NVQ Childcare Level 3 or are training towards this qualification.

What training are the staff, supporting children with SEND, had or are having?

The SENCO staff members attend termly Network Meetings. Our head SENCO has recently attended a 10 week training programme in the ‘Solihull Approach’ to understanding child behaviour. We have attended numerous training on behaviour management, first aid, sensory play, and courses involving early talk. We intend to send more staff on the Solihull Approach training and behaviour management. At regular staff meetings we talk about the children with additional needs and what support the whole staff team can do to support them. We have a Designated Child Protection Officer (DCPO) and all staff have either attended safeguarding and child protection training or will attend a course within their first 12 months with us.

How will my child be included in offsite trips in the setting?

All children at the nursery are required to sign a consent form for offsite activities, these will include the neighbouring farm and farm lane. Any further afield trips will require a more formal consent form. No child will be exempt from an outing, if needed we will have extra staff (1:1) rather than (1:2 or 1:3) ratio or it may be that the parent/carer is asked if they will attend. This would be discussed in full before a decision is made with the manager/parents/carer.

How accessible is the early years setting environment? (Inside & Outside)

Our building is entirely located on ground level, with an accessible toilet. We have wide fitted fire doors, we have double doors leading onto the decking it is then one step to assess the garden/Farm school/Vegetable garden which is also on one level. We accommodate children/parents/carers whose first language is not English by having our parent hand book translated into their language. We can also assist them with filling in registration forms. If necessary we will find someone who could translate for us. All equipment for children with specific needs will be discussed if appropriate with their parents/carers.

How will the early years setting prepare and support my child to join the early years setting, transfer to a new setting/school?

Initially, a telephone call will take place with you, and any additional needs will be brought to the attention of the SENCO. The SENCO and key carer will carry out a home visit. Your child will have settling in sessions at the nursery which may involve parental support at the beginning. Once your child is ready to move onto school or a new setting we will forward their learning journal, and telephone or visit them to ensure there is a clear handover. We will also work with your child to prepare them as much as possible to move onto school/new setting. We will use a range of media and materials, and attend a school visit to meet the SENCO and the new teacher. In addition the teacher will be invited to our nursery to visit the environment in which the child will be accustomed to, this helps the child feel comfortable and can share their learning journal with their teacher or carer. A transition meeting may also be held with the parents, the nursery and the various agencies involved to discuss the best way forwards with the transition.

How are the early year’s settings resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?

Our delegated budget includes training and developing of our staff, including any training requirements for special educational needs. At present we do not receive any special educational needs funding, but we will apply for funding if required.

How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?

We will monitor your child through observations linked to the EYFS ages and stages of development. These will be discussed fully with the parents/carers. A decision will be made based on the available evidence and the views of all parties, including outside agencies if needed (e.g. FIRST team, speech and language experts, physiotherapy professionals). The SENCO and key carer will communicate back to the parents/carers how we will offer the level of support that has been decided upon and who will need to be involved.

How are parents involved in the early years setting? How can I be involved?

We welcome input from parents at any opportunity. We hold presentation evenings on subjects such as recent project work, behaviour management, and teaching phonics at home. If a parent would like to make a suggestion we would more than be happy to try and accommodate this.

Who can I contact for further information?

Please feel free to contact by email: info@littlebarnowls.co.uk or telephone: 01403 254413 or visit our website: www.littlebarnowls.co.uk. Please mention the needs of your child upon making contact so we can help and support you. If you have any specific concerns please ask to speak to the SENCO.