Frequently Asked Questions
What do I do if I think my child has Special Educational Needs?
In the first instance, have a conversation with either your child’s Student Support Officer, Head of House or Tutor. They are the pastoral team that draw together any academic information or concerns about learners. They will be able to identify whether any concerns have been raised by your child’s teaching team and refer them to the Learning Support Team within school.
It is expected that high prevalence (common) learning difficulties, such as Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and ADHD, will be readily identified by your child’s teachers and adjustments made in their classroom delivery accordingly. However, where continued concerns exist, it is important that you discuss these with the school, so that actions can be taken to ensure that your child does not struggle with their learning.
Can my child have a Teaching Assistant?
The Teaching Assistants employed by the school are deployed to work with learners that have a Statement of SEN or Education, Health and Care Plan. The funding allocated to these identified learners must be set aside specifically for their support and our TA hours currently match those of our Statement/EHCP Hours. That said, schools are now required to be creative with their SEN budgets and to reduce the amount of 1:1 support in order to develop interventions, support and provision accessible to a number of learners. Jack Hunt School is working hard on this and has a range of different ways to support learners that are struggling. A Teaching Assistant might not be the most appropriate strategy to support your child, so it’s important that you discuss your concerns first and then a plan of intervention can be made that works for them.
What are the Strategies that Jack Hunt School have available for children with SEN?
Hopefully, once you have had an opportunity to read our Learning Support pages, you will know more about Learning Support across the school. What we really hope to achieve, though, is an individualised approach to SEN. No two children are the same, regardless of any diagnosis, so we need you to tell us about your child in order that we can get the strategies to meet their needs correctly.
Should I be involved in my child’s SEN provision?
Yes, definitely. We believe that you – as their parent – know your child better than anyone. With all the changes in SEND provision, the key messages are: planning outcomes for children and ensuring the involvement of the family. Schools aim to make their SEND provision person-centred. Decisions cannot be made about your child without their family being involved, so please take an active role. The Learning Support team is available to talk to at every parents’ evening, you can always request a meeting with your child’s tutor and you will certainly receive an invitation to an annual review if your child is in receipt of an Education, Health and Care Plan. We also aim to hold an annual SEND evening at the school where your views are sought and taken into consideration when we are planning our SEND provision. If you have never received an invitation and would like one, please let us know by using the details on the Contacts page.
How can I help my child?
There are so many ways that parents can help their children and it’s difficult to be prescriptive here without knowing their individual needs. Principally, we would say be patient. A child with a Special Educational Need and/or Disability – regardless of its nature – will struggle with at least one aspect of school life, whether that’s the academic demands, social/emotional aspects of learning or behavioural expectations, so a school day can be difficult for them. Reading with your child, giving them quality 1:1 attention, supporting them to be organised, helping them to plan for the next day, giving them the right food to eat, allowing them enough sleep time – all of these will support your child to succeed. You can also help by communicating your concerns to the school. Once their needs are better defined, a more detailed plan of support can be provided if you would find this helpful. There are also many external support groups, the details of which can be explored further on our Useful Links page.
Can my child have a place in the Specialist PD Hub?
These places are limited in number and are allocated by representatives within the Local Authority. If your child meets the criteria to secure a place in the Hub, it is likely that they are already very familiar to the Local Authority and a place will have been recommended to you. If you are an out-of-county family, however, please contact the school in the first instance and we can make arrangements for your child to be assessed against Hub Entry Criteria to determine whether this is the most suitable placement for them. All children within the Hub provision require an Education, Health and Care Plan in place. If in doubt – always contact the school for a discussion.
Can I come and look around the school?
Yes! You may not always have an opportunity to meet with the SENCo, as diaries fill up fast, but there are Learning Support staff that would be happy to show you around if you are considering Jack Hunt as the secondary placement for your child, whatever their Special Educational Need. You cannot make an informed decision if you don’t know about our provision, so please do ask. We would also encourage you to come along to the prospective Year 7 parents evening in September; staff from Learning Support will always be there on that evening, so it is a good time to come and discuss the needs of your child with us and to look around the school.