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  1. Who are the best people in school to talk to about my child’s special educational needs?
  • Firstly, talk to your child’s teacher about your child’s needs.
  • It is likely that the class teacher will have discussed your child’s need with Townsend’s SENCo, Nicola Jones-Ford. You may wish to arrange a meeting with the SENCo, please make contact with Fatima (school office) to book an appointment.
  • If you continue to have concerns please arrange an appointment to discuss these with the Headteacher, Anne Stonell.
  1. Who helps my child with special educational needs?
  • Pupils with special educational needs have access to learning opportunities that are matched to their needs within their classroom with staff that have been trained to support their needs.
  • Sometimes other members of Townsend staff will work with individuals or small groups of children to help them succeed.
  • At Townsend school to make sure that all pupil’s needs are catered for we will work with educational professionals, health professionals, early help professionals and the network of adults that could be involved in any aspect of a pupils’ life.   These services are outlined in more detail in the answer to question number 15.
  1. How does Townsend Primary School know if my child needs extra support?

We know when pupils need support if:

  • Concerns are raised by the pupil, family or teachers
  • Limited progress is being made
  • There is a significant change in progress or behaviour
  • Concerns are raised by external agencies
  • The previous school have informed us of extra help needed or
  • The results from regular assessments carried out in class are not as expected
  1. How will the school let me know if they have concerns about my child’s special educational needs?
  • If a class teacher is concerned about a pupil, they are highly likely to have spoken with Mrs Collins/Mrs Stonell or the SENCo to seek further support to help the pupil make progress.
  • The class teacher/Mrs Collins/Mrs Stonell or the SENCo will ask you to attend a meeting to discuss your child’s progress and needs and how the school is supporting them. This may make up part of the termly parent day meetings.
  1. How does the school consult pupils and parents about special education needs?
  • In school we work with children to help them understand their needs as appropriate in class and around school, so as they do not get in the way of their learning or well-being. In planning for their needs if they are able, we try to include them in any discussion about their next steps in learning.
  • For parents we know that working together with families to support your child is the most effective way to help them make progress and we will endeavour to consult families in helping plan forward for learning. This is most likely to occur at parent day meetings.
  1. How does the school ensure the teaching staff are appropriately trained to support my child’s special needs?
  • All staff at Townsend Primary School are assisted with their work with pupils with special educational needs through school-based in-service training which may be in-house or be provided by external agencies.
  • Staff in the school regularly update their knowledge and awareness of issues relating to special educational needs through attendance at relevant courses.
  • We use our external professionals working with our children to develop staff knowledge, understanding and skills in supporting all the needs of our pupils at Townsend Primary School.
  1. How do we ensure children with special educational needs enjoy a broad and balanced curriculum ?
  • Townsend Primary School is a highly inclusive school, who sees every pupil as an individual with different strengths and areas to improve. The curriculum is planned to ensure that all children have access to a broad and balanced curriculum appropriate to their needs, to support them in making as much progress as possible.  When planning interventions and further support staff are mindful that this help does not have an impact on the range of learning opportunities any individual has access to.
  1. What are the different types of support available for pupil’s with special educational needs ?

At Townsend Primary School we have a three-tiered approach to supporting a student’s learning.  These tiers are Universal, Targeted and Specialist.

  • Universal – this is the quality first teaching your child will receive from her/his class teacher and may include some very minor adaptations to match learning needs.
  • Targeted – it may be appropriate to consider making additional short term special educational provision to remove or reduce any obstacles to your child’s learning. This takes the form of a graduated four-part approach of a) assessing your child’s needs, b) planning the most effective and appropriate help/support, c) providing this help/support and d) reviewing the impact on your child’s progress towards individual learning outcomes. Specific targeted one to one or small group interventions may be run outside the classroom. These will be limited to a number a week to minimise disruption to the regular curriculum.
  • Specialist – it may be necessary to seek specialist advice and regular long-term support from a specialist professional outside the school in order to plan for the best possible learning outcomes for your child. This may include educational psychology, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, sensory advisory teachers and the child development service. The school may need to prioritise referrals to these services. However, for a very small number of pupils’ access to these specialists may be through an EHC Plan.
  1. What are the different types of SEND that are provided for at school?
  • Townsend Primary School is a highly inclusive school and we work with all students. Special Educational Needs can be considered as falling under four broad areas;
  1. Communication and interaction
  2. Cognition and learning
  3. Social, mental and emotional health
  4. Sensory and/or physical
  • Many children’s difficulties fit clearly into one of these areas; but for some they may have needs that fit two or more areas.
  1. How will the school know that the support has made a difference to my child’s learning and how can I and my child be included in this review process?
  • Your child’s progress will be continually monitored by his/her class His/her progress will be reviewed formally with the Deputy Headteacher/Assessment lead, classteacher and SENCo every term.
  • Your child’s progress will be assessed both in terms of his/her regular learning within the class and with regard to specific help and support given.
  • The impact of the support given is carefully measured to ensure that the learning outcomes have been achieved and if not, what adaptations or next steps are necessary.
  • It may be decided that a further period of support would be beneficial for your child.
  • You and your child will be kept informed and encouraged to be actively involved at all stages of this support.
  • The progress of children with an EHC Plan will be formally reviewed at an Annual Review with all adults involved with the child’s education.
  1. How are equipment and facilities used to support the learning of students with additional needs?
  • The school buildings do not permit easy access for students with limited mobility. Townsend Primary school buildings are not considered to be accessible due to the age and nature of the buildings.
  • For other students with SEND, if appropriate, specialist equipment may be given to the student to use e.g. coloured filters, pen/pencil grips, concentration aids, netbooks/tablet PCs. As a school we are happy to discuss individual access requirements, but we do not have any specialist facilities for certain types of specific needs. This would need to be discussed on an individual basis.
  • In times where the majority of learning is having to happen virtually (due to other circumstances), carefully thought about provision, both in school and online is planned for children with special educational needs and offered to families to support them with learning in a different way.
  1. How will you help me support my child’s learning?
  • At Townsend Primary School we are always ready to help with supporting you with helping your child continue their learning at home. Please just ask your child’s class teacher as they will be happy to help.  They may ask the SENCo to be in contact also.
  • If there are times when school learning is taking place on line (due to other circumstances) we will endeavour to ensure that your child has access to the right equipment and learning to help them make as much progress as possible. We will also support families to be able to access the learning opportunities.
  • Alongside this we offer parent workshops/coffee mornings/virtual meetings to help you understand the strategies used in school. In addition, we may be able to offer you individual training in specific support strategies relevant to your child.
  • You may have an opportunity to meet with the external professionals involved in supporting your child who can offer advice on supporting activities you could do at home.
  1. What support will there be for my child’s happiness and wellbeing at school?
  • At our school we believe that the happiness and wellbeing of all our pupils is paramount. All members of staff take this aspect of school life very seriously. We know that happy pupils, learn well.
  • You can be confident that all staff at Townsend Primary School understand greatly the importance of children’s wellbeing is integral to the learning process and how to ensure that this is well supported.
  • If there are times when school are not able to be open (due to other circumstances) and learning is on line, school staff will be contact with you and your child regularly to support their happiness and well being even if learning is happening differently.
  • If you have any concerns in this area please talk to staff as soon as you are able, because we want pupils’ to enjoy school and their learning.
  1. How is my child included in all the same activities as his/her peers at school?
  • Provision is made for all pupils to be included in all activities at Townsend Primary School. Sometimes for some children there may be the need for reasonable adjustments may need to be made to support some students with different needs to be included.
  1. How does Townsend involve outside agencies to support the parent, child and school?
  • Townsend Primary School have great links with the local authority, health service, school nurse service, CAMHS, charities, social care, early help that they can ask for help with any pupil at the school.
  • The Governing body actively encourages links with supporting agencies to help our students. The governing body includes representatives from some of these agencies.
  • Where outside agency support is required, the SENCo will make contact with the family and then complete relevant appropriate referrals to ensure the right advice, support and guidance is accessible for the child, family and school.
  1. How are pupils and parents with special educational needs supported during transition times?
  • There are many transitions points for children within their school life, starting school, leaving school, moving school and moving to a new year group. At Townsend Primary School all these transitions are thought about and planned for, as we know transitions can affect pupil progress.
  • We work with our local secondary schools to ensure that our children start secondary school in the best possible way and that their new school are aware of any additional needs the children may have before they begin.
  • In starting school, we try and complete home visits for our youngest pupils so that they have met their new teachers in a place that is familiar to them.
  • In children move away from the area, we make contact with the new school to again ensure that they are aware of the children’s needs.
  • In making the transition from one year group to the next time is spent with the teachers passing on information about all children and also the children spend time with their new teacher in school before the new academic year.
17.  Where can you find further support and information?
  • Southwark Local Authority provides full information and support around its local offer and attached services. See their website:
  • The Southwark Information Advice and Support team (SIAS – formerly known as Parent Partnership) offers parents impartial support, training and advice on such topics as: Special Educational Needs; transition to secondary school; how to request an Education Health Care plan; understanding tribunals and SEND exclusions.
  • KIDS London SEN Mediation Service is an independent disagreement resolution service that provides mediation meetings for parents of children with Special Educational Needs and their local education authority or the child’s school when there is some kind of disagreement surrounding how best to meet those needs. Mediation is an informal, voluntary process where parties in disagreement meet together with an independent mediator.


  1. What do I do if I am not happy about how my child’s additional needs are being supported?
  • Please contact the School Office who will arrange a meeting with the class teacher or SENCo.
  • If you feel that you would like your concerns to be addressed further, then please arrange an appointment with the Headteacher (Anne Stonell) or Deputy Headteacher (Karen Collins)
  • If this still does not solve the problem, you will need to contact Miss Angela McDowall, the School Governor who is responsible for Special Educational Needs and Disability at Townsend Primary School. This is best done by writing to her, care of the school office.
  • If you wish to make a complaint to the Local Authority about some aspect of its practice with respect to meeting the Special Educational Needs of your child, this is perhaps best done by contacting them directly on:

Telephone: 020 7525 0042 or via e-mail at: