Scroll to content
Contact Us Bournemouth Septenary Trust
St Mark's C.E Primary School home page

St Mark's C.E. Primary School

Achievement, respect and care in a happy, Christian community.

St Mark's C.E Primary School home page

St Mark's C.E. Primary School

Achievement, respect and care in a happy, Christian community.

SEND & Inclusion

Our Inclusion Co-Ordinator, Mrs A Saunders, can be contacted in the first instance via the school office number 01202 512241. Or via the email address.

Mrs Saunders' working days are Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (she is class-based on a Tuesday).


For the SEND policy, please see the Policies page:

Inclusion and SEND report and the St Mark's Local Offer

At St. Mark's CE Primary School we promote 'Achievement, Respect and Care in a Happy Christian Community'.

We aim to be fully inclusive, meeting the needs of all children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), wherever possible within our mainstream setting.


What are Special Educational Needs?


According to the SEND Code of Practice 2014:


xiii. A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her.

xiv. 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

xv. For children aged two or more, special educational provision is educational or training provision that is additional to or different from that made generally for other children or young people of the same age by mainstream schools, maintained nursery schools, mainstream post-16 institutions or by relevant early years providers. For a child under two years of age, special educational provision means educational provision of any kind.

xvi. A child under compulsory school age has special educational needs if he or she is likely to fall within the definition in paragraph xiv. above when they reach compulsory school age or would do so if special educational provision was not made for them (Section 20 Children and Families Act 2014).

xvii. Post-16 institutions often use the term learning difficulties and disabilities (LDD). The term SEN is used in this Code across the 0-25 age range but includes LDD.


Disabled children and young people

xviii. Many children and young people who have SEN may have a disability under the Equality Act 2010 – that is ‘…a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’. This definition provides a relatively low threshold and includes more children than many realise: ‘long-term’ is defined as ‘a year or more’ and ‘substantial’ is defined as ‘more than minor or trivial’. This definition includes sensory impairments such as those affecting sight or hearing, and long-term health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, and cancer. Children and young people with such conditions do not necessarily have SEN, but there is a significant overlap between disabled children and young people and those with SEN. Where a disabled child or young person requires special educational provision they will also be covered by the SEN definition.



What types of SEN are there?

(p97 of the Code of Practice, 2014)

‘6.27 These four broad areas give an overview of the range of needs that should be planned for. The purpose of identification is to work out what action the school needs to take, not to fit a pupil into a category. In practice, individual children or young people often have needs that cut across all these areas and their needs may change over time. For instance speech, language and communication needs can also be a feature of a number of other areas of SEN, and children and young people with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) may have needs across all areas, including particular sensory requirements. A detailed assessment of need should ensure that the full range of an individual’s needs is identified, not simply the primary need. The support provided to an individual should always be based on a full understanding of their particular strengths and needs and seek to address them all using well-evidenced interventions targeted at their areas of difficulty and where necessary specialist equipment or software’.


Broad areas of need

  • Communication and Interaction

6.28 Children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) have difficulty in communicating with others. This may be because they have difficulty saying what they want to, understanding what is being said to them or they do not understand or use social rules of communication. The profile for every child with SLCN is different and their needs may change over time. They may have difficulty with one, some or all of the different aspects of speech, language or social communication at different times of their lives.

6.29 Children and young people with ASD, including Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism, are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication and imagination, which can impact on how they relate to others.

  • Cognition and learning

6.30 Support for learning difficulties may be required when children and young people learn at a slower pace than their peers, even with appropriate differentiation. Learning difficulties cover a wide range of needs, including moderate learning difficulties (MLD), severe learning difficulties (SLD), where children are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum and associated difficulties with mobility and communication, through to profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD), where children are likely to have severe and complex learning difficulties as well as a physical disability or sensory impairment.

6.31 Specific learning difficulties (SpLD), affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This encompasses a range of conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.

  • Social, emotional and mental health difficulties

6.32 Children and young people may experience a wide range of social and emotional difficulties which manifest themselves in many ways. These may include becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. These behaviours may reflect underlying mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression, self-harming, substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Other children and young people may have disorders such as attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder.

6.33 Schools and colleges should have clear processes to support children and young people, including how they will manage the effect of any disruptive behaviour so it does not adversely affect other pupils. The Department for Education publishes guidance on managing pupils’ mental health and behaviour difficulties in schools – see the References section under Chapter 6 for a link.

  • Sensory and/or physical needs

6.34 Some children and young people require special educational provision because they have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided. These difficulties can be age related and may fluctuate over time. Many children and young people with vision impairment (VI), hearing impairment (HI) or a multi-sensory impairment (MSI) will require specialist support and/or equipment to access their learning, or habilitation support. Children and young people with an MSI have a combination of vision and hearing difficulties. Information on how to provide services for deafblind children and young people is available through the Social Care for Deafblind Children and Adults guidance published by the Department of Health (see the References section under Chapter 6 for a link).

6.35 Some children and young people with a physical disability (PD) require additional ongoing support and equipment to access all the opportunities available to their peers.


In September 2014 the new SEND Code of Practice came into effect.

Below is a brief overview of changes made from the 2001 Code of Practice (CoP)


  • The new CoP covers the 0 - 25 age range and includes disabled children as well as those with SEN.
  • There is a focus on the participation of children & parents in decision-making, at individual and strategic levels.
  • There is a focus on high aspirations & improving outcomes for children.
  • There is guidance on a graduated approach to special educational needs (assess, plan, do, review)
  • Instead of the previous codes 'School Action' and School Action Plus' there is now a single category of 'SENSupport'.
  • All schools must publish an SEN Information report.
  • Schools and colleges will be more accountable for funding allocated for SEN and disability.
  • There is guidance on the 'Local Offer' (see the key questions below) of support for children with SEN & disabilities.
  • Statements are being replaced with a new 0-25 years Education, Health & Care Plans (EHCP) 
  • The new CoP supports developing a process to make personal budgets available to parents and/or young people with EHCPs.

SEND Reforms 2014

This is an animated overview of the main changes coming to Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole as part of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Reforms. The three local authorities, the Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group and the local parent carer forums for each area are working together to bring about the changes.

Key and Frequently Asked Questions about SEND and support on offer at St Mark's:


How will my child be supported emotionally?

At St. Mark’s we run a Nurture Group in school.

This is predominantly for our KS1 children. It is run by Teaching Assistants and open four afternoons per week.

Children of concern are referred to the Nurture staff and their class teachers are asked to complete a Boxhall Profile (a recognised assessment tool for children who may need Nurture Group support).

If (after assessment) a child does require support from Nurture group they then attend between one and four afternoons per week for no less than a term.

Nurture group is a small group of 8 – 10 children with two members of staff for activities such as art, craft, social skills, turn-taking, sharing a snack and other activities.

We also have ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants) in school who provide one to one or small group sessions for children needing support with social skills, friendship issues, making conversations, managing feelings and self-esteem.


How could my child be supported in school?

Children in school will get support that is specific to their individual needs.

In the first instance this will be provided by the class teacher trough ‘Quality First Teaching’ but it may also involve:

Other teaching staff in school

(Specialised) Teaching Assistants

Staff visiting the school from the Local Authority such as the Learning Support Services Team

Staff visiting the school from outside agencies such as the Speech and Language Therapy Service


How will teaching and learning be adapted for my child?

Class teachers ensure learning tasks are adjusted in order to enable your child to access the curriculum and their learning as independently as possible at their level; following a differentiated curriculum

Specially trained teaching assistants can implement the teachers modified / adapted planning to support the needs of your child where necessary.

Specific resources and strategies may be used to support your child either individually or in small groups.


What is the Local Offer?

The Local Offer describes the services and support that are available for all children/young people and also those that are available for children/young people with SEN and/or Disabilities. Each Local Authority will develop their own Local Offer – specific to services and support available in that area.

The purpose of the Local Offer is to enable parents and young people to see more clearly what services are available in their area and how to access them.

The offer will include provision from birth to 25, across education, health and social care and should be developed in conjunction with children and young people, parents and carers, and local services, including schools, colleges, health and social care agencies.


What support is offered for parents and carers?

At St. Mark’s we have two Parent Support Workers who are available for you to discuss any issues you may have. The INCo is available to meet with you to discuss your child’s progress and/or any concerns you may have.

Following any outside agency assessments we will hold a Team Around the Child (TAC) meeting and invite you in to any conclusions and ideas suggested by outside agencies to support your child.

School work and homework will be differentiated to support your child.If your child is undergoing statutory assessment you will be supported by the Local Authority’s SEN team.


How have you made the school physically accessible?

The school is accessible to children with a physical disability via stair lifts

We have a disabled toilet and a wet room with shower facilities

We have writing slopes, pencil grips and a variety of writing resources available

We ensure that equipment used is accessible to all children regardless of their needs

Where necessary we borrow equipment from Poole or Bournemouth hospitals

The current 'Accessibility Plan' can be found under 'Policies'.


How will we support a child with identified SEND as they start school?

We will invite you to visit the school with your child to have a look around and speak to staff.

If other professionals are already involved and/ or an EHCP or statement is in place, a Team Around the Child (TAC) meeting will be held to discuss your child’s specific needs, to share strategies used and ensure appropriate provision is put in place before you child starts.

We may also suggest adaptations to the settling in period to enable your child to settle more easily.

It might be appropriate for the INCo and teachers to make additional visits to nursery provision to liaise with staff and prepare transition booklets or social stories.


What training do the adults have to support my child?

The INCo supports class teachers in planning for children with SEN.

Whole staff training to disseminate knowledge, strategies and experience to ensure consistency of the school’s approach for children with SEND.

Individual teachers and support staff attend training courses throughout the year run by outside agencies that are relevant to the needs of specific children in their class or who they are supporting 1:1.

In house training takes place on a regular basis and we encourage staff to share their training with each other. We invite outside agencies in to support us where we have a specific need.

We have monthly Teaching Assistant meetings where good practice and practical advice is shared


How will we support a child with transitions?

 We take steps to ensure that any transition for children with SEND is as smooth as possible.

If your child is moving to another school:

  • We will contact the new school’s INCo and ensure that they are made aware of any special arrangements of support that needs to put in place for your child.
  • We will make sure that all records are passed on as soon as possible.
  • If necessary we will meet with the INCo and other relevant staff or hold a TAC meeting.
  • If necessary your child will visit the school and we will create a transition book with photos and relevant information.


When moving classes in the school:

  • At the end of every academic year teachers and teaching assistants meet to pass on information about their current class to the new class teacher.
  • At the end of the summer term each class visits their new teacher, teaching assistant and classroom.
  • Where necessary staff will make further visits with your child and create a book with photos and information which will support your child’s transition.


In Year 6:

  • The class teacher will attend the Primary Transition Day to discuss specific needs of your child with the Year 7 leader.
  • The INCo will also attend the SENCo’s Transition Day.
  • If necessary the SENCo from the new school will be asked to come into school to observe the child in a familiar setting.
  • Where possible your child will visit their new school on several occasions and in some cases staff from the new school will visit your child at St. Mark’s.


Who do I talk to if I have concerns about my child?

If you have concerns about your child’s progress first you should speak to your child’s class teacher.

If your concern is not dealt with to your satisfaction, you should make an appointment to see the Phase Leader. This is Miss Neal (Reception, Year 1 & Y2), Mr Hall (Year 3/4/5/6), or the INCo, Mrs Saunders

If your concern requires further support, you should speak to Miss Roberts (Deputy Headteacher). If you have still not received the outcome you feel is necessary, you may need to make an appointment with Mr Bright (Headteacher). Details of our complaints procedure can be found here.


How is extra support allocated and how do children move between levels of support?

The school budget, received from the Education Funding Agency, includes money for supporting children with SEND.

The Headteacher (in consultation with the school governors) decides on the budget for SEN on the basis of the needs of the children currently in school.

The Headteacher and the INCo discuss all the information they have about SEND in the school and decide what resources / training and support is needed.

All resources / training and support are reviewed regularly and changes made as needed.


How does your admissions policy cater for children with additional needs and disabilities?

The admissions policy of the School is, while there are adequate places, to offer a place to all applicants irrespective of gender, religion, ethnicity or country of origin, disability or academic ability.

To ensure that pupils with disabilities are not treated less favourably than other pupils, we adhere to the Local Authority 'Fair Access Protocol'. See 'Bournemouth Co-ordinated school admissions scheme' [currently here] or if unavailable, see details on the Bournemouth admissions webpage.


What are the different types of support available at St Mark's?



Children are involved in the process of reviewing their learning and support. Children with EHCPs are invited to reviews (if appropriate) or may contribute to the meeting via a video clip or one-page profile.


Pupils' work is regularly assessed. The Assess-Plan-Do-Review cycle is used to assess individual children's progress against their individualised targets.


The INCo, DHT and SLT monitor provision across the year. This may take the form of drop-ins, observations, planning or marking scrutiny or pupil interviews. Outcomes are firstly fed back at SLT level and disseminated to staff across the school.

Bournemouth Septenary Trust