If you have concerns about your child’s progress, you can initially speak to your child’s subject teacher or Head of Community. If you are concerned your child is still not making progress, you can speak to Ms Lynett, the school’s Special Educational Needs Coordinator who currently has responsibility for SEND. Alex is currently undertaking the Postgraduate Certificate in Special Educational Needs Co-ordination (National Award for SENCo and PGCert).
You can contact Ms Lynett (SENCO) on (0117)9763000 x 1167 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
At John Cabot we are fortunate to draw students from both South Gloucestershire and Bristol Local Authorities. Both Authorities have published their Local Offer of SEND at the following sites.
Local Offer South Gloucestershire –
Local Offer Bristol –
All staff at JCA are committed to supporting students with additional needs. We look to identify difficulties as early as possible to ensure that appropriate provision is put in place. Additional needs are identified in the following ways:
- Observations by subject teachers, Heads of Community and the wider school staff
- Identification through tracking pupil attainment and pupil progress meetings
- Discussion with parents and carers.
- Discussions with the students themselves
- Discussion with other schools on transfer or transition.
As with all schools we follow the graduated response as outlined in the SEND Code of Practice and we involve outside agencies where appropriate.
Our aim is that all students at JCA receive high quality differentiated lessons and for those that require it, additional support is available where necessary.
IEPs are still used many schools but at John Cabot we have reflected on current educational advice and have adopted an improved system for achieving the same aim as an IEP.
Students who are on the SEN Register will have a personal Pupil Profile. These Profiles are accessible by all teachers and support staff. Parents are encouraged to contribute towards this process by meeting a representative from the SEN department during Parents’ Evenings. Alternatively parents can email with any concerns and if a bespoke meeting is required, then arrangements can be made.
If a student is identified by assessments, staff, parents or external agencies as needing an intervention of some kind, we will work hard to make sure this compliments their learning and ensure that parents are kept informed. Where support is identified this will be allocated in line with the need of the pupil or where indicated in the students Statement or EHCP. If it is deemed appropriate students will be allocated a ‘Lead’ LSA to allow clear identification of communication lines between the students, subject teachers, the SENCO and Home. These lead LSA’s also carry out regular mentoring sessions to discuss issues or deliver bespoke life skills packages.
Group Life Skills sessions take place in Learning Support and cover key skills that young people need such as keeping healthy, managing social relationships, and personal safety.
If a student is identified as someone who may benefit from some extra help to improve their skills in these areas, there will be regular small group sessions that enable all students to actively engage in the lesson.
As a school, we are not able to give a Dyslexia Diagnosis. This would need to be pursued privately by parents either through their GP or by contacting the Dyslexia Action Centre directly. We can and do carry out a screening assessment, which would indicate whether this is something worth pursuing for parents, but due to time, staff and financial restraints this is only done when school and home agree that it is necessary.
Students with Dyslexia will have their condition noted on their student profile and therefore all their teachers made aware, and will aim to adjust their teaching where necessary.
During Year 7, a small number of students that are identified as needing extra help with their literacy, regardless of whether they have Dyslexia or not, will be assigned to our specialist teacher. She will then work in a small group session with them for an hour per week.
We also access other programmes to support students with Dyslexia / Specific Learning Difficulties such as Wordshark, Lexia, and Dockside (which are all computer based literacy improvement programs) and bespoke English comprehension work, but these are all recommended to students and parents on a case-by-case basis.
Laptop / ICT
With the development of ICT across the school, our aim is to utilise this technology to allow students to access as well as enhance the school curriculum. The level and type of ICT used will be decided on a case-by-case basis following discussion between relevant stakeholders. Alternatively, students are welcome to bring their own mini-book / laptop / iPad if it helps with their learning and is agreed with key staff.
Liaison with parents is crucial to providing a holistic support network for a child’s education. Parents should not hesitate to get in contact with us at the school or particularly in the SEN department if they have any concerns or questions. We will always aim to respond as quickly as possible. We also advise parents to make the most of any opportunity to engage with staff at the school; from Parents’ Evenings and drop-ins, to school trips and productions.
JCA benefits from external support from a range of agencies, including:
- Educational Psychologists through the Cabot Learning Federation as well as the two local Authorities own Education Psychology services.
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) Learning Improvement Service (SEND Support)
- Health agencies such as Speech and Language Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Community Paediatrics.
Social and Emotional Needs
As well as supporting students with learning and/or medical needs JCA is committed to supporting children’s social and emotional development through all areas of the curriculum. We support children’s development in school through our vertical pastoral support system and where needed higher tier support from the school Engagement Lead Mr Mark Wright
Transition of children into our school is planned and supports the child to feel safe and ready to join JCA. The induction plan includes:
- Meeting children and staff in their primary setting and where necessary attendance at review meetings.
- Meetings/discussions around the students need with parents
- Where necessary an enhanced transition programme including possible extra visits before becoming a full time member of the school community.
For further information, the full SEND policy is available below