St Mary’s Farm
  • 'With God's help we reach for the stars'

Local Offer


1. How does the school know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child/young person may have special educational needs? 

At St Mary’s, children are assessed routinely and regularly.  These assessments form part of our ongoing tracking of pupil progress.  Ongoing observation in lessons together with tracking of pupil progress and attainment quickly identifies children at risk of underachieving or having difficulties with accessing the curriculum.  Half termly progress meetings are used to explore barriers to learning and actions steps to support children facing difficulties.  Any concerns are discussed with parents at an early stage so that they are involved and informed and continue to be so throughout.  Parents are encouraged to share concerns with the class teacher who will arrange a meeting with the Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) or in her absence the Assistant SENCo.  If concerns continue despite class teacher intervention, staff will discuss next steps with you which may involve you child receiving School Support, meaning being entered on the Special Educational Needs (SEN) register.  This means that they have needs that require intervention that is greater than or different from their peers.


2. How will early years setting/school staff support my child/young person? 

Children identified as needing extra support will have access to quality first teaching, small group support and if needed specific interventions delivered either one to one or in small groups.  Children on School Support will have their needs identified on a Passport to Success which will identify their strengths and areas needing development, along with specific targets and actions needed.  They will receive interventions in small groups and also one to one.  If a child has an Education and Health Care Plan, they will receive additional support and specific interventions to match the outcomes stated on their plan. 

Progress made is documented in each intervention session and overall progress is reviewed each half term by the SENCo.  This review may mean that interventions may change in order to achieve the best outcomes for the child. 


3.How will the curriculum be matched to my child's young person's needs? 

Skilled teachers will differentiate the content of the curriculum to ensure that all children are included but feel successful.  Their individual targets will be planned for in lessons.  If a child is identified as needing School Support, the SENCO may involve external agencies for further support.


4.How will both you and I know how my child/young person is doing and how will you help me to support my child's/young person's learning?  

Here at St Mary’s, all staff have a clear idea of how each child is achieving.  All children have progress and attainment tracked through a school tracking system called Assertive Mentoring.  This shows each child’s progress against their personal targets.  Mentoring meetings (three times a year) enable parent, child and teacher to discuss together progress against the child’s targets.  Further evidence is logged on the schools database called DCPro.  All literacy and numeracy books have a record of progress on the cover so each child knows where they are in relation to appropriate stage for their age.  As a parent, you can find advice on how to help your child at home through our leaflets on entry to school, also discussions with the class teacher will support you in what to do at home to support your child.  If your child has an SEN or Disability they will receive additional monitoring through the use of diagnostic and standardised assessments which give more detailed information about what support you child may need.


5. What support will there be for my child's/young person's overall wellbeing?

As a Christian school with a Christian ethos, we very much view each child as an individual. The teaching of Jesus- treating each other as we would wish to be treated, is at the heart of all we do.  All staff care for and nurture all children in our care.  In addition our Home School Link Worker is a source of support for children and families.  She is also able to sign post parents to external agencies for support and continually supports and mentors children.  In addition, as a school, we follow the SEAL programme of study which supports children’s social and emotional needs.  If your child is identified as having a social or emotional need, they may receive interventions to support this.


If your child has a medical condition they will have a care plan in place, developed by the school nurse.  If your child requires medication during the school day, a parent will need to sign to give permission for a member of the Senior Management Team (SMT) to administer it. 


St Mary’s adopt a positive behaviour system which uses a range of rewards to engage children.  Regular praise, certificates, stickers and a collection of smiley faces can be traded for rewards.  Through the use of consistent routines and clear high expectations of behaviour, we expect that the children will make the right choices.


6. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the setting/school/college?

The school works closely with outside agencies and is able to make referrals to the Psychological services (EP), CAHMS, the School Nurse, and Speech therapy.  Our school also receives support through our SEND’s team (LA).  School can also access behavioural support from the inclusion team for children with social and emotional issues.  Our Home School Link Worker has links with social care to ensure the safety of children in our care.


7.What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND have had or are having?

Both teaching and support staff are trained in various teaching strategies and intervention programmes, this depends on the varying needs of the pupils with SEN.  A number of support staff are trained in specific interventions such as Teaching Talking and Better Reading Partnership.  All staff receives Stoke Speaks Out Level one.


8.How will my child/young person be included in activities outside this classroom including school trips? 

All children are able to access all out of school clubs and activities.  If a member of staff notices a particular talent, he/she will be encouraged to join groups that will nurture this.  Risk assessments are carried out if health and safety issues could arise for some children.  We will always aim to make reasonable adjustments to ensure inclusion for all.



9. How accessible is the setting/school/college environment? 

 Our school has two floors; Nursery, Reception and Key Stage one on the ground floor and Key Stage two on the first floor.  We have a lift in order to access the second floor and a disabled toilet.  We have disabled parking spaces in front of our school reception for easy access.  Further information can be found in the school’s Accessibility Plan.


10.How will the setting/school/college prepare and support my child/young person to join the setting/school/college or the next stage of education and life?

St Mary’s has close links with local nursery settings and we make it a priority in summer and early autumn to engage in positive transition work, including discussions with staff.  For children joining nursery for the first time, home visits take place to ensure a smooth transition into school.


Should a child join us mid-year transition is conducted with the previous school, to ensure that all information is shared and we have a clear picture of the child as a whole.


Transition between year groups starts three weeks before the end of the summer term, providing time for children to adjust to their new classroom and teacher.  Children with SEN will have transition meetings and their transition will be planned to suit their particular needs.


When transferring to high school, the children will visit and experience their new environment and meet new staff.  Again those will SEN may require a more personalised plan to be in place.


11. How are the setting’s/school's/college's resources allocated and matched to children's/young people's special educational needs? 

When a child’s needs are assessed, resources are allocated on a priority needs basis.  Children with an Education and Health Care Plan with have support commensurate with the outcomes stated on the plan by the local authority.  Children identified as needing School Support, in addition to that provided in class, will receive support from within the schools budget.  The resources used will be at the discretion of the Head teacher, governing body and SENCo to best meet the needs of all learners.


12. How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child/young person will receive? 

Any decision regarding the support your child will receive is made with the advice of school, families and outside agencies.  Discussions will take place in which needs are identified and appropriate strategies are suggested.  It is then at the discretion of St Mary’s to decide how available resources are deployed to best meet the needs of all learners, taking account of advice from outside agencies and parents views.


13. How are parents involved in the setting/school/college? How can I be involved?

Parents are encouraged to join the life of the school through invites to special assemblies, concerts, parents evening or sports days.  


Regarding children who have SEN, parents are involved at all levels, for example at the early identification stage; determining the level of support and the barrier to learning; at the review stage and at the transition stage from school to school and on to the next phase of education.  The staff at St Mary’s work hard to engage parents in all areas of school and are welcome to join the PTFA.