Accessibility Plan: Siddal Moor Sports College
Accessibility Plan - Background Information
Under the Equality Act 2010 schools are required to have an Accessibility Plan. The Equality Act replaced all existing equality legislation, including the Disability Discrimination Act. The effect of the law is the same as in the past, meaning that
“Schools cannot unlawfully discriminate against pupils because of sex, race, disability, religion or belief and sexual orientation”.
The Governing Body has had three key duties towards disabled pupils,
- not to treat disabled pupils less favourably for a reason related to their disability;
- to make reasonable adjustments for disabled pupils, so that they are not at a substantial disadvantage;
- to plan to increase access to education for disabled pupils.
This plan sets out the proposals of the Governing Body of the school to increase access to education for disabled pupils in the areas required by the Equality Act increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum;
- improving the environment of the school to increase the extent to which disabled pupils can take advantage of education and associated services;
- improving the delivery of written information for disabled pupils.
It is a requirement that the school’s accessibility plan is resourced, implemented and reviewed and revised as necessary.
Information from pupil data and school audit.
Who are our disabled pupils?
The disability discrimination duties are owed to all pupils who are defined by the Equality Act as being disabled and under the planning duties schools and local authorities have a general duty to improve the accessibility of schools for disabled pupils. The Equality Act defines a disabled person as someone who has ‘a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his or her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.’
The definition can include a wide range of impairments, including hidden impairments such as dyslexia, autism, speech and language impairments, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Impairment does not of itself mean that a pupil is disabled. It is the effect on the pupil’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities that has to be considered.
A significant number of pupils are included in the definition.
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Disability and special educational needs
Many children who have SEN will also be defined as having a disability under the Equality Act. It is likely that many of the pupils who have SEN and an educational health care plan, additional support or other additional needs such as EAL will count as disabled.
However, not all children who are defined as disabled will have SEN. For example, those with severe asthma, arthritis or diabetes may not have SEN but may have rights under the Equality Act 2010 . Similarly, not all children with SEN will be defined as having a disability under the Equality Act. In particular some children whose emotional and behavioural difficulties have their origins in social or domestic circumstances may fall outside the definition.
Possible overlap of SEN and Equality Act disability definition for children and young people
|Special Educational Needs||Both SEN + Disabled||Disabled|
|Mild dyslexia||Motor Impairment (long term)||Asthma|
|Emotional Behavioural||Learning difficulties||Diabetes|
|Difficulties (EBD - social factors)||Hearing impairment / Deaf||Cancer recovery|
|Mild Dyspraxia||Visual Impairment / Blind||Mental health Issues|
|Minor speech impairment||Incontinence||Disfigurement|
|Mild Learning difficulties||Significant Dyslexia||Eating disorder|
|Epilepsy||Lack of limbs|
|Non-verbal||Sickle cell Anaemia|
|Autism||Very Short Stature|
|EBD (factors other than social e.g. medical conditions/mental health)|
The school’s SEN and medical register were closely examined and from these a Disability Register was compiled into the below categories.
- Level 0: Non Register Support (e.g. EAL support, etc.)
- Level 1: Additional SEN Support
- Level 2: EHCP Levels 2 and 3
We identify required actions for SEN students in terms of rates of progress to be achieved and access to learning. When children or young people have significant gaps in terms of their actual progress or access to learning and when this deficit can be ascribed to an identifiable learning need, the child or young person will be placed on the SEN register so that they are able to make greater progress with SEN support, rather than without it.
Important: Defining a child or young person as having SEN does not mean that they will automatically be placed on the SEN register (see below). It may be the case that, should they not meet criteria for this, they will be monitored and that, should their progress dictate, they will be placed on the register at some future point. Equally, if a registered student who has received SEN support becomes able to make the expected progress without further SEN support, the student will be removed from the SEN register.
In regards to primary school students, the SENCO is invited to review meetings of pupils in Year 5 in our feeder schools and gains knowledge of future cohorts in this way. Further information is gathered during visits by the SENCO and Transition Co-ordinator in the Summer term prior to transfer to Siddal Moor Sports College.
What are the school’s strengths in working with disabled pupils?
Information to all staff
School staff have experience of working with a wide range of disabled pupils. Support information is given to staff at the start of each year through INSET, information sheets and targeted inset for specific pupils. This is updated twice a year. New information is distributed to staff when necessary throughout the year.
For Example, RANS has delivered a number of sessions, Specialists have worked with the TAs to deliver strategies for particular students. Throughout the year staff are regularly updated as and when new and relevant information is received, for example, after an SEN review meeting. This is disseminated via the confidential school bulletin or individual help sheets.
Teaching Assistant team
The school has a team of Teaching Assistants currently working alongside the teachers; they have a regular training slots to ensure all staff are kept up to date with current polices and effective classroom strategies.
Procedures are in place to ensure a smooth transition for all pupils with a disability to Siddal Moor Sports College.
The SENCO, when invited, attends reviews in Year 5 for any pupil with a Statement. A visit is also made to primaries during Year 6 so that planning can start for any learning or physical needs. Further meetings can be arranged where necessary or requested by the parents and individual pupils can make additional visits to the Year 6 Taster day already arranged.
The SENCO works closely with the Transition co-ordinator to ensure that any pupil who has SEN or is on the disability register is sensitively and appropriately placed in a form.
All pupils at Siddal Moor Sports College follow a full and balanced curriculum. Personalisation is an important consideration and work is differentiated to ensure is it accessible. Where appropriate, a reduced curriculum is put in place. For example, a small group of pupils in Years 7 and 8 follow a reduced curriculum as they have been withdrawn from MFL.
All curriculum areas are accessible to pupils using a wheelchair. Regular work has taken place to continually improve accessibility e.g. Regular maintenance of pathways.
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Consultation during the development of the plan
- A questionnaire was sent to all staff and support staff to gain feedback on accessibility issues.
- The old plan was evaluated with some actions carried forward.
- The views of pupils were actively sought to determine the effect of current school policies on pupils with a disability. This was either done via SEN review meetings or via small focus groups in the form of All about me documents.
- The views of parents have been actively sought. Parents are invited to attended coffee mornings as well as meet to discuss their child’s needs via annual reviews and drop in sessions during parents evenings.
- The site manager carried out an access audit and evaluation of the old plan.
- School council consultation.
- Consultation with the School Governor.
A. Management, co-ordination and implementation.
Overall responsibility for the school’s accessibility plan lies with the governing body, but improving access for disabled pupils requires everyone at school to understand the duties in the Equality Act and apply this knowledge in their own area of responsibility.
The Action Plan will be reviewed annually by the SENCO and other appropriate staff.
B. Getting hold of the school’s plan.
The plan is available upon application to the school. The document is published using Arial, 10 font. If you require a larger font size, please let us know.
It is hoped that the plan will also be published in due course on the school’s web site.
We welcome any views you may have to make this plan more accessible.
The school offer which can be found on the school website also provides information on all listed below to ensure all information regarding SEN and disability can be easily accessed.
How we define Special Educational Needs
What kinds of special educational provision are made at Siddal Moor?
How do we identify, assess and provide for pupils with SEN?
Who is the school contact for SEN?
How is Siddal Moor accessible to children with SEND?
What are our arrangements for consulting with parents of pupils with SEN?
What are our arrangements for consulting with young people with SEN?
Do we have a complaints procedure for parents of pupils with SEN?
Who are the other people providing services to children with SEND in Siddal Moor?
What are the contact details for support services for the parents of pupils with special educational needs?
What are our arrangements for supporting pupils transferring between stages of education and preparing for independent living?
How to access Rochdale Local Authority’s Local Offer?
The policy is monitored across all areas of Inclusion under the lead of the Headmaster and SENCo. A register of all children with identified disabilities is kept confidentially and updated regularly.
The academic progress of children on this register is tracked using the established school systems and any outcome gaps identified.
We endeavour to ensure that disabled children participate in all educational and non educational visits and make provision accordingly.
The monitoring and assessment of the act of this plan and curricular provision / standards achieved by children under its remit are integrated in review meetings on an annual basis.
Parents are fully informed of all provision made for their children and are involved in formal meetings. Teachers are always accessible for informal meetings to discuss progress. In addition to this, the allocation of a Learning Guide to all learners across the School within a vertical House system ensures that all learners, irrespective of disability or additional need, have a designated adult who is their first point of contact, and who can be contacted by parents/carers at any time to discuss provision for their child.
In addition to the ‘vertical’ support network through the Form and House system, additional support is in place to ensure behaviour needs and any issues relating to the Year group are addressed. In this way, a matrix of support is in place to ensure no child ‘falls through the gaps’ at any stage in their School life.
This document should be read in conjunction with the Local Offer, SEN(D) Policy and all other policy documents relating to the conduct of staff and learners across the School which can be found on our school website.