Our Local Offer

From September 2014 every local authority will be required to have a ‘local offer’ which informs parents, carers and young people with SEN and disabilities with education, health, and other services such as transport and leisure are available in their local area. This includes childcare provision which is suitable for disabled children and those with SEN.  It also sets out what information services are available locally, how parents and young people can request a EHC plan assessment, the arrangements to resolve disagreements, including through access and mediation.  The Local Offer should also cover support available to all children and young people with SEND from universal services such as GP’s, targeted services for those who need additional short-term support and specialist services for those needing specialised, longer term support.

The local authority must involve parents, young people, and education settings such as children’s centres and early years settings in the local offer. It must also publicly consult on the local offer and publish the results of consultation, including what they have done as a result of the consultation feedback.  The local offer must contain provision for children and young children with SEN or disabilities from across the 0-25 year old age range. 

How our setting knows if young children need extra help and what our parents/carers should do if they think their child may have SEND

As a setting from the minute, you start you and your family will be assigned a key person, this person will get to know your child as an individual. From the first stay and play session or home visit and throughout their time with us your child’s development will be discussed i.e. what stage is your child at and what would you like to see your child develop in the coming terms.    At any time on completing observations a delay is noted your child’s key person will inform you and advise of the actions we can take to support your child further.

Each term the key person also completes a development tracker whereby your child will be tracked in all areas of the EYFS, again if a delay is noted your child’s key person will inform you and discuss any further support we can put in place and how we can work together to get the most for your child.  These trackers can be viewed at any time please just ask.

If you as a parent or carer are concerned about your child’s development at any stage, please speak to your child’s key person who will guide you through the development we are seeing and any further support we may need to put in place.

How our setting supports young children with SEND

At Fairview Under Fives preschool, we have a named SENCO who is Emma Kelley – she has been at the setting for 3 years and previously worked as part of a School’s SEN team and has a vast amount of knowledge around developmental stages of children as well as specific SEN knowledge and training.  Emma holds the certificate for SENCO’s in early years.  She works closely with both the Rocket and the Rainbow rooms to gain extra observations, support staff, and deliver training to staff around the area of SEND.  Every month Emma will monitor the progress of those children that are on our SEN register and will liaise with the child’s current key person to discuss progress and observations gained and actions or outcomes to continue in the coming month.  This has proved to be a highly effective strategy as progress is shown each month and should during the month a key person feel a strategy is not working or extra support may be needed this can be put in place at any time.  This information is fed back to parents and if preschool a meeting may be called with the child’s key person, SENCO, and key person to ensure all are working on the same strategies and support as well as gaining information from all people involved in the child’s learning and development.  Team around the child meetings will be held termly for those children who are being assessed for an ECHP.

How our setting creates learning and development opportunities for individual children with SEND

As each child is assigned a key person from the minute, they start at Fairview Under Fives approaches to learning are individual.  The key person will devise an individual plan identifying what the child is interested in and how they will be supported in the coming term to support further development.

Activities through the day are differentiated in daily practice to ensure they are accessible to all and support each child’s learning. The staff will go along with children’s individual interests of the children so spontaneous activities and interests are acted upon and supported through the means of extra activities being introduced and differentiated in the way staff see fit for example giving a younger child a bigger brush to hold to paint or holding a child’s hand as they walk up and down the stairs or working in smaller groups to maintain attention and concentration of an activity.

How our setting works in partnership with parents/carers

Any child who is identified with SEND will have regular contact with their child’s key person and SENCO, this may be in the form of meetings on site, telephone contacts or updates via email.

As a parent/carer you will be in your child’s learning and development from the moment you start through the initial meeting on transition discussing outcomes for your child to achieve.  When plans including individual plans and additional support plans are updated a copy of these are given to parents and activities and outcomes can be added if a parent wishes.

Each child has their own tracking sheet on Tapestry and their development is reviewed each term to show developments and achievements they have made.  Through close observation and support the progress is tracked shows the development and progress they make at each stage.

How our setting supports the wellbeing of young children with SEND

As a setting we have an in-depth inclusion policy covering all areas around this including behaviour.  It shows how we support both children who may be involved as a result of a confrontation and that parents will be informed should one child hurt another and the actions that have been taken. 

Should we deem it necessary a risk assessment may be updated or devised to further support the child/children’s safety.  If a child does come into the setting and a risk assessment should need to be in place, then this will be completed with the support and presence of the parent or carer.

All staff hold the paediatric First Aid certificate.

Staff training and experience in supporting young children with SEND.

Our setting SENCO has over 8 years’ experience in childcare.  She regularly attends external training as well as meetings with outside agencies such as Educational Psychologist and children’s centres to update and refresh her knowledge.  Any legal updates that are made around the area of SEND the setting SENCO attends training and then this is then fed back through on-site team meetings to the rest of the staff to ensure all are meeting guidelines and best practice is evident. 

The setting Manager is also a qualified Primary School teacher, who holds the National SENCO Award and has over 20 years experience.

All practitioners complete the level 2 safeguarding training.  We also have 2 designated safeguarding staff on site who have completed the level 3 training. 

Specialist services and expertise accessed by the setting.

We regularly access and have contact with:

  • Essex SEN Team
  • Speech and language therapist
  • Educational Psychologists
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Health visitors
  • Play and Development Specialist
  • Specialist Teacher

Our accessible environment

Our ENCO (Equality Named Co-ordinator), Claire Watson completes an access update which is updated annually to ensure all facilities are accessible, if throughout the year alterations need to be made or reviewed these will be done on an as and when basis.

On arriving at the preschool, we have a slope access which is accessible for wheelchair users to gain access.  Our toilets are fitted with low sink to enable access.

Resources and equipment can be accessed through the setting SENCO contacting the area Inclusion Partner who will visit the setting to see what available resources can be loaned or obtained to support children with SEND.

If we have parents and carers at the setting whose first language is not English, we endeavour to use as many pictures as possible to help the parents and families understand information we are conveying where practicable a translator may be contact to support us further.

How our setting prepares and supports young children with SEND when joining the setting and when transferring to another setting or school.

Transition meetings are arranged for the parents to come in and meet their child’s key person, during this time all vital information regarding needs and support will be discussed as well as importance to inform the setting of other agencies involved if your child has SEND. Play sessions are available for the child to come in and get use to the setting as well as a time to get to know their new key person. From the initial visits extra play dates will be arranged to help your child settle into Fairview Under Fives. Your child’s key person will start to support your child with the identified needs as discussed in your initial transition visit following your child’s start point as stated by the parents or carers.

Should a parent feel it appropriate, home visits can be arranged with the SENCO and child’s key person.

If your child leaves our setting to go to a new setting or to start school, then their child’s key person and settings SENCO will visit the setting they are going to and meet with the new key staff to discuss support that is in place and continuation from when they leave Fairview. 

How our setting organises its resources to meet the needs of young children with SEND

When staff are employed at Fairview Under Fives, they are carefully selected to ensure appropriate experience has been gained and identified additional support or training in place for when they start should they need this. 

Each member of staff that starts with us also undergoes thorough induction training to ensure all are familiar with set procedures and practices at the setting covering areas around SEND including behaviour, speech and language and autism.

How we decide on appropriate support for young children with SEND

From the moment an identified additional need is recognised the parents will be informed, this may be through a conversation with your child’s key person to raise the concern with supporting evidence and observations which reflect our findings. Further observations will then be completed both at home and in the setting to gain further information that may be required.

Following the observations should the settings SENCO deem it necessary other professionals may be contacted to come in and complete any further observations that may be needed. As soon as all the information is gathered parents will be invited in to have a meeting with all involved to discuss what support will be put in place to best meet the child’s needs.

A plan will be written, and copies given to all people who have contact with the child including parents, cares, family members, groups the child may attend, health visitors etc to ensure all having contact with eth child are following the set support that has been put in place.  Every month the actions will be reviewed to ensure the outcomes are being developed and as to whether this need adjusting in any way again best to suit the child’s individual needs.

How we involve all parents/carers in the setting

We have an opened door policy in setting.  Should you have a concern at any time please speak to your child’s key person who will happily support you and your family in the best way possible.

We use Tapestry which is an online learning journal this enables staff to share the children’s observations, care diary and reports throughout the year.

Who to contact for further information

Our named SENCO is Emma Kelley so please speak to Emma if you have any questions in relation to SEND or inclusion.

Further information regarding the local offer can also be found at www.essexlocaloffer.org.uk