How we support young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND)

Paradigm is a warm, welcoming and inclusive school trust, where we go the extra mile to meet each child’s individual needs and adopt a fully person-centered approach. In each of our schools, there is a designated teacher whose role it is to champion children who are looked after by the local authority. Where looked after children also have SEN, the designated teacher will work closely with the relevant SENCo to ensure that effective support is provided. 

To find out more about individual schools, please contact the SEN leads who will be happy to assist you. Visits to each of the schools are welcomed. Please read the information below. Detailed information can be read using the links on the left.

Leadership of SEND across Paradigm

Culloden Primary Academy – Charlotte Baker

Ipswich Academy – Lauren Hague and Joanne Adams

Murrayfield Primary Academy – Sara Johnson 

Old Ford Primary Academy – Yomna El Guindy

Piper’s Vale Primary Academy – Kimberly Morton

Solebay Primary Academy – Reine Geldenhuys

Woodbridge Road Academy – Naomi Shenton 

In each of our schools, there is a designated teacher whose role it is to champion children who are looked after by the local authority. Where looked after children also have SEN, the designated teacher will work closely with the relevant SENCo to ensure that effective support is provided.

What is the requirement for SEN information reporting? 

The SEND Code of Practice (section 6.79 p106 and 107) states that the following information must be made available in an information report:

6.79 The governing bodies of maintained schools and maintained nursery schools and the proprietors of academy schools must publish information on their websites about the implementation of the governing body’s or the proprietor’s policy for pupils with SEN. The information published should be updated annually and any changes to the information occurring during the year should be updated as soon as possible. 

Additional guidance is provided on the Department for Education website- what maintained schools must publish.

Support available for pupils with SEN needs

The SEND Code of Practice states that “children have special educational needs (SEN) if they have a learning difficulty which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her” (xiii p.15).  Paradigm Trust is committed to ensuring that pupils with SEN are provided with high quality provision ensuring that all achieve academically and develop socially.

The Trust implements support for pupils in three ‘waves of intervention’, with quality first teaching as the first wave, followed by the second wave of small group intensive intervention led by a qualified teacher or teaching assistant and a third wave of intervention drawing on specialist additional support, often involving the support of external agencies.

Paradigm Trust supports pupils with a variety of SEN, within each of the four broad areas of need, including communication and interaction; cognition and learning; social, emotional and mental health; sensory and / or physical needs. 

Provision will be provided and evaluated by each school using a person-centered approach adopted from the Code of Practice; Assess levels of ability- Plan appropriate input- Do, put into practice- Review, evaluate outcomes.

The Trust has set protocols and arrangements for admission of disabled pupils, with each individual pupil having a care plan to ensure his/her needs are met. The Trust uses this information to make sure that classroom teachers are aware of the needs of pupils, with specialist training and equipment being utilised when required. Paradigm Trust has made every effort to make the schools accessible for those with disabilities, ensuring that difficulties navigating the school day are minimised. 

Identifying children and young people with SEND

The SEND Code of Practice states that in identifying a pupil as needing SEN support, the subject teacher, working with the SENCo, should carry out a clear assessment of the pupil’s needs.  Teachers who have identified a pupil as not making adequate progress, despite high-quality teaching targeted at their areas of weakness must share their concern with the SENCo. The SENCo will then collate assessments from other teaching staff; external agencies may also be referred to for guidance and support, such as health and social care agencies.

How we involve parents/carers and pupils in consultation

Paradigm Trust schools adopt a ‘person centered’ approach to ensuring parents/carers and pupils are consulted and collaborated with throughout their time at school.

Tracking and assessment data can be accessed through the school’s reporting structure as well as annual parent/carer consultation evenings.  Each school’s SENCo is the primary liaison for families and external professionals working with pupils with SEN. Each school also has an extensive pastoral system to provide additional support. 

Pupils with an EHC plan will have their provision monitored and reviewed, with a review of the education, health and care plan taking place annually. 

Assessing pupils with SEND

Within primary, pupils are assessed termly using mainstream standardised tests (when appropriate) and pupils are reported to be emerging, expected or exceeding. In cases where pupils are working below their age-related expectations then they will be assessed using specialist tools and scales  These assessment tools track the academic and holistic progress of the pupil, such as attention skills and also track pupil progress against expected pupil progress of pupils with similar end of previous key stage starting points nationally.  In addition, external professionals, such as speech and language therapists, contribute to the assessment and review of the pupils through their assessment systems and targets.

Secondary pupils are tracked to make progress in line with the nationally average progress made by pupils with similar end Key Stage 2 starting points. Pupils are assessed against their knowledge, skills and understanding throughout the curriculum during three termly assessment points. Following standardisation, staff report whether pupils are below, at or exceeding along with a scaled score. KS4 pupils will complete mock examinations twice per year in their core and option subjects. We will then report actual grades and forecast grades for each subject to the students, parents and carers. 

How the school supports transition of pupils with SEND

The Trust believes that transition should be an ongoing process throughout the academic year; ensuring good practice and vital pupil information is adequately shared.

The transition for SEN pupils coming into nursery or reception begins in the spring term when staff complete home visits.  For pupils with an EHCP and identified needs, the SENCo will arrange additional transition visits and hold multi-professional meetings to develop a transition plan.

The transition for SEN pupils from year 6 into year 7 starts in the autumn term. The primary SENCo will provide all relevant information to the secondary school to ensure pupil needs are met. The SENCo at Ipswich Academy will also conduct a number of transition visits to each feeder primary school to observe and work with relevant staff to further support transition. As well as the two standard secondary transition days for all year 6 pupils, there are six additional visits arranged with primary SENCos throughout the spring and summer term for SEN pupils to attend. 

Pupils with SEN in Years 10 and 11 receive support with their post-16 pathway. The careers advisor, pastoral support and SENCo liaise with post-16 education providers to ensure that all key inclusion information is shared and relevant support is in place to give pupils the best chance of succeeding in post-16 education or training.

In cases where SEN pupils transfer mid-year, information is gathered from the previous educational establishment to ensure provision on admission date is appropriate. Support and documentation is also provided when students transfer to another placement. 

Approach to teaching pupils with SEN, including any adaptations to the curriculum or learning environment

Paradigm Trust is inclusive; underpinned by our values.

Integrity- doing the right thing even when no one is watching.

Community- working together; learning from, and supporting, others.

Excellence- enabling everyone to achieve more through education.

We offer all pupils, including those with SEND, the opportunity to succeed and to reach the highest level of personal achievement. 

To do this, we will:

  • follow the Paradigm Trust lesson rubric; this is a clear and consistent approach to lesson delivery;
  • monitor progress data of all SEN pupils and take action where appropriate;
  • regularly update and share with relevant staff pupil profiles to inform planning and teaching strategies;
  • make reasonable adjustments to ensure pupils with SEN have full access to a broad and balanced curriculum;
  • provide additional learning aids and equipment specific to need;
  • provide a host of additional interventions to support learning, academic progress and social, emotional and mental health needs;
  • broker additional expertise around supporting pupils with additional needs;
  • seek to involve all parents/carers in supporting their child’s education;
  • ensure equality of access for all pupils and prepare them for life in a diverse society;
  • promote attitudes and values that will challenge derogatory and discriminatory behaviour or prejudice.

Staff training and specialist expertise

All Paradigm staff receive five days of professional development (CPD) each academic year as well as weekly whole staff CPD meetings. As part of this CPD programme, specific training is provided on support strategies for pupils with SEN. 

Each school’s SEN register and pupil profiles are accessible to all staff. Both inform staff of pupils’ individual needs and strategies. Supply teachers are informed of pupils’ specific learning needs for the group they are covering. Managers monitor any cover work set to ensure it meets the needs of all pupils.   

Specialist teachers, teaching assistants and learning mentors undertake additional CPD including external specialist CPD, to enhance their skills in supporting pupils with diverse levels of need. 

Culloden Primary Academy 

Has a Deaf Support Base for 30 pupils which includes a lead Teacher of the Deaf, two trained Teachers of the Deaf, and two trainee Teachers of the Deaf. The school adopts a total communication policy approach, using Sign Supported English which is based on British Sign Language (BSL). The school also works closely with specialist outreach professions such as speech and language therapists.

Murrayfield Primary Academy

Has a specialist education unit SEU for pupils  in lower and upper Key Stage 2 who need additional support for autism and challenges with sensory processing. The unit is run by a specialist teacher and support staff to enable small groups and personalised learning for the pupils. 

Piper’s Vale Primary Academy 

Has a specialist education unit SEU for pupils  in Reception and Key Stage 1. The unit is run by a specialist teaching and support staff to enable small groups and personalised learning for the pupils. 

Woodbridge Road Academy

In September 2022 we opened a new SEN school for 90 children in Key Stages 2-4 in Ipswich. Working closely with Phoenix School, a London-based specialist which shares our values, the new school is our first for children with communication and interaction needs in one of our communities. 

From time to time we also operate one or more ‘special classes’ or ‘learning support centres’ in our schools to cater for the needs of pupils with particular needs who we feel would benefit from an offer which is distinct to mainstream (but where pupil needs are not sufficient to indicate attendance at a special unit or special school). Our ability to offer such provision is always dependent on the overall needs of each school at each point in time, and pupils only access such provision if the relevant parent/carer is supportive of this approach.


Please click here to access the Paradigm Trust complaints policy.

Admissions policy

Please click here to access the Paradigm Trust admissions policy

Accessibility plan

Please click here to access the Paradigm Trust accessibility plan 

Information on Local Offer 

Each local authority publishes a ‘local offer’ which contains information about services that are available to children, young people and families in that area. The ‘local offer’ includes information and advice about the help on offer for people with special educational needs and disabilities from birth to 25 years. The local offer for Tower Hamlets can be found here, and the local offer for Suffolk can be accessed here.

How we enable pupils with special educational needs to engage in the activities of  school (including physical activities) together with children who do not have special educational needs

For all activities in school, provision will be provided and evaluated by each school using a person-centered approach to ensure pupils are able to fully participate and engage. For activities which include educational visits a risk assessment is completed and  individual pupil care plans are taken into account. Journeys and venues are risk assessed and private transport is provided for pupils when needed. To support pupils who may find the particular environment overstimulating we will also seek out quiet spaces in advance and include these in the risk assessment. Social stories are also created as and when appropriate for pupils to prepare for the modes of transport/journey/transition/change in day.

The support that is available for improving the emotional, mental and social development of pupils with special educational needs

Pupils with special educational needs have access to learning mentors, emotional literacy support assistants and speech and language therapist based interaction interventions, such as zones of regulation. There is also a mental well-being focus in each school e.g wellbeing Wednesdays for all pupils which SEN pupils are supported in.  Transition support for internal and external transitions (primary-secondary) is also put into place and social stories used to prepare for changes in the day/weeks etc.  

Last updated May 21, 2024