SEND Local Offer

SEND Info to


What is the Kirklees Local Offer?

The Local Offer has been developed as part of the new Children and Families Act. It aims to provide information on education, health and social care provision available for disabled children and young people and those with special educational needs, in a way that can be accessed quickly and easily.

Who is producing the Local Offer?

Kirklees Council is working with parents, carers, young people, schools, colleges, early years providers and health services to produce the Local Offer.

What information do schools provide?

Schools have a duty to provide information about special educational needs that is accessible to pupils, parents and carers.   We need to make sure this information is kept up to date.

Where can I find the Local Offer?

The Kirklees Local Offer can be found at This is a work in progress. Kirklees Council and partners are working hard to create a Local Offer that includes links to all relevant information that Kirklees residents would find useful. If you have any suggestions for improvements or ideas about what might help you, contact


At St John Fisher Catholic Voluntary Academy, children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities are fully included in the school with appropriate intervention and level of support to enable them to access the curriculum and make progress alongside other pupils in the classroom. The Special Educational Needs Code of Practice lies at the heart of the school’s SEN policy and sets out the processes and procedures to meet the needs of children. The Code describes a graduated approach which recognises the different needs of pupils, with more specialist expertise at SEN Support. If further support is required the school may request a statutory assessment of Special Educational needs, which may result in an Education, Health & Social Care Plan being issued to the child.

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

A student may be identified as having a Special Educational Need (SEN) at any stage during his/her education. This may be a long term difficulty requiring continuing support or a short term difficulty requiring a specific intervention.

Information about your child’s special educational needs comes from a number of sources:

  • Year 7 transfer meetings
  • Cognitive Abilities Tests
  • Screen tests for reading and spelling
  • Observations
  • Educational Teaching Assistant/teacher feedback
  • Parental concern
  • Student self-referral
  • Director of Study/A Needs Team concern

If parents / guardians think that their child may have special educational needs that have not been previously identified then they should contact the school and ask to make an appointment with the Special Education Needs Coordinator (SENCo): Mrs M Biggin, at the school.

 2.   What provision is there for students with Special Educational Needs and Disability?

The Whole School Approach for pupils with Additional Needs revolves around a strong Pastoral System. Appropriate interventions and actions are identified through regular reviews and involvement of Multi Agency Teams, so that Action plans can be discussed and agreed to support the pupil and the family.

The Additional Needs Team:

Mr Kevin Higgins:        The Headteacher

Mrs Marie Biggin:         Additional Needs Co-ordinator / SENCo

Mrs Kathryn Lea:         Deputy SENCo

Mrs Clare Kernan:        Assistant Headteacher, Pupil Welfare & Achievement

Mr Paul Rushton:         Senior Director of Studies

16 Educational Teaching Assistants

Janet Kent, Claire Barker: Catholic Care Social Workers

Mr Shane Campbell:    Inclusion Unit manager

Ms Grace Collett:         Behaviour & Transition Mentor

Mrs Angie McGreevy and Mrs Julie Thomas: Learning Support Unit managers

Mrs Stephanie Cookson, Mrs Phillippa Hartley, Mrs Pam Speight, Mrs Eva Barber: Classroom Cover Supervisors

The Additional Needs team work together to:

  • Ensure that all students with special educational needs/disabilities and those who are looked after by the authority, are provided with the opportunity to achieve academic, social and economic success.
  • Advise teaching staff about the individual needs of students with special educational needs/disabilities.
  • Assess students to ensure that the most appropriate access arrangements are put in place during formal assessment periods/ exams.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the provision for SEND pupils as part of the review process and agree appropriate interventions where needed.
  • 16 Educational Teaching Assistants are involved in supporting SEN children, predominantly in the classroom and around school. These are trained and experienced in working with pupils across the whole school to enable access for pupils with a wide range of physical and learning needs. The school also has a Learning Support Unit where pupils receive targeted intervention and support in small groups for allocated sessions.


We are committed to narrowing the attainment gap between SEND and non-SEND students. This may include short-term intervention learning or other learning interventions developed on an individual needs basis alongside the broad and balanced curriculum provided to all students each year. The range of support deployed will be tailored to individual need following assessment by internal or external agencies. It is designed to promote students working towards becoming independent and resilient learners

3.   How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

Teachers adapt teaching to meet the range of needs in each class. Planning is flexible so as to recognise and take into account individual student’s needs and requirements. Trained support staff can implement the teachers modified/adapted planning to support the needs of your child where necessary. Differentiation is approached in a range of ways to support learning and ensure that all students can experience success and challenge in their learning. Teachers use a variety of teaching methods appropriate to the abilities and learning styles of individual students.
Our aim is to support students to become independent learners; support staff are used flexibly to avoid students becoming over reliant on adult help.

Staff Expertise

All Staff have experience of working with children with the range of additional needs which we have at St John Fisher Catholic Voluntary Academy

 Working with children with Communication & Interaction difficulties

 Working with children with Cognition & Learning difficulties

 Working with children with Social, Emotional and Mental Health difficulties

 Working with children with Sensory and/or Physical needs.

Staff are encouraged to attend training for continued professional development. This has included Safeguarding awareness, behaviour management skills, working with pupils with specific learning difficulties, First Aid Training and the SENCO National qualification.

4.   What Specialist Services are available to the school?

External Agencies

 The following agencies work with the school to support individual pupils:

  • Catholic Care Social Workers
  • Educational Psychologist
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Physiotherapists
  • Manual Handling Advisor
  • School Nurse and Medical teams
  • Social Care teams
  • Connexions Careers
  • Parent Partnership
  • The CAMHS team
  • Sensory Impaired Service
  • Targeted Youth Support Services
  • Early Help Access Team
  • Police


Liaison with School Partners

Strong links exist with our feeder primary schools and the SENCo visits all the schools with the Director of Study in the summer term to ensure a smooth transition into year 7 and she attends change of phase reviews for pupils with statements who are hoping to come to the school.

The SENCo meets with the Primary SENCos at the Kirklees SENCo Network meetings which is valuable to discuss and share good practice.

5.   How accessible is the school environment?

The school is accessible for pupils with mobility problems, with lifts to upper floors and ramped areas to ensure access and independence. The school is fully accessible to wheelchairs and there are two closimat toilets with hoisting facilities. The SENCO meets with Health professionals regularly for advice and guidance around specific needs of individual pupils to ensure independence and full access to the school and the curriculum

6.   How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom?

All students have access to all activities offered by the school and, where necessary, additional adult support will be available to assist with after school activities and on school trips. Parents may be asked to meet with school staff to plan appropriate support where necessary.

 7.   How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s education

Parents and Carers are updated regularly on their children’s progress and personalised reviews are held which includes the views of the pupil and the family. The Additional Needs team are available for parental consultations in line with reviews and by request. Personalised reviews are held for SEND pupils in year nine with the Connexions Careers involvement to provide advice for future choices available for them. Through KS4 & KS5 additional advice and guidance is available to help them to decide career pathways and enable them to achieve their desired outcomes either in the sixth form, college or into employment and training.


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