Lumley Infant & Nursery Site: Great Lumley, County Durham DH3 4JL | Tel: 0191 388 5292 | Email:
Lumley Junior Site: Cocken Lane, Great Lumley, County Durham DH3 4JJ | Tel: 0191 388 2310 | Email:

Lumley Primary Federation

How we identify, assess and review children with special educational needs

Most children and young people in mainstream schools will have their special educational needs met through good classroom practice. This is called Quality First Teaching. All teachers are responsible for meeting children’s needs and will therefore employ a range of strategies so that children are able to overcome any barriers they may face. This is based on the child’s individual needs and may include adapting teaching styles and resources, differentiated learning and on-going assessments of needs.

Early Identification of Need

As a school, we continuously assess children’s needs in all areas of school life in order to ensure early identification of needs. This is done alongside regular discussions between school staff, observations of children and analysis of data.

In deciding whether to make special education provision to support educational, social, physical or emotional needs, we also:

  • Work in partnership with parents/carers and children to identify children’s strengths and difficulties

  • Consult with relevant external agencies such as Cognition and Learning and the Educational Psychologist and act on the advice given

  • Use assessment tools & materials

  • Use observations

‘short note’ of these early discussions, observations and assessments will be added to the child’s record and monitored on a regular basis in partnership with children and parents/carers.

SEN Support

SEND support will be discussed if, despite ‘Quality First Teaching’, a child:

  • continues to make little or no progress in specific areas over a period of time

  • continues to work at a National Curriculum level which is substantially below that expected of children at a similar age

  • has emotional difficulties which significantly interfere with their learning and day-to-day life

  • has a sensory or physical need that requires additional support or equipment.

Where a pupil is identified as having a special educational need we follow a graduated approach which takes the form of cycles of “AssessPlanDoReview”.

This means that we will:

  • Assess a child’s special educational needs
  • Plan the provision to meet your child’s aspirations and agreed outcomes
  • Do put the provision in place to meet those outcomes
  • Review the support and progress

Following the initial identification and assessment of need, every child who requires SEN support will have an individualised SEN Support Plan that describes the child’s  strengths and needs and also the outcomes & provision to meet those needs. Outcomes within support plans are specific, measurable, achievable and realistic. Parents/carers and children’s (where appropriate) views are integral to this process.

The outcome and provision within the SEN Support Plan is regularly reviewed by the staff, the child themselves and parents/carers so that, as a school, we are able to reflect and adapt on the provision provided. SEN Support Plans will also be formally reviewed and updated on a termly basis in collaboration with parents.

Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan

A small percentage of children and young people with significant and/or complex needs may require an assessment that could by the Local Authority that could lead to an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC).  This is a very detailed assessment of a child’s needs which would take place if a child, despite the school having taken appropriate action to identify, assess and meet the needs of a pupil, continues to not make expected progress and requires a multi-agency approach to accessing needs, planning provision and identifying resources required.

Parents or carers, the school and a range of professionals will all be asked to provide written reports to the Local Authority. The Local Authority will expect to see evidence of previous action taken by the school and other professionals. If the Local Authority agree to provide a child with an EHC Plan, children will be given long term outcomes following a consultation with parents/carers, the child themselves and education, health and social care professionals.

Parents/carers and other professionals also have the right to ask the Local Authority to carry out this assessment. It is usually best if you can do this with the support of the school.

For more detailed information see the Local Offer

Details of Identification and Assessment of Pupils with SEN

If your child has SEN, it may be important for us to carry out formal assessments to identify their strengths, needs and progress accurately. To do this, we will use a range of methods depending upon their needs. This could include:

Communication and interaction  

  • Talkabout Programme assessment tool by Alex Kelly
  • Speech Therapy Assessments – which may focus on sound production, language understanding, or other relevant assessments of your child’s needs

Cognition and learning

  • Subject specific assessment
  • Cognition and Learning Team assessments
  • Education Psychology Assessments – which may include memory, understanding, reasoning, logic, and general skills assessment.

Social, Emotional and Health Difficulties 

  • Observations of pupils
  • Talkabout Programme assessment tool by Alex Kelly
  • Education Psychology Assessments

Sensory and/or Physical Difficulties 

  • Movement Difficulties Team assessment
  • Occupational Therapy assessment

For those children who are working on the National Curriculum, your child will also be assessed against age related expectations. Those who are not ready to work at National Curriculum levels may be assessed against other measures.

When children are undertaking assessments or examinations, arrangements can be made, depending on the needs of the child, to ensure that they are able to achieve to the best of their ability.

For further information please view or download our Accessibility Plan which can be found in the School Policies section of our website.