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 Post subject: SEN and grammar schools
PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 3:21 pm 
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https://www.parliament.uk/business/publ ... -18/49291/

I thought parents who have children with SEN and considering grammar schools admissions might be interested with the percentages of children attending particular grammar schools as of January 2016.

(Edited I have just seen this link is on the end of the first sticky.)

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 4:06 pm 
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This data implies that the criteria for being classed as SEN are the same in every school - they certainly aren't in Bucks.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:05 pm 
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I was surprised at the difference between the grammars in Stroud and rest of Gloucester grammars...really striking....


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:21 pm 
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Would a child with Asperger or mild ADHD be classed as SEN?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:36 pm 
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Moon unit wrote:
Would a child with Asperger or mild ADHD be classed as SEN?


A good question - yes in some schools, no in others!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:04 pm 
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Your answer makes me feel better as I have never quite understood what qualifies a child as SEN.
The huge variation is fascinating.
It would be really interesting to know if those children were registered before or after starting secondary ie if some schools are just really good at picking things up.
A SENCo friend of mine teaches every class in year seven at some stage of the year to help identify difficulties. Not sure if that’s common practice.
Does each pupil identified increase funding for SEN or is it included in the overall budget?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:24 pm 
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It's interesting data but surely ultimately meaningless because there's no single definition.
At our primary there were children with very severe additional needs who had statements, but there were others with relatively mild dyslexia or who were just relatively delayed compared to their peers at the time, who were given SENCO assistance because it suited the school (she had time within her timetable, it helped those children develop skills more quickly and it allowed for the rest of the class to do different work) but who would never have been classified as having SENs in other schools.
In my sister in law's school their definition is a student falling three years behind what is expected. At our school it was more like three months!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:26 pm 
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Statements have been replaced by EHC and funding comes via that process. Each school should have a policy about SEN on their website.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:26 am 
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loobylou wrote:
It's interesting data but surely ultimately meaningless because there's no single definition.
At our primary there were children with very severe additional needs who had statements, but there were others with relatively mild dyslexia or who were just relatively delayed compared to their peers at the time, who were given SENCO assistance because it suited the school (she had time within her timetable, it helped those children develop skills more quickly and it allowed for the rest of the class to do different work) but who would never have been classified as having SENs in other schools.
In my sister in law's school their definition is a student falling three years behind what is expected. At our school it was more like three months!
I have also worked in two schools where the difference was striking. In one, even children with quite severe issues did not get support, while in another, children who in my own view were just a little slower to catch on or found it hard to sit still ended up with SENCo support. I don't think it is any coincidence that the demographics of these two schools varied hugely.

I am afraid that having worked in a school for children with complex cognitive and physical disabilities (often both - blind/deaf/severely autistic in one child, for example) whose parents have had to fight at every step of the way for even basic provision, the increasing tendency to categorise variations of normal as SEN which then attract extra funding and time does irritate me. In Finland there is a recognition that many children have specific needs and the responsibility for ensuring that those needs are met lies with the schools - that is what happens when you have a highly professionalised workforce who are able to exercise their knowledge with autonomy. I cannot help thinking that in England, the early school start, along with an often inappropriate curriculum for small people, is exacerbating a tendency to see children as having SEN when actually if school was more appropriately structured and took account of individual variations then many would be just fine. Controversial view perhaps, and no offence intended to those whose children have been diagnosed with one of the newer disorders: I just wonder where the tipping point lies after which we will acknowledge that if, say, 51% of children have SEN, it is the 'E' which needs to change, not the child.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:42 am 
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Amber wrote:
loobylou wrote:
It's interesting data but surely ultimately meaningless because there's no single definition.
At our primary there were children with very severe additional needs who had statements, but there were others with relatively mild dyslexia or who were just relatively delayed compared to their peers at the time, who were given SENCO assistance because it suited the school (she had time within her timetable, it helped those children develop skills more quickly and it allowed for the rest of the class to do different work) but who would never have been classified as having SENs in other schools.
In my sister in law's school their definition is a student falling three years behind what is expected. At our school it was more like three months!
I have also worked in two schools where the difference was striking. In one, even children with quite severe issues did not get support, while in another, children who in my own view were just a little slower to catch on or found it hard to sit still ended up with SENCo support. I don't think it is any coincidence that the demographics of these two schools varied hugely.

I am afraid that having worked in a school for children with complex cognitive and physical disabilities (often both - blind/deaf/severely autistic in one child, for example) whose parents have had to fight at every step of the way for even basic provision, the increasing tendency to categorise variations of normal as SEN which then attract extra funding and time does irritate me. In Finland there is a recognition that many children have specific needs and the responsibility for ensuring that those needs are met lies with the schools - that is what happens when you have a highly professionalised workforce who are able to exercise their knowledge with autonomy. I cannot help thinking that in England, the early school start, along with an often inappropriate curriculum for small people, is exacerbating a tendency to see children as having SEN when actually if school was more appropriately structured and took account of individual variations then many would be just fine. Controversial view perhaps, and no offence intended to those whose children have been diagnosed with one of the newer disorders: I just wonder where the tipping point lies after which we will acknowledge that if, say, 51% of children have SEN, it is the 'E' which needs to change, not the child.


Yes so true...it actually hasn’t taken much for my ds to be able to fit in and learn with the accommodations for Dyspraxia....they are simple things like use of a laptop, a bit of patience and acceptance that he does need a bit of support to learn to do practical tasks, accepting he isn’t going to want to play competitive group sports...they haven’t taken a great deal of expense to work out just a bit of thought and acceptance and yet he has needed an SEN label to get them...though I suspect he will do just fine in the field of study he is aiming for...


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