What are the different types of support available for children in this school?

Types of support provided

What would this mean for your child?

Who can get this kind of support?

Class teacher input via good/outstanding classroom teaching.

  • The teacher will have the highest possible expectations for your child and all pupils in their class
  • All teaching is based on building on what your child already knows, can do and can understand
  • Putting in place different ways of teaching so that your child is fully involved in learning in class. This will involve using communication support, adapted resources, specialist equipment (as appropriate to children’s individual needs)
  • Putting in place specific strategies for example the MOVE programme (Movement Opportunities Via Education) (hyperlink to Teaching and Learning/MOVE), Sensory Integration, Intensive Interaction, and any other identified approaches, to enable your child to access a broad and balanced curriculum
All children in school have access to those strategies that best meet their needs


  • Willow Dene has just completed a new build programme. There are special adaptations made throughout the school which ensures that all children have access to all parts of the building and its facilities.


How do we ensure that the views of your child and other children in the school are used to plan for them within the school.
  • Children’s views are represented at annual reviews in some of the following ways:
    • DVD presentation made by the class teacher with footage of the child engaging in preferred activities and demonstrating new skills they have acquired throughout the year.
    • Where appropriate children are encouraged to attend reviews to share their views with parents and professionals.
  • Children are encouraged to use their communication systems throughout the school day to share their feelings and make choices as well as to express ideas and opinions
  • Staff have an awareness of their roles in advocacy of children who are non-verbal or pre-intentional communicators
  • Staff develop links with families that promote pupil voice

Small class groups.

  • Led by a teacher in collaboration with a team of teaching assistants.

Classes are supported by input from:

  • Your child will be in a small group with children who have similar needs
  • Class groups at Willow Dene range in size from 6-10 pupils
  • There is a high ratio of staff to children (approximately  2-1)
  • The class teacher will plan group and individual sessions for your child as appropriate and will set relevant targets to ensure that your child makes progress
  • The class teacher will work in partnership with other professionals to deliver programmes of work that are appropriate to group and individual needs
  • All children attending Willow Dene will have an (Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan or if your child has had support for a while a Statement of Special Educational Needs.
  • This will outline the support that your child will receive how it should be used and strategies that should be put in place. There will also be long and short term goals.
  • It will also identify additional support to be provided e.g. SaLT, OT, MT as appropriate.

All children in school receive this.

Specified support according to your child’s diagnosis and staff training:

  • Small class groups with high ratios of adults to children
  • Structured teaching environments where staff are supported to understand the children’s needs through regular training
  • A communication-rich environment where children have access to a variety of communication approaches (as appropriate) e.g. PECS, signing, communication boards, Intensive Interaction, objects of reference
  • A therapy team who work alongside staff to assess children and help devise and deliver the best programmes for individuals. This consists of:
    • Speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, music therapists, and physiotherapists
    • A nursing team who help to support children who need medical interventions in school.
  • MOVE programme - we are a MOVE centre of excellence and have a dedicated MOVE coordinator
  • Children are assessed for their sensory needs and are offered personalised sensory diets and sensory integration. We have a designated Sensory Integration coordinator to deliver this provision
  • There is regular training specific to the needs of children at Willow Dene for teachers, therapists and all support staff.
All children as appropriate

Dual placements and mainstream links

  • Sometimes it may be appropriate for children from Willow Dene to have dual placements with mainstream schools, often these take place if the child is looking to transition to a mainstream secondary school or unit
  • Sometimes it may be appropriate for children to have a dual placement or a link with a local primary school. These will be supported by Willow Dene staff and will be arranged for a period of half a term in the first instance
  • Children on roll at mainstream primary schools can access a short 5-week training-based placement at Willow Dene school. These placements can be set up if it is thought that this would be useful to skill staff to meet the needs of your child better in their mainstream setting. Staff from your child’s mainstream school setting would support your child at Willow Dene. Access to this option is via the LA SEN Department


Some children where appropriate to their needs