Our Local Offer provides parents and carers of children with special educational needs and/or disabilities with information detailing the support accessible at Seymour House.
Seymour House is committed to inclusive practice and has a wealth of experience in supporting children and families with special educational needs and disabilities. Our priority is always the welfare, health, safety, and education of young children. We value every child as an individual and we assess our ability to support your child and meet their needs on an individual basis.
1. Accessibility Arrangements
We strive to provide a happy, safe, and secure environment for all children to flourish. Our teams provide a welcoming environment with appropriate learning opportunities for all children in our care.
The nursery is organised at floor level across 6 homebase rooms, all with direct free-flow access to one of our two outdoor classrooms. Each homebase is organised relevant to the children’s age and stage of development with light, colour and space carefully considered. Bathroom areas include child sized toilets with handwashing facilities, alongside an adult disabled bathroom. Resources are always accessible at child level, and Makaton sign language and visual aids are used as part of everyday practice.
We ensure a rigorous Health and Safety procedure, and detailed Risk Assessments are completed where appropriate to ensure the children’s safety.
2. How does your service cater for children and families with SEND
The nursery has a named Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) who works closely with the Key Person and in partnership with parents to ensure that your child’s needs are met. The settings SENCo is a qualified Early Years Teacher/Educator who has undergone specialist training signposted by the local authority SEND Team on the Code of Practice.
Parents are encouraged to share any special educational needs or disabilities with the nursery from the outset. We aim to gain as much information as possible from parents and other professionals involved with the child before their start date to ascertain the support needed.
The SENCo will liaise with a range of external professionals via the local authority SEND team and Health, including Health Visitors, Speech and Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists, tapping into their expertise to support your child at nursery. We welcome the sharing of reports to plan appropriately to meet needs, with parental permission always sought before seeking any external support. The setting has established links with the Local Authority Inclusion Development Officer, good partnership working means we can seek advice on strategies, interventions, and support as appropriate. In addition, the nursery has established links within the community such as the local Family Services, schools to offer smooth transitions and charities and promotes a multi-agency approach to meeting needs. The SENCo will be pleased to signpost you to specialist information and other services in the area as appropriate.
3. How will staff support my child’s needs?
Before your child’s first day, their Key Person will spend time with you and your child to help them settle into nursery. During settling in visits, they will seek key information to create an overall picture of your child. This information begins to shape your child’s development profile, giving a starting point for the Key Person and the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) to plan tailored educational programmes for your child.
We recognise that every child is unique and that children learn at different rates and in different ways. The Key Person completes regular observations and developmental check-ins for each child, making informed judgments on progress. If a child’s progress gives cause for concern, the Key Person will present learning opportunities using alternative approaches before additional support is considered.
The Key Person will share observations and seek guidance from the settings SENCo. Observations are sensitively shared with parents and actions for moving forward agreed. Where needs have been identified, your child will be assessed using the Individual Assessment of Early Learning and Development (IAELD). If it is agreed that additional support is needed, we use a graduated approach to plan appropriate support, including an Individual Education Plan (IEP) to outline targets and how your child is being supported. IEP’s are monitored, reviewed, and evaluated with you regularly. In addition, your child will have a unique e-Learning Journey, Starting Point Report, regular Development Check-In’s and a 2 Year Check to keep you fully informed of their progress.
Transitions can be a particularly sensitive time. We see transitions as a process which need to be well planned for, involving both the child and parents. We aim to make transitions as happy and as smooth as possible for each child. Transition to a new home base room is fully discussed and planned with parents and include an updated All About Me to support the handover of key information to your child’s new room. Children have flexible opportunities to visit their new home base with their Key Person and all development records are shared and reviewed.
In the summer term before transition to school we invite in the Reception Teacher/ School SENCo to meet your child and talk through their IEP with the nursery SENCo.
4. Staff training/ experience
The settings SENCo identifies and actions any training needs within the nursery to support early identification and intervention. The SENCo often works with the groups Head of Early Years Practice Team, who are all SENCo trained and have further educational expertise.
All core Team Members at Highfield Lane are either trained in Early Years Education and Teaching or are undergoing L3 qualification. A high proportion of Team Members are also qualified in paediatric first aid. All Team Members access further ongoing training through planned training pathways. Furthermore, Team Members have regular training opportunities on supporting children with additional needs and the Early Years Foundation Stage through Best Practice Workshops, access to Makaton training and resources, Reflective Practice Themed Weeks, as well as access to the settings Child Development Library, and other external training opportunities.