SEND support in schools

All schools have a special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) policy, which sets out their approach to identifying the special educational needs of their pupils. You can visit their individual websites to read their policy.

Once identified the support will be provided in addition to the existing support given to all pupils.

Mainstream schools can provide assistance from their own resources or from the resources available to schools in their locality, from example the Local Inclusion Forum Team (LIFT), health and social care services.

Find out how to apply and choose a school suitable for your child's needs.

SEN support

Usually, when a child or young person is receiving additional support, they have been identified as having a special educational need or disability. Alternatively they may be presenting characteristics that fall under one of the four broad areas of need set out in SEND Code of Practice 2015.

The four broad areas of need are:

  • communication and interaction
  • cognition and learning
  • social, emotional and mental health difficulties
  • sensory and/or physical needs.

We want to ensure that all schools, academies, early years and childcare settings are able to provide inclusive education, where they follow both the spirit and the letter of the law with inclusive values. Therefore in partnership with Kent education settings, we have created the SEND inclusion statement, which sets out how we will work together to provide inclusiveness and the SEND mainstream core standards.

The graduated approach

The graduated approach means that over time the school will develop their understanding of what works well for your child and how best to support them to make progress.

This approach is a 4 part process called the ‘assess, plan, do, review cycle’.


The SENCo and teachers will look in to the barriers and difficulties your child is experiencing in school. This may involve:

  • looking at work
  • observing your child in lessons or during break and play times
  • carrying out assessments
  • looking at reports from other professionals such as doctors or speech and language therapists
  • discussions with you.


Working with you, the SENCo plans:

  • the support they will put in place to help your child
  • agree the targets for your child’s learning or development
  • decide when the plan will be looked at again to see if it’s working.


The plan is put in place.


How has the support worked and what should we do now?

This cycle is repeated and provision changes over time as an understanding of what works well for your child develops.

If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s support in school, you should arrange to speak to the SENCo.

If despite speaking to the SENCo, you are still worried about the SEN provision in place for your child, contact us and one of our SEND Provision Evaluation Officers (PEO) will be able to help.

For more information about the graduated approach, read our mainstream core standards.

SEND funding

Schools and early year providers can apply for funding if they need financial support to help deliver the support they need to for your child. Find out more about what support is available to schools and early years providers.