The Local Offer

The Children and Families Bill which becomes enacted in 2014 will require Local authorities to publish and keep under review information from services that expect to be available for children and Young people with SEND aged 0-25, this will be known as “The Local Offer”. The Purpose of the local offer is to enable parents and young people to see more clearly what services are available in their area and how to access them. The offer will include provision from birth to 25, across education, health and social care and should be developed in conjunction with children and young people, parents and carers, and local services including schools, colleges, health and social care agencies.

The Council for disabled children have produced “A briefing note on the Local Offer”

SE7 – Local offer guidance and Framework

What is the local offer?

Our local offer is information for parents/carers of children who have Special Educational Needs (SEN) or a disability, and all of those who support children with additional needs. The information outlines the support and provision they can expect to receive whilst attending this school.

How are Special Educational Needs defined?

Special Needs has a legal definition referring to children who have learning difficulties or disabilities which make it harder for them to learn than most children of the same age and which calls for Special Educational Provision to be made for them.

Special Education Provision means:
For children 2 or over, education provision which is additional to, or otherwise different from, the educational provision made generally for children of their age in an education provision.
For children under two, educational provision of any kind.

Children have a learning difficulty if they:
Have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age
For others of the same have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities generally provided age in mainstream education.

A child or young person does not have a learning difficulty or disability solely because the language in which he or she will be taught is different from a language which is or has been spoken at home.

How will the playgroup know if my child needs extra help?

How do you identify children/ young people with special educational needs? How will I be able to raise any concerns I may have? If the setting / school / college is specialist which types of special educational need do you cater for?

Little Adventurers – Astley Village has a key worker system embedded throughout the setting. We view the role of the key person as an important link in our setting. The key person working enables parents/carers to gain a trust in their key person, therefore enabling a trusting, caring attachment with the child. The key worker system also enables the key person to monitor and track your child’s development in line with EYFS requirements.

On entry to the nursery, information will be gathered regarding the child/family in terms of background in the All About Me section within the enrolment form. This together with discussions during induction sessions will form part of the initial starting point for each child. Once the child starts the setting, observations, evidence and an “on entry assessment” will be made. This is a broad judgement of each individual child’s development and will be used as a starting point.

Observations and assessments are central to planning of activities or for the environment. Staff carry out planning which is based around the child’s interests and development needs and their characteristics of effective learning are also incorporated in this. All observations and evidence is gathered onto the EYLog system. This software enables us to monitor children’s progress in all areas of development and observe and assess them to identify their next steps. It also enables us to have a clear overview of all children’s progress, quickly identifying any children who may not be making progress and in what areas.

Should an area of concern be highlighted an initial concern form will be completed by the key person and given to the SENCO. It also allows to identify Characteristics of Effective Learning and use the Every Child a Talker (ECAT) tool.

Parents/Carers are also able to access their child’s learning journey through a mobile app which they are given an individual password for. This enables them to see their child’s progress, what they have been doing in Nursery and to contribute with their own observations and comments. key persons share information on a daily basis and through parents evenings. Any parent/carer who may have concerns about their child will be encouraged to voice these concerns to their child’s key person, the manager or the settings SENCO.

The EYFS framework includes two specific points for providing written assessments for parents and other professionals, when the child is aged two and at the end of reception year.

Progress check aged two. Little Adventurers – Astley Village is committed to identifying needs and early interventions, in line with the EYFS we undertake a two year progress check on each child. A written assessment identifying the child’s strengths and any areas where the child’s progress may be below what was expected will be provided to parents/carers. If there are any significant emerging concerns practitioners develop a targeted plan to support the child and involve outside agencies such as Health Visitors and Speech and Language professionals. Once concerns have been raised and discussed with parents/carers and other professionals the child’s key person together with the SENCO and parents/carers will create an Individual Education Plan (IEP) The IEP will be updated to ensure progress is being made.

A profile will be created/completed for children leaving to start school to ensure children with SEN have plans for future learning and any additional needs for support are identified.

Who is the best person to talk to about my child’s difficulties with learning / SEN?

Who will oversee and plan the education programme and who will be working with my child/young person and how often? What will be their roles? Who will explain this to me? How are the setting / school / college governors or trustees involved and what are their responsibilities? How does the setting / school / college know how effective its arrangements its provision for children and young people with special educational needs are?

At Little Adventurers – Astley Village, your initial point of contact is your child’s key person. The SENCO, Manager and your child’s key person are responsible for:

  • Overseeing the day to day operation of the settings SEND policy
    Liaising with and advising other practitioners/staff.
    Co-ordinating provision for children with special educational needs and disabilities.
  • Overseeing the records on all students with special needs and disabilities
    Liaising with parents/carers of children with SEND.
  • Contributing to the in-service of training of staff.
  • Liaising with external agencies including the LA, Portage, Special schools, Speech and Language and any other external agencies involved.

Staff have excellent relationships with parents/carers and talk daily about their child and activities taken place throughout the day. We also provide daily diaries to ensure good communication with parents/carers.

Little Adventurers promotes an open door policy, we welcome parents/carers either by appointment or more informally on a day to day basis to discuss their children.

How will I know how the school will support my child?

In addition to the normal reporting arrangements what opportunities will there be for me to discuss his or her progress with the staff? How does the setting / school / college know how well my child / young person is doing? How will I know what progress my child / young person should be making? What opportunities will there be for regular contact about things that have happened early years setting / school / college e.g. a home schoolbook? How will you explain to me how his or her learning is planned and how I can help support this outside of the setting / school / college? How and when will I be involved in planning my child’s/ young person’s education? Do you offer any parent training or learning events?

At Little Adventurers we follow the EYFS. The main principles of which are:

  • Unique Child
  • Positive Relationships
  • Enabling Environments
  • Learning and Development

In addition to this we use the Characteristics Of Effective Learning in planning to ensure that children are taught in line with their style of learning.

  • Playing and Exploring
  • Active Learning
  • Creating and Thinking Critically

Staff plan in all seven areas of learning. These are:

  • Personal Social and Emotional Development
  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Maths
  • Literacy
  • Understanding of the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

Staff planning is determined by the stage of development of each child, their currant interests and their style of learning.

Each child has a Learning Journey which include observations taken by staff, tracker summaries, possible next steps, IEPs if appropriate, children’s pictures and children’s work.

The learning journeys are made available to parents/carers at all times.
Questionnaires are sent out to parents/carers to canvass their opinions to ensure improvement in our nursery..

How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

What are the setting’s / school’s / college’s approaches to differentiation? How will that help my child/ young person?

At Little Adventurers – Astley Village we plan for each child’s interests and needs. We will differentiate your child’s planning to cater for their specific needs, targets, style of learning. As your child is allocated a key person, that person will come to know your child very well and will start to include your child’s style of learning and their interests into the planning and the activities that are planned.

If your child has already been identified as having additional needs then staff Little Adventurers will always ensure that all children have equal access to early learning opportunities to aid their progression.

How will I know how my child is doing?

In addition to the normal reporting arrangements what opportunities will there be for me to discuss his or her progress with the staff? How does the setting / school / college know how well my child / young person is doing? How will I know what progress my child / young person should be making? What opportunities will there be for regular contact about things that have happened early years setting / school / college e.g. a home schoolbook? How will you explain to me how his or her learning is planned and how I can help support this outside of the setting / school / college? How and when will I be involved in planning my child’s/ young person’s education? Do you offer any parent training or learning events?

At Little Adventurers, there are plenty of opportunities for you to discuss your child’s progress. Progress is monitored through the observation, planning and evaluating processes used in the setting. We share the results of these through the use of our Learning Journeys, displayed planning and individual planning.

Parents/carers are encouraged to look at their child’s Learning Journeys on a regular basis. In addition parents/carers also have the following systems of communication;

  • Parent/carers meetings
  • Questionnaires
  • Newsletters
  • Communication diaries
  • Planning boards

In addition to these systems we regularly update parents/carers at handover time on the day to day matters of how their child has been in playgroup.

How will the school help me to support my child’s learning?

In addition to the normal reporting arrangements what opportunities will there be for me to discuss his or her progress with the staff? How does the setting / school / college know how well my child / young person is doing? How will I know what progress my child / young person should be making? What opportunities will there be for regular contact about things that have happened early years setting / school / college e.g. a home schoolbook? How will you explain to me how his or her learning is planned and how I can help support this outside of the setting / school / college? How and when will I be involved in planning my child’s/ young person’s education? Do you offer any parent training or learning events?

There are numerous opportunities for parents/carers to discuss their child’s progress with the setting. We are always available to talk to parents/carers and to give advice on how they can continue their child’s learning at home.
The weekly planning is always on display and staff are always eager to share this with parents/carers via drop off/ pick up times, over email, EYLOG and social media.

Parents/carers are given information on the EYFS to gain a better understanding of the learning goals set out in this framework. This way parents/carers can contribute to their child’s tracker with information from home.

Staff are always available to explain the trackers to parents/carers.

What support will be available for my child’s overall well-being?

What is the pastoral, medical and social support available in the setting / school / college for children with SEND? How does the setting / school / college manage the administration of medicines and providing personal care? What support is there for behaviour, avoiding exclusions and increasing attendance? How will my child / young person being able to contribute his or her views? How will the setting / school / college support my child / young person to do this?

Upon entry to the setting if your child has already been diagnosed or is under any referral we will gather information from yourselves and complete a Personal Education Plan that includes information on any professionals involved. We will use this information to ensure your child is supported whilst attending this setting.

We follow golden rules/ British values in Little Adventurers and the children are taught to respect each other in everyday life. An emphasis on self-help and care is instilled through staff guidance and role modelling.

Our medication policy is in line with the EYFS. If your child requires medication whilst in the setting, we are only able to administer should the medication be prescribed by a doctor and have the child’s name on. Prior to administering any medication, a form must be completed by the parent/carer with information regarding time, dose, name of medication,
time last given and signature. The member of staff administering the medication will then log the dose and time given and sign the medicine form. On collection of the child the parent/carer will be advised of the time and dose given and asked to sign and date the form.

Should a child require emergency medicine such as paracetamol for a temperature, parents/carers will be contacted for permission to administer this and a medication form will be completed for parents/carers to sign on collection of their child.

Little Adventurers have a behaviour policy and use the Three Step Approach to manage behaviour. Should a child display inappropriate behaviour our policy will be followed. All attempts to ensure your child is supported will be made to avoid exclusion.

What happens if my child has a high level of need?

Should your child have a high level of need, Little Adventurers would in the first instance, prior to admission, arrange a meeting with the child, parents/carers and any professionals involved to ascertain the level of need.

We ensure that all views are taken into account including the view of the child where appropriate.

The SENCO at Little Adventurers is responsible for contacting the various agencies involved with the child so that everyone has an opportunity to understand the needs of the child. At this meeting strategies for managing the high level of need will be agreed and recorded for implementation.
The strategies agreed are then written down and agreed with parents/carers and other external agencies and any training for staff will be agreed and delivered by the SENCO. All staff are made aware of any additional needs where necessary.

What specialist services and expertise are available at this school?

Are there specialist staff working at the setting / school / college and what are their qualifications? What other services does the setting / school / college access including health, therapy and social care services.

Little Adventurers has a SENCO who is responsible for all children with SEND.

We work closely with numerous external agencies to ensure all SEND children are supported which include, Speech and Language, Occupational Therapist, Health Visitors and Parents/Carers.

We regularly take advice and invite professionals into the setting to observe and give advice on SEND children. We also hold inclusion meetings with the local authority to discuss needs and progress. Parents/carers will be informed of this prior to the visit.

Are the staff who support children with SEND in this school, provided with appropriate training?

This should include recent and future planned training and disability awareness.

Little Adventurers all have First Aid – Paediatric and forest school training opportunities

The SENCO attends appropriate training alongside the deputy.

How will my child be included in activities outside of the classroom, including school trips?

Will he or she be able to access all of the activities of the setting / school / college and how will you assist him or her to do so? How do you involve parent carers in planning activities and trips?

We run a forest school here at Little Adventurers and we regularly take children on walks to the local park and have full am / pm sessions in the woods. These outings are with permission from parents/carers.
We will do our upmost to ensure that your child is able to access all activities whenever possible. Your child will be supported by their key worker and all staff. Activities such as trips out will be risk assessed for your child including a general risk assessment. Parents/carers views will be taken into consideration when panning trips and decisions will be made to make certain all children will be able to attend and join in activities to the best of their ability.

Parents/carers are invited to put forward ideas for an activity or trips out and are very welcome to come along with their child or help in general.

Daily sweeps on the outside spaces at both our nursery bases are completed daily.

Where appropriate a one to one ratio is applied.

How accessible is the school environment?

Is the building fully wheelchair accessible? Have there been improvements in the auditory and visual environment? Are there disabled changing and toilet facilities? How does the setting / school / college communicate with parent carers whose first language is not English? How will equipment and facilities to support children and young people with special educational needs be secured?

Our setting is on one level with easy access to all areas. The outside area is accessed through the main room door which does have a small step – or there is a second door with a flat entrance for wheelchair users.
We have a disabled toilet, changing facilities, potties and toilets to cater for all stages of development in terms of toilet training.

All rooms are open plan and spacious.

Our forest school bases is easily accessible via paths through the local woodlands – grass and gravel can be easily walked upon or accessed using a wheelchair/crutches and other mobility aids.

Children or parents/carers whose first language is not English will be welcomed into the playgroup. Information will be provided in their first language and we will also seek support from the Early Years EAL who can provide the appropriate translators and support needed.

How will this school prepare and support my child when they are starting, leaving this school or moving to another year?

What preparation will there be for both the setting / school / college and my child / young person before he or she joins the setting / school / college. How will he or she be prepared to move onto the next stage? What information will be provided to his or her new setting / school / college? How will you support a new setting / school / college to prepare for my child / young person?

Before your child starts the setting both you and your child will be invited to an informal meeting to discuss the needs of your child and yourself. We will then arrange a series of inductions for your child to suit you. You will be asked to stay for the initial induction where both parties will be able to pass on vital information and will give you and your child chance to become familiar with your key person, the rest of the staff and the activities planned.

The key person will make notes during the induction and you will be asked to add any information regarding your child you feel we need to know.
If a child attends another setting every effort will be made to contact them giving the opportunity to liaise with us and pass on information.

When a child is leaving due to going to school or another setting, contact will be made and a meeting arranged. Teachers from schools are invited to visit our setting when the child’s learning journey can be discussed and handed over to ensure a smooth transition.

During the months of June and July activities around the nursery revolve around transition to school for those of pre-school age. The environment will be enhanced with resources such as school uniforms, lunch boxes, backpacks and key workers will talk to the children about starting school involving role play to prepare them for their next steps.

What if my child needs transport to and from school?

We do not provide transport to and from nursery.

How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to the children’s special educational needs?

How is the settings / schools / colleges special educational needs budget allocated?

Any child with SEND will be evaluated on a one to one basis.
Some children at Little Adventurers have been allocated a one to one person to enable them to access all resources within the setting.

Outside agencies are involved to give advice on strategies and resources for each individual child with SEND.

Some strategies used are;

  • Visual timetables
  • Flashcards
  • Time out to a quiet area where child can focus and engage in activities of their choice.
  • Speech and language resources
  • Occupational therapy, chairs, standing frames.
  • Visual Impairment Audit – to enable the environment e.g. Large print.
  • Working closely with outside agencies/professionals ensures that training and advice is given to staff to support the activities implemented.

How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive?

Describe the decision making process. Who will make the decision and on what basis? Who else will be involved? How will I be involved? How will I be involved? How does the setting / school / college judge whether the support has had an impact?

The amount of support your child will receive will depend on your child’s needs.

We use the STAR and DEYO tracker system to identify any additional needs your child may have.

Should a child be deemed not to have met the relevant age-appropriate milestones or should a parent express any concerns, then a meeting will take place in the setting between your child’s key person, the SENCO, the manager and parents/carers.

Once this meeting has taken place any referral to outside agencies that are required will be made.

Once outside agencies are involved your child can be observed in the setting and at home and a strategy put in place to help your child make the best possible progress.
We will monitor and review progress and share with parent/carers and parents/carers will be encouraged to measure progress at home.

If it is deemed that extra support is required, we will apply for one-to-one funding from Lancashire local authority to support your child.

Who can I contact for further information?

Who would be my first point of contact if I want to discuss something about my child / young person? Who else has a role in my child’s / young person’s education? Who can I talk to if I am worried? Who should I contact if I am considering whether my child / young person should join the setting / school / college? Who is the SEN Coordinator and how can I contact them? What other support services are there who might help me and provide me with information and advice? Where can I find the local authority’s Local offer?

We believe that partnership with parents is key to your child’s progress and success.

We work closely with parents/carers in all areas, encouraging inclusion in planning activities through to learning journeys, trackers and evaluating your child’s progress.

Your first point of contact should you have any concerns for your child would be your child’s key worker.

We also have a SENCO who can speak to you at any time.
All information will be treated with sensitivity and confidentiality. The SENCO is identified on the staff notice board. Our SENCO is responsible for implementing strategies and Individual Education Plans.

The Manager is always available to discuss any concerns you may have.

We hold parent’s evenings and informal and formal discussions take place frequently.

Parents/carers will be involved in any decisions made about their child as we believe they know their child best.