SENCO Mr Rice –

Children and young people with Cognition and Learning difficulties, Social, Emotional & Mental Health difficulties, Communication & Interaction Difficulties or a Sensory or Physical Need can struggle in a school environment where the support they receive may not be sufficient to meet their specific need. This can result in low self-esteem, low self-confidence and/or inappropriate behaviours.

Each child, whatever their need, may require a different style of teaching and support. The Pinetree School provides personalised timetables that are tailored to the specific needs of our young people.  Each pupil is encouraged to recognise their needs, strengths and abilities in different areas of the curriculum.

Our approach to teaching learners with SEND

  • Provide differentiated lessons to improve the educational opportunities of all pupils, regardless of ability
  • Improve the literacy and numeracy skills of pupils via differentiated lesson plans and literacy and numeracy intervention
  • Increase the confidence of students with SEND, encouraging them to be involved in their own provision
  • Involve parents at every opportunity to ensure they are aware of all aspects of the special needs provision made for their child

Statement of Special Educational Needs (SEND) or Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP)

If a child currently has a statement of SEND or an Education Health and Care Plan this will continue and be reviewed annually. A child may receive an Education, Health and Care plan following assessments by professionals.


Good quality assessment

At the Pinetree School pupils spend their first three weeks in assessment. This time is used to assess the needs of each individual child to ensure that each pupil has an Individualised Learning Plan.

Below is a table of some of the assessments used to ensure that needs are met effectively.

Assessment Title Description
Cognition and Learning Assessments

The Wide Ranging Attainment Test.

Used to assess word and sentence reading ability and spelling as well as basic computational maths skills.

Gives a standardised score to enable comparison against the pupils peer group.

Composite reading score is a weighted average of the Word and Sentence Reading scores.

Sentence comprehension is linked closely to score in the BPVS3 assessment of receptive vocabulary.

Basic Skills

Assessment of mathematical and reading skills.


Attainment is in the range from Entry 1 through to Level 2 (GCSE C-A).

Functional Skills

Computer based self-levelling assessment of mathematical and reading skills.


Attainment is in the range from Entry 1 through to Level 2 (GCSE C-A).

Digit Span

Assessment of working memory.

Pupils are read a sequence of digits, starting with 2 digits and increasing to 9 digits. These must be repeated forwards and backwards.

Indicates a pupil’s ability to hold information / instructions long enough to process them.

Access Reading Test

A wide ranging assessment of literal comprehension, inference, analysis and vocabulary.

Gives a standardised score to enable comparison against the pupils peer group and a reading age.


Detailed Assessment of Speed of Handwriting

Used to measure handwriting speed across a range of tasks.

Gives a standardised score to enable comparison against the pupils peer group.

Low scores may indicate pupils that will need additional time in tests / exams or who may struggle to increase their rate of writing when needed.

Learning Styles – VARK

Online assessment of preferred learning style – Visual / Auditory /Read-Write / Kinaesthetic.

This will indicate which style of teaching and learning pupils will prefer and engage with best.

Pupils with more than one preferred style are known as Multimodal (60% of the population) and can use two or more styles to learn; adapting their learning style to the teaching style being used.

Learning Styles – BGFL

Birmingham Grid for Learning Multiple Intelligences Questionnaire.

Multiple intelligences are the things that pupils are naturally good at – though they may not recognise this – e.g. a pupil who scores high on Interpersonal will have a natural ability with communications and will interact well with others.

Language and Communication Assessments
Speech Link

The Secondary Language Link Screening Tool is a standardised assessment designed to identify pupils at risk of underperformance or social exclusion because of difficulty understanding spoken language.

The screening tool can be delivered as a universal screen for large groups of pupils or on an individual basis and is suitable for


The British Picture Vocabulary Scale 3

The British Picture Vocabulary Scale is used in assessing a child’s receptive (hearing) vocabulary, and can help identify any delay in vocabulary development. As no reading is required, BPVS3 can be used to assess language development in non-readers and especially pupils with expressive language impairments or EAL.

BPVS gives a standardised score and a “vocabulary age” to enable comparison against the pupils peer group.

Social, Emotional And Mental Health Assessments

The OCEAN Personality Questionnaire profiles key areas of a pupils personality including Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism.

This can give an insight into how the pupil may respond under different circumstances and what personality traits can be expected.

ECM Questionnaire

Every Child Matters

This questionnaire assesses areas of the pupil’s self esteem as defined by the Every Child Matters agenda. Low scores can indicate pupils who may have low self esteem or poor self image.

Pupils are measured on arrival and at exit.

Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire

This assessment is used to identify possible Emotional, Behavioural or Hyperactivity/Concentration Disorders in pupils on arrival. It is completed independently by the Pupil, their parents and the assessment staff to gain a clear profile of the pupil’s needs.

Onward referral to GP/CAMHS may be indicated by the outcome of the assessment.

This form is also used by CAMHS in initial diagnostic investigations.

LAWSEQ Questionnaire The Lawson’s Self Esteem Questionnaire is used to  identify possible issues with self esteem. An average score would be 18±4 with significant high or low scores indicating possible issues.
Physical / Sensory Assessments
Visual Stress Screener (Online)

An online screener that can be used to identify possible issues with Visual Stress (Mears Irlen Syndrome).

If indicated, a full assessment will be carried out.

Visual Stress Test

Assessment of issues with reading that indicate the likelihood of a pupil having Mears Irlen Syndrome.

Pupils may indicate as needing a coloured overlay/reading ruler to make reading easier. This is the assessment that would be carried out by Sensory Support and would need the pupil to have had their eyes tested within the past 12 months. Pupils who are prescribed glasses will need to have worn these during the assessment.

Dyspraxia Screener (Online)

Online screener for Dyspraxia.

Onward referral to GP/Paediatrician may be indicated by the outcome of the assessment.

Fine / Gross Motor Control Assessment. An observational assessment of a pupils ability to use pencils, scissors, etc. appropriately within a classroom setting.

Intervention Programme

Once a pupil’s needs have been assessed their Individualised Learning Programme informs the pupil, parents and staff how best to meet their needs.

Depending on the need(s) identified an intervention programme will be put in place, this can include 1:1 or small group literacy or numeracy intervention, anger management (with School Counsellor),  Social, Communication intervention, etc.


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