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Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

Dartford Science and Technology College admits students with special educational needs and disabilities to the school in line with the school’s admission procedure. Admissions Information  and Equality Policy: DSTC Equality Policy

Support for applying can be gained through various methods including; We are BEAMS or IPSEA . If in doubt please contact DSTC: .

The school provides an innovative and challenging learning environment that is totally dedicated to seeking and developing the potential of every young person.  Identified SEND students have personalised access to the SEND Team in their dedicated rooms within The Hub.

DSTC takes a whole school inclusive approach to students with special educational needs, recognising that the vision of the school (Everyone Excels in all Endeavours) is the same for all students , whatever their abilities.

The school recognises that a student has SEND if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them and, as defined in the 2014 Code of Practice, the school accepts that a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if:

"… they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for ‘special educational provision’

to be made for them and they have significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age"

The school makes provision in accordance with:

  • Children and Families Act 2014
  • SEN Code of Practice 2014
  • SI 2014 1530 Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014
  • Part 3 Duties on Schools – Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators
  • Schedule 1 regulation 51– Information to be included in the SEN information report
  • Schedule 2 regulation 53 – Information to be published by a local authority in its local offer
  • Equality Act 2010
  • Schools Admissions Code, DfE 1 Feb 2012
  • SI 2012 1124 The School Information (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012
  • SI 2013 758 The School Information (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013
  • Mainstream Core Standards (opens in a new window)
  • DSTC Accessibility Plan can be found: Accessibility Plan / Policy DSTC. This identifies facilities that support some of our SEND students.



What are Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)?

At Dartford Science and Technology College, as in other schools there are students for whom the usual timetable of lessons and activities may not be entirely appropriate or may need adapting.

This may be for many different reasons, e.g. emotional, medical or physical difficulties such as hearing or visual impairment or temporary lack of mobility resulting in a student being on crutches or confined to a wheelchair.

Other problems might occur from a child having missed a lot of school through illness, or from the need to learn more slowly than most. It maybe that short term intervention is required following bereavement or another personal crisis. Students who experience difficulties are placed on the appropriate programme to meet their individual needs as soon as possible.

New admissions from other schools may need short term support to catch up on certain areas of the curriculum and new arrivals from other countries may find themselves needing extra language support.

There are also exceptionally gifted students who will also need particular consideration in order to develop and extension work in many different subjects can be provided.

SEN Provided for at DSTC

Special Educational Needs are identified in terms of learning, communication, interaction, and emotional health, physical and sensory needs. At DSTC we believe that young people have a right to be involved in making decisions and exercising choices. They have a right to receive and impart information, to express an opinion, and to have that opinion taken into account in any matters affecting them. Consequently, the school is committed to working in partnership with the student , parents, carers and outside agencies to identify needs, provide support for them and monitor the progress of all students.

Identification and Early Intervention

  • The Director of SEND and Vice Principal / DSL liaise closely with Primary Feeder schools to discuss the current level of support upon transition.

  • Mid-year transfers uses information from the student's previous school if available

We will work closely with the young person and their parents to identify what support is needed, what the specific barriers to learning are and to understand why a studentsmay not be making progress. We will then seek to put in place appropriate interventions. All interventions are monitored and evaluated for the effectiveness of their impact, using the ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review’ model.

Special Educational Needs and provision can be considered as falling under four broad areas:

1. Communication and interaction

2. Cognition and learning

3. Social, mental and emotional health

4. Sensory and/or physical

All staff provide high quality first teaching which allows students to learn effectively. A range of teaching and learning strategies may be required to ensure that all students can access the curriculum.

  • Members of staff understand that they are all teachers of students with special educational needs and may need to differentiate work accordingly.

  • All students , regardless of ability, have full access to a wide range of suitably challenging educational opportunities which are appropriate to their needs.

  • Every student at the school is provided with opportunities to make progress in every aspect of their development, enabling them to be the best they can be.

  • Key worker scheme within the SEND Department allows a more personalised approach to working with a SEND student.

  • Meetings to discuss progress with the Key Worker and/or Year Team/Director of SEND, or other appropriate member(s) of staff following the publication of the reports (3 times per year) or following a parent request.

  • Access arrangements for public examinations are applied for.

  • Liaison with the Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy service for guidance on students needing specialist equipment.

  • Liaison with the Specialist Teaching and Learning Service at KCC. (STLS)

Specialist Support

In order to fulfil our commitment to fully support every child we have access to a range of specialists via the Local Inclusion Forum Team (LIFT). The Team looks at the difficulties facing students and discusses ways of helping them. As a result we access support from the Educational Psychologist and the Specialist Teachers Service.

We may also make referrals to:

  • Queen Mary’s Hospital - Visual Stress

  • CYPMHS (Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service)

  • Young Carers

  • IMAGO - short breaks and respite service

  • Bereavement Counselling through Slideaway

  • High Needs Funding applications where deemed appropriate and evidence available concerning need

Intimate Care Procedure

At DSTC we recognise that children have different rates of development and differing needs during their time at school. Some children remain dependent on long-term support for personal care.

All children have the right to be treated with courtesy, dignity and respect and to be able to access all aspects of school life and DSTC will work:

  • To ensure that all students with continence difficulties are not discriminated against in line with the Equalities Act 2010

  • To provide help and support to students in becoming fully independent in personal hygiene

  • To treat continence issues sensitively so as to maintain the self-esteem of the child

  • Work with parents in delivering a suitable care plan where necessary

  • To ensure that staff dealing with continence issues work within guidelines that protect themselves and the students involved

The arrangements for consulting parents of students with Special Educational Needs

From making an application for a place and throughout their child’s time at the school, parents are given regular opportunities to discuss their child’s needs, progress and concerns. These opportunities can occur, for example, through:

  • Meetings to agree transition arrangements and support. The Director of SEND, SEND Lead, meetings with SENCOs from feeder primary schools during the Summer Term. Bespoke transition plans are put in place where necessary

  • Meetings to discuss progress with the Year Team and/or Vice Principal, or other appropriate member of staff following the publication of the reports (3 times per year) or following a parent request

  • Statutory EHCP meetings and reviews

  • The school records the outcomes of these meetings so that everyone is clear about what has been said and agreed

  • Through parent surveys

  • High Needs Funding applications where deemed appropriate and evidence available concerning need

Evaluation and Effectiveness of Interventions

Student progress is tracked following every Academic Overview. Here at DSTC we follow the ‘Assess, Plan, Do, Review’ model and ensure that parents and students are involved at each step. A baseline will be recorded which can be used to compare the impact of the provision.

If a student has an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) reviews will take place following interventions and will also be formally reviewed annually.

Supporting students moving between phases of education and in preparation for adulthood

  • For students transferring to DSTC from primary school, meetings are arranged with parents, SENCOs and other relevant specialists to agree transition arrangements and support. Bespoke transition arrangements are agreed where necessary.

  • Year 6 students are invited to attend ‘taster sessions’ during the summer term as appropriate to their needs. SEN students are encouraged to attend and parents have the opportunity to meet with the Director of SEND and the SEND Lead should they wish to.

  • All students attend a ‘Transition Day’. Learning Support Assistants and teaching staff are made aware of students with SEND so that they can be supported.

  • In Year 10 students start to receive careers advice from our designated CxK advisor. The Director of SEND / SEND Lead / Key Worker, meets with the advisor to highlight the needs of SEN students if needed.

  • Throughout Years 10 and 11 the CXK advisor continues to liaise with the Director of SEND / SEND Lead, so that students ’ needs are met.

  • DSTC will liaise with Post 16 providers with regards to ensuring students are able to access the correct level of support.

How students with SEND are enabled to engage in activities available with students in the school who do not have SEND:

At DSTC we work hard to ensure that no student is disadvantaged in terms of facilities and equipment dependent upon need. To ensure that we achieve this goal we work with outside professionals such as specialist teachers, occupational therapy and specialist nursing teams.

All student are encouraged to attend a range of after school subject- based clubs as well as Homework Club which is led by Learning Support Assistants / Independent Support Assistants (full details available on request).

SEND student are encouraged to attend school trips. Parents are consulted where there may be mobility or medical issues to ensure that all needs are met. A Health Care Plan (HCP) will be put in place where a student has medical needs.

The design of the school building is fully inclusive for all staff and student whether they are able bodied, physically disabled or have visual or hearing impairments.

Support for Improving Emotional and Social Development

The pastoral Year Team at DSTC monitors and supports the emotional and social development of student in their care as well as their educational achievement.

If bullying is reported the Pastoral Leader / Raising Standards Leader will meet with all student concerned and liaise with their parents to resolve the issue. For other emotional and social development difficulties the following interventions may be put in place:

  • Referral to a student ‘Anti Bullying’ Ambassador

  • Referral to an external mentor or student Social Worker (when appropriate)

  • Referral to our Attendance Officer

  • Referral to School Counsellor

  • Referral to CYPMHS

  • Referral to specialist support via LIFT (STLS)

  • Opportunity to attend Social Skills Group led by SEN Team

  • Opportunity to attend Play Therapy sessions run by SEN Lead

  • Opportunity to attend a Lego group to develop speech and language / social skills led by SEN Team