Working With Families
Working with families
'A nurturing and positive environment for young children to learn in.' Parent response to Ofsted questionnaire, Ofsted Inspection report February 2019.
We have high regard for the successful partnership between home and school. Parents are welcomed into school and are actively encouraged to contact the staff if they have any concerns. We know that all parents and carers want the best for their children and hope they will be happy and achieve their potential at school. We believe that success in the education of our children depends, at least in some part, on how parents, carers and school work together and this is particularly so when a child has SEND. You know your child best and we want to take into account your views and experience to increase the effectiveness of any provision put in place for the child.
The process of identifying that a child might need additional support or assessment will involve a conversation between school and parents/carers at the earliest opportunity. This makes sure that parents/carers are always consulted and kept informed about the help their child is given, and the results of that help.
Parents/carers will also be invited into school to talk about how their child is doing - what is working and what we might need to do differently. Coming to parental consultations gives an opportunity to talk about the support that is in place for the child and to ask questions, or give us information. We hold twice yearly reviews for children with SEND and those receiving additional support through interventions. These feed into parental consultations.
In addition to this the school has an open door policy and is happy to arrange a suitable time to discuss a child at other times should the need arise.
At West End these are some of the communications systems we use:-
• Offer home visits in the Early Years
Tapestry - online communication for children in Early Years
• Hold a meet the teacher session at the start of each year
• Hold termly Parental Consultations where we discuss children's progress
• Sharing of child’s targets
• Sharing learning afternoons
• Seek parents/carers' views
• Communicate via reading records
• Provide an annual report
• Make provision to speak about concerns as they arise
• Hold regular reviews for children with Educational Health Care Plans
• Provide parent workshops
• Provide information via the website, newsletters, texting service
• Arrange and host Multi-agency meetings where appropriate
• Hold parent and child activities
* Demonstration lessons for parents
We value the feelings of the parents in our community and appreciate that at times your role can be very challenging! We understand that on occasion parents have concerns that are not academically related but cause anxiety. Staff are always happy to listen, but equally we have key staff trained to deliver the following support mechanisms which you may wish to explore:-
Mrs Debbie McFall (Inclusion Mentor)
Mrs McFall is employed by the school to offer social and emotional support. She can be found on the yard most mornings or she can be contacted by calling the school.
Her role is:-
• Delivering Inclusion Interventions to our children
• Working with you to offer support or advice
• Attending relevant meetings
Mrs Kim Green (Parent Support Partner)
Kim is contracted in by the school to support parents. She comes in one half day a week, usually a Wednesday, but can be flexible. She can be contacted via the Headteacher, SENCO or School Office.
Her role is:-
• Delivering Parent and Child workshops in school
• Offering parents a personalised block of support outside the school environment
This may be supporting a parent with SEND meetings, helping with home routines, family mediation etc.
If you have any questions about what is possible or available, please come and talk to us.
In the Wider Context
In a small number of cases a child’s needs may be quite complex and impact on the wider family. We are very happy to work closely with parents and carers of children with more complex needs, in order to support them in school, wherever it is appropriate and possible.
At these times it may be appropriate to liaise with you in order to seek support for the family as a whole. We would do this through a process called an ‘Early Help Assessment’.
Early Help Assessments
This process involves discussing the concerns with you then, if you feel this appropriate, holding a ‘team around the family meeting’. Relevant agencies, that may be able to offer the support needed, are invited. The situation is discussed and an action plan set to provide the support. The agencies who become involved meet with the family to review and update the plan regularly until the needs are resolved. This is usuallyimplemented when there are more than one or two agencies needed to offer support. The process ensures that everyone understands their role in the support package. The meetings can be daunting with a number of professionals, but we endeavour to keep them as informal as possible.
The SENCO can also provide contact details of agencies to approach for support, which are listed in The Northumberland County Council Parent Partnership Handbook. The SENCO’s role in this situation is to guide and support you through the process, arranging meetings and working with you and other agencies to put support in place.
Who do I contact?
If you want to talk about your child your first point of contact would be the class teacher, who will talk to you about progress and provision as they know your child best in school. They may refer you on to the SENCO if they feel it is appropriate.
If you have wider questions about anything above or on the website you may contact the SENCO or relevant staff member direct. All staff can be reached on the school number, which is (01670) 822328.