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St James Primary School

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We pride ourselves on being an inclusive school and have wide experience working with children with a range of special needs.

 Please find below information about our approach to supporting children with special needs.

As part of Surrey’s local offer for families with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities children, schools have been asked to state where they are in answer to 14 frequently-asked questions which detail the support and ethos of the school when working with children with SEND.

 For more information you can look at Surrey County Council’s website under ‘Local Offer.’



School Response

School self-evaluation rating


How does the school know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?

We have rigorous monitoring in place that tracks the progress our learners make in all areas of the curriculum.  Our staff raises initial concerns through our cause for concern forms which are discussed with the SENCO and other relevant staff. We share concerns with our parents and consider their views. Then we use focused observations and assessment data to identify the support needed. Parents/carers are also encouraged to speak to the class teacher/tutor about any concerns they have. We have in-house specialist expertise in a number of areas of special educational needs.  We may take advice from outside professionals.

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How will school staff support my child?

 The Head Teacher, senior staff and governors play an active role in monitoring the quality of our special educational needs provision. The SENCO reports regularly to the SEND governor regarding provision, assessment and impact. Children on the Special Educational Needs register have Individual Support Plans. These show the arrangements in place to meet specific needs and are overseen by the class teacher and monitored regularly by the SENCO. The ISPs are reviewed termly and shared with the parents. All the interventions that we put in place are research-informed or evidence based and are measured regularly to monitor impact against expected rate of progress.  Where progress is not as strong as expected, we are quick to respond and find alternatives through dialogue with the child, their teacher, their families and sometimes other professionals.  All our additional support programmes are overseen by the SENCO.  All our teachers are inclusive and plan specifically for our special educational needs children.

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

Differentiation is embedded in our curriculum and practice. The curriculum is adapted to meet the needs of individual children. Half termly Pupil Progress Meetings help us to monitor progress and reflect on the next steps for each child. All our teachers are clear on the expectations of Wave 1 provision and this is monitored regularly by the leadership team.

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How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?

Class meetings for parents, at the beginning of each year, give an outline of the curriculum over the coming year and teachers offer ideas about the ways parents can support their children. For children with a particular need, activities may be sent home to support their learning.

We have two parent consultation evenings each year, as well as a written mid-year interim report and an annual report of progress and achievement at the end of the year.  In addition, we encourage parents to meet with the class teacher where necessary, to discuss their child.  At such meetings we clearly share what can be done by parents at home to support the learning/behaviour at school. Reviewed Individual Support Plans are sent home at
the end of each term and these show the progress a child has made against the targets set. 

Should more regular contact be required, our staff will make suitable arrangements to ensure this is put in place. 

We host curriculum evenings to help families understand what learning is expected and how they can best support their child’s needs. Relevant resources are posted on our website.  

We believe in developing the knowledge and skills of parents and provide information about relevant support groups, courses and parenting workshops delivered in the local area. 

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

The ethos of our school ensures all staff provide a high standard of pastoral support.  Mental health is a high priority for the school.  All staff are trained to support emotional needs. 

Our acts of worship explore Christian values and how they can be reflected in the daily life of the school. Our Personal Social and Health Education curriculum addresses, in a progressive way, issues that will help children to be fully rounded individuals.  we use Trick Box throughout the school; through this scheme, children are taught various ways of helping themselves with their mental health. 

We have two staff who are trained as Emotional Literacy Support Assistants and they deliver short-term interventions with some children who have a particular need around social or emotional well-being.  We also consult with Mental Health workers from CAMHS on a regular basis.

For children with medical needs, we arrange our provision with the parents and relevant outside professionals.  Each child with medical needs has a Health Care Plan.

Our Behaviour Policy, which includes clear guidance on our expectations, rewards and sanctions, is fully understood by children and staff. The school House system provides recognition of good behaviour and effort through the awarding of house points.

We regularly monitor attendance and take the necessary actions to prevent prolonged unauthorised absence. Good attendance is celebrated each term.

Pupil voice is central to our ethos and this is encouraged in a variety of ways such as school council and  pupil interviews.

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What specialist services

and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?

Our staff all receive regular training to meet the specific needs of the children that are in the school. All our class teachers hold qualified teacher status. 

We have a number of established relationships with professionals in health and social care.  We also work closely with  Language Learning Support, Behaviour Support and the Educational Psychology Service. Outreach workers from Freemantles School visit regularly for consultations.  All external partners we work with are vetted in terms of safe guarding and when buying in additional services we monitor the impact of any intervention against cost, to ensure a value for money service.

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What training have the staff supporting children with SEND had or are having?

Our Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) has completed the mandatory National SENCO Award and is a qualified teacher. We invest time and money in training our staff to improve Wave 1 provision delivery and to develop enhanced skills and knowledge in the delivery of Wave 2 and 3 interventions. Training is comprehensive and covers many different specialist areas. Recent staff development has included training on Speech and Language, Downs Syndrome and mental health Issues. In staff meetings, our staff are regularly updated on matters pertaining to special educational needs and disability.

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

Our Equalities Policy promotes involvement of all our learners in all aspects of the curriculum including activities outside the classroom, such as educational visits and residential trips.  Where there are concerns of safety and access, further thought and consideration is put in place to ensure needs are met; where applicable parents/carers are consulted and involved in planning. We endeavour to include all children, whatever their need, in all activities as much as possible. Involvement in extracurricular clubs is monitored to ensure that all children are participating in the opportunities offered by the school.

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How accessible is the school  environment?

Our Accessibility Plan is updated annually and is available on the School Policies page. We have made adaptations to the school environment for particular children and consider our environment to be fully accessible to current pupils and parents.  We are vigilant about making reasonable adjustments where possible. Our policy and practice adhere to the Equality Act 2010. Where possible, we ensure any home-setting communications are available in the relevant languages and, when required, translators are sought to attend meetings.

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How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school, transfer to a new setting or school or the next stage of education and life?

We have a robust Induction programme in place for welcoming new learners to our setting. All children have several visits to school before they start in Reception. If children join us at a later stage, we endeavour to visit them in their current setting and also arrange visits for them to spend sessions at our school to meet staff and their new class. When children leave our school, we have transition arrangements in place whereby staff from local secondary schools visit and the children spend time at the school to which they are transferring. If we feel Year 6 children have a more specific need, parents are involved and additional transition activities, tailored to the child’s needs, are arranged with the receiving school.  Individual Support Plans record the aspects of our environment which help a child learn and this information is passed on in transition, together with any reports from outside professionals. 

We have very good relationships with feeder schools and nurseries, as well as with the schools that the children may move on to. There are regular meetings between the different SENCOs of these schools to ensure a smooth transition for all children.

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

Our finances are monitored regularly by the leadership team and governors. SEND resources are reviewed regularly to support the strategic aims and improvement priorities of our school as well as meeting individual learner needs.

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

Quality First inclusive Practice (Wave 1) is clearly defined in our school and all staff deliver this. Should additional support be required, this is undertaken after consultation with the relevant staff, the families and the children where appropriate. The advice of outside professionals is also sought if needed.

Decisions about the type of support needed are made by the class teacher, in consultation with the SENCO. Outcomes are defined at the start of any intervention and then all interventions are monitored regularly to measure impact. Should progress not be as strong as expected, the intervention is altered or adjusted to meet need.

The SENCO oversees all additional support and there is regular feedback to class teachers regarding the children’s progress in interventions. Regular updates are shared with the SEND Governor who reports to the full governing body.

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How are parents involved in the school?

How can I be involved?

We whole-heartedly believe in partnering parents in a two-way dialogue to support children’s learning, needs and aspirations. We operate an open door policy and take every opportunity to strengthen this dialogue. Parents are invited to contribute though a number of means such as listening to children read, talking to a class about a particular interest or event, running clubs, accompanying trips or becoming involved in our wider school community through our very active PTA.

Our Governing Body includes Parent Governors.

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Who can I contact for further information?

In the first instance, parents/carers are encouraged to talk to their child’s class teacher.  Further information and support can be obtained from the school’s SENCO. Parents/carers may also wish to talk over concerns with the Headteacher. Both the SENCO and Headteacher can be contacted via the school office on 01252 703248.

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