At Allens Croft we use the Government's Every Child Matters Agenda to support the work we do with our children. We strongly agree that every part of a child's development is important and hold this at the very heart of our philosophy.
Over the last few years there has been a new approach to the wellbeing of children and young people from birth to age 19. The Government's aim is for every child, whatever their background or their circumstances, to have the support they need to:
- Be healthy
- Stay safe
- Enjoy and achieve
- Make a positive contribution
- Achieve economic well-being
This means that the organisations involved with providing services to children from hospitals and schools, to police and voluntary groups work together in new ways, sharing information and working together, to protect children and young people from harm and help them achieve what they want in life.
This is particularly important at Allens Croft with the Allens Croft Children's Centre on the same site providing support for the community in terms of Health Care and care for children from 0 to 4.
All our children are given equal access to learning opportunities, and an equal chance to contribute to the educational process themselves and the life of the School. We aim to promote equal opportunities in all aspects of school life and to promote the welfare and achievement of all pupils regardless of gender, disability or ethnicity. Racist incidents are rigorously recorded and monitored by the Local Authority.
We recognise the contribution that children of all backgrounds bring to school life and actively seek to celebrate the cultural diversity within which we work.
Please help our children but allow them space to explore situations for themselves and not be tempted to do everything for them.
Social and Emotional Literacy is an integrated part of school life. It is used as a way of encouraging everyone to develop a set of common positive values for managing appropriate behaviour in our school and in the wider community.
We recognise that, at some time, a child may have a learning difficulty that calls forspecial educational provision to be made for them. At Allens Croft, we are committed to providing that support in order to develop the potential of every child, through a broad, balanced curriculum that is within the requirements of the Foundation and National Curriculum.
Children who have special educational needs are those who have:
- either greater difficulty in learning than most of the children of their age;
- or a disability which hinders them from making use of the facilities usually provided for their age;
- or behaviour which inhibits their educational progress.
The school follows the recommendation in the New Code of Practice 2002. We also follow the Policy and work of Birmingham City Council on Inclusion. We will endeavour to provide support and facilities to enable all children to access the school and curriculum by responding to children's individual needs.
Our policies and strategic planning encompasses inclusion for all learners, whatever their age, gender, ethnicity, impairment, attainment or background. We will strive to eliminate prejudice and discrimination amongst the whole school community and create an environment where all children can flourish and feel safe.
In order to meet each child's special educational needs, we closely follow the model of the Code of Practise 2001 and LEA guidance which recommend the following levels of intervention:
To assess children's level of need, the school uses the local authority's annual audit criteria for measuring progress in numeracy and literacy in conjunction with regular teacher assessments. Suitable support is then provided for the children with special education needs.
Early Years Action and School Action:
If a child shows that he or she is progressing at a much slower rate than other children in the class, extra help is provided for the child in school. A programme of work for the child to work through over a certain length of time is planned with the teacher, parent and Special Needs Co-ordinator. This is called an Individual Educational Plan (IEP). Children who have behaviour support have an Individual Behaviour Plan (IBP).
Early Years Action Plus and School Action Plus:
If the child is still having significant difficulties, we can contact outside support agencies for advice and help, eg. educational psychologists and specialists in speech and hearing, etc. Children will still receive an IEP/IBP but with the expertise of the specialist.
In a few cases parents or teachers may ask for a Proposed Provision Plan or Statutory Assessment of Special Educational Needs. This is a detailed examination of the child's needs which includes information from all those who have been working with the child.
Parents are involved at each stage and are expected to attend all meetings arranged to discuss their child's progress.
If as a result of this Statutory Assessment, the LEA thinks that the child's needs cannot be met within the school, they will make a Statement of Special Educational Needs. This sets out in detail what the child needs and what extra help is required in terms of adult support, resources and in some cases placement.
The Disability Discrimination Act
The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) was passed in 1995, following years of campaigning by disabled people and supporters. The DDA is a Government measure intended to reduce discrimination against disabled people. It has been amended to improve its scope a number of times since 1995.
The Act has a direct impact on schools and because Allens Croft is an Inclusive School we welcome the Act. As a school we need to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that any child or adult has access to the building and the facilities we offer regardless of their disability.
All schools are required to produce an Accessibility Action Plan. Our current Action plan will run from 2008 to 2011.
Our main objectives are to:
- • increase the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum;
- improve the environment of the school to increase the extent to which all pupils (including disabled pupils) can take advantage of education and associated services;
- improve and find appropriate ways of communicating information to all pupils and their families.
To achieve these objectives the school will work with many outside agencies, parents, pupils and governors. We are constantly reviewing the school environment and curriculum to ensure that all pupils have access. We are happy to provide information to families in a variety of forms including tapes, large print or simply provide people to explain information to parents.
We were delighted to be awarded the Healthy School's Award again in 2009 (for the fourth time) and the Activemark Award. We take the health of our children very seriously and work closely with parents to ensure that the children get the very best education in all matters of health and fitness.
The children, staff and parents continuously monitor the school dinners to ensure that nutritional standards are high as well as providing a range of food the children enjoy. The school kitchen also provides healthy playtime snacks and drinks to give children the opportunity to make an informed choice about what they eat.
All children are encouraged to participate in regular exercise to maintain their health. Children are offered an appropriate range of activities through the curriculum in all Key Stages. At times, extra-curricular activities and clubs are often offered. Once a year all children will participate in a 'sports' Fun Day where they can demonstrate the development of their skills.
We place great emphasis on children participation for fun and not just winning.
Throughout their time at Allens Croft, children are offered a balanced range of games, dance, gym and athletics activities. Swimming sessions are also offered for certain year groups on rotation. There is also a range of extra-curricular clubs providing a wide range of activities throughout the year.
In 2009 we once again received the Healthy Schools Award. The Healthy Schools Programme has been around since 1999 and links into the Children's Plan especially in connection to Healthy Weight and Healthy Lives. It is a joint venture with the Departments of Health and Education. School council has looked specifically at healthy school meals and the use of playground facilities at break times.
Healthy Schools is intended to deliver real benefits in respect of:
- Improvement in health and reduced health inequalities;
- Raised pupil achievement;
- More social inclusion;
- Closer working between health promotion providers and education establishments.
We regularly review the meals served at Allens Croft and all our menus are balanced for their nutritional value as well as their appeal. School Council have been a driving force in deciding the kinds of food served with the help of parents and Governors.
We encourage parents to visit to sample school dinners and all have been happy with the choice and quality. Salads are always available for children at lunchtime.
We have also run very successful workshops for parents on healthy lunchboxes and our children are very eager to tell visitors the foods they think are healthy! Healthy mid morning snacks are served in the morning for Key Stage 2 children.
All children have access to chilled water throughout the day.
The real issue in every school across the land! It is so important that every parent checks their child's head every night and if head lice are found they do need to carry out the appropriate treatment.
The best way to control lice is to use a nit comb and hair conditioner and meticulously comb the hair, even when you can see no eggs present. Remember to keep long hair tied up, not to share combs or hats and wash hair very regularly.