The Highcrest Academy


Learning Support Department

The Highcrest Academy is currently working towards the SEND Inclusion Award. This is an externally monitored process and will take between 12 - 18 months to complete.  The award will help ensure the Academy delivers high quality education for pupils with SEND. The aim is to; remove barriers to learning, ensure early identification of need, continually develop inclusive teaching and leadership. Our focus is to continually evaluate provision, the impact of provision for pupils and improve classroom practice and pupil outcomes. The Learning Support Department exists to support pupils who need a differentiated approach to learning and additional support in reaching their full potential.

A pupil may be identified as needing additional support by the subject teacher, Head of Learning, Form Tutor or SENDCO. We are part of the Inclusion Team and work closely with Heads of Learning, Inclusion Support, Mental Health Co-ordinator/CP Officer, the More Able and EAL Departments.

We administer reading and spelling assessments twice yearly (September and January) in order to track progress and screen for difficulties. This enables us to identify students who may require additional support/intervention and/or support during exams.                           

Passports are produced for pupils who have additional provisions in place. These are discussed at the bi-annual Parents' Evenings and at Annual Reviews for pupils with Educational Health Care Plans.

A small minority of students are disapplied from Modern Foreign Languages and will instead complete the Key Steps curriculum or ASDAN. A student disapplication is decided by the SENDCo working in collaboration with parents, Assistant Heads of Learning, Heads of Learning, department staff and other professionals already supporting the student. A combination of information from KS2 attainment, initial assessments undertaken upon entry to The Highcrest Academy and the specific learning needs of each student are considered on a case-by-case basis before a final decision is made.

If a student is identified as requiring SEN Support families will be informed. Provision will vary according to the needs of the individual student. This may be in the form of in class support from Learning Support Assistants, in house intervention run by Learning Support Assistants or Higher-Level Teaching Assistants. Some students may be in receipt of intervention run external agencies. The SENDco has dedicated Parent Evenings for the student and families of any young person on a SEN Support Plan or in receipt of an EHCP. The SENDCo is also available at all Parent Evenings should you wish to raise a concern about your child.

The Additional Provisions provided to pupils takes many forms and may be provided in any of the following ways over a strategised two-week intervention program: 

  • In Class support from LSA - for groups or individuals
  • Key Stage 3 LINC (Learning Inclusion) groups
  • Literacy support - small group intervention for invited students
  • Numeracy support - small group intervention for invited students
  • Social skills groups small group intervention 
  • Forest School group
  • Weekly homework support for all year groups
  • Key Stage 4 alternative curriculum arrangements eg option support, college courses etc.  Support from various outside agencies, such as the Educational Psychology Service, Specialist Teaching Service, Speech and Language Therapy Service and others.

SEND Information Report 2023 to 2024

Special Educational Needs/Learning Support Policy