Shropshire Council

SEND resource provision at Sir John Talbot's

  • Period: 07 May 2019 - 05 June 2019
  • Status: Open
  • Audiences: Everyone
  • Topics: Education, Children's services
  • Type: Public
  • Address: Prees Road, Whitchurch, Shropshire SY13 2BY
  • Local authority: Shropshire (893)
  • Headteacher: Mr David O'Toole
  • Age range: 11 to 18
  • Phase of education: Secondary
  • School type: Academy
  • Gender of entry: Mixed
  • ID: URN: 141176, DfE number: 893/4001

Background

The Children and Families Act 2014 sets out a statutory duty for local authorities to keep provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) under review, in order to ensure that the provision reflects and addresses local needs.

In October 2017, Shropshire Council commissioned a comprehensive review of its high needs provision as part of the Specialist Provision Strategic Review and Development Plan which made a number of recommendations as to how additional capital funding available from the Department for Education should be invested.

The report highlighted that there are particular gaps for learners who are academically able to access some aspects of the national curriculum but who may struggle with some of the environmental and/or social aspects of mainstream school life.  The analysis strongly suggests that the key priorities should be:

  • The development of specialist provision attached to mainstream schools in order to meet the needs of complex learners - particularly those with communication and interaction difficulties - enabling them to be educated closer to home.
  • These provisions could be either mainstream school led (known as Resourced Provision) or special school led but based on mainstream school sites – (known as Satellite Provision).

In accordance with The School Organisation (Making Prescribed Alterations) Regulations 2016, the Local Authority - Shropshire Council – proposes to establish a resource provision at Sir John Talbot’s School. and offer up to 20 places for secondary aged learners with Moderate/Severe Learning Difficulties and communication and interaction difficulties (including Autism Spectrum Conditions) from September 2019, subject to the completion of any required building works.

A four-week representation period of consultation will run from Tuesday 7 May 2019 to Wednesday 5 June 2019.  A final decision will be made following the end of the consultation period, taking into account all representations and comments made during the consultation period.

All schools were approached by the Local Authority some time ago and asked if they would consider hosting resourced provision.

Mr David O’Toole, Head Teacher of Sir John Talbot’s School, expressed an interest in this provision saying:

"Sir John Talbot’s School which is part of the Marches Academy Trust is delighted to be engaging with Shropshire Gateway Education Trust to develop a specialist provision in the local area for children with specialist needs. 

Our ethos of one learning community extends to this provision and with the staff experience and expertise, we are ideally placed to enhance our current provision. Sir John Talbot’s School is well placed within the local community to develop the excellent education already offered to children with additional learning needs. David O’Toole, Headteacher added, “We want to ensure that each child has access to the best education to equip them with confidence and skills needed to enhance their wellbeing.

The Trust has a vision of ‘achievement through caring’ and that every learner matters. We strive to be the best at ensuring every child has access to quality learning in their local community."

Having established the school’s willingness to participate in the project, this consultation document is about turning the school’s commitment from a vision into a reality.

This document marks the start of a genuine and open consultation process.  We would like as many people as possible with an involvement or interest in the school, or in Secondary education in the area more generally, to contribute their thoughts on what should happen.  Please complete the questionnaire which can be found beneath the 'How to get involved' tab on this page.

Resourced provision for children with Moderate/ Severe Learning Difficulties and communication and interaction difficulties (including Autism Spectrum Conditions) in Shropshire.

Overview

Shropshire Council has made a long and successful commitment to inclusive and high quality education for pupils with special educational needs. Shropshire Council continues to make available the highest levels of inclusive mainstream provision to pupils of all ages in comparison with other local authorities in England.

In an effort to extend the range of inclusive learning opportunities for pupils, the Council intends to develop a network of additionally resourced provision at mainstream and academy primary and secondary schools throughout Shropshire.

For more information on resourced provision and the principles that have underpinned their development, please have a look at the Specialist Provision Strategic Review and Development Plan.

The Council believes that these developments will, through the inclusion of pupils with a wider range of special educational needs, enhance the learning opportunities of all pupils by:

  • enrichment of the curriculum through social awareness and community responsibility
  • developing the quality and skills of the staff
  • improving the buildings and offering better facilities.

Inclusive learning expectations

The Council recognises that its policy of establishing a network of resourced schools is, by its very nature, less inclusive than making provision in each and every local mainstream school.  The rationale for this policy centres on the lack of expertise, specialist support and resources to be able to offer suitably enhanced provision in every school.  Resourced schools are seen as a key development in extending the range of provision available to pupils across Shropshire.  Our ultimate aim is to reach a position where all schools can meet the needs of all pupils, regardless of the complexity of their needs.  However, for the learners identified, the siting of skills, resources and expertise within a resourced mainstream or academy school is a way of achieving a position that is close to the inclusive ideal that we strive for.

By developing resourced provision within selected schools in the county, the Council believes that it is enhancing the range of provision for children and parents within Shropshire.  Furthermore, the Council considers that this strategic response:

  • meets the continuing needs of pupils in the area
  • fulfils its responsibilities to parents and families to provide a range of local services
  • enriches opportunities for all pupils
  • complies with the legislation set in the Children and Families Act 2014.

What is most important for pupils is that they are educated in a supportive educational environment which offers the opportunity for inclusive learning.  This should take place in a school that is willing to adapt to the needs of the individual, rather than expecting the individual to cope with what is provided for others.

Considering the possibility of establishing resourced provision

General

In order to bring about school organisation change, it is necessary to publish what are known as statutory proposals.  A formal proposal to bring about a ‘prescribed alteration’ is needed to establish resourced provision at Sir John Talbot’s School.

As we have explained, by developing resourced provision within Shropshire, the Council will be providing a local option that extends the range of provision for pupils in the area.  The Council feels that the case for establishing resourced provision at Sir John Talbot’s School is very strong.  The leadership team at Sir John Talbot’s School has indicated that it feels the same way.

We would like to have your views on the possibility of establishing provision for learners with Moderate/ Severe learning difficulties and communication and interaction difficulties (including Autism Spectrum Conditions) at Sir John Talbot’s School.

We look forward to receiving your completed questionnaire or online response as your views are important and will influence the decision which is eventually taken.

The consultation period

The consultation is based on this document.  The consultation period starts on Tuesday 7 May 2019. The final date for letting us have your thoughts and comments is Wednesday 5 June 2019.

How to express your views?

Click on the 'How to get involved' tab on this page to have your say using our survey.

What happens after the consultation process?

Once the responses to the consultation process have been analysed, a report will be prepared for the Council’s Cabinet.  The report will include a summary of comments received from individuals and photocopies of the responses from recognised organisations.  The report will be a public document, so will be available to the media and on the school and Council websites.

The Local Authority will consider the response to the consultation and form a view about what it believes to be the appropriate provision for the future.  This will happen as soon as possible after the end of the consultation period.

Have your say on this proposal using our survey.

Go to the survey... »

If you prefer, you can make comments or object to the proposals by writing to:

Resourced Provision Consultation
Sir John Talbot’s School
Prees Road
Whitchurch
Shropshire SY13 2BY

or by emailing sjtadmin@mmat.co.uk

 

Data protection

Information collected in our surveys will only be used by us (Shropshire Council) to inform the immediate and future provision of our services. The information you provide will be kept confidential in accordance with our Privacy Policy. It will not be shared outside of Shropshire Council. Information collected via our online surveys (hosted on the Surveymonkey website) will be stored on SurveyMonkey’s servers in the United States of America and SurveyMonkey gives an undertaking never to disclose the survey questions or your responses to others without permission.