SEND Information Report

School SEND Information Report

All Solihull maintained schools have a similar approach to meeting the needs of students with Special Educational Need and Disabilities (SEND) are supported by the Local Authority to ensure that all students, regardless of their specific needs, make the best possible progress in school. All schools are supported to be as inclusive as possible, with the needs of students with a Special Educational Need/s being met in a mainstream setting wherever possible.

The Solihull Local Offer website has information about the services that are available.  Please click the link to access the page:

Smith’s Wood Sports College is a large mainstream secondary school. All mainstream Solihull schools have a similar approach to meeting the needs of those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). All schools are supported to be as inclusive as possible to ensure that students with SEN have their needs met in a mainstream setting where possible.

The school has a wide variety of strategies used in school to support those with SEND. Where needed we will also draw on the support of the Local Authority and the relevant external agencies.

The Solihull Local Offer website has information about the services that are available.  Please click the link to access the page: Click Here to access the Solihull Local Offer.

How do we identify students with SEND?

The early identification of students with a learning need is key.

In Year 7, we work closely with the Primary Schools to identify the students who will be on the SEND Register. This ensures that we can meet the students’ needs as soon as they start with us in September. Where there are concerns, we use a variety of data to help build a picture of a child. This includes Key Stage 2 SATs scores and half termly data from teaching staff. This data is then used to identify those that may need further testing. We will test numeracy, reading comprehension and spelling to identify if there are any areas of need.

We work closely with our teachers to ensure they have a wide range of knowledge and understanding of the difficulties children with SEN. Through this consultation and staff training we identify the typical signs and characteristics of various special educational needs.

If a teacher has any concerns about a student, they will seek advice from the Inclusion and Access Department. We than have a SEN referral process, whereby staff can highlight students who they believe have additional needs. Depending on the nature of the need identified, we will begin investigating the concerns. Where needed, we can draw on the advice of external agencies that we work with.

Does my child need to have a SEND diagnosis in order to receive additional support?

No. Although a formal diagnosis will provide us with greater knowledge about your child’s difficulties and may grant access to some services; no formal diagnosis is needed in order to access support. Working with the Inclusion and Access department will help form part of our investigations into the needs of the child. However, access to support from the SEN team must be based on the evidence presented.

Is the curriculum fully accessible to children with SEND?

We are an inclusive school, which offers a variety of support to students with additional needs. The curriculum is differentiated (adapted) to meet the learning needs of students with SEND. Any materials provided to students are presented in an appropriate form in order for them to access the content. This includes providing a multi-sensory learning environment, which caters to a variety of learning styles.

Staff are supported to help SEND children access the curriculum through an Individual Pupil Profile (IPP). This document details the nature of the childs needs and the ways in which teachers can support the students in lessons. ALL staff at Smith’s Wood Sports College are teachers of SEND.

What provision is available for students with SEND?

Our provision is in line with the SEND Code of Practice (2015). We use the ‘Graduated Approach’ of Assess – Plan – Do – Review, in response to the need of a student. A Wave 1, 2 and 3 support approach is provided on the basis of a student’s needs and the resources available at the time.

For students with emotional needs, Smith’s Wood pupils can seek support from a number of places. Students can get support from their House Teams, the SEN Team, the Behaviour Support Team or the Safeguarding Lead or Family Workers. Who is best placed, will be determined by who is working with your child and the nature of their needs. For some it may be appropriate to seek additional support from medical professionals and we are able to complete referrals to CAMHs when appropriate. We may also recommend seeking further advice from your GP.

Furthermore, we offer a variety of specialist interventions to help support students whose difficulties are more persistent. Where appropriate, we also utilise a wide range of external agencies to help support our vulnerable students.

Outlined below is the support we can offer in relation to a students SEND need:

Type of Need Wave 1

(Quality First Teaching

Wave 2

(Additional Support in school)

Wave 3

(Specialist Individualised Support)

External Support
Cognition and Learning In class differentiation.

Variety of learning styles being taught e.g. visual, auditory, kinaesthetic

Additional time in class to complete activities

Developing opportunities to generalise skills across the curriculum.

Visual cues to support learning.

Scaffolding of writing


Those on the SEND Register – An IPP to support Quality First Teaching.

Transition support bespoke to individual needs.


Appropriately identified teaching groups.

Additional cognition testing

Observations in class

Literacy and/or Numeracy small groups

Advice from SISS CLD


In addition to Waves 1-2:

1:1 spelling, reading, literacy programs

Access Arrangements

In addition to Waves 1-3:

SISS CLD team – testing and/or small group work or 1:1

Application for EHC if there are concerns around progress

Communication and Interaction Observations in class

Lunch Club

Pastoral Support program

Time in SEN Base

Social Skills groups

In addition to Waves 1-2:

1:1 numeracy programs

Access Arrangements

In addition to Waves 1-3:

Speech and Language

Educational Psychologists

SISS ASD team – 1:1 work


Application for EHC if there are concerns around progress

Social and Emotional Mental Health Difficulties Observations in class

Pastoral Support program

Time in SEN Base

Observations from in school Behaviour Specialist

Social Skills groups


In addition to Waves 1-2:

Access Arrangements

In addition to Waves 1-3:

SISS SEMH assessment and/or small group work or 1:1



Educational Psychologist

Application for EHC if there are concerns around progress

Sensory or Physical Impairment Observations in class

Pastoral Support program

Time in SEN Base

Care and Support Plan

In addition to Waves 1-2:

Access Arrangements

In addition to Waves 1-3:



Occupational Therapy

Application for EHC if there are concerns around progress

The vast majority of children with SEND will have their needs met within Waves 1-3.

My Child is due to start/leave Smith’s Wood Sports College, what is in place to support them?

Starting Smith’s Wood: Smith’s Wood link up with the feeder primary schools in order to gain an understanding of the cohort of students we will be receiving in Year 7. it is the primary schools responsibility to ensure that your childs SEN file is sent to the school to ensure that Smith’s Wood have a good understanding of your childs needs. The SEN team will visit primary SENCos to discuss high profile students so that we have an awareness before they start.

All children will participate in the schools transition day. In addition your child may be invited to attend additional days throughout the year alongside their primary peers to have a taster of secondary school life.

If your child is on the SEN register and identified as very vulnerable then they may also be invited to an additional transition morning where we invite parents to come in with their children for a breakfast morning, meet the SEN team and the House teams, talk to us, meet other parents, see the school, meet other SEN children in the school and get further information about what we do. We also encourage the students with some ‘getting to know you activities’ as well as meeting the Head.

Some students will also participate in a transition programme over 2 days with Mr Cushen, our outdoor learning coordinator. The focus will be on students who may be coming to Smith’s Wood the need to develop their social skills or coming knowing few people. Students will also meet current vulnerable students from Smith’s Wood and have the opportunity to go rock climbing and do team building activities in the Lickey Hills.

As soon as your childs SEN file is received, we will begin to create their IPP. Where the file is delayed, we will await the file and use the first half term to develop our understanding of them. The Teaching and Learning Assistants will work with you to create an accurate profile.

Key Stage 4 and Post 16: All students will have access to support from our internal Careers Advisor, Ms O’Donnell. She will work with them to understand their aspirations and what is available Post 16. This process starts in Year 9 in order to help determine which options may be appropriate. Vulnerable students are prioritised. Where possible Ms O’Donnell will provide extra curricular opportunities for students in areas of interest. We also ask students to complete work experience in Year 10. Ms O’Donnell will support SEN students in finding a placement should they need to.

SEN staff, Guidance Tutors and Ms O’Donnell are available to help with completing applications or giving advice.

For those with a statement or EHC, Ms O’Donnell will meet with your child and feed into the Annual Review where actions are determined. The school will help support any child with SEN visit colleges/employers etc prior to making an application.

Furthermore, the school runs careers open evenings and their Careers Advisor Report will sign post students and parents as to where to look for further advice and support about particular courses or colleges open events.

How do I know if my child is making progress at College?

All of our students have regular assessments and are tracked through a whole school assessment process. Staff collect data on students each half term. This allows us to closely monitor the rate of progress.

If your child is not making the expected progress, teachers will use the ‘Graduated Approach’ of Assess – Plan – Do – Review to identify teaching and support strategies that can be used to help your child progress. As part of the Graduated Response, we will monitor a childs progress over a minimum of 2 academic terms in order to determine the next steps for a child with SEND.

The Inclusion and Access department are available at parent’s evenings for you discuss any information related to the school or your child. However, if you have any concerns throughout the school year, please do not hesitate to contact us.

The SEN Team will monitor your childs progress alongside teaching staff and Heads of Department using the data that is produced at each half term by assessment that is taken in school. This will help the SEN Team determine who needs support and where. English and Maths will be prioritised above other subjects as they are the core of the curriculum.

What support agencies do you work with?

Smith’s Wood Sports College has a wide variety of expertise in house. Alongside the Inclusion and Access team who have extensive experience of a variety of needs, there is also the Behaviour Support Team who work with those struggling to access the curriculum due to the behaviours they display. This team offers a wide variety of programmes to support the needs of students including 1:1 work, observations and small group work in a setting away from the mainstream. Furthermore, we have a safeguarding lead in school and Family Support Workers. Within departments there is also subject specific Teaching Assistants.

Where a childs needs go beyond in school support, the school works closely with the Local Authority (Solihull and Birmingham) to help support them. Who we work with depends on the nature of the childs needs. Below is a list of the most common agencies we work with:

  • Solihull and Birmingham Local Authority
  • CAMHS (Solihull SOLAR, Birmingham Blakesley Centre)
  • SISS – Solihull Inclusion Support Service. We currently buy into the services from the Communication and Learning Difficulties (SISS CLD), ASD Team (SISS ASD), Physical Impairment (SISS PI), Hearing Impairment (SISS HI), Social and Emotional Mental Health (SISS SEMH). Please click here for further details.
  • LACES – Looked After Children’s Education, Birmingham and Solihull
  • Meadows Centre
  • NHS – Paediatricians and Consultants
  • Educational Psychology – When students are undergoing assessment for an EHC
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Engage
  • Social Care

How do you ensure access for students with Physical Disabilities?

Our building is fully accessible to students with physical disabilities. We have excellent access to our main building reception, we have automatic front doors, a large circulation space in reception and an easily accessible area to the front doors. We have meeting rooms and toilets within easy reach of the Reception area and we can easily accommodate wheel chairs and visitors with reduced mobility around the school.

Additional facilities include:

  • Disabled toilets throughout the school.
  • Internal lift to all floors.
  • An Evac chair on both sides of the building in case of an emergency evacuation.
  • Ramps to external onsite buildings, dining hall, theatre and sports facilities for easy access.
  • Audio Induction loop to assist individuals with hearing difficulties

Please see our Accessibility Policy for more information

Every student who has Physical Disabilities will have a support/care plan developed by our staff. Risks will be assessed and reasonable adjustments will be made where possible.

Can my SEND child participate in wider school opportunities?

Absolutely! We are an inclusive school. We offer a wide variety of lunchtime and after school clubs and SEND students are welcome at all extra-curricular clubs. SEND students are able to attend school trips and reasonable adjustments are always made to accommodate their needs. Trip organisers are required to complete risk assessments to ensure that students are safe and that their needs are adequately met.

Examples of some of the extra curricular activities our SEN pupils have participated in include outdoor education – rock climbing, overnight residential to the school cottage in Wales, sports day, school sports teams, bespoke swimming lessons, music, link up work with our campus schools Forest Oak and Merstone and induction activities with year 7.

What training do staff receive to help them support students with SEND?

All teachers are teachers of SEN (SEN Code of Practice 2015). Therefore we are committed to ensuring that all staff have the right skills and strategies needed to support students with a variety of special educational needs and disabilities. Staff members are provided with Individual Pupil Profiles (IPP’s) for students with additional needs. These highlight the child’s strengths and weaknesses, and provide strategies for teachers to use within the classroom. This process helps us to achieve ‘Quality First Teaching’. There is an on-going programme of professional development led by the schools Assistant Head for Teaching and Learning. The Inclusion and Access department work collaboratively with the Teaching and Learning team to identify areas of training need for staff.

Our Teaching and Learning Assistants also have the opportunity to continue their professional development. They are trained at Level 2 through the AET Autism Training as well as being trained to understand and evaluate the data produced through school systems.

How do you gather the views of SEND students?

Our SEND students are at the heart of any provisions made. Where appropriate, they take an active part in the review process. The Inclusion and Access team are available before and after school, and also at break and lunch times if a student needs to talk. Furthermore, students also have a strong pastoral link through their House Team who also regularly offer support. This consists of a Head of House, Mentors and Child and Family Support Workers. Each child on the SEND Register has a Teaching and Learning Assistant allocated to them. The students will be able to ‘touch base’ and talk to them about any concerns.

Our SEND students are also asked to complete feedback and monitoring forms entitled ‘My views’. This allows students to give their opinion on matters such as:

  • How they are getting on at school
  • How effective is the support they are given
  • What they enjoy
  • What they don’t enjoy or find difficult
  • What they would like more help with

We feel it is extremely important to maintain regular interactions with the students we support. This in turn helps us improve our working practice.

Who can I contact if I am not happy with the support my child is getting?

There are a number of options you can take. We will always prefer to work directly with you to try to resolve any issues.

In the first instance, if your child is on the SEN register, you can contact the Schools Inclusion Manager, Sarah McManus or your childs allocated Teaching and Learning Assistant

If after this you feel the issue is not resolved you can contact Caroline Dorrofield, Associate Assistant Principal for Vulnerable Students.

Failing this avenue, you may wish to write to the Head of the school, Mrs K Craig and/or the Chair of Governors.

Please use the school contact details in order to make contact.

Who can I contact in the Inclusion and Access Department about my child?

Regular contact with parents and carers is extremely important in the development and support for students during their time at Smith’s Wood Sports College.

If you would like more information, please contact:

Ms S McManus – Inclusion Manager

Mrs C Dorrofield – Associate Assistant Principal for Vulnerable Students

Alternatively, if already on the SEN register, you may request to speak with your childs allocated Teaching and Learning Assistant.

Tel: 0121 788 4100

Failing this avenue, you may wish to write to the Head of the school, Mrs K Craig and/or the Chair of Governors.

Please use the school contact details in order to make contact.