Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

Reducing SEN paperwork

The Implementation Review Unit (IRU) is publishing guidelines to help schools avoid unnecessary paperwork involved in educating students with special needs.

In particular, the IRU guidance points out that schools do not need to write individual education plans for children with SEN where they have a policy of planning, target setting and recording progress for all pupils that:

  • identifies learning targets for individual pupils with SEN

  • plans additional or different provision from the differentiated curriculum offered to all pupils

  • reviews provision in the light of individual pupil outcomes

Advice on planning is given in the material from the primary and secondary national strategies.

In addition, schools are free to locate their accessibility plan, disability equality scheme and annual action plan in one or a number of different documents. So, in practice, existing mechanisms, with minimal adjustment to cover employees and services to the public, can do double duty.

A school's accessibility plan for example, could, by considering staff and users of its services, be extended to form the basis of its disability equality scheme as both are on broadly the same planning cycle. Similarly, annual action plans for the scheme could be incorporated into the school improvement plan and self evaluation arrangements.

For the full IRU document, go to www.teachernet.gov.uk

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