This site uses cookies to bring you the best experience. Find out more
Skip to main content


Learning at West Coventry Academy

Supporting Learning (SEND)

We are a fully inclusive mainstream school and we strive to ensure that all students achieve their potential personally, socially, emotionally and academically in all areas of the curriculum (regardless of their gender, ethnicity, social background, religion, sexual identity, physical ability or educational needs).

This document is intended to provide information regarding the ways in which all West Coventry Academy students can be supported, including those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), in order that they can realise their full potential.

It may not list every skill, resource and technique employed in order to achieve this as these are continually developed. Provision is regularly reviewed to meet the changing requirements for the individual students.

West Coventry Academy is an inclusive school and aims to offer a range of provision to support pupils with communication and interaction, cognition and learning difficulties, social, and emotional health difficulties or sensory or physical needs.

Nationally, based on 2021 school census data in secondary schools 2% of pupils have an EHCP plan and 11.5% of students have SEND support. At West Coventry Academy 0.6% of pupils have an EHCP plan and 10.5% of students have SEND support.

SEND Provision at WCA

Do students with SEND attend WCA?

We are a mainstream school and the majority of our students are expected to reach the education standards for their age. A number of our students have special educational needs. The percentage varies from year to year but is usually between 12-15%. All students, including SEND students, are expected to make good progress by achieving the targets that we set for them.

What kinds of SEND does the school make provision for?

Students with SEND in our school may have difficulties with:

  • Communication and interaction
  • Cognition and learning
  • Social, emotional and mental health
  • Sensory difficulties with sight or hearing, or physical difficulties

On our school site, there is an Inclusion Department where SEND (and other) students may receive support in meeting their needs.

How does the school know if a student has SEND?

Some students will transfer from their primary school with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan, or will be on the Inclusion/SEND register. Other students may be identified as having SEND whilst attending West Coventry Academy.

“A child or young person “has SEND where their learning difficulty or disability calls for…provision ‘different from’ or ‘additional to’ that normally available to pupils of the same age.” (SEND Code of Practice, Page 83, Section 6.15).

“A child of compulsory school age has a learning difficulty or disability if s/he:

  • has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or
  • has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions” (SEND Code of Practice, Page 4, Section xiv).

We identify students as having SEND when:

  • they have an Education, Health and Care Plan;
  • their academic attainment falls significantly below the average range for their age group;
  • they have an identified or diagnosed difficulty which affects their learning;
  • they have consistently failed to make progress and the cause of this cannot be attributed to any other external factor.

Teaching staff closely monitor the progress made by all students. All departments plan interventions to address detected underperformance. Where concerns regarding progress persist, staff may approach either the young person’s pastoral team or the Inclusion Team for advice. The SENDCO may offer advice to an individual teacher or to a department. Where a teacher is raising concerns about an individual student, it may be appropriate to seek the views of all staff who work with that student, and/or to make observations of the pupil in order to see if a more widespread response is needed.

If a difficulty persists, a more formal assessment may be needed in order to determine the appropriate course of action. Initially, this is likely to be undertaken within school in the Inclusion Department. If progress continues to be of concern, referrals to specialist staff or services (such as the Educational Psychology Service) will be considered. As a result of such an assessment, it may be determined that the student will be placed on the Inclusion/SEND register.

Parents/carers and young people themselves may seek advice from school staff about concerns over their progress and barriers to their learning. These will be discussed and acted upon as agreed by school staff.

How will I know if my child is receiving SEND support?

If a student is identified as having SEND, the school will contact parents/carers (and other relevant parties, where appropriate) in writing. An invitation will be made to come into school to discuss how all parties, including the student, can work together to ensure that progress is made. Notes of such planning and any actions will be circulated to all parties, including those not involved in the meeting but working with the student. The plan will be regularly reviewed by all parties. Where desired outcomes are achieved, leading to sustained progress by the student, it may be appropriate to consider that the student no longer requires to remain on the Inclusion/SEND register. In such cases, all relevant parties will be informed in writing of the decision to remove the student from the Inclusion/SEND register.

How do teachers help students with SEND?

Mainstream teachers have high aspirations and expectations of all students in their classes, and deliver high quality teaching in their classrooms. They are aware of the targets for all students, including those with SEND, and adapt their teaching in order to ensure that all students make progress to achieve their individual targets. All teaching is based on building on what the student already knows, can do and can understand. As well as planning their own teaching, including different methodologies, the teacher may also make use of specific strategies suggested by the SENDCO or other specialist staff.

Throughout the school year, there are regular opportunities to meet with school staff about aspects of the curriculum, for example Parent Consultation Evenings, targeted Parents’ Evenings and special events.

Pastoral and Progress Leaders and subject staff can be contacted by ringing the central school number, 024 76 426200.

Is there any extra support to help students with SEND in their learning?

Where there is a lack of progress, additional support may be needed. Any support provided will always be considered in the light of the type of need, the purpose of the support and expected outcomes. Students with SEND might be supported in any of the following ways:

  • Individual or small group work (which may take place out of mainstream lessons or before school)
  • A specialist class or group
  • In-class support from an Education Assistant;
  • Technological support;
  • Access Arrangements for examinations, based on need, history of need, and whether it is the student’s usual way of working;
  • Intervention from external agencies.

Students may choose to attend Homework Club, which runs after school in the Library from 3-3.45pm daily. Students can attend to complete assignments or to reinforce learning in areas with which the student is finding difficulty. Students can make use of all the resources in the library at these times and Library staff are available to support.

For students unable to stay after school hours, there is the opportunity to arrange support with homework help in the Inclusion department during lunch break.

How will I know if my child is getting extra support?

Parents/Carers will receive notification that their child is receiving additional support. Under exceptional circumstances, for reasons of confidentiality or personal safety, this may not occur.

Are there before and after school activities for students with SEND?

There are a range of extra–curricular activities offered across the school all of which are open to all students. The school is a community facility, and details of community sports and leisure activities can be found on the Coventry City Council website.

The Inclusion Department is staffed before school, at break times and at lunchtimes. SEND students may drop in informally if they choose to use the facilities at these times; others may have planned slots during non-lesson periods.

The school has a robust pastoral system in place. Each student has a named Form Tutor, who has care of their wellbeing. Additionally, each year group has a non-teaching Pastoral Leader and a teaching Progress Leader who link closely with students, their families and the teaching staff to ensure progress and support social and emotional aspects of learning.

Pastoral Leaders meet with their Progress Leaders weekly to discuss the students and make any referrals for additional support or advice to the Inclusion Team.

Students may be referred to participate in ‘in-house’ groups designed to address their social, emotional or behavioural needs. These generally run for six consecutive weeks, and parents/carers will be informed.

Alternatively, some students may be referred for individual mentoring input from a Welfare/Learning Mentor based in the in the Inclusion Department. A programme suited to their needs will be planned.

If appropriate, the advice and support of outside agencies can be sought. The school works with:

  • The Complex Communication Team (CCT)
  • The Social Emotional Mental Health and Learning Team (SEMHL)
  • Looked After Children’s Education Service
  • Educational Psychology Service

and can support or may suggest referrals, where appropriate, to:

  • School Nursing Service
  • Integrated Primary Mental Health Team
  • Compass Aspire (Self esteem, alcohol and drug awareness)
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)
  • Social Care
  • The local Family Hub (Mosaic)

and a range of other agencies.

My Child’s Progress

How will I know that my child is making progress?

The progress of all students, including those with SEND, is monitored, assessed and reviewed regularly using data in each subject area. Parents receive a copy of the student’s latest attainment levels, their progress report at least once per year. In addition, students who are on the SEND register at West Coventry Academy have a Learning Plan. These are reviewed termly.

How will I be involved in reviewing my child’s progress?

Any student with SEND will have their progress reviewed at least three times a year. A member of the Inclusion Team will arrange to meet the parent/carer and the student to discuss their progress. Where an external agency has been working with the student, this specialist may be invited to contribute to the meeting. A student who holds an Education, Health and Care Plan will have an Annual Review meeting involving the SENDCO, Student Support Manager or SEND Teacher, parent/carer and student, as well as any other relevant parties. Parents are able to invite someone to accompany them to any of these meetings, including a representative from SENDD Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS) (Tel: 024 7669 4307).

Annual Review paperwork is sent to parents prior to the meeting to enable them to prepare in advance of the meeting.

How will you help my child move to the next year group, or make any other transition?

Primary school colleagues are met with during students’ Year 6. This ensures that information about your child’s needs is shared and suitable arrangements are made to meet their needs before they start at West Coventry Academy. All students take part in the transition day during Year 6 and, where appropriate, additional transition work is also organised. When moving between Year groups in school, there is liaison between staff to pass on information and knowledge about students. Enhanced transition opportunities can also be put in place where appropriate to ensure that students feel comfortable and prepared for their transitions.

West Coventry Academy has a careers team who work with students to prepare them for education or training post 16. All students are worked with to investigate, decide on and apply for suitable placements. Where appropriate, they work closely with key, identified students to support the transition, for example by visiting placements with the student and/or their family.

Who do I contact if I am not happy with my child’s progress?

In the first instance, you should contact your child’s Pastoral Leader. You might also contact the SENDCO. ATLP has a Complaints Policy on dealing with unresolved issues which can be viewed here.

SEND Information at School

Where can I find information about the school’s SEND policy, or other policies?

For all policies please visit: 

How has school made the building and site safe and welcoming for students with SEND?

The school is spread across nine blocks, six of which are two storey and one of which is four-storey (the upper storeys are only accessible via staircases). There are no lifts, and so upstairs areas are not accessible to wheelchair users. The PE/Swimming changing rooms are located on the ground floor.

All science laboratories are located on the second storey of the science/technology blocks.

All buildings have ground floor wheelchair access. A disabled-access toilet is available in the administrative block.

Ground-floor classrooms are available for teaching, including Design and Technology rooms, Art rooms, ICT facilities. Where needed, we strive to provide a ground-floor timetable to allow students to learn with their peers but this is not possible for all subjects.

To improve access for visually impaired students, potential trip hazards have been identified and painted yellow.

Some students require a supervised quiet area for breaks and lunch times. This is offered through the Inclusion Department or Year Offices.

Who do I contact if I want to find out more about SEND support?

The SENDCO is Ms Alicia McKeown.

If your child does not attend West Coventry Academy and you are thinking about sending them to the school, you may call Ms McKeown 024 76 426266 to discuss any SEND queries you may have.

The Head’s PA, Mrs Maggie Taylor, on 024 76 426204 will be able to inform you of Open Days and Evenings when you might visit the school with your child.

How are staff at school helped to work with students with SEND and what training do they have?

Continuing professional development in regards to SEND is accessible to teaching and support staff throughout the year. This allows all staff to build on their previous training experience. Mainstream teachers also receive information about the special educational needs of the students in their classes.

Education Assistants, Higher Level Education Assistants and Learning Mentors are provided with a comprehensive training programme which covers a variety of SEND.

The expertise of outside agencies is also sought, when appropriate, to deliver training to specific groups of staff in regard to specific students or types of SEND. Training and advice is available from:

  • Complex Communtion Team (CCT)
  • Speech and Language Education Service
  • Sensory Support Service
  • Educational Psychology Service
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • School Nursing Service
  • Integrated Primary Mental Health Service
  • Occupational Therapy Service

and others.

Within the staff teams who support students with SEND, a number of teachers, Education Assistants (EAs) and Higher Level Education Assistants (HLTAs) have specialist skills and/or qualifications and experience.

Partnerships between parents/carers, students and School

How will I be involved in planning for and supporting my child?

There are regular opportunities for you to be involved in the planning of and support for your child’s learning. These include:

  • Year 5 Visits, with appointments with members of the Inclusion Team if requested
  • Transition Evening for students in Year 6 transferring to West Coventry Academy
  • Open Evening for Parents (held in September)
  • Open Mornings in July for Year 5 pupils and in September for Year 6 pupils
  • Parents’ Evenings for all year groups
  • Targeted Parents’ Evenings for particular groups of students or a subject (e.g. Year 10 Mathematics; SEND)
  • Review and planning meetings.
How can I support my child at home?

Staff will be able to discuss with you what you can do at home to help support your child. West Coventry Academy is also able to offer parents/carers referrals to:

  • Positive Parenting support;
  • Cygnets Group (for parents of students with Autism)
How will my child be involved in their own learning and in decisions about their education?

Students are involved in Parents’ Evenings appointments to review their progress in all subjects and to meet with Inclusion Team staff. Students are also involved in planning and review meetings, including Annual Reviews of Statements/Education Health and Care Plans wherever possible. A programme of departmental reviews and half termly learning walks make use of student voice.

The Inclusion Team also undertakes planned student voice activities to ascertain the views of students about their education.

Further SEND Services in School

Where can I find out about other services for my child?

Local authorities publish information in their Local Offer. The Local Offer is available from Coventry City Council, Solihull Borough Council or Warwickshire County Council’s websites (as applicable):

Who else provides services in school for students with SEND?

The school seeks to ensure that all students make required or better progress and makes provision within the staffing to do this as far as is possible. It may be necessary to secure support from outside agencies. The governing body procures services from particular agencies. Other services are universally available, in particular those provided by the NHS. The school’s Service Level Agreements and contracts cover the following agencies:

  • Complex Communication Team (CCT)
  • Speech and Language Education Service
  • Educational Psychology Service
  • Coventry Access & Technology Service
  • Sensory Support Service

The following are universal services routinely used by the school:

  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
  • Integrated Primary Mental Health Service
  • Compass
  • Occupational Therapy
How can my family get support from these services?

The SENDCO can advise whether your child meets the criteria for support from a service, and whether such support is appropriate.

Who can I contact to find out about other support for students with SEND and their families?

Within school, further information about other support for parents can be sought from the relevant year office team or from the SENDCO, Ms Deborah Bell, 02476 426200.Specialist advice is available from the SEND Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS) – Tel: 024 7669 4307

What happens if my child needs specialist SEND equipment or other facilities?

Where a student requires additional technology or equipment, and it is a reasonable adjustment to do so, the school will secure them. In case of a student with a Hearing or Visual Impairment, the Sensory Support Service. Additional equipment previously or currently secured by the school include:

  • Alphasmarts or other word-processing technology;
  • Writing slopes;
  • Coloured overlays and reading rulers;
  • Pencil grips
  • Accessible toilet
  • Tinted paper and exercise books
  • Specialised food chopping board