Snowsfields and Tower Bridge are both fully inclusive schools. We take pupils from a range of abilities and with a range of needs. We treat each child as an individual and ensure that we support them to meet their full potential and be able to access all the opportunities we provide.
When children have special educational needs we make every effort to give extra help in the usual classroom setting. This may mean that some children are given similar work to the rest of the class, but at a different level of difficulty. We keep detailed records on these children and note whether our efforts are meeting with success.
If we think the child needs more help than we can provide using the everyday school resources, the Head, Class Teacher and Special Needs Co-ordinator may meet with parents or carers to discuss extra support that can be made available. This may involve buying specific resources or exploring the possibility of involving other agencies, such as the Speech and Language Service or Educational Psychologist to assess the child’s needs and to give us advice.
In a few cases, if detailed records show that despite every effort, the child is still not making the progress expected, then with the parent/carer’s agreement, a Statutory Assessment of Special Educational Needs may be applied for. The Special Needs Team at Southwark Education Department then considers all of the different kinds of help the child has had and decides whether the level of progress has been adequate or not. This may result in an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) that sets out the kind of support needed for the child’s further progress, this may be in the form or extra resources or adult support.
Here is a link to Southwark’s Local Offer:
Snowsfields has a Resource Base for children with autism, which is known as Rainbow Class. Rainbow Class has spaces for 14 pupils from Reception through to Year 6 (age 4-11), with two pupils per year group. It is situated in 3 purpose built rooms. There are 2 classrooms and a soft play / sensory room. Rainbow Class has its own playground, which is safe and always well supervised.
Most pupils will integrate into the mainstream school for varying lengths of time during the week. They are supported by a Teaching Assistant, who works closely with the teachers to ensure each child’s individual needs are planned for. Each pupil has their own individually designed timetable which is based on their individual needs, strengths and abilities. We work closely with parents and write home daily as well as keeping in touch with telephone calls and parents’ meetings
The staff and children also receive support and advice from an Occupational Therapist, as well as a Speech and Language Therapist and the development of early communication skills has a very high priority.
The students follow the Foundation or National Curriculum adapted to their needs and learning is developed in small steps. Teaching is given individually, in small groups, or in a whole class group. The class uses a very structured teaching approach so that students know what is happening and what is expected of them at any time of the day. A lot of physical activities such as soft play, movement, outdoor play and swimming are incorporated to calm the children and to develop their social communication skills. The children work on the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) to improve their communication skills. Makaton signs and symbols are also used to support communication.
Rainbow Class run programmes such as Legotherapy, Cooking, Out and About In the Community, Swimming, and Writedance where pupils can work on their social skills, speech and language targets and self help skills.
Some pupils in Rainbow Class require a Behaviour Plan that is agreed by the school and parents. The plan has been written to address the particular difficulties experienced by individual children. Physical, visual and verbal prompts are given to help children understand what is required and we use gentle approaches wherever possible to calm and distract the children if they are upset or in difficulty. In some cases physical restraint may be used.