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Local Offer

The Attic Local Offer

The Attic Local Offer September 2014 for Lowestoft and Walpole sites. Also we are pleased to announce that on 22nd June a new site was opened at Cartlon Colville.

All governing bodies of maintained schools, maintained nursery schools and the proprietors of academy schools have a legal duty to publish information on their website about the implementation of the Management Committee or the proprietor’s policy for pupils with SEND (Special Educational Need/Disability). The information published must be updated annually.


We are a Pupil Referral Unit based across three sites; Lowestoft, Carlton Colville and Walpole. We work with young people from 8-16. Many of the young people attending The Attic Learning Centre have been permanently excluded from their mainstream schools. Some students have, for a variety of reasons, been out of Education for periods for time. At The Attic we are dedicated to working together with all members of our school community and local partners to give the young people the best possible outcomes for their future education. Our aim is to, where appropriate, re-integrate them back into a mainstream provision, or prepare them for placement in one of our parallel provisions. We have outlined our local offer below and would welcome feedback from staff, parents, carers and young people.

Our Approach to Teaching Learners with SEND

At The Attic we are committed to supporting every student in overcoming their personal barriers to learning and enabling them to make the best progress possible. We want all adults and children to participate in learning and we celebrate all members of our community. We have an inclusive culture in our school and we aim to always be responsive to the diversity of children’s backgrounds, interests, experience, knowledge and skills.

We value high quality teaching for all learners and actively monitor teaching and learning in the school. Our school improvement plan is about developing learning for all and details are planned continued professional development (CPD) opportunities for all staff. We aim to create a learning environment which is flexible enough to meet the needs of all members of our school community. We carefully monitor the progress of all our learners, and staff continually assess ensuring that learning is taking place. Our whole school system for monitoring progress includes progress checks every half term.

How we identify SEND

Due to the nature of our school our students arrive with a history that often indicates that they have difficulty coping within a mainstream school setting. This MAY indicate that they have an underlying Special Educational Need.

The Code of Practice defines SEND as:

A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for them. A child of compulsory school age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if they:

  1. have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age: or
  2. have a disability which prevents or hinders them 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.”

Upon entry to The Attic, all pupils are assessed in our Assessment Centre using a number of methods including standardised tests that relate directly to the four categories of need identified in the SEN Code of Practice. This information allows us to write accurate Individual Learning Plans for each of pupil. If a pupil is identified as having SEND we provide provision that is ‘additional to or different from’ the normal differentiated curriculum. This is intended to overcome the barrier to their learning.

Assessment Centre staff share fully all results and publish levels to all staff.

At The Attic our pupils are always either taught in small groups with additional

adult support or on a one to one basis. Our focus is on personalised learning and where a pupil has an identified SEND relevant strategies are used and intervention put in place as part of their school package to address their needs.

Pupils can fall behind in school for lots of reasons. They may have been absent from

school, they may have attended lots of different schools and not had a consistent

opportunity to learn. They may not speak English very well or at all, they may be worried about different things that distract them from learning. At The Attic we are

committed to ensuring that all pupils have access to learning opportunities, and for those who are at risk of not learning, we will intervene. This does not mean that all vulnerable learners have SEND. Only those with a learning difficulty that requires special educational provision will be identified as having SEND.

Assessing SEND at the Short Stay School

Class Teachers, support staff, parents/carers and the learner themselves will be the first to notice a difficulty with learning. At The Attic we ensure that assessment of

educational needs involves the learner, their parents/carer and takes note of finding from the previous school. The Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) and the SEN and Assessment Teachers support with the identification of barriers to learning. We have a range of assessment tools available that relate to the different areas of need identified in the SEN Code of Practice. We have also developed our own programme of Assessments, using Vark, BPVS, and thoughts and feelings.

For some pupils we may want to seek advice from specialist teams. In our school we have access to various specialist services. We have access to services universally provided by Suffolk County Council and have direct support from:

  • Senior Youth Support Worker
  • Educational Psychologist
  • Clinical Psychologist
  • Social Worker
  • Specialist Advisory team

What we do to Support Learners with SEN at The Short Stay School

Every Teacher is required to adapt the curriculum to ensure access to learning for all

children in their class through the use of individual education plans. These are based, initially, on the results of their assessment period and are then modified and adapted as pupils begin to progress through their specific targets. All IEP’s are written with the young people, and parents are invited to be part of this process. Our Teachers will use various strategies to adapt access to the curriculum, this might

include using:

  • Visual timetables
  • Writing frames
  • All young people are allocated a Key Worker
  • Positive behaviour rewards system
  • High Staff to pupil ratio (generally 2:6)

Each pupil identified as having SEND, is entitled to support that is ‘additional to or different from’ a normal differentiated curriculum. The type of support is dependent on the individual learning needs, and is intended to enable access to learning and overcome the barrier to learning identified. Due to the changing nature of our cohort the type of support offered is varied and personalised.

Funding for SEN

The Attic receives funding directly to the school from the local authority to support the needs of learners with SEND. We have written our policy for SEND which is available here. The Attic is committed to improve learning for all, and we are able to share resources, training and moderate provision for learners with SEND

How do we Find Out if this Support is Effective?

Monitoring progress is an integral part of teaching and leadership within The Attic.

Parents/carers, pupils and staff are involved in reviewing the impact of interventions for learners with SEND. We follow the ‘assess, plan, do, review’ model and

ensure that parents/carers and children are involved in each step. Before any additional provision is selected to help a child, the SENCO, SEN and Assessment Teacher, Teachers, parents/carers and learner, agree what they expect to be different following this intervention. A baseline will also be recorded, which can be used to compare the impact of the provision.

Pupils, Parents/carers and their Teaching and Support Staff will be directly involved in reviewing progress. This review can be built in to the intervention itself, or it could be a formal meeting held at least once a term, where we all discuss progress and next steps. If a learner has an Education Health and Care Plan (EHC plan,) the same termly review conversations take place, but the EHC plan will also be formally reviewed annually.

Other Opportunities for Learning

All learners should have the same opportunity to access all activities. At The Attic

we are committed to making reasonable adjustments to ensure participation for

all. Please contact the relevant Leader at the base your child attends if you would like to discuss this further.

Further extra curricular activities in your local area have been identified and information relating to these can be found on your local council website and within the Suffolk County Council local Offer. Detailed information regarding this can be found by following this link:

All staff at the Short Stay School have training on the Equality Act 2010. This legislation places specific duties on schools, settings and providers including the duty not to discriminate, harass or victimise a child or adult linked to a protected characteristic defined in the Equality Act and to make ‘reasonable adjustments.’

The Equality Act 210 definition of disability is:

“A person has a disability for the purposes of this Act if (s)he has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his ability to carry out normal day-to day activities.”

Section 1(1) Disability Discrimination Act 1995

This definition of disability in the Equality Act includes children with long term health

conditions such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, and cancer. Children and young people with such conditions do not necessarily have SEN, but there is a significant overlap between disabled children and young people and those with SEN. Children and young people may therefore be covered by both SEN and disability legislation.

Preparing for the next step

Transition is a part of life for all pupils. This can be transition to a new class in school, having a new teacher, or moving on to another school, training provider or moving in to further education or employment. We are committed to working in partnership with children, families and other providers to ensure positive transitions occur.

Pupils with special educational needs will be served best by liaising with our Advisory team, SNO’s, EP’s  and specialist placements. We work alongside them to

try and minimise pupil’s worries about starting a new placement.

Have your say

At The Attic, we can shape and develop provision for all of our learners

ensuring achievement for all. This SEND report declares our annual offer to learners with SEND, but to be effective it needs the views of all parents/carers, learners, governors and staff. So please engage with our annual process to ‘assess plan, do and review’ provision for SEND.

For a more in depth look at our SEND provision at The Attic, please refer to

our Special Educational Needs and Disability Policy which can be found in the policy

section of our website.


This local offer has been produced with pupils, parents/carers, governors, and members of staff. We would welcome your feedback and future involvement in the review of our offer, so please do contact us. The best people to contact this year are:

Name of SEND governor – Kerry Ellison

Name of SENCO – Kris Backhouse

Name of Deputy Headteacher –Phil Woods

Name of Executive Headteacher – Judy Sherington

Contact Us

The Attic - Lowestoft

Lovewell Road
NR33 0RQ

Tel: 01502 565646

The Attic - Walpole

Cookley Road
Suffolk, IP19 9AT

Tel: 01986 784287

The Attic - Carlton Colville

Hall Road
Carlton Colville
Suffolk, NR33 8AX

Tel: 07714 256906

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