Borrowdale CE Primary School
  • Search


"The vulnerable, disadvantaged, and those with special needs and/or disabilities are extremely well-supported so that everyone makes a positive contribution, inspired to be the best they can be."

(SIAMS inspection 2019)

At Borrowdale School, we do our utmost to meet the needs of all pupils in our school and because of this, we have a good reputation for working with children with SEND. All staff are aware of SEND within the school and receive high-quality information and training. We aim to quickly identify pupils who are making limited progress and provide targeted interventions and support to meet their needs. We ensure that parents are fully aware of the SEND process and informed of their child's learning regularly throughout the year. We are a fully inclusive school and have strong links with the Local Authority, Health Professionals and organisations within Cumbria. Our learning environment at Borrowdale School is developing continuously to meet the needs of our pupils. As a school, we continue to learn and grow our understanding of SEND to meet the needs of all pupils in our care.


Mr Ralf Smits  

Headteacher / SENDCo

(PGCE in Education (Special Needs & Inclusion))

The four main areas of SEND


If your child has been identified as SEND, it will be determined which of the four areas will be their main area of need. We promote the ethos of Quality First Teaching and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to adapt and meet learning needs. We will then follow the process of Assess-plan-do-review to determine the next steps for your child.


Communication & Interaction

  • Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC)
  • Speech, Language and Communication needs (SLCN)


Cognition & Learning

  • Specific learning difficulty (SpLD)
  • Mild to moderate learning difficulty (MLD)
  • Severe learning difficulty (SLD)
  • Profound multiple learning difficulty (PMLD)


Social, Emotional & Mental Health

  • Children and young people with SEMH may have the following mental health difficulties: anxiety, withdrawn or feeling isolated, having challenging and disturbing behaviour, self-harming, depression, eating disorder, and substance misuse.


Sensory and/or Physical

  • Visual impairment (VI)
  • Hearing impairment (HI)
  • Multi-sensory impairment (MSI)
  • Physical disability (PD)


If you have any concerns or would like to discuss anything further, please contact Mr Smits

The Local Offer


Q: What is the Local Offer?

The Local Offer is to assist parents in the important decision of choosing the best school for their child. It explains the provision for children with Special Educational Needs or Disabilities (SEND) within the school.
It explains to parents what the school offers children with additional needs, including how they are identified, and also helps them to understand how services and extra support are accessed. We hope the following information will be useful to parents when making a choice.
At Borrowdale School, we are a fully inclusive school and we ensure that all of our children achieve their full potential in all areas of the curriculum, regardless of gender, ethnicity, social background, physical ability, religion or educational needs.


Q: How does the school know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child has Special Educational Needs?

Children are assessed regularly within the school using both paper and online resources. Mr Smits (SENCo) has regular discussions with class teachers to discuss any children working below age-related expectations. Further assessments, discussions, or observations may be carried out to find out if any further support is needed. If the teacher/SENCo feels that a child has needs that require additional support to that provided in the classroom, then the child is recognised as having Special Educational Needs and an Individual Education Plan will be written by the class teacher. The details of this plan will be discussed at a meeting between parents and the class teacher and, if deemed appropriate, the SENCo.


Q: How will the school staff support my child?

At Borrowdale School we use a graduated approach to supporting pupils who have additional needs. Depending on the amount of support and resources your child needs, your child may be supported in the classroom, in a small group, or individually. If, after in-school support, it is identified that your child needs more specific assessment or involvement from any outside specialist, then the SENCo will discuss this with you and seek your permission to proceed to apply for an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP).


Q: How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

At Borrowdale School, children’s individual needs are met through differentiated teaching activities within the classroom. We aim to be inclusive in all areas of the curriculum, including the outdoors, however, on occasions children who require additional support may work on a specifically designed program of study to help boost their achievement in reading, writing or number work. If deemed beneficial, your child may work as a member of a smaller group of children or individually in a room other than your child’s usual classroom. These groups would normally be run by a teacher or a member of support staff who has been trained to deliver the program.


Q: How will I know how my child is doing and how will you help me support my child’s learning?

In addition to the normal reporting arrangements, parents’ evenings are held during the Autumn and Spring terms. At these appointments, teachers will discuss the progress that a child is making and how parents can support their child at home, if necessary. Additional appointments are also offered with the SENCo if a child has an individual education plan (IEP) which will give details of the targets, who will be supporting your child to help achieve the targets, and when the targets will be reviewed.IEPs are usually reviewed and rewritten every six months but, on occasions, they can be issued at the beginning of a term. Parents are always able to contact teachers or the SENCo (either by email or telephone) to discuss their child or to arrange a meeting at any time throughout the academic year.


Q: What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?

Every pupil's personal development, well-being, and behaviour at Borrowdale School are key. Our expectations about behaviour are consistent across the school. All children are treated equally and rewards and sanctions are in place for appropriate and inappropriate behaviour.

At Borrowdale School some children require an Education Health Care Plan. These plans are written and monitored annually by the Headteacher/SENCo to ensure that children with medical requirements (allergies, specific medical conditions, etc) have their needs met by staff. The plan may include the administration of medication or advice regarding what to do in the event of an allergic reaction. The Health Care Plans are displayed in the staff room and the child’s class register.


Q: What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?

The SENCo at Borrowdale School is Mr Smits. He is also the Headteacher. The school employs no specialists for SEN provision, but we will always do our best for every child in our care and training is carried out when the needs of the child require it.


Q: What training is the staff receiving or have completed to support children with SEND?

Staff training about SEND is carried out regularly depending on the needs of the children within the school. Referrals can also be made to external specialists in particular areas of SEND by the SENCo. They will then come into school to observe and work with the child. They will then write a report which will provide staff with advice and strategies to support individual children.


Q: How accessible is the school environment?

Borrowdale School is accessible for wheelchair users and there are disabled toilet facilities.


Q: How will the school prepare and support my child to join the school or to transfer to a new school or the next stage of education and life?

The Reception and Nursery class staff carry out home visits once you have accepted the place for your child. If a child is transferring to another school or setting, appropriate data is shared with the new setting. If the child leaving has Special Educational Needs, then the SENCo from Borrowdale School will contact the new school directly by telephone to discuss the needs of the child. For Year 6 pupils transferring to Secondary School there are intake days towards the end of the Summer Term. If a child has SEN or for another reason might take longer to settle into a new setting, then extra visit days are arranged by the schools. The Head and Deputy Head of Year 7 visit our school in the Summer Term to give the Year 6 pupils information about the secondary setting and answer any questions they may have.  Where pupils transfer to other secondary settings, visit days are arranged, usually at about the same time.


Q: How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?

The school budget received from the Local Authority includes money to support pupils with SEN. This money is used to employ Teaching Assistants to deliver specially designed programs to meet the needs of the specific children. Some of this support will be in the classroom, others will be small group support and individual support will also be given if necessary. The money received could also be used to buy specialised equipment if necessary. Children who have an EHCP will have their Education and Health Care Plan allocation money topped up with money from the school budget. This money will be used to pay for a Teaching Assistant to support the child for the number of hours stated in the EHCP.


Q: How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?

Each child is assessed individually following guidelines written in the SEN Code of Practice. The decision will be made based on the needs of the child and the professional agencies involved in providing support for the child. Children with Educational and Health Care Plans (formerly known as 'Statements') will be allocated funding as recommended in their plan. Core assessments are carried out termly for all pupils in school so the progress of children with special needs can be tracked alongside that of their peers.