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SEN Website

Discussion in 'Special educational needs' started by GoldSEN, Aug 7, 2019.

  1. GoldSEN

    GoldSEN New commenter

    Hi all,

    I've started a website that is 60% complete around supporting people who work with individuals with SEN. The website is called:


    Have got links, downloads and articles- all free. Would like to know what people think and what they may want on it in the future. Also if anyone wants to contribute to the website (and have author credits) let me know.


  2. Dodros

    Dodros Star commenter

    An interesting site and I'm sure its content will be warmly welcomed by colleagues who work in special schools. Are you planning to provide support, advice, links and resources too for teachers working with, and seeking to include, students with SEND in mainstream schools?
    minnie me, GoldSEN and peter12171 like this.
  3. peter12171

    peter12171 Star commenter

    A very good point. If so, I think there needs to be an expansion of the scope of the site (I intend this to be a constructive post, by the way; apologies in advance if it comes across otherwise). As a TA in a mainstream school I deliver literacy intervention, along with intervention for dyslexic students. Dyslexia is an area for which there is a massive gap at secondary level; it’s almost as if people are saying ‘you’re in secondary now, dyslexia won’t be a problem. Yet there seems to be nothing for dyslexia on the site.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am sure the site is needed, and will be a great help for those in SEN specific schools. If that is the target audience, I think it needs to be made a bit clearer.
    GoldSEN and Dodros like this.
  4. GoldSEN

    GoldSEN New commenter

    Hi Dodros,
    Thank you for replying, and your kind words.

    Our plan is to also include resources for staff supporting SEND pupils in mainstream. If there is anything in particular you or other teachers would like/need please let us know and we can create the resource or signpost to an existing resource.
  5. GoldSEN

    GoldSEN New commenter

    Hi, Thanks for your feedback. I see your comments as constructive- it was the sort feedback I was hoping for. If we know what people are hoping/expecting from a website, particularly those in the mainstream teaching SEN, then we will focus on ensuring that areas such as Dyslexia get a bigger focus. At the moment we are in the early stages of the website so have used material that was at hand which at the moment is probably more focused for SEN specific schools. However with time the plan is to spread into more mainstream support.
    Dodros and peter12171 like this.
  6. Dodros

    Dodros Star commenter

    Thank you for being open to our comments. It does make sense to start with what you know and if your experience is special school based then just be prepared to make it clear on your site that this is your immediate focus. By the way, keep an eye on the state of your links; my teaching and research interests are curriculum focused and I've noted that curriculum links to a couple of the special schools generate error messages at the moment.

    If you are planning to cover inclusion of SEND in mainstream, don't underestimate the task ahead. Peter12171 has mentioned specific learning difficulties (dyslexia) as a key issue in mainstream settings and I agree totally. I would add to the mix:

    * The importance of implementing appropriate access arrangements for individual candidates with SEND sitting public examinations.
    * The need for subject teachers (not just English and Maths!) to understand the implications of SEND for the delivery of their dimension of the whole curriculum and integrate that understanding into classroom practice. Such colleagues would also possibly appreciate examples of SEND-friendly teaching materials in the full range of NC subjects, not only English and Maths.
    * The need for "collegiality" when exchanging information between subject departments and the school SENCo, so that data goes both ways. No single individual has a monopoly of expertise when including a student with learning difficulties. Perhaps case studies of typical but fictional students might be given.
    * Mainstream schoolwide and departmental SEND policies and the procedures for their regular review need to be exemplified.
    * Remember that SLD/PMLD are likelier to present in special schools than in mainstream settings, where specific learning difficulties, mild/moderate learning difficulties, autistic spectrum conditions, speech and language disorders, social, emotional and mental health issues and sensory impairments are likelier to manifest themselves.

    I'm well aware there's little here about SEND in either primary or tertiary education, which deserves to be thoroughly explored too. Just a few ideas off the top of the head of a retired MFL and SEND mainstream secondary school teacher.
    peter12171 and GoldSEN like this.
  7. grasshopper2000

    grasshopper2000 Occasional commenter

    It's a really good idea and something that is needed for teachers as there is such a lack of training given to the majority of teachers.

    As mentioned above, there is nothing about dyslexia, but also ASD, visual stress/irlen, etc.

    Also, who is the EHCP section who is it aimed at? Schools or parents? I think there should be a parent section and a school section both with a lot more detail about the laws regarding them, how to get one and who needs one.

    The chosing a secondary or special school part misses out the important detail that most special schools you can only get a place at if you have an EHCP and if you want a place there you should allow at least a year to get the EHCP sorted to be in place in time.

    Hope that helps.
    peter12171 likes this.
  8. dzil

    dzil Occasional commenter

    You have put a lot of work into the site and I thought it may be useful for NQTs or teachers in mainstream schools. The posts above suggest it may be useful for special schools but I disagree. Hopefully the next 40% that is developed will prove me wrong.

    I may be unusual, being a fairly experienced special school teacher, but I'm sorry to say I found the resources and information for special schools rather basic and slightly patronising for teachers working in schools for students with SLD. The site does not seem to provide much at all for students with PMLD other than links to sites such as Priory Woods, which are very well known and used in special schools. The switch resource list is very basic and does not include any links to possible progression in teaching and learning the use of switches (for example Ian Bean's seminal work.)
    You seem to be a PE specialist, so I'd like to see you build on that as it's not covered well by other sites (except the very specialist ones like Sherbourne and Haliwick) . I'd particularly like more content suitable for people with mobility difficulties who don't use a wheelchair; team games for students who need to be out of their chairs; those who have limited strength in all limbs not just legs and some ideas for students who have gross and fine motor difficulties and co-ordination problems. Maybe some lesson ideas for a standard PE class with students who have a mixture of all of the above difficulties and some who are very physically able. Such a class would usually be taught by one teacher with one teaching assistant and I know from experience that that is a normal, regular challenge for a new teacher in special.
    Your site could, when finished could be a very useful resource, especially if it signposts the myriad of other sites which are available to teachers of people with SEN.
    stressynic likes this.

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