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whats the difference between a SENCO and a special needs teacher?

Discussion in 'Special educational needs' started by bluemoon, Mar 1, 2007.

  1. Hi, does anybody know what the difference is between a SENCO and a special needs teacher?
    at our school we have both and the special needs teacher does all the IEPs and teaches children with special needs for short sessions. She also attends statement reviews etc. Our SENCO is actually a fulltime class teacher. im not sure exactly what she does for SEN!
    is it normal for a primary school to have both a SENCO and a special needs teacher?
     
  2. Hi, does anybody know what the difference is between a SENCO and a special needs teacher?
    at our school we have both and the special needs teacher does all the IEPs and teaches children with special needs for short sessions. She also attends statement reviews etc. Our SENCO is actually a fulltime class teacher. im not sure exactly what she does for SEN!
    is it normal for a primary school to have both a SENCO and a special needs teacher?
     
  3. avi

    avi

    Sencos have a managerial role. This may include the following:

    They ensure that SEN provision is in line with good practice.
    They ensure paperwork and records are kept in good order.
    They write applications for formal assessment/statement reviews etc.
    They liaise with Sencos from KS3 and, if appropriate, KS1/early years.
    They advise Head/staff/parents/governors.
    They disseminate information and good practice to colleagues and parents.
    They organise and manage SEN support and individual/small group teaching, according to different schools' requirements.
    They may organise or provide training for staff, both teaching staff and support staff.
    They liaise with Head/staff/outside agencies/parents.
    They monitor and evaluate provision and progress of children on the SEN Record, individually and across the school.
    They monitor and assess SEN teaching across the school (which is not just the province of 'the SEN teacher').
    They gather information for and/or write reports for outside agencies/Heads/governors/SEF etc etc etc.

    Additionally, they may assess individual children, they may teach small groups and/or individuals, they may write all/some IEPs or they may do some/none of these things (especially if they are full-time class teachers as well).

    The above list is not exhaustive; I suspect I have missed out other parts of the Senco role.

    An SEN teacher should not write 'the' IEP entirely on his/her own, imo; IEPs should detail provision/resources/strategies etc within class as well, so the input of the classteacher (preferably) or Senco is clearly required.

    In KS1/2, I would expect a specialist SEN teacher to plan for, teach and assess individuals and/or small groups according to their needs, in consultation with staff and Senco. I would expect any specialist teacher who teaches a particular child to attend statement reviews (and provide a written report), as I would the child's classteacher.

    It is not unusual for primary schools to have both a Senco and specialist SEN staff, assuming their budget can support this. In fact, many would see this as a good thing.

    However, schools do vary widely in what is required of individual members of staff, regardless of job title. Do you have an issue with your SENCO? If so, why not ask her to explain what she actually does? You may well be surprised.
     
  4. thanks for explaining the different roles
    i was confused about this as some schools have SENCOs who are classteachers but are given time to to do all the things which our special needs teacher does
     

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