St John’s values individuality and is committed to meet the needs of every student, developing and reinforcing their self-esteem and encouraging a positive attitude to life.

Special Educational Needs & Disabilities

Since September 2014, all schools and academies are required to publish information about their Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) provision.

For an overview of SEND at St John’s, please see our SEND Guide for Parents. >>

Policies, Plans and Local Offer

Our Special Educational Needs & Disability Policy has been created in line with the National SEND Code of Practice: 0-25 years as well as with all other Excalibur Academies Trust policies. Our SEND policy will also form part of a dedicated Local Offer (further details below).


We also take care to ensure that our curriculum and our building do not discriminate against children with Special Educational Needs or a Disability. To see how we achieve this, please see our Accessibility Plan.

You may also like to see a floor plan of the school site, detailing how we are able to support students with physical disabilities.

You can view a virtual tour of our site, showing our accessibility features on the Accessibility tab of our Virtual Tours webpage.

Accessibility Plan

Accessibility Floor Plan

Accessibility Virtual Tour

Our SEND Team

Mrs Sarah Cardy has been the SENDCo here at St. John’s School since 2013, having previously worked as both SENDCo and Headteacher in one of our Trust schools. She has over 25 years’ experience of working with young people with SEND.

We have a dedicated SEND Governor, who can be contacted by emailing us on  and marking your email For the attention of Mrs T Harrigan-James, SEND Governor.



If you are a parent of a child who receives SEND support, you may find the following websites useful.

Wilts SEND Information Advice & Support Service


Independent Provider of Special Education Advice

Wilts Parent Carer Council


Please see the FAQ section below for some additional information that will help you understand more about SEND and our approach to SEND here at St. John’s.

St John’s currently supports more than 40 students with EHCPs (also called Statutory My Plan), with a further 180 students on the register for SEN support. We monitor a further 118 students.

The infographics below highlight the support at each key stage. This information is updated after each government census (October, Jan and May each year).

Definition of Special Educational Needs and Disability

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

  • has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or
  • has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions

Students must not be regarded as having a learning difficulty solely because the language or form of language of their home is different from the language in which they will be taught.

St John’s has a graduated approach to identification with four stages of action: assess, plan, do and review. This cycle of action will be revisited in increasing detail and with increasing frequency, to identify the best way of securing good progress. Assessment is an ongoing process that can identify students who may have special educational needs. We will measure student’s progress by referring to:

  • evidence from teacher observation and assessment—this can be collected both informally or formally through various types of ‘round robins’ and reports;
  • their performance against the standard for their Key Stage;
  • standardised assessments such as CAT’s, Reading and Spelling and other diagnostic assessments.

Teachers set high expectations for all pupils and will use appropriate assessment to set ambitious targets and plan challenging work for all. Teachers will plan and deliver high quality lessons which ensure students with SEND, disadvantaged and students with low prior attainment can study every subject, wherever possible, and ensure that there are no barriers to every student achieving. Teachers will also take account of the needs of pupils whose first language is not English.

From page 8 of the curriculum handbook: (see the Curriculum Information page of the website). Further information can be found in our SEND Policy on our Academy Policies page and under Policies, Plans and Local Offers above (click the hover button).

When a student is identified as having special educational needs, St John’s will provide interventions that are additional to or different from those provided as part of their usual differentiated curriculum. The SENDCo along with other colleagues, the student and their family, should decide on the action needed to help the student to progress. This support might be:

  • to provide different learning materials or special equipment;
  • to introduce some group or individual support;
  • to devote extra adult time to devising the nature of the planned intervention and to monitoring its effectiveness;
  • to undertake staff development and training aimed at introducing more effective strategies;
  • to access commissioned support services for one-off occasional advice on strategies or equipment.

If the SENDCo and the external specialist consider that the information gathered about the student is insufficient, and that more detailed advice must be obtained from other outside professionals, then the consent of the student’s family will be sought.

One Page Profiles Strategies employed to enable the student to progress are recorded within their One Page Profile (OPP). The OPP includes information about:

  • the nature of their learning need and how they may present in class;
  • the teaching strategies to be used;
  • the students’ strengths and weaknesses;
  • What works for that student;
  • What doesn’t work for that student.

Test Assistance and Access Arrangements form the primary means by which a school offers equal opportunities to students with additional needs during tests and exams.  The main difference between these two support measures are:

  • Test Assistance: offered by teachers in accordance with the student’s daily needs.
  • Access Arrangements: in place as a legal requirement from KS4 onwards, where deemed necessary, to enable students to access assessments in compliance with the Equality Act 2010.

For further details on the different Access Arrangements we are able to consider, please see our Test Assistance Guide for Parents leaflet.

All Education, Health & Care Plans (EHCPs) will be reviewed at least annually with the parents, the student, the LA and the academy to consider whether any amendments need to be made to the description of the student’s needs or to the special educational provision specified in the EHC Plan. The annual review should focus on what the student has achieved as well as on difficulties that need to be resolved. The annual review held at the end of a Key Stage will be particularly significant in preparing for the student’s transition to the next stage of their education.

The SEN team will evaluate the effectiveness of provision for pupils with SEN by:

  • Reviewing pupils’ individual progress towards their goals each data drop;
  • Reviewing the impact of interventions each new data drop;
  • Using pupil questionnaires;
  • Monitoring by the SENCO/Assistant SENCO/ TA manager;
  • Holding annual reviews for pupils with EHC plans.

Further information can be found in our SEND Policy on our  Academy Policies page and under Policies, Plans and Local Offers above (click the hover button).

The ethos of St John’s is one that values the individuality of every student. To this end, the staff and Governors are committed to a policy that seeks to meet the individual needs of each student, particularly by developing and reinforcing self-esteem and by encouraging a positive attitude to life. Each student is helped to achieve a feeling of success in some aspect of school life and every effort made to instil a sense of pride in self and work.

We recognise that many of the learning difficulties of students should not be a barrier and can be overcome, so students with special educational needs and disability are given the opportunity to benefit as fully as possible from a challenging education in a positive environment. This policy is consistent with the fundamental principle contained in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0 to 25 years (July 2014).

Parents and Carers

Parents or carers are seen as important partners in the effective working relationship with the academy in raising their child’s attainment. Parents are fully involved in the identification, assessment and decision-making process in the schools. Their contribution to their child’s education is valued highly by the staff. Parents are encouraged to involve their child in the decision making processes, including determining the level of participation, recording children’s views and implementing and reviewing their One Page Profile. St John’s will also update parents with relevant information.


We show sensitivity, honesty and mutual respect in encouraging students to share concerns, discuss strategies and see themselves as equal partners in their school. All students are involved in making decisions, where possible, as soon as they start at the academy. The ways in which we encourage them to participate reflects their emerging maturity. Confident young students, who know that their opinions will be valued and who can practice making choices, will be more secure and effective students during their school years. At St John’s, we encourage students to participate in their learning. We encourage them to take ownership of their learning and what they can do to improve. For students with SEND this includes discussing the strategies for success in their One Page Profiles. We encourage them to take part in reviewing their progress and in setting new goals and challenges.

For a few students the help given through additional SEND support may not be sufficient to enable the student to make adequate progress. In that case, we will consider asking the LA to initiate a an education, health and care needs assessment. Where a request for assessment is made to an LA, the student will have demonstrated significant cause for concern and the school will provide written evidence to the LA detailing:

  • our actions through a non statutory My Plan
  • OPP for the student
  • records of regular reviews and their outcomes
  • the student’s health including the student’s medical history where relevant
  • levels of attainment in English and Mathematics
  • educational and other assessments, for example from an advisory specialist support teacher or an educational psychologist
  • views of the parents and of the student
  • involvement of other professionals
  • any involvement by the Social Services or Education Welfare Service

When the LA receives a request for an assessment, it must decide within six weeks whether to carry out such an assessment. EHC Assessment and EHC Plan Local authorities must consult the child and the child’s parent throughout the process of assessment and production of an EHC Plan. The needs of the individual child and young person should sit at the heart of the assessment and planning process. Planning should start with the individual and local authorities must have regard to the views, wishes and feelings of the child or young person and their parent, their aspirations, the outcomes they wish to seek and the support they need to achieve them.

For a more detailed insight into the detailed sections covered within an EHC plan, see page 7 of our SEND Policy on Academy Policies or under Policies, Plans and Local Offers above (click the hover button).

If parents or carers have a complaint concerning provision for their child they will discuss this with the class teacher or Tutor. If this proves unsuccessful the matter should be referred to the SENDCo. Should the matter still be unresolved the parents should contact the Principal or the SEND Link Governor. If the complaint remains unresolved, the responsible Director from the Excalibur Board should be involved and finally the complaint should be taken to the LA and/or Secretary of State.

St John’s will contact the previous school/setting the pupil is moving from to collect information to support transition. If appropriate, additional transition visits are arranged both from us to the former school and the new pupil to this school. All pupils have transition visits as part of our core offer. We will share information with the school, college, or other setting the pupil is moving to. We will agree with parents and pupils which information will be shared as part of this.