Simon Balle All through School is proud to be an inclusive school. We want the very best educational experiences, academic and social, for all our young people. We set the very highest expectations from their entry into Reception to when they leave in the sixth form. Our school vision of “creating tomorrow’s citizens today” is just as relevant for those with SEND as all other students.

SEND Information Report 2023-2024

As a comprehensive school, we welcome students of all abilities and recognise that some of our young people will present a variety of learning, physical and social needs. What we do know, as research clearly demonstrates, is that the school’s ethos and values are key for all children to thrive and in particular those who present with SEND. High quality teaching and learning are equally important, using those staff who have built expertise in and knowledge of effective strategies which address these students’ needs. As a school which celebrates the individual for who they are and what they bring to the community, we endeavour to personalise our approach.

If you would like to speak to a member of the SEND team, and your child currently attends Simon Balle all through School, you can book a virtual appointment of up to 15 minutes with a member of the SEND team, please use the following booking link: Booking link


All children and young people may experience learning difficulties at some point. This is not unusual. For most children the difficulties are temporary and are soon overcome with support and encouragement from home and school.

The term ‘Special Educational Needs’ is used to describe learning difficulties or disabilities that from time to time make it harder for children to learn than most children of the same age. Children with Special Educational Needs (SEN) are likely to need extra or different help from that given to other children their age. This help is known as special educational provision.

The SEND Code of Practice is a national document which all schools must refer to when making decisions relating to students with Special Educational Needs (SEN) or disabilities. This helps to ensure that children have access to a similar system of support, whichever school they attend.

A child may have a Special Educational Need (SEN) if they require additional or different provision to support them in their learning in order to ensure that they make progress.

The Code of Practice says: ‘A child or young person has SEND if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made…’

A child of school age has a learning difficulty or disability if they:

  • have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age in local schools
  • have a disability which prevents or hinders the child from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age.

There are four broad areas of SEN need. These are:

  • Communication and Interaction
  • Cognition and Learning
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health
  • Sensory and/or Physical Needs

These difficulties can be barriers to learning and a child may have needs that fall into one or more of these categories. Children who need extra help with their learning may receive additional support under one of the following categories:

  • SEN support
  • An EHC plan

As a school, we assess all children to identify their strengths and needs and how they can best be supported. As a school we follow a graduated response (Assess, Plan, Do, Review) when assessing needs. The graduated approach is used to ensure that students have necessary adjustments made to support them. When a pupil is identified as struggling in one area then adjustments can be made within Quality First Teaching (QFT) to ensure they are included. This is in-line with the Code of Practice for SEND and ensures that parental concerns are heard, and that the child’s needs are assessed to agree on next steps.

We believe the best place for students to progress is in a classroom with their peers, led by a subject specialist.

  • We recognise that high quality teaching is the first step (Wave 1) in responding to students who have or may have SEND needs. Our teaching is adaptive to respond to the needs of all young people.
  • Many students (Wave 2) may receive short term support in the classroom through extra adaptation to help access the curriculum. This may include short-term interventions, with clearly defined goals.
  • Some students (Wave 3) will have extra support, on a longer-term basis in order to accelerate progress and ensure they can fulfil their potential. Targeted students may benefit from support and advice from other professionals and specialists.
  • A very small number of children (Wave 4) will have exceptional long term and complex needs and will require an EHC plan.


The graduated response – this is used to determine what type of support is best suited to each young person:


Wave 1 Wave 2 Wave 3 Wave 4
High quality, adaptive teaching

For all students

High quality teaching plus extra short term support

For students making slower progress

SEN support

Additional medium/long term, individualised support

For students still making less progress or learning at low attainment levels in one or more areas

EHC plan

For students with more complex needs

If your child is identified as having a SEND need, or has a diagnosis from a professional, they will be placed on our school’s SEND register.

At Simon Balle All-through School, we look at the individual child’s barriers to learning and put the appropriate provision in place to remove those barriers. SEND support might include:

  • Extra support in the classroom (adaptive teaching)
  • Adapting resources to ensure they are accessible
  • Small group or one-to-one learning – both within the class and as interventions
  • Support from specialists such as speech and language therapists

Progress is reviewed regularly using the graduated response and student profiles are updated in collaboration with parents/carers to inform next steps.

Experts from outside agencies may be asked to assess your child’s needs if, despite the support put into place in school, their progress is slow and they continue to have difficulties. These assessments are generally focused on giving the school and parents additional advice on the best way to support the child, through working as a partnership between home and school to implement similar reasonable adjustments.

The SEND team will ask for your permission to seek additional advice from outside specialists such as health professionals, specialist teachers or an educational psychologist who would:

  • Carry out further assessment of your child’s needs
  • Observe your child
  • Provide advice to the school on how best to support your child
  • Suggest resources that would help your child to make further progress

Other examples of external support include:

  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physiotherapists
  • School Nurse
  • Strengthening Families
  • Social Workers
  • Family Support Workers
  • Speech and Language (SALT)

Parents are, wherever possible, offered the opportunity to meet with these professionals to discuss the results of their assessments / observations.

Unless a child has an EHC plan, the school does not receive specific funding for individuals. Rather, part of the school’s limited budget is for supporting students with special educational needs and disabilities. The amount each school receives is based on the number and age of students attending; this is known as ‘per pupil entitlement.’ An additional notional SEND budget provides funding to offer extra support to students with additional needs, including those with SEND. The value of funding each school receives varies and is informed by a set of government indicators. A child with an EHC plan may be set an amount of ‘high needs funding’. This is used to help fund the provision outlined in their individual EHC plan. Not all EHC plans receive additional high needs funding.

If your child’s needs are very complex and long-term the school may ask the Local Education Authority (LEA), in collaboration with you as the parent or carer, to carry out an education, health and care needs assessment. This is only appropriate for a very small number of students. Schools can make this request when they have undertaken a number of cycles of support and can demonstrate that they need additional funding or support to meet the child’s needs.

Parents can also make their own request for an assessment directly to the LEA. If the LEA agrees that an assessment needs to take place, it should be completed within 20 weeks from when it was requested. This assessment could lead to your child getting an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan. This EHC plan brings all of your child’s education, health and social care needs into one legal document.

A child with an EHC plan will have an annual review at least every 12 months. Where a child is not reaching set targets or there are concerns with the progress against the EHC targets, an early review will be held.

If you are worried about any aspect of your child’s development or learning, talk to your child’s teacher / teachers or contact the SEND team if you think it is related to a SEND need. We always recommend that you speak to your child’s class teacher / teachers first if you have any concerns or questions about your child’s progress.

In the Primary phase, the class teacher and support staff will address any concerns. In the Secondary phase the Head of Year and Form Tutor will be involved. The Head of Year and Form Tutor play a key role in pastoral care and can address both social and academic concerns. If needed, they will signpost you to the SEN team.


  • SENDCo Amanda Wood (
  • SENDCo Alexandra Raven (
  • KS5 SEND lead Stephen Robins (
  • Inclusive wellbeing lead Edd Brown (

If you would like to speak to a member of the SEND team, and your child currently attends Simon Balle all through School, you can book a virtual appointment of up to 15 minutes with a member of the SEND team, please use the following booking link: Booking link

Research shows that children who make the greatest progress, whether those with or without SEND, are those whose parents/carers support the work carried out at school by:

  • Attending all meetings such as parents’ evenings, workshops, EHCP reviews
  • Supporting excellent study habits at home - daily reading, structures for completion of home learning (dependent on age and stage)
  • Supporting excellent routines (bedtimes, use of devices and phones, mealtimes etc, again dependent on age and stage)
  • Ensuring excellent attendance and punctuality (97%+)
  • Communicating with key staff in school - class teacher and form tutor in the first instance - for example, any changes at home that staff may need to know

We will achieve the best results for your child if we work together!

Hertfordshire Local SEND offer

The Local Offer lets parents and young people know what special educational needs and disabilities services are available in Hertfordshire, and who can access them.

Link to website:

Herts Sendias –

Herts Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support Service or SENDIASS is a free, confidential and impartial service for parents and carers, children and young people (up to twenty five years).

The type and range of support offered includes:

  • Information regarding the local offer, local policy and SEN/ disability law from independently trained staff.
  • Advice for parents/carers, children and young people on gathering, understanding and interpreting information and applying it to their own situation.
  • Information on the local authority’s processes for resolving disagreements, its complaints procedures and means of redress.
  • Signposting children, young people and parents to alternative and additional sources of local and national information, advice and support.
  • Individual casework and representation where needed including support in attending meetings, contributing to assessments and reviews and participating in decisions about outcomes for the child or young person.
  • Support for parents and young people in managing mediation and appeals to the SEND Tribunal.

  • EHC plan – education, health and care plan
  • SEN – special educational needs
  • SENDCO – SEN Co-ordinator
  • SEND – SEN and disability