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    The Russell School


The Russell School SEND Information Report September 2023

The Russell School is a multicultural primary school for children aged between 3 and 11 years old. We are proud to offer an inclusive education to children with a wide range of special educational needs and disabilities.

All staff and children support and celebrate difference and diversity, with a vision of promoting equality and opportunity for all and the respect of others. This is reflected through both our school values and vision.

If you need to speak to our SENCo (Mrs McCann) or INCO (Ms Clarke) please email on info@russell.richmond.sch.uk and title FAO SENCo.

All maintained schools in Richmond have a similar approach to meeting the needs of children with Special Educational Needs. We are supported by the Local Authority to ensure that all children, regardless of their specific needs, make the best possible progress in school. All schools are supported to be as inclusive as possible, and the needs of children with a Special Educational Need or Disability (SEND) are met in a mainstream setting, whenever possible, if it is the family’s preference.

The admission of children with SEND is the second criterion considered when offering school places. There will only be a few cases when a child has to go to a specific school for exceptional family, learning, social or medical reasons. If your child has special educational needs or if your child may need additional support in school, but does not have an Education, Health and Care plan (EHCP), it is not possible to consider their application for a higher priority under this criterion.

Please see the questions and answers below for more information about the special needs provision offered by The Russell School. The SEND Information Report detailed on this webpage was last updated September 2023.

What is the school’s ethos and approach to teaching pupils with SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities)?

The Russell Primary School is a nurturing, inclusive school which delivers a high standard of education to children from the local community regardless of their individual needs. The school is proud of its diverse community and endeavours to respond to the individual and unique needs of children from our local community in a positive, proactive manner. Children with additional needs make good progress from their starting points and their achievements are celebrated. All children are supported and encouraged to take part in all aspects of school life.

The Russell Primary School supports children with a wide range of needs including communication and language difficulties, Autism (ASD), ADHD, learning difficulties, global developmental delay and social emotional difficulties. Currently our main presenting need in school is Social Communication needs.

 What are special educational Needs?

The Special Educational Needs Code of Practice 2014 states that a child has SEN if they:

a) Have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age or

b) Have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of the kind generally provided for others of the same age in a mainstream school.

Special educational needs are broadly defined by the following four areas of need:

·        Communication and interaction

·        Cognition and learning

·        Social, emotional and mental health

·        Sensory and/or physical needs

What expertise, training and experience do school staff have in SEND?

The school SEND provision is managed by two members of staff - the school’s Inclusion Lead (and member of the Senior Leadership Team), Ms Clarke, and our SENCo, Mrs McCann. They can both be contacted via the school office by telephone on 0208 940 1446 or email at info@russell.richmond.sch.uk.

The Inclusion Lead, in consultation with the Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team, plan regular training for all staff linked to the current needs of the present pupils and staff.

The school's Inclusion Lead and SENCo are qualified teachers with postgraduate qualifications in SEN, Disability and Psychology. They attend regular training within the Local Authority to stay up-to-date with current Government legislation and provision for SEND pupils.

The Russell School Governing Body has an appointed SEND Governor who meets termly with the Inclusion Lead to ensure the staff are receiving appropriate professional development and are confident to meet the needs of the pupils they teach.

The Russell School works closely in partnership with Strathmore School; we are co-located in one building. Strathmore has a wealth of experience and expertise which The Russell School can access and benefit from when needed. Both schools regularly share experiences and gain from each other’s practice.

The Inclusion Lead's and SENCo’s jobs are to support the Class Teacher to provide Quality First Teaching for children with SEND. Class Teachers plan lessons according to the specific needs of all groups of children in their class, and will ensure that your child’s needs are met. Trained support staff can adapt the teachers’ planning to support the needs of your child where necessary. Planning and teaching will be adapted on a daily basis, if needed, to meet your child’s learning requirements. This is called ‘in the moment’ provision.

The school has regular and specific training for all staff to improve the teaching and learning of children including those with SEND. Staff have received training on trauma and attachment, scaffolding learning, colourful semantics, spelling, phonics, executive functioning difficulties and mental health and wellbeing . Individual teachers and support staff attend training courses run by outside agencies or the Local Authority, that are relevant to the needs of specific children in their class.

Class Teachers are able to attend termly consultations with the Inclusion Lead and SENCo to discuss any new concerns. Pupil Progress meetings are held termly with the Headteacher to discuss individual progress and the needs of all children.

How will I know how my child with SEND is doing in school or if they may have SEND?

As a school, staff closely monitor the progress of all pupils. The staff have termly Pupil Progress meetings with the Headteacher, Inclusion Lead or SENCo to discuss the progress for all pupils in their class. The school have half-termly assessment focused weeks, the results from which are recorded on our internal assessment system called Target Tracker. Regular book scrutiny, lesson observation and learning walks provide a wealth of information about each pupil’s progress. Each year all staff are part of the whole school provision mapping process from which pupils’ needs are identified.


If your child is identified as not making enough progress academically, physically, emotionally or socially, the school will set up a meeting to discuss this with you. At the meeting, we will collaboratively share our concerns about your child and think of ways to further support your child’s needs at school and at home. After this, your child’s progress and learning will be monitored closely.


If your child’s learning and progress is of a significant concern, despite careful planning and assessment by the Class Teacher, the school will consider whether they feel your child’s needs are longer term and need further, more targeted, support. At this point, in consultation with parents, the child will be included in our SEND Support register. The child’s learning will then be monitored and supported closely by the SENCo and the Inclusion Lead.


When a child is included on our SEN support register, the child and parents / carers will be part of an Assess, Plan, Do and Review cycle of learning as outlined in the SEN Code of Practice. The provision planned for your child will be written on an SEND Support Plan (SSP) and shared/discussed with parents / carers at termly parent / carer evenings.


Who are the best people to talk to in this school about my child’s difficulties with learning/ Special Educational Needs or Disability (SEND)?

 Inclusion Lead and SENCo: Responsible for:

  •  Coordination and day to day management of all the support for children with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) and developing the school’s SEND information report to make sure all children receive a consistent, high quality response to meeting their needs in school.
  • Ensuring that you are involved in supporting your child’s learning, kept informed about the support your child is getting and involved in reviewing how your child is doing.
  • Liaising with all the other people who may be coming into school to help support your child’s learning e.g. Speech and Language Therapy, Educational Psychology, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy etc.
  • Updating the school’s SEND support list (a system for ensuring all the SEND needs of pupils in this school are known) and making sure that there are excellent records of your child’s progress and needs.
  • Being an advocate for children with SEND and promoting inclusive practices throughout the school.

 Class Teacher: Responsible for:

  •  Checking on the progress of your child and identifying, planning and delivering any additional help your child may need (this could be things like targeted work, additional support) and informing the Inclusion Lead as appropriate
  • Setting relevant targets for your child and sharing and reviewing these with parents
  • Ensuring that all members of staff working with your child in school, such as TAs and outside specialist help, are supported to deliver the planned work/programme for your child so that they can achieve the best possible progress
  • Ensuring that the school’s SEND Policy is followed in their classroom and for all the pupils they teach with any SEND

SEN Governor: Responsible for:

Making sure that the necessary support is provided for any child who attends the school who has SEND.

Headteacher: Responsible for:

  •  The strategic leadership and management of all aspects of the school, including the support for children with SEND.
  • Ensuring that your child’s needs are met, giving responsibility to the Inclusion Leader and Class Teachers.
  • Ensuring that the Governing Body is kept up to date regarding any issues in the school relating to SEND.
  • Ensuring that the Local Authority plays its part in the provision for children with an EHCP (Education Health Care Plan).

How does the school involve children/young people with SEND in their education and in the decision making process?

All children across the school are involved in and expected to take some responsibility for their own learning. All children have differentiated learning statements in their writing books so that they know their own next steps of learning in English. All pupils are encouraged to reflect upon their own learning using their ‘Bubble catcher’ books. 

Children who have an EHC plan have their own individual targets in their personal A5 folder which is always available in class. They can give their own feedback and work with the teacher on their next steps of learning. Children are encouraged to take-part in their EHCP Annual Review meeting giving their views about what they would like to be better at and how adults in school can support them. All pupils with an EHC plan or receivin SEND Support write their own ‘one page profiles’ which are updated each year, outlining what the children feel may help them to learn.

SEND pupil voice is gathered each year via a questionnaire and this information is used to support future planning of SEND within the school.

What are the different types of support available for my child with SEND at The Russell School?

1.   Class teacher input via excellent, targeted, classroom teaching also known as Quality First Teaching (Wave One).

For your child this means that:

  •  All staff will seek to promote their independence and resilience.
  • The teacher has the highest possible expectations for your child and all pupils in their class.
  • All teaching is based upon building on what your child already knows, can do and can understand and finding the next steps forward.
  • Different methods  of teaching are in place so that your child is fully involved in learning in class. This may involve things like using more practical learning and multi-sensory learning, pre teaching or the use of scaffolds.
  • Specific strategies (which may be suggested by the SENCo, Inclusion Lead or outside professionals) are in place to support your child to learn.
  • Your child’s teacher will carefully check on your child’s progress and if he/she identifies any gaps in their understanding/learning he/she will help them to fill those gaps to make the best possible progress.
  • Your child’s teacher will meet regularly with the Headteacher to report on the progress and strategies used to support every child’s needs.
  • Your child’s class teacher will adapt their teaching during each lesson to meet the needs of the children within her class.

2.      Group work (Wave Two).

For your child this means that there are:

  • Groups available for any child who the class teacher feels need a little extra support as they have specific gaps in their understanding of a subject/area of learning.
  •  Groups available that are run inside and outside of the classroom.
  • Groups run by the class teacher or  the class Teaching and Learning Assistant (TLA) under the guidance of the class teacher.

 3.      SEND Code of Practice: SEN Support (Wave Three)

If it is decided that your child needs more individual, specific support,. The school will use the notional SEN budget, provided to state-funded mainstream schools, to provide targeted support which have specific outcomes that the child will work towards. This is called SEN Support.

You will be asked to attend a meeting to discuss your child’s progress and help plan possible ways forward. A SEND Support Plan (SSP) will be written with specific learning objectives. The child’s progress is monitored regularly in line with the SEND Code of Practice (Assess, Plan, Do, Review cycle)


If appropriate, an intervention programme delivered by a teaching assistant, the SENCo or the Inclusion Lead will be run to meet the specific targets written on the SSP.

Parents / carers may be asked to give permission for the school to refer your child to a specialist professional e.g. a Speech and Language Therapist or Educational Psychologist. This will help the school and parents / carers understand your child’s particular needs better and enable the school to support the child more effectively in school. The specialist professional will work with your child to understand their needs and make recommendations, which may include:

  • Making changes to the way your child is supported in class e.g. some individual support or changing some aspects of teaching to support them better.
  • Set targets which will include their specific expertise
  • A group or individual intervention run by school staff under the guidance of the outside professional e.g. a social skills group, a speech and language intervention, a motor skills coordination group, speech work.

This level of support is available for children with specific barriers to learning that cannot be overcome through Quality First Teaching and groups.

4.      Education, Health and Care Plan:

An Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) means that your child will have been identified by the class teacher/the Inclusion Lead in consultation with parents as needing a particularly high level  support which cannot be provided from the budget available to the school. Your child’s needs will be complex and long term.

Usually your child will  require specialist support in school from a professional outside of the school. This may be from Local Authority central services such as the Educational Psychology Service, Sensory Service (for students with a hearing or visual need), outside agencies such as the Speech and Language therapy (SALT) Service, Occupational Health or CAMHs.

The school (or you) can request that the Local Authority (LA) carry out an Education, Health and Care needs assessment of your child.

After the school has sent in the request to the Local Authority (with a lot of information about your child, including some from you), the LA will decide whether they think your child’s needs seem complex enough to require an EHCP (Education, Health and Care Plan). They will refer to the Threshold guidance  If this is the case, they will ask you and all professionals involved with your child to meet, assess and write a report outlining your child’s needs.


After the reports have all been provided, the Local Authority will decide if your child needs additional support in school to make good progress. If this is the case, they will write an EHC Plan. If this is not the case, they will ask the school to continue with the support at SEN Support as indicated in the Code of Practice.

The EHC Plan will outline the amount of additional funds provided to the school to help support your child, how the funds should be used and what strategies must be put in place in order to reach a set of  long-term outcomes. An additional adult may be used to support your child with some whole class learning, to run individual programmes or to run small groups including your child. It is important to note, this adult is not employed to work solely alongside your child. They work as part of the classroom supporting a wide range of pupils.

How can I let the school know I am concerned about my child’s progress in school?

At The Russell, we pride ourselves on open, honest and positive relationships with parents and carers.   If you are concerned about your child’s progress please talk to us.

In the first instance, speak to your child’s class teacher. 

If you require further information or support make an appointment to meet with the one of the school Inclusion Team:   Ms Clarke Or Ms McCann.

You may also contact the head teacher, Ms Brooks either by making an appointment through the school office.

If you still remain concerned, you may choose to contact the SEND Governor, who has responsibility for ensuring that the necessary support is provided for any child with SEND attending the school.

How is extra support allocated to children?

The school budget, received from the DfE via Richmond Local Authority, includes money for supporting children with SEND. The Headteacher decides on the budget for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities in consultation with the school governors, on the basis of needs in the school.

All staff are involved in a provision map exercise each year and information gathered from this is used to write detailed Class Provision Plans. Additional adult support is allocated according to EHCP funding and according to the needs within each class. The Headteacher and the Inclusion Lead discuss all the information they have about SEND in the school and together they decide what resources/training and support is needed. 

What other professional services provide support to children with specific needs at The Russell School?

Currently the school community can receive advice and support from the following services: 

Speech and Language Therapist

Educational Psychologist (consultation, assessment and advice)

CAMHs (child and mental health services)

School Nurse

Occupational Therapist

MHST (Mental Health Schools Team)

(EISS) Educational Inclusion Support service

(EAIP)The Advisory/Outreach Services for children/young people with Autism/social communication needs

Trainee Play Therapists

When appropriate to the needs of the child, these professionals can offer advice and support to our school staff, families and the child. To access support from these professionals there is a referral process which is managed by the Inclusion Team.

How will we measure the progress of your child in school?

For all children

Your child’s progress is continually monitored by his/her class teacher.

At the end of the Foundation Stage, the progress of each child is measured against the Early Learning Goals and parents / carers receive an end of year report including this information. Throughout the Early Years, teachers monitor all pupils using a six monthly  SPOTLIGHT assessment which is shared with parents.Teacher assessment and observation  plays an important part of Quality First teaching in the Early Years.

At the end of Year One all children are assessed using the National Phonics Screening Assessment. If your child does not meet the required threshold, this test will be repeated in Year Two after a period of additional support.

During Year 4, Pupils are tested on their knowledge of Times Tables. This is a National Assessment.

At the end of Year Six, children are formally assessed using Statutory Assessment Tests (SATs). This is something that the Government requires all schools to do.

For children at SEN Support or with an EHCP

When a child identifies as SEN support, assessment will be part of an assess, Plan, Do and Review cycle of learning as outlined in the SEN Code of Practice. The provision planned for your child will be written on a SEND Support Plan and reviewed regularly. Support Plans are shared/discussed with parents at termly parent / carer evenings. The impact of these interventions is continually monitored against the progress made by children over the course of the input.

As above, the progress of children with an EHC Plan is reviewed termly with parents. In addition, progress against the outcomes listed on the EHCP are formally reviewed at an Annual Review. All adults involved with the child’s education are invited to attend or input into this annual assessment.

How does the school evaluate the effectiveness of its SEND provision?

Children are assessed carefully at the beginning and end of all interventions using appropriate screening tools.   For some interventions this may involve obtaining a reading, spelling age for the pupil before and after intervention.  In this way the rate of progress can be ascertained and the effectiveness of the support evaluated. For other interventions an audit of skills may be conducted at the start and end of the intervention as a way of judging progress. Alternatively, observation based assessments and checklists may be used to evaluate progress of a particular intervention.

All children at SEN Support and those who have an EHCP will have short term targets set relating to each intervention they are accessing.  These will be set out in their SEND Support Plan.  At the end of each term a judgement is made as to whether the child has achieved the target set for each intervention.  This process helps the school to make judgments about the effectiveness of particular interventions and programmes and decide the next steps of learning.  The SENCO is responsible for monitoring the information gathered from assessments and evaluating effectiveness of SEND provision at The Russell.

How does the school communicate and consult with me about my child’s education?

Progress will be reviewed with your involvement each term. Parents of pupils receiving SEN support or those with an EHCP are invited to three parent / carer consultation meetings where the provision outlined in the child’s support plan is reviewed and new learning objectives / provision are discussed. Homework will be adjusted according to your child’s individual needs. If your child is supported via an EHCP, a home/school contact book can be used to support communication when appropriate. In some cases, when a child has limited or no speech, a camera is used so your child can communicate with you visually about their school day. The Teaching and Learning Assistant is available at the end and beginning of the day for brief, informal chats. If you have any concerns, teachers can be contacted via email if you have any questions and they will arrange a convenient time to chat.

How is The Russell School accessible to children with SEND?

Our wonderful building is accessible to children and adults with physical disabilities. The hall and Strathmore Wing have built in hoists to allow for more independent movement. There is a lift to the upper floors and disabled toilets around the building. All entrances are accessible for wheelchairs. Our play spaces are wide and easily accessible.

We have specialist equipment available to aid gross and fine motor development including adapted scissors, pencil grips and slope boards for writing. Fine motor boxes are available to use with all children across all key stages.

For those children with sensory needs, we have a dedicated sensory circuit space where children can develop strength and coordination and have a movement break to aid their concentration for learning. For sensory impaired children, text and books are enlarged when appropriate. Large display calculators and rulers and a colourful, lower case computer keyboard is available. Slope boards are used to support posture when writing. We work closely with the Occupational therapy team and Educational Service for Sensory Impairments who can advise on the best strategies to implement for a particular child.

All trips and activities offered to pupils at The Russell School are available to pupils with SEND.  For some pupils, reasonable adjustments may need to be considered. This is always carried out in partnership with families and carers.

The Russell School is an Attachment & Trauma informed school. The school has a calm ethos where children are encouraged to talk about their worries and concerns. The school has a dedicated space called The Reef where children can emotionally regulate or talk to an adult when needed. The school has two staff trained as ELSAs.

Visual timetables are used in all classrooms across the whole school to allow children to have meaningful structure to their day. Access to the curriculum is provided through good quality first teaching and all staff are teachers of SEND. Scaffolds such as maths manipulatives, writing frames or task lists are used to support learning.

After school provision and extra-curricular activities are accessible to all children including those with SEND. If required, funding is requested and an additional member of staff is appointed.

How will we support your child when they are leaving this school or moving on to another class?

We recognise that transitions can be difficult for a child with SEND and we take steps to ensure that any transition is as smooth as possible.

If your child is moving to a new school:

Russell staff will contact the other school’s SENCo and ensure he/she knows about the arrival of your child. The Russell Inclusion Lead or SENCo will discuss the specific needs of your child with the SENCo from the new school. All records about your child are transferred. Where possible, if moving to a local secondary school, your child will visit their new school on several occasions and in some cases staff from the new school will visit your child at The Russell. When transitioning to KS3, your child will have opportunities to meet new staff and to learn how to navigate the building and the playground. In year six, all pupils have access to a ‘transition workshop’ which focuses on the wellbeing of the pupils, allowing opportunity to share their concerns about secondary school.

When moving classes in school:

Information will be passed on to the new class teacher. Extra visits will be arranged to help your child settle in more quickly and dispel any anxieties he/she may have. All records and targets will be shared with the new teacher. A one page profile is written with your child explaining your child’s strengths and difficulties and things that help your child to succeed in school. This is shared with new staff when they first meet your child. Your child‘s move could be supported by a social story or visual book to support them understanding moving on, to recognise new staff or environments. Vulnerable children have had the opportunity to interview their new teacher and ask them questions.

What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being and/ or behaviour?

The Russell School has a Mental Health Strategy. This strategy explains what is offered to children within the school to support mental health and wellbeing.

Who, outside of the school, can I turn to for advice and support? Where can I find information about Local Authority provision for children and young people with SEND?

The Achieving for Children website offers a wealth of information about local organisation and provision for children and young people with SEND.


Other charities and organisations that can provide help and support