The Department for Supportive Education (DSE)
The DSE has recently undergone a number of developments to improve provision and meet the diverse needs of our learners. Improvements in structure, curriculum, training and resources continue to promote an inclusive approach to education which benefits all. Recent appointments within the DSE will ensure that this unique feature of DCIS continues to play an essential role. Miss Alison Ford has been appointed as DSE Leader and will continue to work closely with Mr Simon Townsend (Deputy Lead for Secondary DSE) who has also recently been appointed as SENCO (Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator) for Years 5 – 12. Ms Rajshree Singh, an experienced SEN practitioner, has been appointed as SENCO for Years Nursery – 4. We also welcome Mrs Gemma Reynolds from the UK as Secondary Life Skills teacher.
Staged Intervention/IEP Process, Twinning & Integration
Our Staged Intervention process (see Parent Handbook) clearly outlines the different stages of provision at DCIS and the support structures we have available. The IEP (Individual Education Plan) process relevant at Stages 3 & 4 has been carefully reviewed by our Educational Psychologist, Miss Vivienne Scott, to ensure targets set are S.M.A R.T. (Specific, Measured, Achievable, Realistic and Time Measured). Parents of children who receive an IEP will receive more information separately.
Class twinning and integration opportunities continue to be an integral part of the inclusive practice at DCIS. We have reviewed provision to ensure opportunities for inclusion are maximised and delivered in a way which can be consistently monitored and reviewed by our Educational Psychologist. More information on both structures can be found in your parent handbook or by speaking to your class teacher.
This year we will be piloting a range of curriculum enhancements which will complement the English National Curriculum and ensure all learners can access a curriculum which develops their knowledge and independent thinking skills. More details to follow.
We are also excited to offer a more inclusive range of ECA’s for students with additional learning needs such as Construction, Sports Skills, Sensory Play and Music. These ECA’s are run by our experienced DSE teachers and therapists and offer opportunities to experience extra-curricular activities with peers in an inclusive and nurturing environment. We hope students take advantage of these new opportunities and would welcome feedback from parents.
Another success has been our ‘Circle of Friends’ programme which was piloted last term in Year 2. The scheme is an approach to inclusion in a mainstream setting where any child experiencing difficulty is supported by their peers. The scheme is facilitated by trained teachers who work with groups of children to encourage and promote friendship, support and inclusion. The scheme will now be rolled out across school throughout the year. More information can be found on the website here http://inclusive-solutions.com/circles/circle-of-friends/ or by speaking to your class teacher.
Plans are now underway for the development of our Sensory Room which will benefit children with additional sensory or behavioural needs. We are consulting with a number of specialist providers who are assisting with the design and construction to ensure a professional facility. Updates on the development will follow over the coming months.
We are also in the process of finalising arrangements for a specialist consultant to review DSE provision at DCIS and make suggestions for future development. We look forward to sharing more details with you between now and Christmas.
Finally, the DSE would like to take this opportunity to remind parents of the therapy and consultation services available to all students at DCIS; Speech & Language, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Educational Psychology and Learning Support professionals are here to support you and your families. Enquiries for services should be directed to your class teacher in the first instance who will then follow the school referral process.
Last year we were also pleased to welcome a DSE Parent Representative, Mrs Jill Rodavich, to the DCA. This year we will be holding a number of information and training/support events for parents such as a Transition workshop, curriculum events and coffee mornings. Please check the school calendar and keep an eye on the newsletter for further announcements.
We are looking forward to welcoming you at these upcoming events.
Miss Alison Ford