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- Schools must have the freedom to prioritise relationships, build trust between the school, families and students, and show compassion.
- Schools must be supported by Government to have a listening culture.
- Trauma-informed attachment-aware frameworks should be introduced into all schools – with training and time for implementation funded by central government
- Government behaviour approaches should be driven by the development of a whole school ‘Belonging’ approach, not by increased discipline and sanctions.
- Funding to increase numbers of teaching assistants (TA) and learning support assistants (LSA) whose understanding and experience of working with SEND pupils is essential to creating inclusive learning environments.
- Appropriate funding in schools and local support services to enable high quality SEND and mental health support
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMHS) funding so young people can be seen by mental health specialists when they are referred, at the moment of greatest need.
- Funding for schools to allow smaller class sizes and additional specialist staff
SEND support staff:
- Provide essential additional support for SEND students
- Are often the key liaison between schools and families of SEND students – and have played a key role in supporting home/school relationships during Covid
- Have faced large scale redundancy due to government funding cuts to school budgets which has left many SEND students without the small group and 1:1 support that provided the opportunity for them to thrive in mainstream education
- Need fair contracts, pay and recognition by government of the important role they play in working with SEND students
Time for teachers and support staff to:
- meet, jointly plan and assess SEND students
- meet and listen to parents/carers
- meet regularly with the school SENCO to agree support for working with SEND students in the mainstream classroom.
- attend appropriate SEND training and CPD
- must be a qualified teacher (as per the SEND Code of Practice) with qualifications and sufficient time (according to the number of SEND students in a school) to support class staff and conduct meaningful meetings with families to ensure the success of SEND students.
- should be a member of the school leadership team
- should have administrative support so that they can focus on advising class teachers and support staff.