SEND (Special Educational Needs & Disabilities)

We are proud to be inclusive at Wistaston Church Lane. We intend to cater for every child's individual needs, but we are particularly proud of the way we meet the specific needs of SEND pupils.


Miss Willington

Miss Willington

SENCO & Year 6 Teacher

Miss Willington oversees the classroom provision for pupils and advises teachers and Teaching Assistants on the best way to ensure that the children make progress.

Mrs Booth's main responsibilities lie with the children in Early Years and Key Stage 1, although she works with Miss Willington to support children across the whole school.

Miss Willington and Mrs Booth work together on whole school SEND work, ensuring that the children on the SEND register receive support and meet their targets. 

‘The leadership of SEND is effective. The special educational needs coordinator (SENCo) is trained well and works in partnership with different specialists to ensure that the personal, social and educational needs of pupils with SEND are met.’ 

(Ofsted, 2019)

Why choose Wistaston Church Lane to support your child with SEND?

We believe that Wistaston Church Lane is the best place for children with additional needs and their families. The staff at our school are determined to meet the needs of every child as best we can. This dedication to our families and children with SEND ensures that all of our pupils enjoy the same academic, social, sporting and cultural opportunities as their peers with appropriate adjustments and assistance, where necessary.

…pupils with SEND make consistently strong progress from their different starting points. They benefit from good specialist teaching as well as from learning alongside their peers.’ (Ofsted, 2019) 

We are inclusive

Inclusion is embedded within everyday practices at Wistaston Church Lane. Where teaching assistants are employed in classes, they may circulate around the classroom, make adaptations to SEN materials, work within small groups, or promote independence with a few children. In other words, all of our children are supported to be involved in all aspects of learning: The goal is to grow and learn together.

‘Teaching assistants give pupils just the right amount of support to enable them to access learning. Thereafter, pupils are encouraged to find things out for themselves and, where possible, work independently.’ (Ofsted, 2019)

Each child is an individual

At Wistaston Church Lane we know that each child is an individual and each child has individual needs. We embrace and value these qualities as this is what makes each person unique. Through this understanding, the provision for each child is tailored to their needs. Even within group work we may adapt our language or break down activities differently for a single child. Our staff do this intuitively, constantly removing any barriers to learning as they present themselves.

‘Staff are trained well and have a good understanding of how young children learn.’ (Ofsted, 2019)

We work with you

We are committed to working alongside the parents and families of all our children, but we particularly enjoy working alongside families of children with additional needs. We work hard to understand each family’s unique situation and we listen to any concerns, no matter how small. We support our SEND children and families throughout their time at Wistaston Church Lane and beyond.

‘Transition arrangements with local high schools are good and extended for some pupils, particularly those with SEND.’ (Ofsted, 2019)

Our commitment to ongoing training and development

At Wistaston Church Lane, we are constantly striving to understand the needs of our children as best we can. That is why we organise, attend and deliver CPD sessions so that we all learn as much as we can about SEND. The more we know, the better we can help.

‘…SEND training helps (staff) to communicate very effectively with children with visual impairments and other specific learning needs.’ (Ofsted, 2019)

What are Special Educational Needs?

A child or young person has SEN 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

A child under compulsory school age has special educational needs if he or she has a learning difficulty or disability and will require special educational provision upon entering school.


Many children and young people who have SEN may have a disability under the Equality Act 2010 – that is: “a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.” Children and young people with such conditions do not necessarily have SEN, but a disabled child or young person may be deemed to have SEN if they require special educational provision.

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In Cheshire East we are meeting the different types and levels of needs of children and young people with SEN through the use of a ‘Graduated Approach’. Where a child or young person is identified as having SEN, educational settings should take action to remove barriers to learning and put effective special educational provision in place through the use of a Graduated Approach.

The Universal level describes the support that is available to all Cheshire East children and young people, including those with and without SEN. Within the Cheshire East Graduated Approach, at the Universal Level, needs are met through Quality First Teaching and Learning, along with universal health and care services that are available to all children and young people (e.g. GPs, dentists etc.). Universal services such as Quality First Teaching are provided to all children and young people, and continue to be provided to children and young people with SEN who are also receiving additional support through other levels of the Graduated Approach. This means that all teachers are teachers of children and young people with special educational needs.

Support for children and young people at both Cause For Concern and SEN Support levels is tailored to the needs of the individual child or young person, and provided through a variety of means, for example: assistive technology, individual or small group teaching, or in-class support.

Cheshire East's SEN Toolkit

Cheshire East's Local Offer

Cheshire East Information Advice and Support

At Wistaston Church Lane Academy, we aspire to be a Dyslexia Friendly School. Not only does a dyslexia friendly ethos help us to meet the needs of dyslexic pupils, but also the needs of pupils, but also the needs of pupils who have delayed literacy skills. We believe adopting and implementing Dyslexia Friendly strategies throughout the school and our curriculum will not only benefit children with Dyslexic tendencies but will also have impact on other learners, as strategies good for Dyslexic learners are good for everyone. We also recognise that a child’s self-esteem and confidence go hand in hand with successful learning. Our children are made aware of the nature of the barriers that some people may have to learning and how different strategies can help to overcome these.

Our aim is to enable children with dyslexia to manage their learning through quality first teaching. We want to work with children and parents to develop a positive mindset so that children don’t see dyslexia as a label or as an excuse.

Read our Dyslexia Friendly Policy.

Our Accessibility Plan includes details of how we are:

  • increasing our disabled pupils’ ability to participate in your school’s curriculum
  • improving the physical environment of our school so disabled pupils can take better advantage of the education, benefits, facilities and services we offer
  • improving the availability of accessible information to our disabled pupils

Staff regularly participate in Continuous Professional Development in SEND

Positive behaviour course at Springfield

Sensory processing training

ADHD course from Adelaide

ELKLAN training for staff (SALT)

Training delivered by the Child Brain Injury Trust

Play therapy CPD

Precision Teaching training

Positive handling course

Writing SEN Support plans CPD

Diabetes training

Contributions from the Sensory Inclusion Service

Makaton and communication (Springfield)

National Deaf Children’s Society roadshow visited the school and held workshops

Emotion coaching CPD

Lego Therapy

Autism CPD

How ASC, ADHD and PDA are managed at Springfield

In-house training on completing referral forms for NHS services