SEND Information Report 2019

These pages set out information about provision for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) at Orion Academy

Orion Academy provides for students with a wide range of special educational needs and disabilities, including those with:

  • Social, Emotional, and Mental Health needs – this includes students who have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), and Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC).
  • Communication and interaction needs – this includes students who have speech language and communication difficulties.
  • Cognition and Learning needs – this includes students who have learning difficulties and specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia and dyscalculia. • 
  • Sensory and/or Physical needs – this includes children who have visual or hearing needs, dyspraxia or a physical disability that affects their learning.

Orion Academy is Gallery Trust academy catering for students with Education Health and Care Plans. Our Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Co-ordinator (SENDCo) is Charlotte Roberts who can be contacted on (01865) 771703.   

How do we identify and give extra help to children and young people with SEND?

The academy uses Oxfordshire County Council’s guidance ‘Identifying and supporting Special Educational Needs in Oxfordshire academys and settings’.

The guidance sets out:
• How we identify if a child or young person has a special educational need.
• How we assess children and plan for their special educational needs, and how we adapt our teaching.
• Ways in which we can adapt our academy environment to meet each child’s needs
• How we review progress and agree outcomes and involve you and your child in this.

Click here to read it:

Compilation Foundation Years and Primary

Compilation Secondary Academys Guidance

How do we work with parents and children/young people?

We work closely with students and their parents to agree outcomes and how we will all work towards these, and then to review progress. We do this: by termly meetings, parent evening meetings, home/academy diaries, scheduled phone calls, etc.

We offer a broad and balanced curriculum for all students. Details are published on the academy website.

At Key Stage 3 and 4 we offer a range of alternative provisions which include specialised programmes and activities such as: BTEC, Functional Skills and Foundation courses, SATRO construction course, Forestry Skills, Hill End, Path Hills and Trax.

We also offer opportunities on specialist courses for young people from Year 10 in association with countywide further Education colleges, including Oxford and Cherwell Valley College.

What expertise can we offer?

Our Learning Manager for SEND holds the NASENCO qualification, and has specialist training in CBT and Trauma Awareness.

As a team, our staff cover a range of specialisms which include training in, and knowledge of, Restorative Practices Therapeutic Management of Violence and Aggression (TMVA), phonics, ASC, ADHD, Trauma Awareness, and the diverse range of SEND presented by students.  Teaching Assistants are trained to support the particular needs of the students they work with.

We also have access to a range of specialist support services including:

  • Educational Psychology
    • SENSS, who support children with communication and language, sensory needs and physical needs
    • Behaviour Support
    • Team Teach
    • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)
    • Oxfordshire SchoolInclusion Team
    • Locality Community Support Service (LCSS)
    • Children’s Social Care
    • Young Carers
    • Bereavement councillors
    • Safer Schools Officer

Information about these services and what they offer can be found on the Oxfordshire County Council SEND web site:

We always discuss the involvement of specialist SEND services with parents first.
We also work with other services and organisations that are involved with a family, with the family’s permission.

How do we know if SEN provision is effective?

For all students we regularly review progress towards agreed outcomes assessing whether the support that has been in place has made a difference and what we need to do next. We evaluate this progress against age related expectations.

When we run special intervention programmes for groups of students we assess how successful they have been and use that information to decide on how best to run them in the future.

How are our students helped to access activities outside of the classroom?

All students are included in activities and trips following risk assessments where needed and in accordance with duties under the Equalities Act 2010. We talk to parents and students when planning trips so that everyone is clear about what will happen.

When we feel it is appropriate or if requested form tutors and staff members will work closely with students and families to help arrange and encourage students to attend local activities and clubs in their area. 

There is other information about activities and events for disabled children and those with SEND in Oxfordshire in the Family Information Directory:

What do we do to support the wellbeing of students?

All students have the opportunity to share their views through their academy council representatives and through conversations and discussions with all staff members in academy. Students are encouraged to attend their Educational and Health Care Plan annual review meeting where they are given the chance to discuss what is working well for them, what areas they may be struggling in and how we can help to support them.

At Orion Academy we take bullying very seriously. We help to prevent bullying of students by educating students about the effects of bullying. We deliver specific and robust anti-bullying units of work via our PSHE and ICT curriculums, tutor times, and through discussion points on our Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development sessions. Where necessary, we incorporate the involvement of external agencies such as the Safer Schools Officer. We will also offer restorative sessions / meetings between students, and in some cases parents and families, which are facilitated by a trained member of staff.

Joining the academy and moving on

We encourage all new students and parents to visit the academy before starting and we will offer transition to help ease students into life at Orion Academy. When students join our academy, we consider the provision that we provide and make suitable arrangements to cater for all needs where possible.  

In some cases, when ready, a student may wish to re-integrate back into a mainstream provision. If both parents and the school believe this is appropriate and in the best interest of the student, then we will offer full support and a bespoke re-integration package to help ensure a successful transition can be made.

We begin to prepare young people for transition into the next stages of their education or training by mapping their journey into college or further education and work through the Talantinos programme and through effective use of students’ EHCPs.

Who to contact

If you are concerned about your child you can either contact your child’s tutor, the SENDCo or the Head Teacher.  If you contact the academy to discuss your child’s education, you can contact the academy via e-mail, telephone or via a meeting in academy. We aim to respond to any complaints within three days but if the complaint has caused upset or distress or is viewed as a safeguarding concern, the academy will act swiftly and decisively.

If you’d like impartial advice from Oxfordshire’s Parent Partnership Service contact SENDIASS

Oxfordshire’s Local Offer contains lots of information for parents. Click here to see it:
Special Educational Needs