This course will be invaluable to all teachers when addressing the needs of pupils with additional needs on a daily basis in their classrooms. It provides information on relevant legislation, and explores specific conditions that affect learning such as dyslexia and ADHD, considers barriers to learning in the curriculum and provides details of outside agencies that can offer additional support.
Section 1 Overview
This short section provides a brief overview of the whole course to enable participants to plan their time and prepare for Section 2.
Section 2 Legislation and Implementation
This section introduces the recent legislation and national initiatives relevant to Inclusion, Disability and Additional Support for Learning.
Section 3 Barriers to Learning
This section, in 9 short parts with a short introduction to barriers to learning, explores the impact on learning of:
- autistic spectrum disorders (ASD)
- challenging behaviour
- physical/sensory impairment
- other barriers to learning
- individualising the curriculum
Each short part also considers some strategies to support these conditions in the classroom. Part 8 concludes with a review of other barriers to learning and part 9 considers delivery of the curriculum in an inclusive way – including the use of ICT.
Section 4 Assessment
This 4-part section, which reviews assessment in terms of the Journey to Excellence and Assessment is for Learning (AifL) explores the purpose of assessment and considers different types of assessment. Separate parts provide a closer look at:
- standardised testing
- diagnostic testing
- classroom observation
Some classroom observation instruments that may be used to help identify barriers to learning within the curriculum and additional needs in the classroom are provided.
Section 5 Working together within the school
This section is in 4 parts with a brief introduction. It explores arrangements commonly in place for working together within the school to support pupils who have additional needs:
- the 5 roles of Support for Learning teachers
- the roles of classroom learning/additional needs assistants
- Support for Learning staff as part of a wider team
- partnerships – with pupils, parents/carers
Provision within recent legislation for resolving disagreements is reviewed briefly.
Section 6 The Roles of Partner Agencies
The main focus of this 4 part section is the roles of partner agencies within the local authority, particularly the role of Educational Psychologists – consideration is also give to the roles of:
- bilingual or EAL services/interpretive services
- specialist teachers including specialists in sensory impairments
- visiting and outreach teaching services
- healthcare providers
- advisory services/voluntary agencies
Course members are encouraged to explore provision in the context of their own schools and authorities and to identify regional differences.
Section 7 Planning Frameworks to Support Learning
This 4 part section explores the different planning frameworks available for pupils who have additional support needs, the criteria which help to inform the choice of support plan and the typical content of some plans. Frameworks covered include:
- Coordinated Support Plans
- Individualised Educational Programmes
- other plans, including the proposed Integrated Children’s Plan
- arrangements for assessment – based on SQA guidelines
There are examples of good practice for sharing and reviewing plans with pupils, parents and other professionals. Course members are asked to identify provision with their own schools and authorities.