This statement is a set of aspirations and principles which was developed by the Essex SEND Headteacher Roundtable and reflects the partnership working between school leaders from early years, primary, secondary, special schools and academies; and the Local Authority in developing a school-led approach to SEND across the system.
It is not a contract, but it is an indication of the partnership between school leaders and the Local Authority in developing truly inclusive practice in relation to SEND in Essex. The statement is a values based statement of principle and intent.
Essex Inclusion Statement
This statement was developed by the Essex SEND Headteacher Roundtable and reflects the partnership working between school leaders from early years, primary, secondary, special schools and academies; and the Local Authority in developing a school-led approach to SEND across the system.
We stand for:
- SEND being positioned at the heart of school leadership and not viewed as the exclusive preserve of the SENCO. We encourage every school to be an inclusive school and to take a whole school approach to inclusion and SEND.
- Making sure that every child and young person in our schools/academies or settings, whatever their circumstance or ability, has a sense of belonging, feel respected, and is valued for who they are.
- Delivering the right education which supports and develops children so that they become positively participating citizens in society.
- Ensuring we equip children with the skills, knowledge and confidence to enable them move on to the next phase of learning and life with success.
- Understanding that there are different types of provision that a child may need at different points in their lives, but that movement between provisions must have a specific purpose which will lead to better outcomes for them as they prepare for adulthood.
- That an inclusive approach, including to admission and exclusion, with an appreciation of diversity, individuality and ambition for all to achieve their optimum potential is essential in raising attainment for all.
- That school leaders must be confident that before a decision to exclude is made, that they can show that all reasonable options available to them have been exhausted and that this will lead to improved practice and provision available to meet all needs in the future.
- That collectively we have a responsibility to provide for Essex children whatever their background and current circumstances and ensure that they receive a precise identification of their needs so that high quality teaching leads to positive experiences and outcomes for all.
- That sometimes we may not have the appropriate provision or capacity to meet the needs of all children who want to come to our schools / academies or settings but that we will work together to ensure that this is addressed and leads to better practice in the future.
- That there are currently capacity challenges with our PRU and Alternative Provision settings and our referral systems need to be regularly reviewed and where necessary changed so that they are effective and responsive to local needs.
- To ensure that all schools, academies and setting are equally and effectively inclusive.
- To challenge and be open to challenge and to show transparency in our thinking and actions, being able to clearly justify evidence-based decisions
- To examine the way we do things in our own settings to become even more inclusive through systematically reviewing our practice and through working in partnership to review practice in other settings.
- To agree to work collaboratively with colleagues in schools, the Local Authority, parents and health and social care to create a new way forward to meet the needs of all Essex children.
- To seek and accept any learning, training and development of inclusion for our staff, engage with research and to share our own good practice generously.
- To ensure that we follow not simply the letter of the law but also the spirit of the law so that we all put inclusive values into practice in the decisions we make.
Take a look at the list of schools that have signed up so far. Alternatively, to sign up to the inclusion statement, please complete the sign up form and email SEN.AchievementSchs@essex.gov.uk
If you have any queries regarding the statement, please speak to either a member of the Headteacher Roundtable, or to ASHE / EPHA / ESSET / ESGA representatives.