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St Mark’s C.E (A) Primary School

St. Mark's C.E (A) Primary School is a large diverse primary school in Shelton. The school has two classes in each year group from Reception to Year six.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Miss J.Thomas
Contact Position
Inclusion Leader
01782 234411

Where to go

St. Mark's C.E (A) Primary School
Wood Terrace
Stoke on Trent
Local Offer

Local Offer

Contact Name
Miss J Thomas
Contact Telephone
01782 234411
Contact Email
Local Offer Age Bands
4-11 years

Schools Extended Local Offer Response 

What kinds of SEND does the school provide for?

The Special Educational Needs  ‘Code of Practice’ (2014) states that there are four main areas of need. These areas are as follows: 

  • Cognition and Learning
  • Communication and Interaction
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health
  • Sensory and/or Physical.

The school provides for a range of needs within these areas. Some pupils may have needs in more than one area and needs can change over time.

How does this setting know if their children/young person needs extra help and what should I do if I think my child/young person may have special educational needs?

Evidence that a child has needs extra help may be from a  concern expressed by parents or the class teacher, evidence from the previous school or setting, lack of progress at school, medical diagnosis, a change in behaviour, assessment by the SENCO or another education or health professional eg .an assessment  by a Speech and Language Therapist or an Educational Psychologist. Additional needs are   identified at the earliest opportunity and parents are consulted.If you are concerned that your child may have special educational needs you should speak to the class teacher or make an appointment to see the Inclusion Leader (SENCO).

How will the setting support my child/young person?

St. Mark’s has a graduated response to supporting children. This begins with good quality teaching. Phonics is taught through the Read,Write, Inc. programme and children are regularly assessed to ensure that progress in reading is as rapid as possible . Additional one to one support is given to those children who need it. Assertive mentoring is used in Mathematics and any gaps in children’s skills are identified and addressed.

Those who need additional support  in other areas may complete a programme in a small group which will usually be for 10-12 weeks. Some pupils who need intensive support may have one to one support for part of the curriculum. Any advice given by professionals will be integrated into the curriculum. Teaching support assistants, bilingual assistants and learning mentors support children’s learning including those with special educational needs or disabilities and those learning English as an additional language.

Where additional needs have been identified, the school is able to access a range of outside agencies to support children.

How will teaching approaches and the curriculum be matched to my child or young person's needs?

Teachers plan based on children’s needs, against age related expectations, differentiating work to closely match children’s ability and learning needs. When a pupil has been identified with special needs their work will be further differentiated by the class teacher to remove barriers to learning and enable them to access the curriculum more easily. In addition they will be provided with additional support that may include specialised equipment or resources, ICT and/or additional adult help such as pre-teaching.

If appropriate specialist equipment may be given to the pupil e.g. writing slopes, concentration cushions, pen/pencil grips or easy to use scissors. If a child is identified as having a special need, they will be given a pupil passport: these replace IEPs. Targets will be set according to their area of need. These will be monitored by the class teacher weekly and the SENCo three times per year. Teaching assistants may be allocated to work with the pupil in a 1:1 or small focus group to target more specific needs.

St. Mark’s has a Learning Challenge Curriculum which is planned considering the interests and needs of the children in each class. Questions and activities during lessons may be adapted for groups or individuals. The level of work set will be matched to children’s age and the level they are working at. Some children may need particular resources such as coloured overlays, pencil grips, sloping writing boards etc.  Computer programmes may be used to support learning.

How will both you and I know how my child/young person is doing and how will you help me to support their learning?

The progress of all pupils is monitored through pupil progress meetings half termly where class teachers discuss the progress of all children with the Executive Head Teacher, Head of School and Inclusion Leader.  Parents are consulted in a variety of ways including consultation evenings, informal discussions and structured conversations. Review meetings are held for children with additional needs and strategies to support them are agreed.  These are shared with parents. Learning logs are used to provide a variety of homework tasks. Class teachers are always willing to discuss ways in which you can support your child.

What support will there be for my child's/young person's overall wellbeing?

The school has a nurturing  ethos  based on the values of RESPECT. (responsibility, equality, spirituality, perseverance, enthusiasm, commitment and trust).

As a church school we have close links with St. Mark’s church. Each class has a reflection area and a prayer room is available for children of all faiths or none to use at break and lunchtimes. Collective Worship (assembly) is inclusive and sensitive to the needs of children from a variety of backgrounds and cultures. A range of after school clubs are offered where children can extend their learning and try new skills.

There is a consistent behaviour management policy and every day is a fresh start.  Our two learning Mentors are able to support children with emotional or social needs.

Pupils with medical needs

Pupils with medical needs will be provided with a detailed Health Care Plan, compiled by the school with support from appropriate health professionals and in partnership with parents and if appropriate, the pupil themselves. Staff who administer medicine complete training and are signed off by the school nurse as competent. All medicine administration procedures adhere to the LA policy and DfE guidelines included within Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions (DfE) 2014.

What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the setting?

Staff are able to deliver a range of intervention programmes including communication, literacy and maths programmes and support for children learning English as an additional language.

St. Mark’s employs Bilingual Teaching Assistants (Currently we have Urdu, Panjabi, Arabic, Polish and Czech speakers).

A range of specialist services can be accessed including: 

  • Inclusion Service
  • Autism Outreach Team
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Hearing Impairment Team
  • Visual Impairment Team
  • Educational Welfare Officer
  • Children and Young People’s Services
  • School Nurse
  • CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service)
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physiotherapy.

Referrals can be made to Special School Outreach for children with statements of Special Educational Needs or Education, Health and Care Plans. 

An Educational Psychologist is allocated to each school. She would normally only work directly with pupils whose needs are quite considerable and who have not responded well to the interventions previously put in place for them. This involvement is planned by the SENCo with the permission of parents/carers. In order to help understand the pupil’s educational needs better, the psychologist will generally meet with the parent and give feedback after the assessment has been completed. She will offer advice to the school and parent/carers on how to best support the pupil in order to take their learning forward. Our psychologist is currently Dr Charlotte Cockroft. 

The school has regular support from our SEND advisory teacher.

What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND have had or are having?

All staff have training on safeguarding children . First Aid training is updated regularly.

Several members of staff are trained in manual handling difficulties. Several staff including some of the Senior Leadership Team attend MAPA training annually.

Staff are trained to administer medicines where this is necessary for individual children with specific medical conditions.

Staff have been trained in the use of a wide variety of intervention programmes to support children’s learning. These include Numicon, Better Reading Partnership, Talking Partners, Active Literacy Kit, Precision Teaching, Use of Clicker 6 and pre-teaching vocabulary.

All staff have done Stoke Speaks Out Level  1.  There is ongoing professional development for all staff. Training is arranged in response to specific needs.

How will my child/young person be included in activities outside this classroom including school trips?

St. Mark’s is an inclusive school which endeavours to provide opportunities for all children to participate in activities including visits and clubs. When planning visits, children’s needs are considered and, where necessary, adjustments are made or additional support provided in consultation with parents. Where this is not possible, every effort will be made to provide a suitable alternative. Risk assessments are carried out and procedures are put in place to enable children to participate. If the school or a health and safety risk assessment suggests that a child requires 1:1 support due to their particular needs the school are able to provide this.

How accessible is the environment?

The school has two stories with fourteen classrooms, four of which are on the second floor. Access to upstairs classrooms is by stairs or a lift is available. The ground floor has wheelchair access. There are suitable toilet facilities for children with disabilities.  

There are currently four portable soundfield systems which will amplify sound in the classroom. Interactive whiteboards and visualisers are available in all classrooms.

How will the setting prepare and support my child/young person to join the next stage of education and life?

Children joining the reception class are invited to play and stay sessions for ten afternoons during the summer term. This enables a smooth transition and children settle well. The SENCO attends Annual Review meetings for children due to transfer to St. Mark’s. Children joining mid-term may be supported by learning mentors or bilingual staff according to their needs. When children transfer to other settings, staff from St. Mark’s liaise with the new school to share information and plan transition work and  visits.. This may include staff accompanying children and their parents  on such visits. Staff from Secondary Schools are invited  to review meetings from year five.

How are the setting's resources allocated and matched to children's/young people's special educational needs?

The school receives funding to respond to the needs of pupils with SEND from a number of sources: A proportion of the funds allocated per pupil to the school to provide for their education (the Age Weighted Pupil Unit); The Notional SEN budget: The Pupil Premium funding for pupils who meet certain criteria. In addition, for those pupils with the most complex needs, the school may be allocated Additional Educational Needs funding. This funding is then used to provide the equipment and facilities to support pupils with special educational needs and disabilities through: 

  • In-class support from teaching assistants  
  • Small group support from teaching assistants e.g. literacy and numeracy support
  • Specialist support from teachers e.g. 1:1 tuition 
  • Bought in support from external agencies e.g. access arrangement assessment, speech and language support. 
  • Parent workshops
  • Provision of specialist resources e.g. assessment software 
  • CPD relating to SEND for staff.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child/young person will receive?

Decisions about support will be agreed at pupil progress meetings according to children’s needs and progress. Some support may be recommended by outside agencies and this will be implemented wherever possible. For pupils with SEND but without an Education Health and Care plan, the decision regarding the support required will be taken at joint meetings with the SENCo, class teacher, parent and other relevant staff as appropriate. Children with statements of Special Educational Needs or Education, Health and Care Plans will be allocated the level of support recommended. This decision will be reached when the plan is being produced or through the  annual review process.

How will our child and young person be involved in the decisions about their learning?

Pupils’ vews are sought and the curriculum planned to meet their needs and interests. Each class elects two representatives to the school council. Pupil passports includeinformation from the child. Children’s views are sought during reviews.

How will we be involved in the decisions about the learning of our children and young people?

Parents/carers of children with identified special education needs are encouraged to contribute to pupil passports. They will be able to discuss the support their child is receiving via a review which will be held three times a year. Structured conversations are held and parents’ views are sought through the Annual Review Process for pupils with Statements of SEN or Education, Health and Care plans. Parents are invited to meet with professsionals from outside agencies.

How are parents involved in the setting? How can I be involved?

St. Mark’s has an Open Door Policy and parents are welcome to speak to staff at mutually agreed times either face to face or by telephone. Members of the Senior Leadership Team and the home school links worker are available at the beginning and end of the school day.

Regular newsletters are sent home. Parent consultation meetings are held each term and there is an annual report on your child’s achievement.

Parents are encouraged to attend class and celebration assemblies and invited to share other events throughout the year linked to the school curriculum.

What do I I do if I want to make a complaint?

Most complaints can be resolved informally or by making an appointment at the school office to see the class teacher, Head of School or Executive Head Teacher.

Complaints will be dealt according to the school’s complaints policy. A copy of this can be found on the school website.

What other support Is available to parents and how can I contact them?

SEND Information, advice and Support Services is a service which  provides free, accurate, impartial, confidential, information, advice and support relating to special educational needs and disability (SEND) for parents/carers, children and young people 0-25 yrs.


Mount Education Support Centre
Mount Avenue

Tel: 01782 234701 / 01782 234847

Business Hours  Monday - Friday Telephone Helpline Operates: 10.00 to 17.00pm


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