Support For Learning Service
The Support for Learning Service (SLS) aims to improve the attainment of children and young people by supporting schools in their inclusion of pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, including social, emotional and behaviour difficulties, through offering advice, training and learning support. The service works in partnership with parents and carers and works alongside schools to ensure that they are confident and skilled in meeting the needs of pupils with a range of needs. The key teams that can offer specialist and targeted support to children and young people with disabilities are: Behaviour Support Team- This team works with professionals in a range of settings including school and, early year’s provisions, and with parents and carers to reduce permanent and fixed term exclusions of pupils. The service helps schools develop their capacity to manage challenging and difficult behaviour and to promote inclusion.
Language and Communication Team – This is a small team of specialist teachers with expertise in teaching pupils with Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN) in mainstream schools. The team can provide advice concerning statemented and non-statemented pupils who have SLCN from pre-school to post 16. The team’s aim is to support the inclusion of pupils with Speech, Language and Communication Needs in mainstream schools.
Sensory Support Team – This is a specialist team working with children and their families with a diagnosis of a visual or hearing loss. The team includes team leaders for both the Visual Impairment Service and the Service for Deaf/ Partially Hearing Children. Babies and very young children are referred directly following diagnosis by a relevant consultant and the service provides home visits and support to the parents/carers at this time to enable them to understand their child’s needs and support their development effectively. Specialist teachers of vision loss and teachers of the deaf work with early years, primary and secondary aged pupils to meet the needs of children with sensory loss and to ensure effective inclusion strategies in mainstream and special schools.
Children with statements of their special educational needs may receive regular weekly input if appropriate, other pupils may only need to be monitored and advice offered to the school. Assessments are carried out as needed. Tower Hamlets also has a number of Deaf Resource Bases for pupils from 18 months through to secondary age who need daily contact in their education from a teacher of the deaf. Further information on this is available from the Sensory Support Team. Some specialist equipment is available for children with sensory loss and mobility input can be accessed by visually impaired pupils as needed. Bilingual instructors are also available who aim to work closely with parents.
Advisory Teachers for Pupils with Physical Disabilities and Severe Medical Conditions – There are three advisory teachers in this team, two for primary schools and one for secondary schools. Their role is to support the inclusion of pupils with physical disabilities in mainstream settings. The team offer support, advice and training to a wide range of professionals including physiotherapists, nurses, social workers, teachers and teacher assistants as well as parents and carers in order to facilitate and promote the inclusion of disabled pupils