At Charter, we believe in creating inclusive environments that aim to meet the needs of all students.

Our SEND Policy

You can access our SEND policy below

SEND information report

The Charter School North Dulwich is a 6 form entry mainstream secondary school and sixth form with 1298 students.  Our lessons are led by a teacher with average class sizes of between 30 and 32 pupils. 

To enable pupils with SEND to fully participate in school life, through a 3-tiered approach to SEN support (See SEN Provision section), we make all reasonable adjustments possible to support a range of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in the classroom and school across the 4 broad areas of need:

‍Cognition and Learning
Communication and Interactions
Social, emotional and mental health
Sensory and Physical

Cognition and Learning (C&L):
Difficulties might include challenges with reading and spelling, learning new information and concepts, working with numbers, working memory and concentration. Such difficulties might include ‘Specific Learning Difficulties’ (i.e. dyslexia, dysgraphia) and moderate learning difficulties. 

Communication and interaction (C&I):
Difficulties might include understanding or using language and communicating socially with others.  This might include conditions or disorders such as: Specific language impairment, autism and speech sound disorders/delay.  

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH):
Difficulties might include experiencing anxiety, stress, distress or anger that have an impact on accessing education.

Sensory and/or physical (S/P): 
This might include sensory processing difficulties affecting movement and co-ordination, physical disabilities, sensory sensitives and sensory impairment (i.e. Hearing Impairment)
It is common for pupils to have SEND difficulties that span two or more of these areas.  If this is the case, SEN support is designed to best support your child’s need using the resources available.  

How we assess and identify pupils with SEND

For your child to access the best possible support, it is important that SEND difficulties are identified early through appropriate methods of assessment.  At The Charter School North Dulwich, dependent on a pupil’s specific areas of need, assessment can take place in many ways:

pupil/parent/teacher questionnaires
Standardised testing
Referral to external/partnership services

Assessments can involve the parents, the pupil, a range of staff members or external/partnership professionals including community health services, speech and language therapy (SaLT), Educational Psychology (EP), Occupational Therapy (OT) and specialist teachers for sensory impairments.  

Assessments, and screening activities are always developmentally appropriate for individual pupils.  We always work closely with families to agree assessment methods.

How we support pupils with SEND 

At the Charter School North Dulwich, we have a 3-tiered approach to SEND support across the school.  Depending on pupils’ strengths and difficulties, support will look different for individuals. 
Wave 1 – Universal Support

To a great extent, good teaching for pupils with SEND is good teaching for all. Our first priority at The Charter School North Dulwich is to ensure the highest standard of inclusive teaching possible for all pupils.  This forms Wave 1, the of our 3-tiered SEND offer.  

This level of support will involve a range of evidence-informed strategies including: flexible grouping of pupils, supporting pupils to develop independent thinking and learning strategies, clear and precise instruction and explanation, use of technology and ‘scaffolding’ of work to allow pupils greater access to learning.

Wave 2 – Targeted Support

For pupils who require a slightly more personalised approach to specific areas of learning, in addition to the Wave 1 strategies, pupils will have access to more targeted, group-based, interventions. These sessions, run by teaching assistants or teachers, include support for difficulties across the 4 broad areas of need such as: speech and language, specific literacy and mathematical skills, social skills, physical and sensory development and emotional literacy. Wave 2 support aims to support pupils make accelerated progress against their individual targets and to be working at the age-expected level. The impact of these targeted support strategies is evaluated on a termly basis.

Wave 3 – Specialist Support

For a small number of pupils, a highly personalised and individualised approach to learning is required, using recommendations from external professionals such as a speech and language therapist (SaLT), Educational Psychologist (EP) or therapists or specialists from other services. This type of support will vary hugely between individuals dependent on strengths and difficulties.  Pupils who might benefit from Wave 3 support will most often have or require an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) in order for the school to provide the level of specialist support required.

All support across the school is monitored and evaluated every term. This is to ensure that the support in place is meeting the needs of individual pupils.

Is The Charter School North Dulwich the school for my child?

At The Charter School North Dulwich, we pride ourselves on providing high quality SEND support for our pupils through our tiered approach.   Through working with the Local Authority and as a network of schools across The Charter Schools Educational Trust, we aim to provide the best possible support for pupils with a wide range of difficulties across the 4 broad areas of need.  

With high pupil numbers, the more specialised/individualised resources mainstream schools have access to is limited, such as teaching assistant support and access to external professionals such as Educational Psychologists and Speech and Language Therapists.  For pupils who might require higher amounts of time with specialist teachers and professionals, it can be difficult to meet pupils’ needs whilst still meeting the needs of all pupils in the school.  Pupils who require high levels of specialist support may benefit from attending a resource base (specialist unit attached to a mainstream school) or specialist school. An Educational, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) is required to access these types of schools.  Resource bases and special schools  often have specialist teachers, speech and language therapists and psychologists who work at the school on a full-time basis.  If you have any questions about the type of support your child may need and what might be available, please email:

For pupils who have physical disabilities and require special/specific equipment to support mobility, please see our accessibility policy.  

Working with parents and pupils

As parents/carers and pupils, you have vital and unique knowledge of your child’s or your own strengths, difficulties, interests, likes and dislikes. At The Charter School North Dulwich, we believe that you should be fully involved in every step of the SEND process, from initial identification right through to making decisions about support in place in school.  We call this SEND process the Assess, Plan, Do, Review (APDR) or Graduated Approach. Communication between school and parents should be two-directional and the information below outlines what you can expect.

Assessment of needs or difficulties is the first step and may be initiated by the school, parents or health and care professionals (i.e., GP/social worker).

School initiated:
If your child’s teachers or head of year has concerns, they will first of all, speak to you to ask for your thoughts and input.  They may speak also to the School’s inclusion and SEND teams for tips and advice.

Parent initiated:
If you have concerns about your child’s learning and/or development, in the first instance, speak to your child’s Head of Year or subject teachers. They will be able to give you feedback on how your child is doing in school and you can develop a support plan for your child. Your concerns will be shared with the SEND team to monitor progress and consider any further next steps.

Health and Care Professional Initiated:
If a concern is raised by a health or care professional, they will usually communicate only with you, the parents, rather than the school.  It is really important that you share as much information about concerns raised or relevant diagnoses your child might have so we can put the right support in place.  Please inform the SENCo, Rachel Howes (, if this is the case.

Further Assessment:
For some pupils, the type of assessment may be more specific including formal screening in school for specific needs or require referral to a qualified professional such as an educational psychologist, speech and language therapist or paediatrician. You would always be contacted to ask for your consent and contributions towards a referral being made.

Plan, Do & Review
If your child has special educational needs, you and your child (where appropriate) will be invited on a termly basis to review and co-produce your child’s learning objectives. This is an opportunity to meet your child’s Head of Year or SENCo to discuss what is going well, and, sometimes, what’s not going so well and what support could be provided in the coming term.  

How we monitor progress and keep you involved. 

Progress and attainment is monitored on a termly basis.  This monitoring is an important step to ensure pupils remain on track to meeting their individual objectives.  

In addition to the information shared in the section above, progress reports on how your child is doing might take place in different ways:

Parents’ evening Meetings:These meetings take place termly (3 times a year). These are a perfect opportunity to meet your child’s teachers, discuss progress against objectives and to shape the planned support for your child.  Meetings directly with the SENCo can be requested by sending an email to Rachel Howes (

School Report:
At the end of the school year, you will be sent a school report.  This will include your child’s assessment information over the year.

Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs)

For some pupils, our universal and targeted level of support (Waves 1 and 2), are not enough to enable them to learn most effectively. For pupils with more complex or significant needs, a more personalised and specialist approach might be required. In many cases, a pupil might require an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).  This is a legal document that describes a pupil’s special educational needs, the support they require and intended outcomes for the appropriate key stage. The support in these plans must be provided by the local authority, meaning that an EHCP can give a pupil extra educational support as well giving parents more choice about which school their child can attend.  
An EHCP can only be issued after a pupil has gone through the EHC needs assessment.  This can be applied for by school or by parents.
For more information about EHCPs, what they are and how to request one, visit the sites below or contact the SENCo

Local Offer

A local offer refers to activities, services, events or support that is available to parents of pupils with special educational needs.  As part of the Charter Schools Educational Trust, we are proud of our own ‘TCSET Local Offer’, open to families in our communities and schools. We also signpost families to the ‘Southwark Local Offer’. 

TCSET Local Offer
At The Charter Schools Educational Trust, our local offer is made up of:

Parent SEND workshops:
These run throughout the year and are interactive sessions where families in the communities are encouraged to attend to learn about and share ideas on the broad array of special educational needs.  The schedule for these sessions will be published on the school website and emails. For more information or requests for specific workshops, contact Will Cannock (

Parent support:
We have a team of SEND leaders who are always on hand to offer support and guidance. Contact or to organise a call or meeting.

Clubs and Activities:
We have an array of after school clubs that pupils with SEND are encouraged to participate in.  Please be in contact if you are interested for your child to take part and we will discuss the support that might be necessary. 

Specialist Advice:
We work with a network of experts and professionals across the broad areas of need.  We can help you find the advice you need from experts in the field. 

Southwark Local Offer
To learn about the Southwark Local Offer follow this link:

Southwark Information, Advice and Support Team
The Southwark Information Advice and Support team (SIAS) is a service which offers impartial advice to parents and young people. SIAS provide parents, pupils and young people with the information and support necessary.

SIAS was established to ensure that parents, carers of pupils and young people aged 0 to 25 years old with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) have access to information, advice and guidance to allow them to make informed decisions about their education and 16 plus choices. For more information, visit:

How we manage complaints about SEND provision.

If you are concerned about any aspects of SEND provision in school, you should contact the SENCo, class teacher or head of year in the first instance. If a complaint cannot be resolved, parents will then be referred to the school’s complaints policy.

The parents of pupils with disabilities have the right to make disability discrimination claims to the first-tier SEND tribunal if it is believed that the school has discriminated against their pupils. Parents can make a claim about alleged discrimination regarding:

• Exclusions

• Provision of education and associated services

• Making reasonable adjustments, including the provision of auxiliary aids and services

This policy and information report will be reviewed by The SENCo and the Deputy Head for Inclusion and Behaviour every year. It will also be updated if any changes to the information are made during the year. It will be considered and approved by the governing board.

Who to contact for more information or to report a concern:
For all enquiries regarding Special Educational Needs please contact:

Rachel Howes, SENCo
020 7346 6685

Our SEND Policy will be reviewed in September 2024.

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