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Sacred Heart RC Nursery & Primary School

Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School is a Voluntary Aided Catholic School and has a vast community which includes children, parents, carers, staff, parishioners, other schools within Torbay and people from different parts of the world. As well as welcoming new families to our school and watching them become an important part of our ‘family’, we continually strive to provide our children with a learning environment that values their individual needs: spiritually, academically, physically, morally and socially.

The very youngest children begin their learning journey at Sacred Heart RC Nursery. In our nursery we believe that children learn at their best when they are able to explore in a safe, stimulating and exciting learning environment. We provide children with a variety of 'hands on' learning experiences that enable them to develop their early exploratory and enquiry skills. 

Sacred Heart RC Nursery & Primary School is part of Plymouth CAST

Our door is always open!

Head Mrs Nichola Day

Who to contact

Contact Name
Mrs Helen Brown
Contact Position
01803 558298
Parent Organisation
Plymouth CAST (MAT)

Where to go

Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School
Cecil Road

Other Details


Age Ranges
From 3 years to 11 years

Local Offer

Local Offer Age Bands
Primary (4-10 years)
Early Years (0-4 years)
SEN Provision Type

SEN Information

A printable version of this form is available in the downloads section.

What special education provision is available at our setting?

The Governors, CAST (Catholic and Anglican Schools Trust), Local Authority, Headteacher and all staff at Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School aim to work together with parents and carers to provide a broad and balanced education to meet the individual needs of each child. We believe in the importance of ‘quality first teaching’ so that all teachers and support staff are inclusive practitioners.  In addition, facilities and support includes:

  • An effective range of interventions for Reading, writing and maths across all key stages
  • Talk Boost  – speech and language intervention
  • Ready Steady Read – an intensive, 1:1 wave 3 reading intervention
  • First Class Number – a 1:1 and small  group wave 3 maths intervention
  • Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL) small  group work
  • Thrive intervention 1:1 and small group work to support emotional and social development
  • Pastoral Support Team to include our school funded Family Support Worker and Attendance Officer
  • Play therapist
  • Educational Psychologist and SEN Advisory teacher
  • Advice and support from  the School Nurse and Speech and Language Therapist
  • Access to outreach from Mayfield Special School, Chestnut special provision, Combe Pafford Special School, Speech and Language department at Barton School, West of England School for the Visually Impaired.
  • We liaise closely with the Early Years Advisory Support to ensure early identification and intervention and Portage workers to ensure a smooth transition into our Foundation Stage.
  • ICT equipment – Microsoft Surfaces, Laptops and ipads
  • Outdoor learning - sustainable Jubilee garden (Winner of the Bay in Bloom)
  • Jubilee Lodge to support whole school emotional wellbeing
  • A curriculum that is fully accessible to all children.
  • Parental support programmes, for example, 'Understanding Your Child's Mental Health'.

What criteria must be satisfied before children and young people can access this provision/service?

Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Nursery and Primary School, for children aged 3 to 11, is an inclusive school and our mission statement is ‘Everyone is Sacred’.

We continually strive to provide our children with a learning environment that values their individual needs: spiritually, academically, physically, morally and socially.

We believe that happy children are successful learners. We respect each other, appreciate differences and understand the importance of good manners. We believe we have a responsibility to be good citizens that live the Gospel values in our daily lives.

Whilst we are a Catholic school, where space is available, we also admit children whose parents wish their children to receive a Catholic education.

To ensure our children’s individual needs are met, at times they may need additional support for a short or a longer period of time to fully access the curriculum and classroom learning. When barriers to learning are identified, after discussion with parents and carers, support is planned by class teachers in liaison with the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Coordinator,   Pastoral Support and subject leaders. When needed we access the support and advice of external agencies and professionals. Parents and carers are always part of this process.

How do we identify the particular special educational needs of a child or young person?

In line with the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Code of Practice 2014 the special educational needs of our children are identified through a range of means.

These include:

  • A visit by parents/carers to our school to have a look around and a discussion with the Head teacher or class teacher.
  • An individual induction meeting for foundation stage parents and children prior to starting school.
  • Liaison with previous school or Nursery  to transfer all relevant information.
  • Continual assessment against Early Years Foundation Stage and other school based assessment procedures.
  • Six weekly Pupil progress meetings with the class teacher, Head teacher, Maths and English subject leaders and SEND coordinator where children who are not making expected progress are discussed and interventions planned.
  • Class teachers raise a concern and after speaking with parents and carers, will put an appropriate programme of support in place keeping parents and carers informed at every stage.
  • Should it be considered appropriate to look more closely at a child’s specific needs an informal assessment will be carried out by the SENCO or a formal assessment by an Advisory Teacher or the Educational Psychologist.
  • A meeting is held weekly to discuss children whose barriers to learning may be due to external factors where pastoral support is planned.

How do we consult with parents and/or children and young people about their needs?

We have an open door policy at Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School where we encourage parents and carers to come in and discuss their child’s progress and any concerns they may have with us. We also have two planned and one optional parent consultation meeting across the year.

Parents and carers are always consulted if a special educational need is identified and their views are sought. If a parent or carer has a concern the class teacher will arrange a meeting with the SENCO who will arrange for outside advice and support if necessary.

If a child has an Individual Support Plan (ISP) this is reviewed at the end of each term with the child and their parents or carers and next steps are planned and agreed.

If a child has an Education, Health and Care Plan, in additional to the above, a formal review is carried out with the child and their parents or carers annually in the term the statement was finalised.

What is our approach to teaching children and young people with special educational needs?

At Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School we believe in inclusion and all of our children with SEND are fully included in all areas of the curriculum and school life.

Through quality first teaching, class teachers and support staff differentiate and personalise the curriculum to meet the range of needs and abilities within each class.

We aim for all our children with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) to be able to reach their full potential in school.

Alongside our quality first teaching we plan and evaluate interventions based on our children’s individual needs.

How can we adapt our curriculum for children and young people with special educational needs?

Each class teacher adapts the curriculum planning to ensure all children have equal access to their  learning, taking advice from subject leaders and the SENCO where appropriate.

Extra support is planned based on need and expertise and may include, for example, small group support within the class by the teacher or teaching assistant or additional intervention groups focussing on specific areas of need. It may include appropriate resources for example, laptops or magnifiers.

All children will have access to a full range of national curriculum subjects which are enriched by themed weeks and extra curricular activities.

All children have an opportunity to go on three residential visits (Year 3/4 Forest and Beach, 5 Warren Barn and year 6 PGL) and they all thoroughly enjoy themselves.

We have an extensive range of after school activities which all children have access to, sometimes dependant on age.

We provide wrap around care for all children from 7.30am-6pm.

Visit  for more information and photographs.

How will we ensure we get the services, provision and equipment that children and young people need?

The Head teacher, SENCO and Pastoral Team work closely with the class teachers to ensure the provision in place is effective and appropriate.

We consult and liaise with professionals from other agencies e.g. School Nurse, Educational Psychologist, Play therapist, Speech and Language therapist, SEND outreach advisors, TESS, paediatricians, Family Support Worker, Attendance Officer and other health professionals to enable us to make sure we are working with current advice and materials to support our children.

How is this provision funded?

The school budget includes money for supporting children with SEND. Children with complex special educational needs and /or disabilities who have an Education Health and Care Plan, previously a Statement of Special Educational Needs, have a personal budget monitored by the Local Authority for additional support to meet identified needs.

The budget is monitored by the Headteacher, governors and SENCO and resources are allocated according to need.

What additional learning support is available for children and young people with special educational needs and how do they access it?

All staff are teachers of SEND and based on discussion with parents, pupil conferencing; tracking and pupil discussion meetings with the Head teacher, SENCo and subject leaders or following advice from the Educational Psychologist or outside agencies, children are chosen to join the intervention groups. They are evaluated every 6 weeks against specific entry and exit criteria.  The support may include:

  • Teaching assistant support in lessons
  • 1:1 Reading
  • Ready Steady Read 
  • First Class Maths ( Wave 3 Intervention)
  • Speech and Language groups
  • Phonics intervention
  • Writing interventions
  • Maths interventions
  • EAL – small groups
  • SEAL – small  groups
  • THRIVE – small  group and 1:1
  • Play therapy
  • Ambassadors club (to develop social skills and promote More able maths and literacy groups)
  • Pastoral support at varying levels
  • KS1 readers group

How do we support and improve the emotional and social development of children and young people with special educational needs?

At Sacred Heart, our children’s social and emotional well-being is very  important to us. 

We are a THRIVE school and many of our teaching assistants are fully trained Thrive practitioners. All staff have attended the 'Whole school Thrive approach training'

We also have the following support available:

  • SEAL – whole class, small group and individual
  • THRIVE – small  group and individual
  • Play therapy
  • Pastoral support team
  • Lunch time pastoral support groups with teaching assistants for continuity
  • Buddy system
  • Attendance Officer
  • Family Support Worker
  • Meet and Greet

How do we support children and young people with special educational needs moving between phases of education and preparing for adulthood?

For children with additional needs, transition plans are in place from the summer term prior to moving into their new class.

Transition books are completed with the child including photographs and dialogue which are taken home during the holidays.

We have meetings between all staff in year groups to pass on information regarding all children including SEND records

We aim for continuity of teaching assistant support where appropriate.

We hold a multi agency meeting for children joining our Foundation Stage if they have an Education, Health and Care Plan to ensure all information is shared to ensure a smooth transition.

Children leaving Sacred Heart have many opportunities to visit their new secondary school and their year 7 tutor and SENCO come to visit them here. For children with more complex needs additional visits are planned and personalised transition arrangements are agreed.

What other support is available for children and young people with special educational needs and how can they access it?

At lunchtime we run a range of clubs to help those who find the unstructured time a challenge. These are led by our Pastoral Support Team or by children supported by an adult.

We have a consistent approach to implementing the school s behaviour policy.

We liaise with the Chestnut Centre (Mayfield Special School) to support children for whom behaviour is a barrier to their learning.

We work closely with occupational therapy and physiotherapy to support children with physical needs and /or disabilities.

We refer children to Speech and Language and put into place programmes personalised to them supported by the speech and language therapist.

We have regular meetings with the school nurse who is available to arrange a meeting with parents to discuss any concerns they may have.

We facilitate parenting courses when available.

We have a wide range of adults, teachers, teaching assistants and mealtime assistants, trained in paediatric first aid and relevant staff have epilepsy and epipen training.

All year 5 have peer mediation training at the end of year 5 ready to take on the responsibility in year 6.

What extra-curricular activities are available for children and young people with special educational needs?

All extra curricular activities provided here at Sacred Heart can be accessed by all children no matter what their needs are.

A selection of clubs we offer:

  • Knit and Chat - After school. Open to all parents, Grandparents and children.
  • Guitar after school
  • Change for Life - after school
  • School Council - lunchtime
  • Early physical skills - after school
  • Civic Awards
  • Cookery Club
  • Song and dance - after school
  • Tae  Kwon Do
  • Football/cricket club
  • Reading club
  • Going for Gold gymnastics
  • Crafts
  • Netball
  • Bible Club
  • Homework Club
  • Running Club

See for a current list of activities available.

How do we assess and review progress towards agreed outcomes, and how are parents, children and young people involved in this process?

We know our provision is effective when:

  • Our children are making expected progress in relation to other children in their year group; They are engaging in their  learning and their attainment is increasing in line with national standards.
  • The children’s attendance is above 96% and their behaviour is good.
  • Parents and children are involved in this assessment through Individual support plan (ISP) review meetings, termly, and where relevant Annual Reviews of EHC plans (statements).

How do we assess the effectiveness of our special needs provision and how are parents, children and young people involved in this assessment?

We have termly meetings with parents and children to review all the Individual Education Plans. We review the provision for children with a statement of Special Educational Need and or disability or Education, Health and Care Plan annually with parents/carers, children, teachers, teaching assistants and the SENCO. In the case of a new EHC plan or statement we meet with parents and carers, teachers and teaching assistants together with the Local Authority Advisory teacher each term for the first year. We have an open-door policy so that parents can come and share feedback about the effectiveness of provision with class teachers, the SENCO and Head teacher. Ofsted and S48 also inspects and reports on the provision, progress and attainment of children with additional needs. Sacred Heart s most recent inspection was in March 2017 and the S48 in March 2016.

"At the heart of the school is an intense shared commitment to inclusion and equality"

"Many parents comment on the 'fantastic support' they themselves receive"

"Early identification, good teaching and well-placed interventions are helping pupils to get the support they need earlier"

"Pupils enjoy strong, trusting relationships with staff"

"The spirit of the gospel permeates every aspect of school life. This is tangibly evident in the school's belief that 'Everyone is Sacred' and ensures all members of the community are supported to acheive their potential, regardless of background"

How do we ensure that teaching staff and other staff have the expertise needed to support children and young people with special educational needs?

The Pastoral Support Lead is an active member of the Torbay SEND network and attends courses for continued professional development.

Our teachers and teaching assistants have a wide range of qualifications, training and experience working with children with a varied range of needs including: Speech, language and communication; Behavioural, social and emotional and Autism.

How do we keep parents informed where children and young people have special educational provision but do not have an Education Health and Care Plan?

We work closely with our parents to ensure a good home school partnership.

Parents meet with the class teachers twice a year to discuss progress and attainment and are warmly welcomed to arrange a meeting at any other time in the year.

Where children are identified as not making expected progress at pupil discussion meetings, they have extra intervention to address the barriers to their learning.

This is recorded on a Group Education Plan and is evaluated for impact.

Individual Support Plan's and the Educational Psychologist's recommendations are used for supporting individual children. Recommendations are recorded on to the appropriate tracking sheet, evaluated and impact measured.

Teachers meet with parents to discuss the intervention and to seek parental support from home learning.

How can parents, children and young people make a complaint about our provision?

Parents are invited to come in and discuss any issues with the class teacher in the first instance, where most questions can be clarified.

For further support and advice parents can arrange a meeting with the SENCO, Pastoral Support or Head teacher by phoning 01803 558298.

How can parents, children and young people get more information about the setting?

If you would like more information about Sacred Heart RC Nursery and Primary School please contact us on 01803 558298 to arrange a visit or alternatively email us at

Please visit our website

How the school involves other bodies, including health and social care bodies, local authority support services and voluntary sector organisations, in meeting children and young people’s SEN and supporting their families?

The school holds regular meetings with the school nurse, speech and language therapist, TESS, Educational Psychologist and SEN advisory teacher.

The school employs their own play therapist, family support worker and attendance officer. Contact details for the family support worker and attendance office, 5rs are as follows:

  • FSW: Alex Mudge: 07917204966
  • Attendance officer: Steph Musselwaite

Social care meetings, were possible are invited to be held at the school and regular contact with social workers is made when necessary.

We work closely with TESS and they often attend our school based TAF meetings.

We encourage and support families who may be experiencing challenges or difficulties through contact with, for example, the charity 'Eat that Frog' and Paignton Community Larder.

What arrangements are in place for supporting children who are looked after by the local authority and have SEN?

Regular meetings with social workers take place. They visit the children at school or at home and are readily contactable if issues arise.

Termly ePEP (electronic Personal Education Plans) meetings take place with the social worker and carer and SENCo/Designated Safeguarding Lead. In addition, the child's views are sought through an online interactive child friendly questionnaire. This is automatically shared via the ePEP at the meeting.

Six monthy CLA (Children Looked After) reviews take place which are led by an IRO (individual review officer) and attended by the social worker, carer and SENCo/Designated Safeguarding Lead. Again, the child's views are sought and considered at the meeting.

In addition, the class teacher is involved in providing information regarding the child's learning and attainment.

Torbay Virtual School monitor's the attendance and attainment of children looked after and will scrutinise the information provided by ePEPs and CLA reviews.

We are actively involved with all the above and attend meetings outside of school hours when necessary.