- The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) as the Professional Guide
This module enables you to investigate, critically evaluate and reflect on current educational policy and practice in inclusive education and the impact it has on pupil participation and outcomes. You will critically evaluate and analyse evidence about learning, teaching and assessment in relation to pupils with specific needs in order to improve practice.
You will have the opportunity to explore a range of issues such as being gifted and talented, socio-economic background, ethnic group, whether pupils are looked after and adopted and other relevant factors such as safeguarding, health and wellbeing and language and communication.
You will critically reflect on national policies, legislation, Ofsted frameworks, funding models and how these impact on provision for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities. The key role of the SENCO is an integral component of the module, in terms of their strategic role in leading a team of practitioners and support staff.
As part of the module there will be a critical exploration of multi-agency approaches and how to work effectively with parents and carers. In addition, you will need to demonstrate an understanding of data protection and the issues relating to confidentiality including Governor accountability. The module aims to enable critical reflection with a view to developing a deep understanding of the benefits, and challenges, of teaching pupils as defined above. You will engage with relevant theory, research and inspection evidence in order to evaluate the effectiveness of a range of interventions employed to support pupils.
- The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) as the Leader
This module enables you to investigate, evaluate and reflect on the characteristics of highly effective leadership. You will critically reflect on the generic attributes of leadership in the SENCO role and will use initiative, take responsibility and solve problems in creative and innovative ways, using a variety of media.
You will make decisions in challenging situations and communicate effectively with colleagues in school, other professionals and parents and carers. This will include a critical reflection on the effectiveness of school systems in order to strategically develop a person centred and inclusive ethos, policies, priorities and practices in relation to the provision for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities and/or other identified groups. The module will develop leadership skills in the role of SENCO to ensure that statutory responsibilities are met through promoting improvements in teaching and learning.
A qualified SENCO will be able to model effective practice and to coach and mentor colleagues. The leadership of professional development of staff to ensure that they are able to remove barriers to learning and participation are fundamental to this module.
A key focus of the module is to adapt to the changes to the SEN system in light of current legislative and policy changes from 2014. You will critically self-evaluate your own leadership including strengths and areas for development, and learn to establish or improve systems to collect, analyse and interpret data to inform school policy and practices to raise expectations, pupil participation and ensure challenging targets are set.
There is a requirement for participants to engage with relevant theory, research in order to disseminate aspects of good practice to senior leadership, governors, colleagues and other organisations.