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Handford Hall Primary School | Community Directory

Handford Hall Primary School

General Details

Children aged 4 - 11 years.

Also has a maintained nursery school/class for 3-5 year olds.

Who to contact

Mrs K Blake
Head Teacher
01473 251603
Gatacre Road

Additional contact

Additional Website
Suffolk County Council website

Where to go

57 Gatacre Road
Area served
East Ipswich

Other details

Age Groups
Pre-school, Children (5-11)
Disabled Parking, Adapted Toilet
School Transport assistance
Find out more about home to school transport
School Type
School Status
Academy Sponsor/Trust
Part of Orwell Multi Academy Trust
View the latest Ofsted Inspection Report
DfE Number
Last Updated

Nursery provision


Other information
Please contact the office for details of nursery vacancies

Other Details

Ofsted Information

Ofsted URN
Link to latest ofsted inspection report 
Inspection history
Inspection History
Inspection DateInspection typeInspection Outcome

Local Offer Local Offer Record

Experience of including people with special educational needs and disabilities

Handford Hall Primary School SEND Information


What do we mean by Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)?

Children and young people who have special educational needs (SEN) do not necessarily have a disability and some disabled children and young people do not have special educational needs. There is however a significant overlap in the two groups.


What do we mean by “SEN”?

The term special educational needs (SEN) has a legal definition which is set out in the Education Act 1996. It applies to children who have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it significantly harder for them to learn or access education than most other children of their age.


The term SEN covers a wide range of types of need including:


§  specific learning difficulties

§  moderate learning difficulties

§  speech, language and communication needs

§  mental, emotional and social difficulties

§  autistic spectrum disorders

§  visual and hearing impairment

§  physical disability

§  multi-sensory impairment

§  profound and multiple learning difficulties


About 20% of children and young people are identified with SEN at some stage in their education. The vast majority have their needs met with the support available in their local school or setting. A relatively small number of children with more significant and complex SEN may need more specialist support.


What do we mean by “disability”?

The Equality Act, 2010, defines a child with a disability if they have a physical or mental impairment that has a substantial or long term effect on their ability to carry out normal day to day activities. The definition of disability includes a broad range of needs and in response we offer a range of Universal, Targeted and Specialist Services. Research suggests that about 6-7% of children are disabled.


Who should you talk to if you think your child has SEN?

Parents/Carers should discuss their concerns in the first instance with their child’s class teacher.  They can also make an appointment to see the SENCO (Mrs Caston), if they wish. 


How does the school identify SEN and inform you?

Above all else, Handford Hall Primary School is a caring institute. Work set is designed to consider the ability of the children, whether their ability is above or below average. At Handford Hall Primary School, every child’s progress is closely tracked.  The leadership team Pupil Progress meetings 3 times a year with class teachers to discuss each child’s needs.  Inevitably, some children will fail to make satisfactory progress. In this situation we will consider ways of helping the child using our own experience and expertise. Concerns about individual children will also be discussed with the SENCO (Mrs Caston) who will advise on the best strategies to adopt.  If we feel a child needs to be placed on the SEN register then we will discuss the matter with parents and seek their permission. Depending on the nature and severity of a child’s difficulty, formal systems for assessing a child’s needs are used. If we feel that we are not able to deal with the child’s difficulties then we may need to seek the advice of a range of specialist support services that are available to us.


What are the different levels of SEND support?

There are two levels:


§  SEN support

§  Education, Health and Care plan (pupils with existing statements will be changed to EHC’s over the next 3 years)


Children who are identified as requiring SEN support will receive appropriate support depending on their need.  Some children will receive support from external agencies if required and others will access additional support from trained staff in school.  Children with an Education, Health and Care plan will receive support as recommended by services supporting them. 


What types of support is available for children with SEND at Handford Hall Primary School?

Quality First Teaching and a curriculum to match needs - Each class teacher will plan and teach lessons so that each child’s work will be at the correct level for them.  Sometimes the activities will be different for children of different abilities and sometimes the activities will be the same.  Extra resources and additional support will be provided where needed.  Each class has a learning support assistant (LSA), who can deliver an intervention or allow the teacher to deliver the intervention.

Advice from external agencies will be implemented for children with SEND to ensure their needs are met. Specific individual or group interventions are used to support children with difficulties.  These will be discussed with parents during review meetings and identified on the school Provision Map.


How do we ensure SEND children are fully included in school to support their well-being?

Handford Hall Primary School is an inclusive school and we welcome all pupils. We ensure children with identified SEND are supported but it is also important that we provide them with basic independent personal, social and learning skills.


At Handford Hall we use the following to support all children:

  • Talking Partners – helps children to communicate and co-operate with each other in pairs
  • Talk Time – Provides a chance for children to talk 1:1 with an adult
  • Assemblies– Teaches children social skills, understanding and respecting everyone and also celebrate their achievements
  • Meet and Greet – Children will be greeted by a familiar adult each day to ensure the child is happy and ready to learn and achieve and staff are available every morning and afternoon to greet parents and children and address any morning and after school concerns
  • Club 15 – adult supported lunchtime club for children who find unstructured times daunting or hard to manage
  • Thoughtful Group - Specific weekly intervention for a group of children who require intensive support with their social and emotional well-being, followed up throughout the week with access to ‘Thoughtful Group’ lead, Mrs Xezonakis
  • Learning Mentor – Mrs Mott provides targeted support to children who are struggling during the school day
  • Lego Therapy – specific intervention to develop interpersonal and communication skills
  • Finger Gym – fine motor activity sessions to develop fine motor skills and improve pencil control
  • Gym Trail – daily physical activities sessions to develop gross motor skills
  • Read, Write Inc –Early Years and Key Stage 1 multisensory, phonic-based programme to develop reading and writing
  • Sound Discovery – specific intervention for children who need additional support to develop phonic skills
  • Lexia– computer based, personalized specific intervention programme used to develop reading skills with Key Stage 2 children
  • Reading Buddy – targeted peer support used to develop reading skills and confidence alongside the personalized Accelerated reader programme.
  • Plus 1/Power of 2 – targeted maths intervention
  • Wellcom – targeted speech and language intervention


What outside agencies / people does the school use to support children with SEND?

If your child requires support from external agencies then a referral will be made with the consent of parents.


We use the following people / agencies:

  • Educational Psychology Service
  • Early Years Support Team
  • Learning Support Service
  • Primary Mental Health Workers
  • Sensory Support Service (Hearing and Vision)
  • County Inclusive Resource (ASD)
  • Communicate Independent Speech Therapist
  • Speech and Language Therapy Service
  • School Nurse/Health Professionals (Paediatrician, OT, Physio etc.)
  • Behaviour Support Services
  • Family Support Workers

What training do staff supporting SEND children have?

At Handford Hall Primary School we are very lucky as we have the following skilled people to support SEND children:


  • Staff trained to deliver Draw To Talk
  • Staff trained to deliver Lego Therapy
  • Staff trained to run a Nurture group
  • Speech and Language Support (all staff ELKLAN trained)
  • Several staff trained in strategies to support Autism, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Visual Impairment, Social and Emotional difficulties and ADHD


Staffs regularly have training as required via external professionals or delivered by staff in school with the expertise.


How accessible is Handford Hall Primary School for children with SEND?

We are able to meet the needs of children with physical disabilities as we are a single site school. Entrance to the building is through the main playground entrances. Where entrances are not level a ramp is accessible. Fire exits are also suitable for wheelchair access. The playground areas also have seating arrangements. Access to classrooms is by corridors which are all on the same level. All other specialist areas are on the one level. There is an accessible toilet. We have made sure that there are good lighting and safety arrangements for any visually impaired pupils. Our classrooms provide good acoustic conditions so that the effects of hearing difficulties are minimised (carpeting, blinds/curtains).

Pupils requiring equipment due to impairment will be assessed in order to gain the support that they require.

Our Accessibility Plan was amended in July 2014. Also, Steve Giddings Environmental Officer visited Handford Hall Primary School to conduct a sensory audit in June 2014.



Linked team for Statutory Assessment and EHCPs: 

Ipswich South and West Family Services (email: SENDSS@suffolk.gov.uk)


Helen Caston (SENCO)
01473 251603
Conditions Supported
Autistic spectrum conditions
Communication difficulties
Health conditions
Learning difficulties
Mental health conditions
Physical disabilities
Sensory impairments

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