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Cognition and Learning

 

SEN Guidance 2014

 

Cognition & Learning Difficulties

 

How to use this Guidance

 

Identifying range

 

  1. Read the Range Descriptors overview on the first page of this document and identify those that describe your pupil. You might find it useful to print off a copy of these and highlight ones that apply.
  2. Use the Range Descriptor detailed information which follows on in each range, to think about how the pupil’s individual profile affects their access to the curriculum and school life. These statements support a decision about whether the pupil is mildly, moderately or severely affected and give guidance about how contexts and support needed affect placement at a particular range.
  3. Steps 1 and 2 above should enable professionals to make a judgement about which range the pupil is at currently. It is important to recognise that these ranges can alter either because the pupil’s profile may change or because of context changes such as times of transition/ school placement.

 

 

Using the Guidance to support learning

 

  1. Once the range has been established professionals will find advice about how to support the learning of children and young people with cognition and learning needs at each range.
  2. It is important to recognise that Quality First Teaching will provide a firm basis upon which to use the additional strategies identified at each range. Strategies and advice from earlier ranges need to be utilised as well as more specialised information as the ranges increase.
  3. Hyperlinks provide useful additional information and contacts

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

Range Descriptors Overview

 

Range One

  • Below expected rate of attainment; up to 2 years behind national expectations.
  • Difficulty with the acquisition / use of language, literacy, numeracy skill
  • Difficulty with the pace of curriculum delivery.
  • Some problems with concept development.
  • Take note of descriptors for other SEN needs, may not be primary need

 

Range Two

  • Mild but persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills.
  • Attainment is more than 2 years behind national expectations despite targeted differentiation
  • Processing difficulties limit independence and may need adult support in some areas.
  • Take note of descriptors for other SEN needs, may not be primary need

 

Range Three

  • Moderate and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills.
  • Needs persist and appear resistant to previous interventions
  • Attainment is more than 3 years behind expected level despite differentiated learning opportunities and concentrated support with wave 1/2 interventions.
  • Moderate difficulties with independent working and needs the support of an adult and a modified curriculum.
  • Cognitive assessment by a specialist teacher or Educational Psychologist likely to be significantly below average range of cognitive ability (SS<72 at the 3rd percentile or below). Moderate LD
  • A diagnosis may be in place eg Down Syndrome/Williams Syndrome/Prader Willi syndrome

 

Range Four(1)

  • Significant cognitive impairment severely restricts access to the curriculum
  • Cognitive assessment by a specialist teacher or Educational Psychologist Likely to be significantly below average range of cognitive ability (SS< 68 at the 1st percentile or below). Severe LD
  • Significant difficulties with independent working and needs the support of an adult and a personalised curriculum.
  • Significant difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Significant level of cognitive impairment that is a lifelong disability and significantly impacts on social development and independence
  • An EHCP is in place.

 

Range Four (2)

  • Significant cognitive impairment severely restricts access to the curriculum.
  • Significant and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/
    numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Significant level of cognitive impairment that is a lifelong disability and significantly impacts on social development and independence and requires specialist teaching.
  • Severe LD DSP Provision available

 

Range Five

  • Profound difficulties with cognitive impairment profoundly restrict access to the curriculum and require specialist provision.
  • Significant and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Complex and severe language and communication difficulties.
  • Profound LD

Range Six

  • Profound learning needs with another significant barrier to learning e.g. SLCN/Sensory/Physical/ASD
  • Profound difficulties with cognitive impairment that profoundly restrict access to the curriculum and require specialist provision. .
  • Profound and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills, that impact on all aspects of daily life; lifelong disability.
  • Complex and profound language and communication difficulties.
  • Profound LD

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

Range 1 - School based responses

 

Descriptor

 

  • Below expected rate of attainment; up to 2 years behind national expectations.
  • Difficulty with the acquisition / use of language, literacy, numeracy skill
  • Difficulty with the pace of curriculum delivery.
  • Some problems with concept development.
  • Take note of descriptors for other SEN needs, may not be primary need

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • Part of normal school and class assessments.
  • Normal curriculum plans include QFT strategies
  • Parents and children involved in monitoring and supporting their targets.

LA

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Mainstream class with flexible grouping arrangements.
  • Opportunities for small group work based on identified need e.g. listening/thinking.

 

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with advice from SENCO.
  • Additional adults routinely used to support flexible groupings and differentiation
  • Mainstream class with enhanced differentiation, regular targeted small group support.
  • Time limited programmes of small group work based on identified need.
  • Opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific targets, with outcomes closely monitored.
  • Advice from LD is reflected in targets.

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • Quality First teaching +
  • Differentiation by presentation, activity and/or outcome.
  • Simplify level/pace/amount of teacher talk.
  • Emphasis on identifying and teaching gaps highlighted by LD Baseline assessment.
  • Opportunities for skill reinforcement/ revision/transfer and generalisation.
  • Formal teaching of vocabulary and concepts

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Full inclusion within the curriculum through use of differentiation and group support.
  • Activities planned through QFT with emphasis on concrete, experiential and visual supports.
  • Multi sensory learning opportunities.
  • Strategies employed to encourage cognitive engagement, transferring and generalising learning e.g. Thinking Skills and problem solving.
  • Links established between new and prior learning with support from review and over learning techniques.

 

  • Top Ten Tips on BSO
  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

Range 2 - School based responses

 

Descriptor

 

  • Mild but persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills.
  • Attainment is more than 2 years  behind national expectations despite targeted differentiation
  • Processing difficulties limit independence and may need adult support in some areas.
  • Take note of descriptors for other SEN needs, may not be primary need

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • SENCO  involved in more specific assessment and observations.
  • e.g. B Squared /PIVATS ,specific screening tools, Aston Index, LD baseline.
  • Curriculum plan reflects levels of achievement; progress is tracked via school tracking or CASPA.
  • There is evidence of systematic monitoring and recording of progress in terms of the effectiveness of interventions.

 

LA

  • Baseline assessment, Toolbox resource on BSO

http://bso.bradford.gov.uk/Schools/CMSPage.aspx?mid=1893

  • SENCo Induction Training
  • Nasen Toolbox-as below

 

 

 

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Mainstream class with enhanced differentiation, regular targeted small group support.
  • Time limited programmes of small group work based on identified need.
  • Opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific targets, with outcomes closely monitored.
  • Advice from LD is reflected in targets.

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Parents are fully informed of school provision for child and involved in decisions about interventions to meet the child`s needs.
  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCO and advice from specialist teachers as appropriate.
  • Additional adult, under the direction of teacher, provides sustained targeted support on an individual/group basis.
  • May include withdrawal on a time limited basis, entry and exit criteria clearly stated.

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • Quality First teaching+
  • Programme includes differentiated and modified tasks within an inclusive curriculum.
  • Modify level/pace/amount of teacher talk to pupils’ identified need.
  • Programmes to consist of small achievable steps.
  • Pre teach concepts and vocabulary
  • Multi sensory learning opportunities
  • Emphasis on using and applying and generalisation of skills.
  • Individual targets within group programmes and/or 1:1carefully monitored and reviewed.

 

  • Top Ten Tips BSO
  • Nasen Toolbox as below

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Adults use the developmental level of language appropriate to the child in questioning and explanation.
  • Elklan and Blank Scheme Levels and Activities
  • Simple Thinking Skills activities Intensive use of ‘Thinking Skills’ approach, sorting/ matching/visual sequencing/ classifying and categorising.
  • Use real objects where ever possible..
  • Individual reading     individual maths
  • Alphabet arc activities
  • Precision teaching Motor co-ordination programme
  • Busy box
  • 5 minute box lit/num
  • visual timetables, timeline
  • QFT is supplemented by appropriate small group work with close monitoring in place.
  • Individualised programmes are incorporated
  • into provision. Clear entry and exit criteria.
  • The child experiences success through carefully planned interventions and expectations

 

  • Top Ten Tips on BSO
  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

Range 3 - School based responses

 

Descriptor

 

  • Moderate and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills.
  • Needs persist and appear resistant to previous interventions
  • Attainment is more than 3 years behind expected level despite differentiated learning opportunities and concentrated support with wave 1/2 interventions.
  • Moderate difficulties with independent working and needs the support of an adult and a moderated curriculum.
  • Cognitive assessment by a specialist teacher or Educational Psychologist likely to be significantly below average range of cognitive ability   (SS<72 at the 3rd percentile or below). Moderate LD
  • A diagnosis may be in place eg Down Syndrome/Williams Syndrome/Prader Willi syndrome

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • SENCo should take advice from assessment by LD/EP and the involvement of education and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • Reviews should take note of evidence based need to move towards an EHC plan
  • Curriculum plans and progress are closely monitored by CASPA or school tracker.
  • Targets are individualised, short term and specific.
  • Continued regular engagement of parents/carer

LA

  • Upon completion of baseline assessment by school and evidence of consistent, structured and monitored provision a discussion will take place as to whether the Specialist Teacher is to be involved. If so;
    • Specialist Teacher will meet parent/carers, assess child, report back and monitor progress and provision.

 

Groupings for teaching

  • Mainstream class, predominantly working on modified curriculum tasks.
  • Frequent opportunities for small group work based on identified need.
  • Daily opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific IEP targets.
  • Grouping needs to be flexible and include positive peer models with input from Class teacher as well as additional adults

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCO and advice from specialist teacher and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • A consistent structured environment may include withdrawal, carefully monitored, planned by class teacher for a specific target.
  • Additional adult, under the direction of the teacher provides sustained targeted support on an individual/group basis. Clear monitoring of effectiveness of interventions.
  • Additional adult to be trained to deliver interventions and support
  • Advice/training from specialist teacher and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • Central training available

 

Curriculum and Teaching

Methods

  • Quality First teaching +Tasks and presentation increasingly individualised and modified  in an inclusive curriculum,
  • Visual cues to support auditory information at all stages of delivery.
  • Individualised level/pace/amount of teacher talk. Ensure transfer and generalisation of skills has occurred before teaching anything new.
  • Small steps targets within  group programmes and/or 1:1
  • Alternative ways of recording as appropriate
  • Central Training available
  • Nasen Toolbox- as below

 

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Use of ‘Thinking Skills’ approach, sorting/ matching/visual sequencing/classifying and categorising.
  • The child experiences success through carefully planned interventions and expectations
  • Use real objects where ever possible.
  • Elklan activities, Motor coordination programme
  • Blank Activities, Busy box, 20/20 reading
    5 minute box lit/numeracy, 20/20 maths, Visual timetables, Alphabet Arc,  Precision teaching
  • QFT is supplemented by appropriate small group work with close monitoring in place.
  • Individualised programmes are incorporated into provision. Clear entry and exit criteria.
  • Adults use the developmental level of language appropriate to the child in questioning and explanation.
  • Central Training available
  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

SEVERE -  Range 4  Band 1

 

Descriptor

 

  • Cognitive assessment by a specialist teacher or Educational Psychologist Likely to be significantly below average range of cognitive ability (SS< 68 at the 1st percentile or below ). Severe LD
  • Significant difficulties with independent working and needs the support of an adult and a personalised curriculum.
  • Significant difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Significant level of cognitive impairment that is a lifelong disability and significantly impacts on social development and independence
  • An EHCP is in place.

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • SENCo takes advice from assessment by LD/EP and the involvement of education and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • Curriculum plans and progress are closely monitored by CASPA.
  • Targets are individualised, short term and specific use B squared /pivats / CASPA to set targets Continued regular engagement of parents

LA

  • Where a child is identified as not making expected progress a Specialist Teacher is available up to ten hours per year, to meet parents, assess child, report back and monitor progress and provision.
  • Parents/ carers are naturally involved.

 

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Mainstream class, predominantly working on modified curriculum tasks.
  • Frequent opportunities for small group work based on identified need. Daily opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific IEP targets.

 

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCO and advice from specialist teacher and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • A consistent structured environment may include withdrawal, carefully monitored, planned by class teacher for a specific target.
  • Additional adult, under the direction of the teacher provides sustained targeted support on an individual/group basis.
  • Clear monitoring of effectiveness of interventions. Additional adult to be trained to deliver interventions and support

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • Quality First teaching +Tasks and presentation increasingly individualised and modified  in an inclusive curriculum
  • Visual cues to support auditory information at all stages of delivery.
  • Individualised level/pace/amount of teacher talk. Ensure transfer and generalisation of skills has occurred before teaching anything new.
  • Small steps targets within  group programmes and/or 1:1
  • Tasks and presentation are personalised to the child’s needs and  monitored regularly to ensure remain appropriate
  • Emphasis on literacy, numeracy PSHCE and ICT
  • Central training available

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Modified class curriculum
  • Pupil still included in activities wherever appropriate
  • Use real objects for thinking skill activities.
  • Explore the context for the objects.
  • Appropriate thinking skills strategies
  • R3 provision plus
  • Visual cues Task plans
  • Simplified language level with instructions chunked.
  • Elklan Strategies
  • Numicon
  • Addacus
  • SALT
  • Daily individualised prog for Lit/Numeracy
  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

SEVERE -  Range 4  Band 2

 

Descriptor

 

  • Severe LD Significant cognitive impairment severely restrict access to the curriculum.
  • Significant and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/
    numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Significant level of cognitive impairment that is a lifelong disability and significantly impacts on social development and independence and requires specialist teaching.
  • Severe LD

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • SENCo takes advice from assessment by LD/EP and the involvement of education and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • Curriculum plans and progress are closely monitored by CASPA.
  • Targets are individualised, short term and specific use B squared /pivats / CASPA to set targets
  • Continued regular engagement of parents Continue to use B squared to set targets and progress is closely monitored and tracked by CASPA.
  • Rely on education and outside professionals for assessment and advice.

LA

Mainstream setting

  • Specialist Teacher available for up to ten hours to meet parents, assess child, report back and monitor progress and provision as required. Parents/carers are naturally involved.
  • See DSP provision offer if child is not in mainstream school.

 

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Mainstream class, predominantly working on modified curriculum tasks.
  • Frequent opportunities for small group work based on identified need.
  • Daily opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific IEP targets.
  • See DSP for offer

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCO and advice from specialist teacher and non-education professionals as appropriate.
  • A consistent structured environment may include withdrawal, carefully monitored, planned by class teacher for a specific target.
  • Additional adult, under the direction of the teacher provides sustained targeted support on an individual/group basis.
  • Clear monitoring of effectiveness of interventions. Additional adult to be trained to deliver interventions and support

 

  • Specific training/ teaching from LA specialist teacher, as appropriate.
  • Input for all the above LA services equals 10 hours per year total.

 

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • Modified class curriculum
  • Quality First teaching +Tasks and presentation increasingly individualised and modified  in an inclusive curriculum
  • Visual cues to support auditory information at all stages of delivery.
  • Individualised level/pace/amount of teacher talk. Ensure transfer and generalisation of skills has occurred before teaching anything new.
  • Small steps targets within  group programmes and/or 1:1
  • Tasks and presentation are personalised to the child’s needs and  monitored regularly to ensure remain appropriate
  • Emphasis on literacy, numeracy PSHCE and ICT
  • Tasks and presentation are personalised to the child`s needs and as R4(1) monitored regularly to ensure remain appropriate

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Intensive use of ‘Thinking Skills’ approach, sorting/ matching/visual sequencing/ classifying and categorising.
  • The child experiences success through carefully planned interventions and expectations
  • Use real objects where ever possible. Pupil still included in group activities wherever appropriate
  • Elklan activities, Alphabet arc activities, Blank Activities
  • Precision teaching, Motor co-ordination programme
  • Busy box , 20/20 reading, 20/20 maths
  • visual timetables, timeline, cues, task plans
  • 5 minute box lit/num, Numicon, Addacus
  • QFT is supplemented by appropriate small group work with close monitoring in place.
  • Individualised lit/numeracy incorporated into provision. Clear entry and exit criteria.
  • Adults use the developmental level of language appropriate to the child in questioning and explanation. Simple language level with instructions chunked.
  • 1-1 SALT may be appropriate
  • Central training available
  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

PROFOUND - Range 5 

 

Descriptor

 

  • Profound difficulties with cognitive impairment profoundly restrict access to the curriculum and require specialist provision.
  • Significant and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills, with the curriculum and out of school activities
  • Complex and severe language and communication difficulties.
  • Profound LD

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • As R4 and with long term involvement of Specialist provision and appropriate non educational professionals.
  • Previous assessment informs the planning process for appropriate programmes. Individual targets and therapy programmes are carefully monitored.
  • Targets are short term and specific, monitored and reviewed on a short term basis. Parents/carers are naturally involved.

LA

 

 

 

 See Specialist provision offer.

 

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Extremely modified and individualised work. Small group and 1-1 daily developing basic skills.
  • May need specialist intervention from time to time to model interventions for schools to follow

 

Specialist Provision

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Staff need to be trained and have experience working with pupils. Access to extra staffing to support pupils in times of crisis and stress and to escort pupils on outings and trips.
  • Appropriately trained staff to deal with medical and physical issues as appropriate

 

See Specialist provision offer.

 

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • As R4 plus access to aids personalised to the child’s needs e.g. communication needs
  • Ensure that appropriate advice and materials are always available such as PECS, Makaton, ICT

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • Extreme modification of curriculum and group activities carefully
  • Monitored to ensure the pupil is not isolated or excluded.
  • Pupil still included in activities wherever appropriate
  • Plus emphasis on using real objects and experiences for all activities, and visual support throughout Specialist ICT hard and software.
  • AAC systems to support communication environment. Specialist equipment to promote self help, physical access and mobility.
  • Appropriate indoor and outdoor provision in a safe and secure setting.
  • Specialist hygiene facilities if necessary.
  • Access to specialist educational and non educational services.

 

See Specialist provision offer.

 

  • Nasen Toolbox

http://www.nasen.org.uk/onlinesendcpd/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/primary-training/

http://www.nasentraining.org.uk/training-pack/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cognition and Learning Difficulties Guidance

 

MORE PROFOUND - Range  6

Descriptor

 

  • Profound learning needs with another significant barrier to learning e.g. SLCN/Sensory/Physical/ASD
  • Profound difficulties with cognitive impairment that profoundly restrict access to the curriculum and require specialist provision.
  • Profound and persistent difficulties in the acquisition/use of language/literacy/numeracy skills, that impact on all aspects of daily life; lifelong disability.
  • Complex and profound language and communication difficulties.
  • Profound LD

 

 

Assessment

 & Planning

 

SCHOOL

  • Specialist Provision
  • As above with close attention to B Squared and PIVATS.
  • Reliance on specialist advice Parents are naturally involved

 

LA

See Specialist Provision Offer

 

Groupings for teaching

 

 

  • Include fully wherever possible in a highly modified/individualised curriculum.
  • Small group and individual work with entry and exit criteria to ensure that despite difficulties, progress, however small can be tracked

 

 

Human resources & staffing

 

  • Specialist provision small group and 1-1 as appropriate.
  • Very high level of adult to pupil ratio 1-1
  • Extremely small classes

 

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

 

  • Support is in line with medical needs and profound Learning difficulties.
  • Tailored to the level of cognition, chronological age and developmental level.

 

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

 

  • As R5 with emphasis on individual specialist needs and taking Chronological age and developmental levels into account. Inclusion dependent on physical and medical needs of pupil.
  • Aim to include pupil fully despite their level of disability, therefore rely on the specialist advice e.g. educational and non-educational services