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Social, Emotional and Mental Health

SEN Guidance July 2016

Social, Emotional, Mental Health

Social, Emotional, Mental Health Descriptors

The children and young people (C&YP) to whom this guidance relates will present with a range of features of social, emotional mental health difficulties which impact on  their learning and social inclusion.  Individual C&YP may display a range of these features which will vary in severity and intensity and which may change over time.  It is not expected that any C&YP will match all the descriptors listed below.   The descriptors may be used to support the identification and assessment of the needs of an individual C&YP:

Social

•     C/YP may be socially vulnerable, withdrawn or isolated within their peer group.

  • C/YP may have immature social skills, or lack the optimum level of social and emotional skills needed to cope in a whole school  environment without adult support for a proportion of the school day
  • C/YP may follow some but not all school rules/routines in the school environment
  • C/YP may have difficulties in social interactions/relationships with both adults and peers
  • C/YP may have difficulties with social interaction, social communication and social understanding which regularly impact on classroom performance
  • C/YP may struggle to maintain positive relationships with peers and adults.
  • C/YP may be slow to develop age appropriate self-care skills due to levels of maturity or degree of Learning Difficulties
  • C/YP may refuse to engage, be abusive towards staff and peers, may present as disengaged and may wilfully disruptive
  • C/YP may damage property

 

Emotional

  • C/YP may show signs of stress and anxiety and/or difficulties managing their emotions
  • C/YP may have difficulty identifying their emotions or triggers and may need support to self-regulate, or may self-regulate in self-harming or anti-social ways
  • C/YP may have dysfunctional states of alertness; for example low states such as depression or boredom, or heightened states such as excitement or hyperactivity, and be unable to prevent these from affecting their prosocial ability.
  • C/YP may exhibit crisis which may be one off, prolonged or regular responses to anxiety, or they may be learned responses to undesired or stressful situations.
  • C/YP may be at risk of leaving the school premises or absconding during the school day
  • C/YP may show patterns of stress or anxiety related to  a specific context or a specific times of the day

•       C/YP may have difficulties expressing empathy or be emotionally detached.

  • C/YP may engage in high risk taking activities both at school and within the community
  • C/YP may need to be in control exhibiting bullying behaviours either as victim or perpetrator
  • C/YP may be over-friendly or withdrawn with strangers and at risk of exploitation
  • C/YP may be provocative in appearance and behaviour, and there could be evidence of over sexualised language or behaviours

 

Mental Health

  • C/YP may be unpredictable and may exhibit patterns of behaviour that impact on learning and inclusion
  • C/YP may be disruptive or overactive and lack concentration in the classroom setting.
  • C/YP may be under assessment for mental health difficulties, acute anxiety, attachment issues.
  • C/YP could have a tendency to hurt others, self or animals.
  • C/YP may have issues around identity and belonging
  • C/YP may experience acute anxiety, fear, isolation, bullying, harassment, leading to controlling behaviours
  • C/YP may present with self-harming behaviour
  • C/YP may have attempted suicide
  • C/YP may engage in persistent substance abuse

 

Presenting behaviour may also include:

 

  • A preference for own agenda and reluctance to follow instructions
  • Presenting with different behaviour with different members of staff.

•     There may be patterns of regular school absence

•       C/YP may be disengaged from learning and significantly under-performing

•       C/YP may be verbally and physically aggressive

•       C/YP may be subject to neglect, with basic needs unmet or they may be preoccupied with hunger, illness, lack of sleep

  • C/YP may be identified as being at risk of CSE

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

Quality First Teaching

Descriptor

 

All children should be educated in a socially and emotionally differentiated learning environment and taught the social and emotional skills which underpin good behaviour and learning.

The key areas are:

  • An appropriate whole school ethos which includes a focus on the promotion of good mental health and well being
  • A positive focus on attendance
  • A positive behaviour policy which is socially and emotionally differentiated to meet the needs of all pupils and reviewed with staff at least annually
  • A classroom and playground environment which focuses on positive relationships and the development of social skills
  • The provision of planned opportunities for pupils to learn social and emotional skills and build resilience
  • The recognition that some pupils may experience short term difficulties managing their emotions and behaviour

Assessment

and Planning

 

  • Systems in place to ensure effective behaviour management strategies
  • Systems in place which ensure effective consequences both positive and negative (rewards and sanctions)
  • Effective links between pastoral support, personal and social education, SEN and the curriculum
  • Differentiation of teaching and learning both academically and socially and emotionally

Groupings for teaching

  • Mainstream classroom environments with attention paid to nurturing principles, developing positive relationships and the creation of a sense of belonging and safety
  • A quiet area in the classroom available for individual work or to allow pupils to calm/refocus
  • Attention paid to learning styles/any learning adjustments that may be necessary to accommodate these

Human resources and staffing

 

  • Provision by class teacher, with additional classroom staff available as felt appropriate
  • Systems in place to facilitate good communication within classroom staff teams  and a shared understanding of how social and emotional issues and difficult events may impact on behaviour
  • Systems in place to encourage the establishment of good liaison and a common approach with parents/carers in order that they might be able to fully participate in decisions about their children
  • Staff support and training on issues related to emotional, social development, behaviour and good mental health

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

  • Appropriate differentiation of the curriculum and all supporting materials socially and emotionally as well as academically
  • Assessment of preferred styles to inform teaching
  • Use of whole class social/emotional and behaviour targets both within the classroom and playground
  • The planned teaching of personal social and emotional skills (eg a curriculum such as SEAL)
  • Planned teaching of social communication skills

Resources and Intervention Strategies

  • A range of additional provisions in place in school such as: school councils, peer counselling buddy schemes, circle time, breakfast clubs, lunchtime/after school activities, break time havens, life Skills teaching
  • Structured systems in place to support internal transitions between classes/activities, around school
  • Strategies in place to monitor attendance and punctuality which enhance communication between home and school
  • Systems for observing, auditing and assessing a pupils behaviour, monitored by SMT
  • Systems in place which enable pupils to easily communicate difficulties, worries e.g. “bullying box”, “worry book”

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

 

Range 1 -  School based responses (Mild)

 

Descriptor

 

Children will have been identified as presenting with some low level features of social, emotional mental health difficulties.

 

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

Assessment will continue as part of normal school and class assessments, while the SENCO may initiate some more specific assessment and observations:

  • Records kept could include observations and assessments of context, structured and unstructured times, frequency, triggers, ABCs, STAR analysis, which are analysed in order to ensure the early identification of emerging difficulties
  • Plans may be in place for more difficult times of the school day
  • Learning styles should be re-visited with adjustments made to accommodate them
  • Parents involved on a regular basis and encouraged to support targets at home

 

 

Groupings for teaching

 

Pupils will continue to be in a mainstream class with attention paid to organisation and pupil groupings as follows: 

  • Opportunities for small group work based on identified need eg listening/thinking/social skills
  • Time limited mainstream classroom programme of support, which relates to assessments 
  • Small group work to teach appropriate behaviours and emotional regulation
  • A quiet area in the classroom available for individual work or to support pupils to calm/refocus
  • A mainstream classroom environment with attention paid to nurturing principles, developing positive relationships, the creation of a sense of belonging and safety and adjusted in the light of information gained as a result of on-going observations and assessments

 

 

Human resources and staffing

 

  • Support/advice for the class teacher from SENCo with assessment, observation and planning
  • Appropriately skilled additional adults routinely used to support flexible groupings and to observe pupils 
  • Skilled adults available to offer planned  support for pupils experiencing difficulties
  • A continued focus on close liaison and a common approach with parents/carers

 

 

Curriculum and teaching methods

  • Strategies developed are part of a planned approach and are shared with all relevant school staff and parents/carers
  • Differentiation of the curriculum and all supporting materials socially and emotionally as well as academically
  • Adult communication well matched to pupils’ assessed level of communication and ability to understand e.g. appropriate amount of teacher talk – chunked instructions, simple sentences
  • More targeted responses  to pupils’ preferred learning and communication style
  • Planned opportunities for pupils to learn social and emotional skills, e.g. use of specific, planned groups e.g. friendship groups
  • Preparation for any change and the need for clear routines so that children feel safe

 

 

 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range 2 - School based responses (Mild)

Descriptor

 

Difficulties identified at range 1 continue/worsen and there has been no significant measured change in the target behaviour/social skill despite quality first teaching and range 1 interventions being in place.

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

Assessment as range 1 plus:

  • More detailed and targeted observation ie interval sampling, ABC’s,  STAR analysis, use and analysis of assessment tools (Boxall, SDQ) and interventions related to assessments
  • Behaviour plans/risk assessments in place for more difficult times of the school day
  • Assessment of progress in response to interventions
  • Pupil self assessment, and wider assessments for learning/other SEN
  • Planning includes individually focused plans with clear targets and with appropriate steps taken to engage pupil and parents
  • Advice sought from recognised professionals external to the school (e.g. Behaviour Support Service Specialist Teaching Team, Educational Psychology Service, CAMHS).

 

       Advice rather than referral at this stage

 

Groupings for teaching

  • In addition to the provision at range 1, identified regular support to teach social skills/emotional literacy in order to support behaviour and learning targets
  • Mainstream class with regular, time limited programmes of small group work based on identified need
  • Occasional opportunities for 1:1 support focused on specific individual targets

Human resources and staffing

 

  • Additional adult, under the direction of teacher/SENCo, provides targeted support on an individual/group basis
  • Increased parental/carer involvement and regularly reviewed individual plans
  • Skilled staff available to encourage inclusion in extracurricular activities
  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCO and with additional advice (not referral) from other professionals as outlined above

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

As range one, but with the addition of:

  • Individually  targeted differentiation of the curriculum to ensure inclusion
  • Individual strategies developed are part of a planned approach and are shared with all relevant school staff and parents/carers
  • More targeted differentiation of the curriculum and all supporting materials socially and emotionally as well as academically
  • Individually targeted responses  to pupils’ preferred learning and communication style
  • Planned opportunities for pupils to learn social and emotional skills, e.g. use of specific, planned groups e.g. friendship groups
  • A nurturing approach within the classroom which takes account of individual SEMH assessments to reduce the impact of difficulties in the understanding of social rules, expectations and appropriate behaviour
  • Short term individual support focusing on listening, concentration, social skills
  • Occasional small group work with an increasing emphasis on relationships, emotions, social skills, conflict resolution
  • Consideration of flexibility to teach according to emotional need rather than chronological age
  • Provision of opportunities for play, creative activities, drama/role play

Resources and Intervention Strategies

  • Continue with range 1 strategies + use of SMART individual behaviour targets within classroom or playground
  • Increase visual systems; prompt cards, behaviour plans, risk assessments, portable plans, diaries
 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

Range 3 (Moderate)

Descriptor

 

Difficulties identified at range 2 continue/worsen and there has been no significant measured change in the target behaviour/social skill despite quality first teaching and range 1 and 2 interventions being in place.

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

As Range 2 plus more systematic application of assessment tools to gain detailed evidence over      time to support a planned approach, from which action plans are developed and regularly reviewed

 

  • Referral to recognised specialist professionals external to the school (e.g. Behaviour

Support Service Specialist Teaching Team, Educational Psychology Service, CAMHS).

  • Behaviour and curriculum plans closely track levels of achievement, and all targets are individualised and SMART
  • Individual provision map is now in place demonstrating provision at range 1-3 to support a pupil with long term needs that are likely to require further specialist assessment. Provision Map clearly evidences  that up to 16.5  hours of individual support is in place
  • Consideration may be given to referral to LA Behaviour Panel/BAC  for further advice and assessment in a short term specialist environment may be felt to be appropriate
  • Effective multi-agency working in place

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Mainstream class but predominantly working on modified curriculum tasks with regular and consistent 1:1 support focused on specific SEMH/learning targets
  • Frequent opportunities for small group work based on identified need  - SEAL small group work or nurture group provision (if available and assessments indicate appropriateness)

 

Human resources and staffing

 

School

  • Daily access to staff in school with experience of SEMH, eg behaviour support worker, lead behaviour professional, SENCo, behaviour/learning mentor, inclusion manager, nurture group staff
  • Additional adult, under the direction of the teacher, supports pupil working on modified

behaviour targets and curriculum tasks

  • Increased access to a combination of targeted individual, small group activities
  • Main provision by class/subject teacher with support from SENCo. Additional advice and support from recognised professionals external to the school (e.g. referral to Behaviour Support Service Specialist Teaching Team, Educational Psychology Service, CAMHS).
  • Consider access to therapeutic interventions such as counselling, play therapy, art therapy, CBT, anger regulation work

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

Teaching focuses on both SEMH and curriculum outcomes throughout the school day

  • Tasks and presentation differentiated and personalised to pupil’s needs
  • Modified and individualised level/pace/amount of teacher talk
  • 1:1 teaching for the introduction of new concepts and the specific teaching and reinforcement of classroom routines and expectations
  • Small steps targets within group programmes
  • 1:1 work task completion with adult support
  • Targets monitored with pupil daily

 

Resources & Intervention Strategies

  • Use the strategies in ranges 1 – 2 with an individualised focus
  • Continue to review any resources and develop them to match the pupil’s needs
  • Involvement from wider services; Children’s Social Care, CAMHS, CDC, PALZ, Early Help

 

 

 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range 4i (Severe)

Descriptor

 

Pupil continues to present with severe and persistent levels of social, emotional, mental health difficulties which are now more complex and long term and which have required statutory assessment to ensure additional financial resource to support continued inclusion in a mainstream environment.

 

Assessment and Planning

 

  • Statutory assessment process (EHCP) is complete and is supported by the annual review process to ensure that assessment continues to be on-going, is multi-agency and involves a range of specialist professionals
  • Is supported by an annual review process to ensure on-going assessment, which is multi-agency and involves parents/carers and a range of specialist professionals, such as CAMHS, EP, YOT, therapeutic provisions
  • IEP, PSP, IBP, risk assessment or provision map detailing strategies and appropriate short term targets

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Pupil offered individualised support from an adult in the mainstream environment – with reference to both statutory funding and advice detailed within EHCP
  • Opportunities for pupil to engage in specialist provision within the mainstream environment for part of the week

 

Human resources and staffing

  • Daily access to staff with experience and training in meeting the needs of pupils with SEMH
  • Continued access to advice and support from external specialists as indicated above
  • EHCP may advise access to therapeutic interventions such as counselling, play therapy, art therapy, CBT, anger regulation work

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

  • Pupils curriculum is personalised and pupils may be disapplied from some aspects of the national curriculum
  • Activities focus on key skills and SEMH outcomes throughout the school day
  • More lessons outside mainstream timetabling with increasing access to alternative specialist provisions

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

Continue to review  resources and develop them to match the pupil’s needs:

  • Targeted intervention carefully employing a range of specialist strategies
  • Individual SEMH programme incorporating 1:1 and small group teaching
  • Specialist provision within mainstream may be appropriate to meet need for part of the week
  • All additional resources and exceptional arrangements are referenced in a personalised provision map

 

 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range 4ii (Severe)

Descriptor

 

Pupil continues to present with severe and persistent levels of social, emotional, mental health difficulties which continue to be complex and long term and which require a higher level of additional financial resource to support continued inclusion in a mainstream environment.

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

  • Statutory assessment process (EHCP) is complete and is supported by the annual review process to ensure that assessment continues to be on-going, is multi-agency and involves a range of specialist professionals
  • Is supported by an annual review process to ensure on-going assessment, which is multi-agency and involves parents/carers and a range of specialist professionals, such as CAMHS, EP, YOT, therapeutic provisions
  • IEP, PSP, IBP, risk assessment or provision map detailing strategies and appropriate short term targets

 

Groupings for teaching

 

  • Pupil offered individualised support from an adult in the mainstream environment – with reference to statutory funding  and advice detailed within EHCP
  • Opportunities for pupil to engage in specialist provision within the mainstream environment for part of the week

 

Human resources & staffing

  • Daily access to staff with experience and training in meeting the needs of pupils with SEMH
  • Continued access to advice and support from external specialists as indicated above
  • EHCP may advise access to therapeutic interventions such counselling, play therapy, art therapy, CBT, anger regulation work

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

  • Pupils curriculum is personalised and pupils may be disapplied from some aspects of the national curriculum
  • Activities focus on key skills and SEMH outcomes throughout the school day
    • More lessons outside mainstream timetabling with increasing access to alternative specialist provisions

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

Continue to review  resources and develop them to match the pupil’s needs:

  • Targeted intervention carefully employing a range of specialist strategies
  • Individual SEMH programme incorporating 1:1 and small group teaching
  • Specialist provision within mainstream may be appropriate to meet need for part of the week
  • All additional resources and exceptional arrangements are referenced in a personalised provision map

 

 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range 5  (Profound)

Descriptor

Significant and increasing social, emotional, mental health difficulties, requiring funding which is additional to that at range 4 and which supports either significantly additional and different provision in a mainstream school setting or provision in a specialist setting other than mainstream.

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

Statutory assessment process (EHCP) is complete, has identified appropriate provision and is supported by the annual review process to ensure that assessment continues to be on-going, is multi-agency and involves a range of specialist professionals, such as CAMHS, EP, YOT, therapeutic provisions

 

Groupings for teaching

Pupil placed in a setting with significantly additional and different provision in place and which ensures close support from highly trained specialist staff.

 

This is likely to be in a specialist setting, but could be in an appropriately resourced mainstream setting.

 

Human resources and staffing

 

Significantly additional and different provision in place and close support from highly trained specialist staff

 

EHCP may advise access to a range of other specialist agencies offering support, such as:

  • Education Social Worker, Drug and Alcohol Team, Police
  • Health, YOT, CAMHS, Educational Psychologist
  • Social Care, Community Support Worker, Family Intervention
  • Families First, School Nurse
  • Connexions/careers advice
  • Youth Service, Voluntary Sector Organisations
  • CAMHS, West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service
  • Barnardos (Turnaround), Children’s Society (Hand in Hand)
  • Probation Service, Social Care, Community Support Worker
  • Family Intervention, Families First, Prevent Services
  • MISPER Teams, other Specialist Health Services
  • Therapeutic interventions, such as. counselling, play therapy, art therapy, CBT, anger regulation work

 

Curriculum and Teaching Methods

Pupils require an alternative curriculum which provides:

  • A detailed and differentiated behaviour management programme in addition to targeted support and reassurance in areas of learning the child finds particularly demanding
  • Regular opportunities to consolidate learning/ promote confidence in the learning environment
  • Close adult support around the implementation of structured small group work and/or one-to-one intervention and to support during less structured times
  • Immediate access to a trained specialist adult able to intervene immediately to support the pupil in recognising their emotions and managing their behaviour

 

Resources and Intervention Strategies

  • Personalised to the specific needs of the pupil
  • Advice available from relevant specialist services

 

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range  6 (more profound)

Descriptor

 

Continuing significant and increasing social, emotional, mental health difficulties, requiring sufficient funding and resource to ensure that appropriate specialist provision outside the mainstream environment is in place.

 

Assessment

Planning

 

Statutory assessment process (EHCP) is complete and pupil has been assessed as needing enhanced specialist provision.

 

Groupings for teaching

Pupil is on roll at a specialist setting offering a personalised programme of education and therapeutic support

 

Human resources and staffing

 

Provision is within a specialist environment with appropriate staff/student ratios

 

Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Guidance

 

Range  7 (Exceptional)

Descriptor

 

Continuing significant, complex and increasing social, emotional, mental health difficulties, requiring substantial additional funding and resource to ensure that appropriate specialist provision outside the mainstream environment is in place.

 

Assessment

and Planning

 

Statutory assessment process (EHCP) is complete and pupil has been assessed as needing enhanced, or more secure specialist provision

 

 

Groupings for teaching

  • Pupil is on roll in a specialist setting, which may be out of area and/or residential

 

Human resources and staffing

 

Provision is within a specialist environment with appropriate staff/student ratios