Referral documents concerning a prospective pupil are received and read by the Head and members of the Senior Management Team. The school has 15 working days in which to raise any initial queries with Additional Needs.
Once the school has informed Additional Needs that there is a place for the child at Athena School the school’s Office Administrator will contact parents/carers to arrange for themselves and the child to come to school for a preliminary visit and interview.
A member of the Senior Management Team will undertake the interview. The parent/carer will be invited to bring a friend or social worker as support if needed.
The interview will include:
- The Admissions form will be completed as far as possible.
- The important role of the parent/care will be emphasised and every effort will be made to ensure their full support for the placement.
- The contract between the school and the parent/carer will be discussed and signed.
- Transport arrangements, term times, school meals and after school activities will be finalised.
- The behaviour management policy will be described including the procedures regarding child protection.
- The procedure for positive physical intervention will be discussed in relation to the individual child. The parents will be asked to sign the necessary agreement.
- An integration programme will be drawn up responding to the particular requirements of the child. This will be a timetable for the first two-week introductory period where the child’s attendance will be gradually increased. The time is flexible and depends on the child, the children in the receiving class and the thoughts of the class teacher.
- Details of emergency arrangements and medical needs will be sort out and the parent/carer will sign general consent forms for school trips and activities.
- Any particular concerns around the use of the extended day will be identified and appropriate arrangements put into place.
During the interview parents/carers or social workers will be asked to sign the following consent forms in agreement with school’s policies and procedures:
- Permission to administer medicine (where appropriate)
- Permission for local Educational Visits
- Home/School Agreement
- Child Protection Statement
- Consent form for After School Clubs
- Consent for emergency medical treatment
- Permission for the use of photographs and videos to be used on the school website, publications and training materials
- Physical Intervention Policy and permission
- Information from Outside Agencies
Following the Admissions Interview, where possible, a Home Visit will be organised and take place prior to the child starting school at Athena.
The Home Visit will allow the Senior Management Team to:
- Ascertain any difficulties being experienced by parent/carers in relation to their child taking up placement at Athena.
- Discuss expectations regarding home/school contact and reassure parents of open and regular communication between home and school.
- Discuss levels and type of support systems required by the children and their families in order to initiate appropriate multi-agency action.
Any information from the visit that influences individual assessments will be included in the initial Risk Assessments and Individual Education Plans for the child and will also be fed-back to staff to try to ensure a smooth transition into school.
In cases where the school or the parent/carer are unsure of the suitability of the placement further discussion will be held with Additional Needs and further action will be taken from here.
If the family and the school are in agreement that a place at Athena is in the best interest of the child, the parent/carer will be sent a letter of acceptance. This will be sent within 10 working days of the interview and will have details of the child’s start date and timings for the transition period.
Where no appropriate vacancy exists a member of the Senior Management Team will contact Additional Needs and inform them of the date for the next available place. Once the place has been allocated conditionally to the child through Additional Needs Athena School will contact parents/carers nearer the start date and put into place the admissions procedure.
The time between interview and admission will be used to prepare the class and the school to welcome the new member.
Travel, catering and clothing arrangements will be finalised with relevant agencies.
Any multi-agency meeting arranged and transport arranged for family members.