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Athena School Policies



Read on to find information on our school policies, which are updated regularly, as appropriate.

Athena whole school policies

Accessibility Policy

Accessibility Policy (Including Accessibility Plans)

Accessibility Policy Federation 2023

Accessibility Policy

This policy complies with the statutory guidance laid out in the SEN Code of Practice 2015 and the Equality Act 2010, which replaces the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 & 2005. The 2010 Act imposes equality duties in respect of the protected characteristics which include:

• Age

• Disability

• Gender re-assignment

• Pregnancy and maternity

• Race

• Religion or belief

• Sex

• Sexual orientation

• Marriage and civil partnership

This policy should be read in conjunction with:

• Equality Act 2010: advice for schools DfE May 2014

• SEND Code of Practice 0-25 (January 2015)

• Schools SEN Information Report

• Statutory Guidance on Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions December 2015

• National Curriculum in England: framework for key stages 1 to 4

The SEND Code of Practice 2015 states that under the Equality Act 2010 schools:

Must not directly or indirectly discriminate against, harass, or victimise disabled children and young people.

Must not discriminate for a reason arising in consequence of a child or young person’s disability.

Must make reasonable adjustments, including the provision of auxiliary aids and services, to ensure that disabled children and young people are not at a substantial disadvantage compared with their peers. This duty is anticipatory – it requires thought to be given in advance to what disabled children and young people might require and what adjustments might need to be made to prevent that disadvantage.

Must make reasonable adjustments to procedures, criteria and practices and by the provision of auxiliary aids and services.

Must publish accessibility plans setting out how they plan to increase access for disabled pupils to the curriculum, the physical environment and to information.

At The FortunAthena Federation we are committed to providing a fully inclusive and accessible environment for all pupils, staff, parents, and visitors.

Overall aims

• To ensure that disabled pupils and pupils with additional needs have access to relevant equipment to support their access, development, and learning.

• To continue to ensure that all pupils are able to access the curriculum and wider school life and that reasonable adjustments are made when required.

• To ensure that all parents and carers are able to access the school’s wider community and support with their child’s learning.

• To ensure that staff are trained in meeting the needs of all pupils including those with additional needs and disabilities to enable them to access the curriculum.

Both Athena School and Fortuna School are for children with social, emotional, and mental health needs. They lie within the City of Lincoln and serve a wider community and at present children arrive on foot, bicycles, by taxi or parents. The schools are built on flat sites with good access to the front entrance doors.

The access to the school premises is not always easy at busy periods at the start and end of the day. Manoeuvring between parked cars may prove a problem for a visually impaired person or wheelchair user. There are drop kerbs that allow access from the car parks up to the school entrances.


Athena School is situated off a busy main road into Lincoln and shares road access to the neighbouring Emergency Services building. There is a high volume of traffic along this road at the beginning and end of the school day due to a high number of taxis transporting pupils, parents dropping pupils off, as well as staff cars from the school and the neighbouring building.

There are two entrances into the school premises, one for the Main Building and one for the Annexe. Car park spaces are taken up predominately by staff, but the Annexe keeps one side clear for taxi drop off and pick up time. The Main Building has a larger car park, again mainly taken up by staff parking, and a large drop off / pick up zone for taxis. This area is used during the day for visitor parking but is kept clear for the start and end of day taxi time.

There is pedestrian access via a footpath, through a separate gate, which runs from the road to the front of the school buildings.

Fortuna School is situated in a busy residential area and shares road access with two other schools. There is a high volume of traffic along this road at the beginning and end of the school day due to a high number of taxis transporting pupils, parents dropping pupils off, as well as staff cars from the school. This is increased by the two other schools operating at the same time. Traffic can be busy outside of these times due to local resident housing along the road.

Car park spaces are taken up predominately by staff, but the spaces directly outside the Main Entrance are kept clear for taxi drop off and pick up time. This area is used during the day for visitor parking but is kept clear for the start and end of day taxi time.

There is pedestrian access via a footpath, through a separate gate, which runs from the road to the front of the school buildings.

The route around the buildings

The main entrances are approached via the path to the front with signs indicating the Main Entrance. Metal gates inside the grounds prevent access around the school when it is in session for security. The sites are level.

Athena School

Main Building:

All rooms are accessed via a single door from one of the corridors. The staff room, ENGIE office, hall, kitchen, cookery room, workshop and science lab all have external doors which are only used for emergency evacuation.

Staff WC - There are male and female facilities down the office corridor. There are separate facilities using the Gender-Neutral toilet, located past the library, which is accessible for wheelchair use.

Pupil WC - There are male and female toilets located down the KS4 corridor and Gender-Neutral toilets down the other class corridors. There are separate facilities using the Gender-Neutral toilet, located past the library, which is accessible for wheelchair use.


All classrooms are accessed via the corridor and have external doors which are used for breaktimes and emergency evacuation.

Staff WC - There are staff toilets in both corridors. There is a Gender-Neutral toilet that is accessible for wheelchair use.

Pupil WC - There are Gender-Neutral toilets in both corridors. There is a Gender-Neutral toilet that is accessible for wheelchair use.

Fortuna School

All rooms are accessed via a single door from one of the corridors. Each classroom then has access to a cloakroom, which leads to the outside space. The staff room, ENGIE office, hall, kitchen and SLT office all have external doors which are only used for emergency evacuation.

Staff WC - There are male and female facilities down the office corridor. There are separate facilities using the Gender-Neutral toilet, located next to the staffroom, which is accessible for wheelchair use.

Pupil WC - There are toilet cubicles located in each of the class cloakrooms. There are separate facilities using the Gender-Neutral toilet, located next to the staffroom, which is accessible for wheelchair use.


The schools are well lit by both natural and ceiling lighting.

Fire evacuation

All fire escape routes are signed and lit accordingly.

Athena Accessibility Plan

Physical Access





Success Criteria

To be aware of the access needs of disabled pupils, staff, governors, parents, and visitors.

New pupil information taken from EHC and Parent/ carer interview.

Create access plans and PEEPs for individual pupils when required.

Identify access needs of parents through parent interview and liaison with child and family worker.

Identify the needs of the staff during recruitment, induction procedures, annual appraisal meetings and back to work interviews.

Before entry of every new child.

As required.

Annually at the beginning of the school year and then throughout the year as required.

Annually and then as required.

SENCO and Assistant Head


SLT and Child & Family Worker


Pen portrait produced and risk assessment completed.

Plans in place as and when needed.

School is aware of access needs of parents and parents are able to access the building effectively and safely.

All needs of staff are highlighted and necessary adjustments are made.

Ensure pupils, staff and visitors with physical difficulties are able to access the building effectively and safely with and without support.

Entrances are clearly identified and are accessible.

Checked regularly.


All pupils, staff and visitors are able to locate relevant entrances and are able to enter and exit the building safely.

Ensure that the equipment within school for pupils with physical difficulties meets their individual needs and that identified staff are fully trained to use them.

Magnetic door fasteners throughout school have been serviced and are working correctly.

Ensure corridors are clearly accessible throughout school.

Ensure that disabled pupils and visitors in wheelchairs are able to access classrooms safely and effectively.

Ensure that PEEPs are in place for identified pupils with physical difficulties and that staff are aware of the contents of the PEEP.

Ensure that staff are aware of Occupational Health, recommendations, plans and equipment for children with physical disabilities.

Ensure equipment and resources for individuals is appropriately used.

Checked regularly and any problems are reported immediately to the school office/ SLT who will log the problem with Engie and engage relevant services to fix the problem promptly.

Corridors are checked daily.

Adapt layout of classrooms where needed to ensure access for pupils with physical difficulties and those in wheelchairs.

Updated dependent on change of needs or staffing.

As required.

As required.


All staff

Class teachers

SENCO and Assistant Head



All staff are able to close outside doors throughout school to ensure accessibility.

All pupils, staff and visitors are able to move around the school safely.

Disabled pupils and pupils with physical needs are able to access the classroom effectively and safely.

Identified pupils with physical difficulties have a PEEP in place to ensure that they can evacuate the building safely in the event of an emergency.

Identified pupils to have allocated time to follow Physio and O.T programmes with appropriate equipment.

Identified staff to liaise with physiotherapist and occupational therapist.

Ensure that pupils with Hearing Impairment and Visual Impairment have access to the aids they require or that reasonable adjustments have been made to meet their individual needs.

Support from the Hearing Impairment specialist teacher within school when required.

Ensure the Hearing Loop is working and serviced.

Ensure that pupils with VI have access to the correct sized font as advised by the orthoptist or specialist VI teacher.

As required.

As required.

As required.


Reasonable adjustments are made to meet the needs of individual pupils.

ENGIE to check the hearing loop system.

Access to the Curriculum





Success Criteria

Ensure that all children have the correct height of furniture and are seated effectively within the classroom to access teaching and learning.

Ensure all tables, work areas and chairs are a suitable height for all children especially when it is a new classroom.

Ensure that children who have been provided with equipment such as classroom chairs from OT have these assessed regularly in order to check that they are functioning properly and are effective in enabling the pupil to access the curriculum.


As required.

SENCO, class teachers and outside agencies such as OT and Physio

SENCO, class teachers and outside agencies such as OT and Physio

All pupils will have access to the correct height of furniture.

Pupils with specific furniture will be able to access the curriculum effectively.

To ensure that staff are aware of the specific needs of pupils within our school and that training is provided as required.

Epilepsy Training.

Update medical information in pupil’s files.

Ensure that first aid certificates are updated when necessary and that staff are trained to meet the needs of more complex medical needs such as diabetes.


Annually and as required.

First Aid training is undertaken within specific timescales.


Staff have a developing understanding of how to meet the needs of pupils with dyslexia and dyscalculia within their classes.

Staff are aware of children who have medical needs within school and are trained to manage these effectively.






Success Criteria

To ensure that information for parents/ carers/ visitors/ potential parents are accessible.

Check that the information regarding SEND such as the SEND information report, local offer, policy, accessibility plan is available on the school website and is easily accessible.

Ensure that paper copies are readily available should they be requested by parents/ visitors who do not have access to the internet.



Parents/ carers/ visitors/ potential parents are able to access information about the school easily and in a relevant form for them.

Ensure that the languages of our school community are reflected around school and that parents who do not have English as their first language are still able to access information from school.

Ensure that there are multilingual signs in classrooms relevant for pupils.

Ensure a translator is made available to parents/ carer when required for meetings etc.

Translate parent letters and information for home into native language so parents can access information.


EAL coordinator

Child & Family Worker

Our school global community is reflected throughout.

Parents who may struggle to communicate in English are able to access information in their own language wherever possible.

Fortuna Accessibility Plan

Whole School Aim:

To support effectively pupils with a disability or impairment to ensure they can have full access to the curriculum and the schools facilities. All pupils are provided with the correct support and resources to support their needs and to maintain provision at a high standard.

Evaluation Methods

All policies, actions and procedures are monitored closely and adapted where necessary to ensure provision is suitable for disabled pupils within Fortuna.

Success Criteria

- Disabled children can access the curriculum in line with their peers 

  • - Disabled children can access the environment in line with their peers 

  • - Appropriate resources, access and support is available for Disabled pupils or 
pupils with an impairment 

  • - All staff have a strong awareness of policies, procedures and expectations 

  • - The curriculum is adapted and made accessible in forward planning 

  • - Staff are deployed effectively to meet the needs of all pupils across school 

  • - School grounds and the building itself has been developed and adapted to meet 
the needs of all pupils 

Tasks- Targets and actions

Lead Responsibility

H Keegan

Resource Implications (inc. cost)


Monitoring Arrangements

1. Increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum

-Seek to provide appropriate training for teachers and support staff
- To supply necessary teaching aids and suitable apparatus to meet the needs of a disabled child e.g. adjustable height desks and equipment.
-Involve all pupils with a disability or impairment in trips and day to day school routines e.g. assembly, lunch etc... and make appropriate arrangements
-Consider trip venues thoroughly within risk assessments to make appropriate arrangements e.g. toilets, access to areas, transport, personal care facilities etc...
-Adapt PE curriculum appropriately to ensure disabled pupils or pupils with an impairment can work alongside their peers
-Providing appropriate adult support to allow disabled pupils to access the curriculum like their peers.
-Ensure the SENDCO attends updates on current legislation and shares this with staff, parents and pupils

HK to oversee most actions.

HK to oversee that access, school ground development take into account legislation and needs of pupils with a disability or impairment

NH and class teachers to monitor some aspects such as trip arrangements.

Cost of possible new resources for disabled pupils or pupils with an impairment.

Contact OT/ SES/ Physio agencies for equipment support when needed or when purchases may be required- discuss with additional needs at county also

All actions to be monitored and reviewed termly however all actions must be reviewed fully and a new accessibility plan made for October 2019

Lead responsibility staff to monitor actions and the impact they are having.

Adapt actions and accessibility plan to meet the needs of any new pupils coming into school or any pupils who need continual provision as they move through school.

Where appropriate.
-Provide personalised learning and interventions where needed
-Ensure that after school clubs and provision is accessible for all

Improving the environment of the school to increase the extent to which disabled pupils can take advantage of education and associated services

  • Ensuring the immersive classroom environments are suitable and easy to access for disabled pupils -Providing appropriate physical accessibility to all areas within the school and within the school grounds as it continues to develop.
  • Continue to develop outside areas with disabled access in mind so children can access alongside their peers different environments
-Ensure all facilities remain up to date and refurbished when needed to fully support all pupils that require use of them.
  • Consider when refurbishing, colour schemes, hearing impairment facilities etc... to suit children with visual and auditory impairments.

Improving the delivery to disabled pupils of information which is provided in writing for pupils who are not disabled.

  • Improve alternative ways of improving communication and providing information
-Continue to ensure staff are aware of the importance of good communication systems.
  • School policies communicate a clear overview of expectations and procedures and all staff are aware of this and have had opportunity to discuss this for a firm understanding in order to implement effectively.

Questions to ask


Issues Identifies

Barrier to access Yes/No

What sort of issue?

Transfer to accessibility plan? Yes/No


1.1 Is everyone made to feel welcome, including those with physical disabilities or sensory impairment?


  1. 1.2 Are there high expectations of all pupils?


1.3 Do staff, governors and pupils share a philosophy of inclusion?


1.4 Are pupils equally valued?


1.5 Do staff seek to remove all barriers to learning and participation/


1.6 Are lessons made accessible to all pupils?


1.7 Does school make the best use of T.A’s?



2.1 Does the school ensure that staff are familiar with technology and practices developed to assist people with disabilities?


Ongoing training

2.2 Does the school ensure that teachers and T.A’s have the necessary training to teach and support disabled pupils?


Ongoing training

2.3 Are staff aware of how classrooms should be optimally organised for disabled pupils?


Ongoing accord into needs of individuals

2.4 Have staff received training in ensuring that lessons are responsive to the diverse nature of pupils needs and abilities?


Ongoing training

Questions to ask


Issues Identifies

Barrier to access Yes/No

What sort of issue?

Transfer to accessibility plan? Yes/No


3.1 What provisions are made making information available to all people who may need access to goods, services, and facilities?

Parent teacher appointments are welcomed along with fortnightly telephone conversations. School website contains information, Parents evenings and work shared with home.


3.2 Is information provided in Braille, Large print or on audio tape for pupils and prospective pupils who may have difficulty with standard forms of printed information?

Braille has not been required

Large print information can be provided and audio information provided [letters have been verbally read using telephone communication}

3.3 Is access provided to computer technology appropriate for students with disabilities’?


Ongoing training

3.4 Does the school ensure that information is presented to groups in a way which is user friendly for pupils with disabilities which affect their vision e.g by reading aloud overhead projections and describing diagrams?


3.5 Does the school have facilities to produce written information in a variety of front sizes?


3.6 Does the school use RNIB guidelines on producing written information in accessible formats?

This has not been required however should it arise we would seek guidance.

3.7 Is the school environment suitable for pupils with hearing impairment?


Training for individuals if required.


{all academic, sporting, play, social, facilities}

4.1 Are there any physical structures such as doorways, steps and stairs which may act as barriers for pupils using wheelchairs?


All doors are wheelchair friendly and no steps or stairs.

4.2 Are toilet facilities and showers accessible to wheelchair users?


4.3 Are there safe pathways of travel around the school site and parking arrangements?


4.4 Is there any décor which may be confusing or disorientating for disabled pupils with visual impairment e.g floors and walls the same colours?


4.5 Are there any signs which may be confusing or inadequate, e.g at the wrong height to be seen by wheelchair users or with little contrast between lettering and background, or with font which is too small to be easily visible?


4.6 Is there accessible storage to enable disabled pupils to access aids and equipment?


4.7 Are there arrangements which might prevent the inclusion of people with disabilities affecting their hearing including rooms with poor acoustics and noisy equipment?


4.8 Are there non-visual guides to assist people to use the buildings including changes in surface material?

Yes where and when required.

4.9 Do emergency and evacuation systems include alarms with both visual and auditory components?


Fire alarm visual light and auditory sound.

Admissions Policy

Behaviour Management Policy

Behaviour Management Policy 2023

Behaviour Management Policy


The children at the Fortuna and Athena Federation experience complex emotional, social and learning needs. These needs find expression in behaviours that are at times destructive for the child and alarming to themselves and others. How, as a group, we manage the behaviour will depend on our shared values and beliefs in relation to children and discipline.

Shared beliefs and behaviour

As schools that work in accordance to the nurture principles, the following shared beliefs are held across the Federation and inform our way of working:

That all behaviour has meaning and destructive behaviour can have various sources:

  • • Anxiety and panic.
  • • A limited repertoire of responses.
  • • Low self-esteem and self-hate.
  • • Attention-neediness.
  • • Immature emotional development.
  • • A disguise for vulnerability and a means of survival.
  • • That external factors in the environment affect behaviour.
  • • That dynamics between individuals affects behaviour.
  • • That behaviour can change

The child has a right:

  • • To safety and protection.
  • • To be treated with respect.
  • • To be understood and listened to.
  • • To be dealt with fairly.
  • • To be valued equally with regard being paid to any differences in race, culture, gender, religion or disability.
  • • To privacy.
  • • To a broad and balanced education and access to the national curriculum.
  • • To play and learn.
  • • To be involved in decision making that relates to them.

Shared beliefs about our responsibility

  • • To exercise a duty of care in respect of each child.
  • • To place the well-being of the child as our paramount concern.
  • • To respect the rights of the child.
  • • To work together as a professional team in a positive and optimistic atmosphere.
  • • To work in a non-retaliatory manner at all times.

Behaviour management is inherent in all our interactions throughout the curriculum: the environment we create; the activities we provide; the language we use; the way we dress and the relationships we build.

Practise and procedures are geared towards helping children find constructive ways of understanding their feelings and managing their own reactions and responses. We believe that in order for this process of positive growth to occur we need to minimise the opportunities for disruptive and dangerous behaviour to arise.

Our shared focus is firmly on prevention

  • • Preventing the children becoming out of control.
  • • Preventing wherever possible the need for an adult to physically intervene with a child.

Primary prevention of destructive behaviour occurs when a staff team adheres to a shared ethos and consistently follows procedures and guidelines in implementing behaviour management.

Shared ethos

A code of conduct for the way we live together at the Fortuna and Athena Federation is explained to the children in assemblies at the beginning of each year.

This states:

  • • Respect myself and others and treat everyone with kindness.
  • • Keep myself and others safe in our mind, bodies and feelings. Make good choices that help me to learn.
  • • Be in the right place at the right time.
  • • Ask for help and share my troubles.
  • • Stop and Think before I Act Then Act Responsibly

Staff in the course of their work regularly refer to this code of conduct. The children become familiar with the overall message and identify with the inherent culture.


  • • Each classroom activity base has its own set of rules, which are carefully displayed.
  • • The rules are clear and understood by all children.
  • • Children are reminded of the rules regularly.
  • • The rules are consistent between classrooms and teachers, avoiding confusion.
  • • Sanctions for breaking a rule must also be consistent throughout school and extra-curricular activities.
  • • Rules are worded in the positive — stressing the "Do's" not the "Don'ts"

The environment

How we organise our working area, be it classroom or dining room, will make an enormous difference in preventing destructive behaviour.

Remember many of our children need careful structure to settle in.

We provide bases which are:

  • • Clean, inviting and orderly.
  • • All equipment and resources are safely and tidily stored.
  • • Materials needed for an activity are prepared before children arrive.
  • • If children are not able to share, then provide individual equipment until they learn this social skill.
  • • Be mindful of space individual space and an area to encourage co-operation.
  • • A specific place for children to go to when they need to have privacy, a place to think or calm down.
  • • Attention given to noise levels and eases of movement around the room. Conflicts often occur in transitions.


The relationships we build with each child are the cornerstone of our work and the greatest influence in preventing harmful behaviour. Our emphasis is on developing attachments whereby the child learns to trust the adult. From this position of trust a child will listen and be guided by the adult. The most successful intervention in preventing or de-escalating challenging behaviour is the power of the adult child bond.

  • • Aim to work with the 'whole child' with your 'whole self'.
  • • Know your general procedures
  • • Make regular contact with the SMT and CAFO who can inform you of any factors, which could affect behaviour.

Building Bridges

  1. 1. Demonstrate unconditional acceptance of the child.
  2. 2. Disapprove of the behaviour but not the child.
  3. 3. Offer emotional involvement as well as primary care.
  4. 4. Listen to the child; know their fears and perceptions, their interests and dislikes.
  5. 5. Understand the sources of their difficulties, do not judge their families or carers but work with them towards solutions.
  6. 6. Be the adult and do not collude with the child.
  7. 7. Be consistent in all your interactions.
  8. 8. Work on praise and self-esteem positive comments should far outweigh negative ones. "Catch them being good".

Provide clear boundaries of control. Set limits for behaviour and confidently stick to them. The children have to know the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour.

  • • Apply limits and sanctions firmly but fairly.
  • • When dealing with difficult behaviour be calm and non-retaliatory.
  • • Remember the long-term goals agreed with the child. A child will not reach them immediately. Remember you can lose a battle and still win the war.

It is important that we remain fundamentally on the side of the child.

  • • Curriculum and play activities — primary prevention
    • • Prepare activities and lessons, which engage the children and cater for individual needs.
    • • Carefully plan lessons and play activities.
    • • Always be in the right place at the right time and ready to greet the children.
    • • All materials should be available. Adults never leave a group of children unattended.
    • • Establish rules and expectations at the beginning of each activity.
    • • Decide on spacing and seating, belongings and movement around the room at the outset.
    • • They may be very developmentally delayed and need short, achievable goals matched to their developmental stage rather than their age.
    • • Be mindful of transitions. Many of our children do not cope with any transitions, either from place to place or from one activity to another. These can be "flash points" for them. Have familiar rituals for the beginnings and endings. Have a wind down period and predict the closing of activities, i.e. "in five minutes we will be going back to our seats

    For children who become distressed by unfinished experiences try to allow time for them to complete, or establish a finishing tray. Plan movement from one place to another. Attention to detail can avoid "hot spots".

    Routines and rituals, which punctuate the child's day, are an essential means for our children to learn that life has a pattern. They begin to predict events and feel secure. They develop ideas of cause and effect and they learn to trust and feel in control.

    When the children feel safe their behaviour is calmer and they can then learn strategies for coping with unrest.


    Whole school strategies are referred to with the children regularly (see beginning of document).

    Remember the traffic light system - STOP - THINK - ACT RESPONSIBLY

    Rewards and Sanctions

    • • Our ethos demands we work on the positive whenever possible.
    • • Praise is frequent and explicit. The children need to hear adults talking about them in glowing terms. They need to always be told when they have had a "breakthrough" in


    • • Positive, qualifying praise-the noticing of pupils that are managing will be used, where possible to support and address negative behaviours.
    • • Each child has individual targets to achieve and they need to be made aware of how well they are going in reaching them.
    • • Children are rewarded with earned choosing times and choice of activities.
    • • All sanctions need to be relevant and appropriate to the child's individual developmental needs and allow for time for the child to reflect on or 'practise' what it was they found challenging. Language of choice will be used and the behaviour (cause) will link directly to the consequence (effect). For example, 'l noticed you found sitting at the table difficult today, I would like you to practise doing that for a moment before you have your choosing. This allows our children the opportunity to develop their ability to 'link up' experiences and understand and learn from sanctions that are put in place. The staff recognise that this, for many of our children, will take significant amount of time and consistency and that for some children, will be something they will always find challenging. Staff will consistently remain patient, consistent, insistent and persistent in supporting the pupils with their behaviour.

    Staff, on reviewing the policy, have agreed upon the following:

    A system of commendations exists throughout the school:

    • • Special mentions and prizes are awarded.
    • • Special mentions are read out in assembly.
    • • Headteacher's awards are given in assembly
    • • Certificates of achievement are given in assembly from any adult in the school

    For inappropriate or unsafe behaviour:

    • • Sanctions should be seen as relevant to the child and the adult.
    • • Whole school sanctions are carried out consistently.
    • • Sanctions should provide an opportunity for the children to put things right.
    • • Sanctions concentrate on the "behaviour" and do not humiliate the child. Unconditional love of the child is demonstrated consistently.

    The agreed sanctions are detailed below:

    Low level disruption: Child may work apart from classmates for a period of time within classroom or payback time out of choosing time or playtime; this needs to be purposeful and linked directly to the behaviour. For example 'l can see you are finding it hard to sit beside? at the moment, I think we should practise sitting and doing your work at this table to give you some space and to help you.

    Extreme disruption: Paying back time from choosing time or removed from class and working in office, missing playtime or part of lunch break, detention to make up time. Staff will make reasons for missed playtimes explicit. Because you have found it hard to be safe in the classroom today, I would like you to have an indoor play time today to show me you can manage that. '

    Limited choices for choosing activities to facilitate a calm choosing and only provide pupils with choices and activities that they can be successful within. In the most serious of instances that have a sustained impact on classroom order and the learning of other pupils, internal exclusion may also be used at the discretion of the Head of School.

    Leaving school: a detention prior to extended day, parents informed. Missing school trips for safety reasons, with consent of SMT.

    Dangerous behaviour: Child takes time out of choosing time to discuss with adults, repairs any damage, makes amends. In the most serious of instances internal may also be used at the discretion of the Head of School.

    Damage to property: Child makes good the damage, asked to contribute to replacement if appropriate, writes letter of apology to any persons concerned in own time, parents informed.

    Violence: incident needs to be discussed with child during choosing time or after school. Children encouraged to reconcile differences, make amends, finding an activity that could help injured party. Possible detention or internal exclusion.

    Any incidence of bullying or racism; logged using CPOMs and both victim and perpetrator take time to discuss the situation and find appropriate ways of resolving negative interactions by finding positive and cooperative activities.

    As stated above, the Head of School may deem an internal exclusion appropriate in instances of extreme disruption, dangerous behaviour and/or violent behaviour that prejudices the learning and/or safety of others. Wilful, violent attack of member of staff or another child will result, depending on individual circumstances, after discussion with Head of School, in a fixed term exclusion.

    The Rising Challenge

    Challenging behaviour describes behaviour that threatens the safety of all. This includes violence, which is directed towards others and violence, which has no particular target. It also includes self-injury or "reckless regard for their own safety or for the safety of others'

    Primary Prevention

    In implementing the recommendations implicit in this policy, we are able to reduce the likelihood of violent and damaging behaviour occurring. We have in effect changed aspects of the child's living and working environment to enable them to manage themselves safely. This is primary intervention. There will however be times when primary prevention is not sufficient means to deal with escalating problematic behaviour. Certain circumstances can trigger a violent response. Factors within the child relating to their own impulses or unconscious drives can also produce explosive incidents.

    Triggers can be immediate and unpredictable. At these times it is necessary to move into secondary prevention.

    Secondary Prevention

    Challenging behaviour describes:

    • • In the event of challenging behaviour, it is important for staff to follow certain guidelines.
    • • Remain calm and maintain personal control.
    • • Remember your body language and personal space.
    • • Send for help before crisis point is reached.
    • • Keep communicating with the child and offering strategies to them.
    • • Be aware of what might de-escalate the situation.

    Diversion e.g.: "let's get these papers and photocopy them".

    • • Change the activity and ease any pressure.
    • • Increase self-esteem; remind them how well they sorted things last time.
    • • Separate the child from the behaviour.
    • • Give them a choice e.g. sit in a quiet area.
    • • Communicate to the child what is happening and let them know you are on their side e.g.

    "I'm throwing the ladder over to you. I hope you can catch it and I can pull you through".

    • • Listen to the child and acknowledge their distress.
    • • Often at these times the child is regressed — treat them as if they were much younger.
    • • Beware of your own triggers. The child may try to transfer their own rage onto you. Do not take insults and verbal abuse personally. Hand over to someone else if you need to remain professional and perceive the situation as "a piece of work".
    • • If gentle physical intervention will de-escalate a violent child it is wise to use it cautiously, again remember the individual personal plan of the child.
    • • If it looks as if a physical intervention is necessary try to warn the child beforehand.
    • • Where possible, adults must exhaust all agreed behavioural management strategies before using an accepted and endorsed physical intervention.
    • • Staff will support each other when dealing with extremely challenging behaviour. Staff can offer a 'change of face' to any adult where they perceive it helpful in resolving the incident for the child by using a shared common language between themselves.

    Physical Intervention (see also Positive Handling Policy)

    However skilful we become at anticipating and diffusing difficult situations, there will be times when we have to resort to physical intervention in the management of children.

    Relevant staff at the Fortuna and Athena Federation are trained in the "Team Teach" method of positive handling. It is important that staff regularly familiarise themselves with the policy and guidelines of the "Team Teach" approach.

    The following points also need to be adhered to by all staff.

    • In all cases of physical intervention, the welfare of the child is the paramount concern.
    • Physical intervention is used only to prevent an offence being committed.
    • Injury being cause to any person, including the child himself, damage to property, engagement in any behaviour prejudicial to the maintenance of good order and discipline in the school or among any of its pupils
    • All staff must exercise their duty of care to take reasonable steps to protect all children from being harmed.
    • The number of staff involved should be the minimum necessary to safeguard the child and others. No member of staff should attempt to "hold" a child by themselves unless it is in the interest of the child and safe to do so.
    • The force used must be the minimum necessary to deal with the harm that needs to be prevented, i.e. it must be reasonable in the circumstances.
    • All children have a Risk Assessment Form which outlines specific considerations for that child in relation to physical intervention. These are updated on a termly basis and as new behaviours present themselves.
    • Staff need to follow a system of recording following any physical intervention. The incident report form needs to be filled in before staff go home. All staff and children involved must read
      through the report form and sign it. A follow up form is also completed which records the child’s perception of the incident and looks to a resolution.

    A complaints procedure is also in place for pupils and parents.
    Where possible "timeout" is given for staff and child following a "physical intervention"

    Senior members of staff offer supervision sessions for less experienced members.

    Remember that it is not possible to declare certain physical interventions as legal or illegal. Each separate incident would need individual assessment and could only be deemed legal or illegal through the test of a law court. Every incident has to justify that all correct procedures and practice has been adhered to.

    Wherever possible time needs to be taken to work through the reasons for "physical intervention" with the child. The experience can be used for addressing issues which cause violent responses and the child can be guided in how to prevent a reoccurrence.

    This is an important time to explore with the child alternative routes and strategies to employ when they are distressed. Look to the strategies highlighted in the prevention section of this policy. Use puppets or play equipment to role play the situation with the child. This indirect approach can really help them to see alternatives without the demonstration feeling personal.

    It is always necessary for staff to continually reflect upon the measures we use to manage and help the children.

    An ongoing audit provides the analytical data we need in order to continue in our efforts to reduce the need for physically intervening with any child to a minimum.

    Behaviour Plans

    When extreme and challenging behaviour is sustained over time and not remedied by the general provision in place, individual behaviour plans will be created to set out the additional measures to support a child with managing their behaviour.

    These will be informed by professional discussion between class teams and senior leaders, in consultation with parents. These conversations will draw on anectodical evidence alongside Physical Intervention Data, Daily Behaviour Log Scores and Boxall Profile Assessments provide by the behaviour and attitudes lead. Where appropriate additional professional may be brought in to inform the development of behaviour plans.

    The implementation and success of the strategies within these plans will be measured against agreed SMART targets and ongoing professional discussion around the child’s behaviour.

    Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy

    Charging and Remissions Policy

    Equality Objective

    “The equality duty supports good education and improves pupil outcomes. It helps a school to identify priorities such as underperformance, poor progression, and bullying. It does this by requiring it to collate evidence, take a look at the issues and consider taking action to improve the experience of different groups of pupils. It then helps it to focus on what can be done to tackle these issues and to improve outcomes by developing measurable equality objectives.” (Equality and Human Rights Commission · Last revised 07-2014)

    How does Athena School comply with the public sector equality duty?

    Attainment – Athena School looks at performance gaps between groups of pupils when analysing school data. We focus on girls and boys, children in public care, children whose parents are in the forces, and children with English as an additional language. When looking at outcomes for pupil’s staff consider intervention and support, which will be needed to narrow the gap. At Athena we use a variety of information including data analysis, lesson observations and discussions with pupils, parents and carers.
    Participation in school life – At Athena we are continually looking for ways to enhance the learning and curriculum. When organising school activities teachers not only identify the children’s needs academically but also consider the wider environment for example, home situation, historical events in the pupils lives and additional physical needs.
    Engage effectively in learning – Consideration is given to outside influences that may result in pupils and their families being unable to engage fully in school life for example school will employ a translator for parents of EAL pupils for annual reviews and other meetings, newsletters are translated into pupils first language for parents, transport is provided for those parents and carers who are unable to attend school events and meetings otherwise and the school allocates money in the budget to cover the cost of educational visitors and visits to ensure all pupils have access to the same opportunities.

    Equality Objectives

    • To promote spiritual, moral, social and cultural development through all appropriate curricular opportunities, with particular reference to issues of equality and diversity
    • To promote cultural development and understanding through a rich range of experiences both in and beyond the school
    • To narrow the gap in curricular attainment between boys and girls at the end of Key Stage 4.
    • To narrow the gap in curricular attainment for the minority groups in our school; girls, Children in Public Care (LAC), children whose families are in the forces and children who are entitled to free school meals, year on year.
    • To promote and develop positive attitudes to learning for all pupils through experiences both in and beyond the school
    • Recognise children may be emotionally and socially functioning as much younger children and need to consolidate their early learning experiences within school, giving them the curriculum and opportunities to be able to do this.
    • Provide opportunities and experiences for children to acquire the necessary skills to play and interact constructively within their peer group.
    • Offer a curriculum, which meets the developmental needs of the “whole” child.
    • How do we eliminate discrimination and promote equality of opportunity?
      Athena school is committed to ensuring that members of the school community do not become victims of unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Equality Act 2010. We have a series of policies and procedures in place to support us with this:
    • Admissions
    • Accessibility plan
    • Anti-bullying policy
    • Behaviour Management policy
    • Child protection policy
    • Collective worship policy
    • Data protection policy
    • Equal opportunities policy
    • Equality and Diversity policy
    • Looked After and Vulnerable children policy
    • Racial Equality policy
    • Safeguarding policy
    • Safer recruitment policy
    • SEN policy

    Some of these policies are available on the school website others are available from the school office

    * Policies in bold are on the school website

      Equality objectives pdf

      Exclusions Policy

      Exclusions Policy


      One of the school’s aims is “To change the negative behaviour of our pupils to more socially constructive ways”.

      In trying to achieve this aim the school uses four types of learning:

      • There is a learning from routines, doing certain activities the same way every day;
      • There is a learning from modelling by adults who mean something to the child;
      • There is a learning from talking and counselling leading to insight and understanding;
      • Finally there is a learning from praise and consequences.

      The school tries to use all these in its efforts to help the pupil have understanding about their behaviour and develop new ways to manage situations they previously would have found challenging.

      In this policy the learning that comes praise and consequences concerns us, more particularly the learning that comes from consequences. Fortuna School, like any other school, needs a series of consequences ranging from mild to serious. In this instance we are concerned with the consequence of excluding pupils:

      There are two types of exclusion

      • Fixed period exclusions which may last from 1 day to 15 days
      • Permanent exclusion where the pupil does not return to the school.


      The school will use exclusion as rarely as possible but will retain it as a serious consequence in certain cases. It will only be used when other consequences have not worked or where the offence is so serious that a clear message about boundaries and safety needs to be given. There may be exceptions to this in unpredictable acts of violence or destruction, but such exceptions should be very rare, as most behaviour can be anticipated. The school will always discuss the behaviour with the parent/careers and plan strategies to help to manage it.

      Behaviour that will lead to a Fixed Period of Exclusion

      • Violence: The first rule of the school is “Remember everyone has the right to feel safe in their body and in their feelings”. In exceptional circumstances if a pupil is seriously violent to another pupil or to an adult the pupil may face an exclusion.
      • Repeated serious damage to property: In the case of damage the child will be asked to make some form of reparation and the parent will be invited to make a contribution. A clear indication will be given to the child and parent/carer that a repetition will lead to an exclusion.

      Where possible the parent / carer will be invited to the school to discuss matters before an exclusion is imposed.

      Permanent Exclusion

      The school makes a commitment to a pupil and parent on admission, recognising that their choice of school is limited, and does everything in its power to keep to that commitment. So a permanent exclusion is a very rare event.

      The reasons for considering a permanent exclusion are:

      • we are obviously not meeting the pupil’s needs and have exhausted all strategies to help him;
      • the pupil’s violence is a threat to the safety of pupils and staff;
      • the disruption caused by the pupil seriously interferes with the learning of others;
      • the behaviour makes too many and unreasonable demands on staff.

      As soon as the school has doubts about any of the above points the parent will be informed. In almost every case the pupil will have had a number of fixed period exclusions which are always accompanied by discussions with the parent/carer. The Head of School will inform the governors in their termly report of any pupils who are causing concern.

      It is expected that before moving to permanent exclusion the school will have had many and lengthy discussions with the parent/carer and all other professionals concerned with the pupil.

      In such discussions the school will seek to find a more suitable provision for the pupil, for example, a boarding school, a therapeutic community or a school for specific learning difficulties.

      The school will do all in its power to facilitate a smooth transfer to such a provision and will try to avoid permanent exclusion while the placement is being arranged. The school has a good record in doing this and will continue to work with the child as far as possible.

      In cases however, where the school community is suffering too much damage as a result of keeping the child in school and no alternative provision is likely without a long delay the school will move to permanently exclude the pupil.


      The procedures are laid down by the DfES and in the Local Authority Guidelines on Exclusions. The school will follow the Local Authority procedures and make sure parents have access to the booklet.

      Fixed Period Exclusions:

      Only the Executive Head and the Head of School have the power to exclude a pupil.

      The parent will be informed without delay, usually by phone. This will be followed by a letter indicating the reasons for the exclusion, the length of the exclusion and the right of the parent/carer to make representations to the Governors and the Local Authority, both of whom have the power to reinstate a pupil who has been excluded for a period in excess of 5 days.

      If parents/carers want to make representations about the exclusion the governors must convene a meeting to discuss the matter as soon as possible.

      On the pupil’s return to school after a fixed period of exclusion parents will be asked, where possible, to accompany their child to discuss the post-exclusion plan with a member of the Senior Management Team

      Permanent Exclusions:

      The Head of School will inform the pupil’s parents/carers of the exclusion and the specific reason for it, including all relevant particulars and refer to any previous warnings or fixed term exclusions.

      The parent will be informed of their right to write to the governors or to come to the meeting and state their point of view. Parents/carers have seven school days to let the school know what they want to do.

      The Governors should meet within 15 school days to discuss the exclusion and any points the parents/carers want to make. There must be a minimum of three governors excluding the Head of School.

      The Head of School will provide a written report which will be sent to the Governors, the Exclusion Co-ordinator and parents/carers at least five days before the meeting to give them adequate time to read and digest it.

      At the meeting the Governors will hear all the reports. The Exclusions Co-ordinator, parents/carers and any school governors not on the exclusions committee, including the Head of School will be asked to leave while the governors make their decision. Once this has been agreed the Exclusions Co-ordinator will join them to make the final decision.

      Finally the parents/carers, other Governors and the Head of School will re-join the meeting to hear the decision. If the exclusion is upheld the Local Authority Exclusions Co-ordinator will inform the parents/carers within 5 school days of the decision. Parents/carers will also be given details of their right to appeal to an Independent Appeals Committee.

      Work for a pupil during a period of exclusion from school

      As far as is practicable the school will provide, and mark, school work for a pupil who is excluded until he returns from the exclusion or until 15 days after a permanent exclusion has been upheld.

      After Permanent Exclusion

      The school will not forget its excluded pupil, but will continue its commitment to them by doing all it can to see that they are successful in any future placement.

      Home Learning Policy

      Mission Statement

      The Fortuna & Athena Federation

      Mission Statement including our Values and Vision



      The fundamental aim of the Fortuna/Athena Federation is to provide a nurturing environment for pupils which is safe, warm, loving and unconditionally accepting of all

      individual pupils and their needs, for them to become part of a School Community.

      Within this community pupils will have the opportunity to flourish and become the best they can be in all that they do. The curriculum will be tailored to the needs of our pupils and will fulfil all the legal obligations set out in the National Curriculum.

      This will ensure that children can learn to develop personally, socially and emotionally and will give them the best opportunity to succeed, in terms of their relationships with others and their continuing education and future employment so that they become good and participating citizens.


      1. We offer unconditional acceptance of all pupils which aims to develop trust through good relationships.

      2. We take every opportunity to nurture pupils for them to gain the experiential foundation that all children need to be able to develop self-worth.

      3. Our curriculum is designed to be achievable, relevant and inspirational.

      4. We recognise and celebrate that all children can change how they see themselves and their world and that they can grow emotionally so that they develop self-worth and become accepting of themselves and others.

      5. We see play as a pivotal part in developing our pupils social and emotional growth and provide many opportunities for this to happen within the school day.

      6. We are outward facing because we believe that we have a responsibility to share our excellent practice with other schools and organisations.

      7. Our parents and carers are a vital part of our community, and we value their support and involvement in their child’s development.

      8. We recognise the value of working with other professionals outside of the school in order to provide comprehensive and personalised support.


      Teachers and all staff within the Federation are accountable for the learning and progress that pupils make within a tailored curriculum within each School.

      Our Teaching and Learning Policy, Behaviour Management Policy and SEN Policy set out detailed expectations within the Federation, but the following essential features

      underpin all School Policies.

      Everything that staff do within the school is related to the needs of the pupils. All staff are pupil focused, honest and positive and have high expectations of pupils potential. 1,2,3

      We accept and understand that what pupils present is only the tip of an emotional iceberg and they each have a history which we cannot understand without

      communication and discussion.  It is only through this discussion and detailed understanding of their motivation that we can begin to support positive change in our

      pupils.  8,4,1,2

      We understand that early childhood development under pins personal and social development and that for some of our pupils this has been fractured or can be missing. 

      It is our purpose to repair and recreate childhood experiences in order to move forward as much as possible with all pupils. 1,2,4,5

      We believe that behaviour can change. We understand that every behaviour has a meaning. Our planning for pupils in school needs to be at this deeply personal level. 

      This must take into account individual motivators. 4,3,5,7,8

      We embrace the concept of a hierarchy of need; learning can only take place when these needs are met.  In planning for progression, we all understand that we build on

      previous learning and pupil interests. 3,1,2,5

      We recognise that chaotic confrontational incidents provide us with unique opportunities to engage with pupils on a psychodynamic level to help them reframe and internalise appropriate strategies to support their needs being met. 4,2,1

      Positive outcomes depend on the effective relationship between adults and pupils.  We are effective when we understand that we need to be empathetic, forgiving,

      appropriately challenging and driven by a generosity of spirit.  By doing this we generate trust. 1,2,4,5

      We support all staff to be able to use self-reflection and regulation to enable them to

      prioritise the needs of the pupils and recognise this can at times be painful and challenging therefore staff well-being is of paramount importance within the federation.

      . 1,2,4,5,7

      The learning environment must be stimulating, engaging, challenging, relevant and immersive.  3,5,8

      We create opportunities to reintegrate into mainstream schools or classes, prepare pupils for life beyond school and for further education or work. 2,3,4,5,6,7,8

      We engage with stakeholders, partners the school community and governors in pursuit of improvement on a regular basis. 6,7,8

      We see the federation as being a centre of excellence verified through external validation. We emphasise and value the development of our staff to become excellent

      practitioners in nurturing approaches to SEMH. We will encourage partners and others to develop their practice along the the lines set out in the values expressed here. 6,7,8

      The Federation will work closely with and alongside the principles set out by NurtureUK as developed by Eva Holmes and Eve Boyd(1999), which are:

       Children’s learning is understood developmentally
       It is understood that all behaviour is communication
       The classroom offers a safe space\
       Nurture is important for the development of self esteem
       Language is a vital means of communication
       The importance of transitions in children’s lives is understood

      Positive Handling Policy

      Positive Handling Policy

      Positive Handling Policy 2022


      The term “Positive Handling” includes a wide range of supportive strategies for managing challenging behaviour. Included in this framework are a small number of responses which many involve the use of force to control or restrain a pupil. The term “physical restraint” is used when force is used to overcome active resistance. National Guidance (Reducing the Need for Restraint and Restrictive Intervention: 27 June 2019) is followed in this policy. A clear and consistent positive handling policy supports pupils who have social, emotional and behavioural difficulties within an ethos of mutual respect, care and safety.

      Pupils with severe behavioural difficulties sometimes present a risk to themselves and others. Section 550A of the Education Act 1996 describes the circumstances in which teachers and others authorised by the Headteacher may use reasonable force to control or restrain pupils. Examples of when such action may be reasonable are to prevent injury to people, damage to property or the breakdown of discipline. This policy details how we implement the guidance at this school. It should be considered alongside the most recent LEA policy statements and recent local and national guidance. It is designed to help staff to ensure that any actions they take are reasonable, proportionate and absolutely necessary.

      School Expectations

      The management takes seriously its duty of care towards pupils, employees and visitors to the school. Staff protection is an important part of child protection; both depend on confident and competent staff who feel supported by the management. This policy has a clear focus:

      • The first and paramount consideration is the welfare of the children in our care.
      • The second is the welfare and protection of the adults who look after them.

      Positive Behaviour Management

      All physical interventions at this school are conducted within a framework of positive behaviour management. The school behaviour policy is intended to reward effort and application and encourage pupils to take responsibility for improving their own behaviour. Part of our preventative approach to risk reduction involves looking for early warning signs, learning and communicating any factors which may influence behaviour and taking steps to divert behaviours leading towards foreseeable risk. However, if problems arise staff have an additional responsibility to support all pupils when they are under pressure and safely manage crises, if, and when, they occur.

      Alternatives to Physical Controls

      A member of staff who chooses not to make a physical intervention can still take effective action to reduce risk. They can:

      • Show care and concern by acknowledging unacceptable behaviour and requesting alternatives using negotiation and reasoning.
      • Give clear directions to the pupils to stop
      • Remind them about rules and likely outcomes
      • Remove an audience or take vulnerable pupils to a safer place
      • Make the environment safer by moving furniture and removing objects which could be used as weapons
      • Use positive touch to guide or escort pupils to somewhere less pressured
      • Ensure that colleagues know what is happening and get help.

      Modifications to the Environment

      Ideally staff will not be waiting until a crisis is underway before conducting a risk assessment of the environment. We know that some pupils at this school may exhibit extreme and possibly dangerous behaviour. In general, it is a good rule to keep the environment clutter free. This may mean giving consideration to secure storage for a range of everyday objects when they are not being used. For example:

      • How is the availability of pointed implements (including pens, pencils, compasses and darts) controlled?
      • What small items are available to an angry pupil who may be tempted to use them as missiles?
      • What objects are available to be used as blunt instruments?
      • Do they all need to be left out all the time?
      • Are there sharp edges or corners which present a risk?
      • Is the design and arrangement of furniture safe and appropriate for pupils who exhibit extreme behaviour?
      • Is there a comfortable place to sit with an agitated pupil?
      • Are protocols in place to encourage angry pupils to take themselves to a safer place?

      Help Protocols

      The expectation at this school is that all staff should support each other. This means that staff always offer help and always accept it. Help does not always mean taking over. It may mean just staying around in case you are needed, getting somebody else or looking after somebody else’s group. Supporting a colleague does not only mean agreeing with their suggestions and offering sympathy when things go wrong. Real support sometimes means acting as a critical friend to help colleagues become aware of possible alternative strategies. Good communication is necessary so that colleagues avoid confusion when help is offered and accepted. They need to agree scripts so that all parties understand what sort of assistance is required and what is available.

      Well Chosen Words

      A well-chosen word can sometimes avert an escalating crisis. When pupils are becoming angry there is no point in getting into an argument. Telling people to calm down can actually wind them up. Pointing out what they have done wrong can make things worse. The only purpose in communicating with an angry person is to prevent further escalation. It is better to say nothing and take time to choose your words carefully than to say the wrong thing and provoke further escalation.

      The Last Resort Principle

      At this school we only use physical restraint when there is no other realistic alternative. This does not mean that we always expect people to methodically work their way through a series of failing strategies before attempting an intervention in which they have some confidence. Nor does it mean always waiting until the danger is imminent, by which time the prospect of safely managing it may be significantly reduced.

      It does mean that we expect staff to conduct a risk assessment and choose the safest alternative. It also means that we expect staff to experiment and think creatively about any alternatives to physical intervention which may be effective.

      “The positive application of force by staff, in order to overcome rigorous resistance; completely directing, deciding and controlling a person’s free movement. The purpose of its application should be to safeguard the person, other people or prevent significant damage to property” Team-Teach definition of restraint.

      Proactive Physical Interventions

      It is sometimes reasonable to use physical controls to prevent extreme behaviour from becoming dangerous provided that is an agreed part of the Positive Handling Plan. Examples of this are where a pupil has shown ritual patterns of behaviour, which in the past have led to the child becoming more distressed and violent. In such circumstances it may be reasonable to withdraw the child to a safer place when the pattern of behaviour begins, rather than wait until the child is distressed and out of control. The paramount consideration is that the action is taken in the interest of the child and that it reduces, rather than increases, risk.

      Reasonable and Proportionate

      Any response to extreme behaviour should be reasonable and proportionate. People should not react in anger. If they feel they are becoming angry they should consider withdrawing to allow someone else to deal with the situation. Where staff act in good faith, and their actions are reasonable and proportionate they will be supported.

      When physical controls are considered, staff should think about the answers to the following questions:

      • How is this in the best interests of the pupil?
      • Why is a less intrusive intervention not preferable?
      • Why do we have to act now?
      • Why am I the best person to be doing this?
      • Why is this absolutely necessary?

      If staff can answer these questions, it is more likely that a physical intervention will be judged to be reasonable and proportionate.

      Unreasonable Use of Force

      It is not reasonable to use force simply to enforce compliance in circumstances where there is no risk. Nor is it reasonable to use any more force than is necessary to achieve a reduction in risk. Under no circumstances should pain be deliberately inflicted, or should pupils be deliberately subjected to undignified or humiliating treatment (this should not be confused with the unavoidable discomfort associated with some approved techniques for disengaging from assaults such as bites and grabs). Other than as a one-off emergency measure to protect health and safety, force should never be used to keep a pupil secluded. Seclusion is only lawful by specific court order and cannot become part of a planned strategy at this school

      Health and Safety

      If dangerous behaviour presents a significant risk of injury to people, there is a legal Health and Safety issue to be addressed. Dangerous behaviour should be regarded just as seriously as dangerous equipment. Dangerous occurrences should be reported to the person responsible for Health and Safety in school. We all have shared responsibility to identify risk, communicate potential risks and take active steps to reduce risk wherever possible. We recognise that it is not possible to entirely remove risk. Sometimes things go wrong even when we make our best efforts to do the right thing. Sometimes we are faced with unpalatable choices. In these circumstances we have to try to think through the outcomes of the options available, balance the risks and choose whatever course of action seems to involve the least risk. As a minimum requirement, in order to comply with Health and Safety legislation, each employee has a responsibility to ensure that they are conversant with school policy and guidance, and to co-operate to make the school safer. It is also a requirement that they participate in training if they are directed to do so. This does not necessarily mean that all staff can be involved in all the physical activities. The non-physical aspects of positive handling training are crucially important too.

      When considering a pupil’s behaviour staff should think about the following questions:

      • Can we anticipate a Health and Safety risk related to this pupil’s behaviour?
      • Have we got all the information we need to conduct a risk assessment?
      • Have we produced a written plan as a result?
      • What further steps can we take to prevent dangerous behaviour from developing?

      Risk Assessment

      Dynamic risk assessments should be a routine part of life for staff working with pupils who may exhibit extreme behaviour. Responsible staff should think ahead to anticipate what might go wrong. If a proposed activity or course of action involves unacceptable risk the correct decision is to do something else.

      Factors which might influence a more immediate risk assessment, and therefore a decision about how to intervene, might include the state of health and fitness of the staff member, their physical stature, competence, confidence and relationships with the pupils concerned. Confidence and competence are often related to the level of staff training. Other than in an emergency, staff should only attempt physical controls when they are confident that such action will result in a reduction of risk. When faced with extreme behaviour, or even in a fight situation, the judgement may be that by becoming involved the member of staff will increase the chance of somebody getting hurt. In this case the correct decision is to hold back from physical controls.

      Getting Help

      At this school the following support structures are in place:

      1. Informal de-briefing with team members
      2. Discussion with Head / Assistant Head
      3. Staff supervision with CAMHS, if required.

      Responding to Unforeseen Emergencies

      Even the best planning systems cannot cover every eventuality and the school recognises that there are unforeseen or emergency situations in which staff have to think on their feet. It is not enough to thoughtlessly apply rules without thinking through the likely consequences. The key principals are that any physical intervention should be:

      • In the best interest of the child
      • Reasonable and proportionate
      • Intended to reduce risk
      • The least intrusive and restrictive of those options available which are likely to be effective.

      When a physical intervention has to be made there should be a verbal warning. Where possible staff should always attempt to use diversion or diffusion in preference to physical interventions. They should only use the techniques and methods approved for use in this school. In general, if staff act in good faith and their actions are reasonable and proportionate, they will be supported.

      Physical intervention within the home

      Occasionally members of staff have to transport children home, particularly if the child has experienced difficulties in school and it is felt they are unsafe to be transported in their taxi. Parents/carers will be contacted before the staff set off and informed that there is a possibility that physical intervention will be used if necessary, on the way home. If parents/ carers are unhappy about this, they will be asked to come to the school to collect their child. Parents/carers will also be asked to meet the school car on arrival. On arrival if the child is still in distress parents/carers will be asked if they require assistance into and or within the home.

      The Post Incident Support Structure for Pupils and Staff

      Following a serious incident, it is the policy of this school to offer support for all involved. The Headteacher and two PI trainers within the school are responsible for this. People take time to recover from a serious incident. Until the incident has subsided the only priority is to reduce risk and calm the situation down. Staff should avoid saying or doing anything which could inflame the situation during the recovery phase. Pupils will be visually checked for any injuries and are asked if they feel they are injured in any way, following a physical intervention. Immediate action should be taken to ensure medical help is sought if there are any injuries which require more than basic first aid. Any injury will be initially checked by the school first aider and in discussion with the Headteacher any necessary decision will be made. All injuries should be reported and recorded using the school systems. It is important to note that injury in itself is not evidence of malpractice. Even when staff attempt to do everything right things can go wrong. Part of the post incident support for staff may involve a reminder of this, as people tend to blame themselves when things go wrong.

      Team-Teach techniques seek to avoid injury to the service user, but it is possible that bruising or scratching may occur accidently, and these are not to be seen necessarily as a failure of professional technique, but a regrettable and infrequent side effect of ensuring that the service user remains safe” (George Matthews – Director, Team-Teach)

      Time needs to be found to repair relationships. When careful steps are taken to repair relationships, a serious incident does not necessarily result in long term damage. This is an opportunity for learning for all concerned. Time needs to be given to following up incidents so that pupils have an opportunity to express their feelings, suggest alternative courses of action for the future and appreciate other people’s perspective. When time and effort are put into a post incident support structure the outcome of a serious incident can be learning, growth and strengthened relationships.


      It is not uncommon for pupils to make allegations of inappropriate or excessive use of force following an incident. The school has a formal complaints procedure. Pupils should be reminded of the procedure and encouraged to use the appropriate channels. The complaints policy applies equally to parents, and staff. We are an open school and promote transparent policy and practice in order to protect the interests of pupils and staff alike. Any staff concerns regarding the welfare of children should be taken to the designated person for child protection. Any safety concerns should be reported to the designated person for Health and Safety.


      Teachers and anyone authorised by the Headteacher who are expected to use planned physical techniques should be trained. This school has adopted the Team Teach model of training. Positive handling training is always provided by qualified instructors within rigorous guidelines. The school has their own Advanced and Intermediate Tutors which deliver regular refresher training throughout the year and all staff members are retrained and certified every year or two years. Records are kept with training dates and certificate numbers, and this is kept up to date on a regular basis. This information is sent directly from Team Teach and all collated by the behaviour lead (Andy Smallcombe), which is then shared with both schools and all tutors.

      The level of training recommended is related to the level of risk faced by the member of staff. Our preferred approach is for whole staff team training. Office staff may not require the same level of training in physical techniques as those working directly with the most challenging pupils. However, all staff benefit from whole school training. The level of training required is kept under review and may change in response to the needs of our pupils.

      All training courses have been fully accredited by the British Institute of Learning Disabilities (BILD) in accordance with DfES and Department of Health guidance. Positive Handling training is always provided by qualified instructors within rigorous guidelines.


      When overpowering force is used the incident must be recorded using the approved forms. The bound P.I. book and hard-backed incident book are kept in Mr Smallcombe’s office overnight, checked, and handed back to classes during the day. They have individual log numbers. The same incident is also logged and cross referenced in an incident book. These books are both monitored and signed on a daily basis by a member of the senior management team. All staff involved in an incident should contribute to the record which should be completed within 24 hours, read through the school recording form carefully, take time to think about what actually happened and try to explain in clearly. Parents/carers are informed, by telephone. Names should be completed in full, and all forms should be signed and dated, staff should bear in mind that these records will be retained and cannot be altered; they will be kept for a minimum period of 75 years from the date of the incident and could form part of an investigation sometime in the future. Serious incident reports should not be completed until the individuals concerned have recovered from the immediate effects of the incident and completed within 24 hours. A concise record should be written into the hard-backed incident book, which can refer to supporting bound P.I. books and other relevant information. A copy of the current Positive Handling Policy and relevant sections of the Staff Practice Guide are archived alongside the individual records each year. Our records take the form of a ring bound book containing Positive Handling forms.

      Monitoring and Evaluation

      The Headteacher will ensure that each incident is reviewed and instigate further action as required. The school incident log is open to external monitoring and evaluation.

      Data will be extracted from each of the incident books and produced as graphs at the end of each term and again at the end of the school year. Each child’s individual statistics will show the time of day, the technique used and the reason for intervention. The end of year data will compare the terms and show any progress made. At the beginning of term in January and April the three children with the highest number of Positive Handling Incidents will be identified. A meeting with the classroom staff and senior management team will follow to discuss each child’s behaviour management plan with a view to reducing the number of physical interventions used. For all pupils, at least three times per school year, staff class teams will meet to update their pupil individual behaviour management plans and risk assessments. These will also be updated as and when any new behaviours or risks are identified throughout the school year.

      The graphed data will be regularly shared with a member of the Governing body and reported back to the full Governing body. A pack containing graphed data will be produced for each class and directed time will be allowed for consideration of this data.

      Follow Up

      Following an incident consideration may be given to conducting a further risk assessment, reviewing the Positive Handling Plan, Behaviour Management Policy or this Positive Handling Policy. Any further action in relation to a member of staff, or an individual pupil, will follow the appropriate procedures.

      Policy Statement

      Staff at this school are trained to look after pupils in their care. Staff have a duty to intervene in order to prevent pupils from hurting themselves or others. There may also be situations in which a child seriously disrupts good order in the school or causes damage to property. If a member of staff ever needs to intervene physically, they will follow the school’s positive handling policy. Any parents/carers wishing to view this policy may do so on request.

      Other Relevant Policies

      This policy should be read in conjunction with:

      Behaviour Management Policy

      Exclusion Policy

      Code of Conduct Policy

      Health and Safety Policy

      Child Protection Policy

      Effective date of this policy: November 2021

      Person responsible for this policy: Claire Senior

      Accredited training model in use: Team Teach

      Person responsible for Health and Safety: Nikki Brown

      Designated Child Protection Lead: Hannah Keegan

      Date of next policy review: November 2022

      Location of bound incident books: Head of School’s Office

      Effective date of this policy: November 2021

      Person responsible for this policy: Behaviour Mentor

      Accredited training model in use: Team Teach

      Person responsible for Health and Safety: Andy Smallcombe

      Person responsible for Child Protection: Michelle Bunn

      Date of next policy review: November 2022

      Location of bound incident books: Andy Smallcombe’s Office

      Pupil Premium Statement


      Pupil Premium Statement


      Background to Pupil Premium

      Pupil Premium has been introduced by the government in order to give all children the opportunity to succeed in education. This has been done in the form of a grant which has been given to schools for children eligible for Free School Meals and those children who

      • • Has been looked after for 1 day or more
      • • Has been adopted from care
      • • Has left care under a special guardianship order, a residence order or a child arrangements order

      A premium has also been introduced for children whose parents serve in the armed forces.

      Barriers to educational achievement

      The pupils who attend Athena school have previously had negative experiences of education and are therefore switched off to learning. They have low self-esteem and self- worth, not seeing themselves as learners. Our children need a lot of support to develop their social and emotional skills which allow them to access the learning environment and curriculum.


      At Athena School the Pupil Premium for the 2020/21 financial year is:

      £61,362 for LAC children including £37,382 B/fwd, £16,000 in year allocation and £7,980 Virtual Head Funding.

      £48,705 for FSM children in year allocation.

      £3,360 for Forces children including £2,120 B/fwd and £1,240 in year allocation.

      £9,380 to support post LAC pupils including £4,690 B/fwd and £4,690 in year allocation.

      The pupil premium funding received by Athena School in the academic year 2021 - 2022 has been allocated in the following ways:

      Children & family Officer in support of pupil’s mental health

      Educational Consultant to support pupils and their families through the EHCP process

      Education Welfare Officer in support of pupils to maintain their attendance in school

      Psychologist to support pupils with their mental and emotional health.

      When the results of assessments, including Physical Intervention data, are received during the summer term we will be able to evaluate the impact of these measures.

      Number of pupils and pupil premium grant (PPG) 2021-22 incl B/fwd

      Total number of pupils on role


      Total number of pupils eligible for PPG


      Amount of PPG received including £43,553 B/fwd








      Children & Family Officer

      Allocated & continues until March 2022

      Mental Health


      Educational consultant to prepare, chair and support pupils and their families through the EHC review process.

      Ongoing through to March 2022

      Mental Health


      J Keogh


      Pupil’s attendance


      The Chapters Psychology support

      Ongoing through to March 2022

      Mental Health

      Total £59, 206

      Remainder £63, 601

      Plan to spend the remaining allocation on whole staff training

      and resources to enable further CPD on working with pupils

      with SEMH. In addition to this, further spending of the

      remaining budget to support pupils in terms of identified

      needs through the Boxall Profile.

      Measuring the impact of PPG spending 2021 - 22 – Evaluated in July 2022

      SEND Policy

      FEDERATION Special Educational Needs Policy 2023 (1)Special Educational Needs Policy

      Ethos and principals
      At The Fortuna and Athena Federation, we are committed to offering an inclusive curriculum to
      ensure the best possible progress for all our pupils whatever their needs or abilities. Not all pupils
      with disabilities have special educational needs and not all pupils with SEN meet the definition of
      disability. At The Fortuna and Athena Federation we pride ourselves in having a unique whole
      school nurturing ethos. Through our principles and practice we aim to provide children with
      essential early experiences to support their academic, social and emotional development. We aim
      to enable children to gain the understanding and strategies required in order to turn around difficult
      behaviour that hinders their chances of success.

      • To identify pupils with special educational needs and disabilities and ensure that their needs
      are met.
      • To ensure that children with special educational needs and disabilities are included in all
      aspects of school life.
      • To ensure that all learners make the best possible progress.
      • To ensure that parents/carers are informed of their child’s special needs and the provision in
      place to support these needs.
      • To ensure that learners express their views and are fully involved in decisions which affect
      their education.
      • To promote effective partnership and involve outside agencies when appropriate.
      Roles and responsibilities
      As The Fortuna and Athena Federation are specialist schools in SEMH (Social, Emotional and
      Mental Health Needs) all staff are responsible for the day-to-day provision to support emotional
      and behavioural development. As a federation we have a strong, long-standing nurture ethos and
      this is reflected within our provision and planning in the classes.
      The SENCo at Fortuna.
      The SENCo at Athena.
      During periods of temporary absence an appropriate member of staff will be allocated as required
      to cover the responsibilities and duties of the named SENCo.
      The responsibilities of the SENCo may include but are not limited to the following:
      • Setting up and reviewing new intake files – initial risk assessment, Penn picture (outlining
      the child’s background) and initial medical overview.
      • Working alongside senior leaders, the broader school staff and appropriate external
      agencies/professionals to identify pupils’ needs and ensure appropriate provision is in
      place. This includes supporting or making referrals to outside specialist services and
      • Monitoring, supporting and evaluating ICEP’s (Individual, Care and Education plans).
      • Organising training and staff meetings relating to special educational needs, including those
      led by outside agencies and professionals with specialist expertise.
      • Supporting the identification of children with SEN who need provision above and/or beyond
      that of the day-to-day provision provided to all pupils.
      Fortuna & Athena Federation Special Educational Needs Policy 3
      * A Deputy Head will deputise for the Head of School in her absence
      • Attending regular training and engaging in professional development activities in areas
      related to SEN, to ensure that each school is meeting their statutory duties and
      demonstrating best practice.
      • Working alongside staff to support across the four areas of need (Communication and
      Interaction, Cognition and Learning, Social Emotional and Mental Health, Sensory and/or
      • Acting as the school’s lead designated professional for Personal Education Plans (PEP) for
      Children in Care (CIC)
      EPEP’s are completed by the Class Teachers under the supervision of the SENCo
      EPEP’s are completed by the SENCo / CAFO.
      Identification and Assessment of special educational needs
      The Fortuna and Athena Federation is committed to early identification of special educational
      needs and meets the special educational needs of each child in line with the Code of Practice
      2014. A range of evidence is collected through the usual assessment and monitoring
      arrangements (see Assessment policy): if this suggests that the learner is not making the expected
      progress, the class teacher will consult with the SENDCo and Assessment coordinator to decide
      whether additional and / or different provision is necessary.
      Provision/action that is additional to or different from that available to all will be recorded in an IEP.
      This will be written by each class teacher and/or the SENDCo in consultation with pupils, parents,
      and carers. It may also involve consultation and advice from external agencies who in some
      instances will generate a personalised plan to be used within school (e.g Occupation Therapy,
      Speech and Language Therapy, Specialist Teaching Team).
      The IEP will set targets for the pupil and will detail:
      • the short-term targets set for or by the child
      • criteria for success
      • the teaching strategies to be used that will link to planning
      • the provision to be put in place
      • who and when the plan is to be reviewed by
      The IEP will be reviewed every term and the outcomes will be recorded. Pupils will participate fully
      in the review process according to their age and abilities. Parents / carers will also be invited to
      participate in the target-setting and review process.
      If the school has evidence that a pupil is making insufficient progress despite significant support
      and intervention, we may seek further advice and support from outside professionals. These
      professionals will be invited to contribute to the monitoring and review of progress. Pupils and
      parents will be fully involved and kept informed about the involvement of external agencies and
      proposed interventions.
      All the children at The Fortuna and Athena Federation have Education Health Care Plans so as
      well as the review of their IEPs, their progress and the support outlined in there will be reviewed
      annually by the SENCo or SMT and a report provided for the Local Education Authority (Section 69
      Fortuna & Athena Federation Special Educational Needs Policy 4
      * A Deputy Head will deputise for the Head of School in her absence
      of the Children and Families Act 2014). When pupils are due to transfer to another phase planning
      for this will be started in the year prior to the year of transfer.
      Early secondary transition planning for
      pupils in Year 5 annual reviews will allow
      appropriate options to be considered. The
      deputy head will liaise with the SENCO of the
      secondary schools to ensure that effective
      arrangements are in place to support pupils at
      the time of transfer.
      Advanced planning for pupils in Year 10
      and 11 annual reviews will allow appropriate
      options to be considered for Post 16 provision.
      The Careers and Post 16 Coordinator and
      SENCO will liaise with the SENCO of colleges
      and other FE centres to ensure that effective
      arrangements are in place to support pupils at
      the time of transfer.
      All the children at The Fortuna and Athena Federation have an Education Health Care Plan. They
      are referred to the Schools by the Additional Needs Statementing Panel. The Head of School in
      consultation with the panel reviews the child’s suitability for the school and whether their needs can
      be best met in an SEMH school. For further details see Admissions Policy.
      SEN Funding
      All children at The Fortuna and Athena Federation have an Education Health Care Plan, which
      indicates their predominant need is SEMH. The current funding is 3:1 (children: adults) in line with
      the LA policy.
      Provision for SEN and school specialities
      The Fortuna and Athena Federation have an extremely experienced staff team in SEMH and
      nurture teaching and learning. Fortuna is funded for 80 places and Athena are funded for 104
      places (Correct as of January 2023). A significant proportion of children within both schools have
      various medical diagnoses in areas like Autism, ADHD, Asperger’s, Oppositional Defiance
      Disorder and Attachment Disorder.
      The Fortuna and Athena Federation has full wheelchair access. Fortuna School has one disabled
      toilet available. Athena School has two disabled / gender neutral toilets available.
      There are numerous trained members of staff in the administration of medication and the needs of
      the children who require special dietary needs can be fully met.
      Fortuna staff are trained in the
      administration of insulin, and the administering
      of appropriate medication and procedure.
      Athena staff have received training for the
      administering of insulin, epilepsy training, the
      administering of appropriate medication and
      Class teams designated first aiders and where appropriate the whole school staff will be provided
      with additional training to support specific medical needs as required to support the day-to day
      health needs of individual pupils. In some instances, this will need to occur before the child can
      attend the school.
      Fortuna & Athena Federation Special Educational Needs Policy 5
      * A Deputy Head will deputise for the Head of School in her absence
      Most children who attend The Fortuna and Athena Federation arrive and leave in a taxi provided
      by the county council. Pupils needs are shared with the Local Authority and Transport Provider to
      ensure there is an appropriate risk assessment in place.
      Teaching and learning
      The children in The Fortuna and Athena Federation have full access to the national curriculum.
      Teachers plan individual lessons for all subjects and include a range of teaching styles in their
      plans. Children’s targets in class are worked on each day both in lessons and opportunities for play
      throughout the day. Individual needs are planned for and taken into account in teachers’ planning.
      The use of facilities outside the school like support services
      There are a range of outside services the school can access and a full list of these can be found in
      the front office. These services can be arranged through the SENCo in consultation with the SMT.
      The role of the parents
      The Fortuna and Athena Federation have close links to the parents and carers of all the children.
      All parents have access at all times to the school for any concerns they have with their child’s SEN
      and the appropriate member of staff will be available to consult with them both over the phone or
      an arrangement to come in to school.
      Monitoring, evaluating and reviewing
      This policy will be reviewed and assessed annually to ensure the effectiveness while monitoring
      the level of implementation.
      • Review of Education, Health and Care Plans once per year
      • Risk assessments set up initially then reviewed three times a year
      • IEP’s 3x a year or more/less frequent if necessary
      • Behaviour logs are updated daily.
      • Behaviour plans are reviewed regularly.
      • Intervention plan is reviewed twice a year.

      Fortuna IEP’s 3x a year or more/less frequent if necessary

      Uniform Policy

      Website Policy

      Careers and Further Education Policy

      Attendance Policy

      Mission Statement

      The Fortuna and Athena Federation is committed to providing a full and impactful education for all pupils. The federation believes sincerely that all pupils benefit from the education our schools provide when they attend school regularly. To this end the Fortuna and Athena Federation will do as much as it can to ensure that all pupils achieve maximum attendance and that any problems, which may impede full attendance, are acted upon as quickly as possible.

      It is recognised that:

      • All pupils of statutory school age have an equal right to access an education in accordance with the National Curriculum regulations.
      • No pupil should be deprived of their opportunity to receive an education that meets their needs and personal development.
      • In the first instance, it is the legal responsibility of parents/carers to ensure that their child attends school regularly.
      • Situations beyond the control of pupils and/or parents/carers may impact on attendance. We will, with the agreement and support of parents/carers, work in partnership with families and external agencies to address these challenges.
      • The vast majority of pupils want to attend school to learn, to socialise with their peer group and to prepare themselves fully to take their place in society as well-rounded and responsible citizens with the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to contribute to the life and culture of their communities.
      • Regular attenders make better progress, both socially and academically.
      • Statistics show a direct link between under-achievement and absence.

      It is recognised that:

      Special schools are less likely to have day-to-day contact with parents/carers than their mainstream counterparts as many pupils will travel some distance to school and/or make use of local authority educational transport. For this reason, it is important to consider how best to establish and maintain links between home and school.

      Parents/carers will be informed of any referrals to another agency. Letters will be regularly sent home to parents/carers updating them of their child’s individual attendance level.

      The Fortuna and Athena Federation have regular meetings with the Education Welfare Officer who will support where there are concerns relating to attendance. Should these issues not be resolved in a timely manner, the school adopt a systematic approach to support parent/carers and young people into promoting improved school attendance.

      The Government defines ‘Persistent Absence’ (PA) as:

      > Any student who has an attendance level of 90% or less is classed as a ‘Persistent Absentee’.

      > Any student who misses more than 10% (19 school days) schooling within and across the academic year for whatever reason (either authorised or unauthorised). Absence at this level is doing considerable damage to any learner’s educational prospects and we need parent/carer’s full support and co-operation to challenge this.

      The Government defines ‘Severe Absence’ (PA) as:

      > Any student who is missing 50% or more of their education.

      If following appropriate support there is not an improvement in attendance the school will make a referral to social care in accordance with Section 87 of Working Together to Improve School Attendance as this may constitute neglect.

      Parents/Carers Responsibility

      • To honour the home/school agreement signed on admission.
      • Parents/carers must ensure that their child attends school every day.
      • To ensure that their child arrives at school within the registration window between 8:30 and 9:15am. N.B. The length of this period is due to the exceptionally large catchment area of both schools.
      • Ensure medical appointments are made outside of the school day where possible.
      • To notify the school and SEN Transport (if used) in advance of any planned absence.
      • To contact the school before 9am if pupils are unwell and unable to attend school.
      • To ensure holidays are only taken during school holiday time, not term time.
      • To engage in the ‘Attend Framework’ process if required to do so.

      School Responsibility

      • School office will telephone home to ascertain reasons for an absence if no one has called from home by 9am.
      • Late arrival will be registered with the office before joining class and their attendance is recorded, even after the registers have closed, in case of a fire or other emergency.
      • The Attendance Officer will track absence and meet regularly with a member of SLT to discuss concerns. Next steps will be agreed and actioned.
      • Utilise the ‘Attend Framework’ to identify underlying reasons for absence by enabling professionals to engage the pupil to work in a collaborative approach to positively affect their attendance.
      • Ensure regular, efficient and accurate recording of attendance using school registers (twice a day).

      SEN and Attendance

      As a specialist SEMH setting the Fortuna and Athena Federation will see to work together with families to support a good level of attendance and address persistent absenteeism when his occurs. The school will also work alongside a range of appropriate professional including:

      • Social care professionals (e.g. social worker, early help workers)
      • Mental health professionals (MHST, CAHMS, psychologists)
      • Medical professionals (School nurse, paediatricians)
      • Lincolnshire Education Transport Services

      Reasonable adjustments will be made where appropriate with consideration of individual needs. After appropriate consultation, the school will determine what constitutes a reasonable adjustment. Some adjustments may be indefinite to meet an ongoing need, whilst others such as part-time timetables will be timebound and regularly reviewed. These will be documented in either a School Attendance Panel record or a Health Meeting record.

      Attendance Step-by Step

      The Federation will use the following protocol in the event of a pupil been absent from school:

      Time Frame




      Day 1 and ongoing

      Office after 9am

      Integris Register & CPOMS if reason for concern.

      To ascertain reason for absence. If no answer, follow up with a call later in the day.

      If still no answer, send an email reminding of the need to notify school in the event of absence and requesting the parent/carer contact the school.

      Day 2

      Class or pastoral staff on the same day


      To call to see when they will be returning. Is there anything the student is worried about? Give the family an overview of what has been covered in the classroom.

      Day 3

      Attendance Officer


      Call to discuss issues around attendance.

      Day 5

      Welfare call to speak to child


      CME referral if appropriate

      A welfare call/home visit to ensure we have spoken to the child directly.

      Referral as ‘Missing in Education’ if appropriate.

      Day 10

      Attendance Officer

      To complete a PNAR form.

      After 10 consecutive days of non-attendance a PNAR survey is completed online and a SAP meeting to be booked.

      Day 15



      To visit the students’ home and meet with the family to discuss attendance and consider any other barriers.

      End of Term Reviews and Intervention Thresholds

      Both schools will review attendance each half term and the following thresholds of action followed:

      Above 97%

      Less than 6 days absence a year: Pupils with this attendance are well place to make good academic and personal progress.

      Less than 95%

      Less than 10 days absence a year: Pupils are likely to make good progress with their learning and personal development.

      A letter will be sent to parents/carers to make them aware attendance has dropped below 95%. This letter will indicate whether this is predominately due to authorised or unauthorised absence.

      Less than 90%

      19 days of absence a year: This is the equivalent of missing a month of education and is likely to impact progress in math’s and English. It will be difficult for children to catch up on missed learning.

      An escalation letter will be sent that ensures parents/carers are aware of their child’s current level of absence and the need to act in order to improve attendance.

      Where there are concerns about persistent absenteeism

      It will be very difficult for children to keep up with learning and achieve their best.

      When there are significant concerns about persistent absenteeism the school will invite parents/carers and other relevant professionals to participate in a School Attendance Panel.

      Should attendance continue to decrease the school will liaise with the EWO and discuss appropriate action. This may include a Fixed Penalty Notice.

      In cases of absenteeism for medical reasons the school will carry out a Health Meeting to discuss barriers to attendance and appropriate support.

      School Attendance Panel and Health Meetings

      Parents/carers and relevant professionals will be invited to take part in a school attendance panel (SAP) when persistent absenteeism is a significant concern. The purpose of these panels is to explore the reasons for low-attendance and agree upon an action plan that will improve attendance.

      An initial meeting will take place and there will be a discussion around what is working well in regard to attendance, what concerns the school has and what needs to happen. This discussion will then inform an action plan. The action plan will be reviewed and amended each half term (shorter review periods may be required where significant concerns around attendance exist). SAPs will close when an agreed threshold of attendance (typically 95%) is met for two consecutive half terms.

      If there is a lack of engagement from parents/carers with the SAP, these will be carried out in their absence and a copy of the SAP action plan will be communicated by post or email.

      All SAP action plans will be shared with the EWO, who may advise the school of additional support and action that should be considered.

      In instances of absenteeism due to medical reasons the federation will request a Health Meeting. To support this meeting the EWO may request information from medical professionals and a letter would be provided to request consent for this.

      Fixed Penalty Notice

      Should a School Attendance Panel not result in an improvement in attendance the school’s Attendance Lead will consult with the Education Welfare Officer as to whether a Fixed Penalty Notice is appropriate.

      In the event of a lack of engagement with the School Attendance Panel, such as not attending the panel meetings, a fixed penalty notice will be issued following the second cycle.

      Other Action

      If following the above, attendance does not improve the school will follow local guidelines and the following additional courses of action will be considered:

      • Education Supervision Orders
      • Attendance Prosecution
      • Parenting Orders


      Attendance Level



      100% pupils

      Excellent 100% Attendance Certificate

      Half-termly attendance stationary

      Excellent 100% Attendance Certificate

      Personal reward – such as –

      • Easter Egg/ Selection Box
      • Book Voucher/ e-voucher
      • 100% club film/pizza

      95% + pupils

      Half-termly Letter to parents/carers recognising positive attendance

      Good Attendance Certificate

      Good Attendance Letter home

      Most improved class (minus long term non-attenders)

      Most Improved Class in School attendance certificate.

      Class reward – such as –

      • Film and popcorn/ pizza
      • Visit to Daisy Made
      • Park and picnic
      • Bowling

      Impactful School Attendance Panel

      Bespoke rewards systems specified into the SAP

      Afternoon in the Common Room following 2 weeks of full attendance

      Children Missing Education (CME)

      The school follows the Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children Panel (LSCP) procedures and will make enquiries into the location of students with continuous unauthorised absence or those who fail to return from leave of absence granted during term time.

      After 5 days of unexplained absence the school will conduct a home visit and ascertain if the child is still living at the address on record. After 5 days of unexplained absence the school will complete a ‘School Risk Assessment for Child Missing Education (CME)’ and forward to the CME Officer at the Local Authority. The school will also notify the EWO. The CME risk assessment is reported via Perspective Lite.

      Pupils Not Attending Regularly (PNAR)

      The Fortuna and Athena Federation will inform the Local Authority of any Pupil Not Attending Regularly (PNAR) . The definition of PNAR is a student that has been absent for 10 consecutive school days with either no reason provided or where school has not accepted the reason provided.

      PNAR referrals should be made using the link below:

      The school should notify the local authority when the pupil returns to school, the Local Authority should be made aware by email ( with the subject heading ‘PNAR Child Returned’. The email should contain the child’s name, date of birth and date of return.

      Reduced Timetables

      All children are entitled to attend school full time, but in some circumstances it may be appropriate for children to attend school on a temporarily reduced time table. Where a temporary reduced timetable results in a child attending school less than 25 hours per week, the school will follow statutory guidance and local protocols which can be found on Perspective Lite. Key points to note are:

      • A reduced timetable can only be granted to meet the needs of the child.
      • A reduced timetable must be agreed by parents/carers.
      • The local authority must be informed of reduced timetables.
      • Reduced timetables are to be coded as either I (illness) or C (exceptional circumstances).
      • A pastoral support plan must be in place if the reduced timetable is due to behavioural, social or emotional needs (the federation will use the SAP process for this).

      Request for Leave of Absence

      Amendments to school attendance regulations were updated in September 2013 and are set out in Working Together to Improve School Attendance (2022). The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations state that the Headteacher may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. The Headteacher can determine the length of the authorised absence and whether the absence is authorised. The fundamental principles for defining exceptional are rare, significant or unavoidable.

      There is no legal entitlement for time off in school term time to go on holiday. Parents/carers wishing to apply for leave of absence are advised to complete a child’s leave of absence form which is obtained from the school, at least 2 weeks prior to the leave date and before making any travel arrangements. Each case will be looked at on an individual basis. If term-time leave is taken without prior permission from school, the absence will be unauthorised in the student’s record and in some cases will be referred to the EWO. This could result in a Fixed Penalty Notice being issued (Section 444A of the Education Act 1996).

      A Fixed Penalty Notice is a strategy used by schools to address the unacceptable levels of attendance of children at their school under the following legislation:

      Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 places upon parents/carers a duty to ensure that their

      child receives efficient full-time education either by regular attendance at school or


      Where a child is a registered pupil at a school and the parent/carer fails to ensure that

      child’s regular attendance at school the parent/carer is liable to be prosecuted for a

      criminal offence under Section 444 of the Education Act.

      In cases where this duty is not being fulfilled Section 444B of the same Act empowers

      The Local Authority to issue a Fixed Penalty of either £60.00 or £120.00

      Please note: A Fixed Penalty Notice can also be issued if a child is seen in a public place within the first 5 days of an exclusion from their school:

      Section 103 of the Education and Inspections Act 2006 makes it a duty for parents/carers in relation to learners subject to a fixed period or permanent exclusion to ensure that their child is not present in a public place during school hours, without reasonable justification, during the first five days of any such exclusion. If a child is present in a public place during the first five days of an exclusion during school hours the parent/carer may be guilty of an offence for which they can be prosecuted by the LA before a magistrates' court or issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice for £60.00 or £120.00.

      Failure to pay a Fixed Penalty Notice will result in the case being referred to Lincolnshire County Council for consideration of prosecution under the Single Justice Process (SJP). This will lead to the matter being put before the Magistrates Court for prosecution.

      School term dates are available from the school website and a copy can be obtained from the school office.

      School Organisation

      In order for the attendance policy to be successful, every member of the staff must make attendance a high priority and should convey to pupils the importance and value of education.

      In addition, there may be specific responsibilities allocated to individual staff such as the following:

      Head of School

      • To oversee and demonstrate ownership of the whole policy.
      • To regularly report progress on attendance to governors, pupils and parents/carers.
      • To set challenging but achievable targets to reduce levels of absence.
      • To liaise with the EWO.

      Head of School together with Attendance Lead, Administrative Assistant or Senior Administrator Office Manager:

      • To oversee the efficient operation of the attendance system and the collation and analysis of attendance data.
      • To oversee the work of administrative staff.
      • To produce the attendance profile for the whole school.
      • To meet regularly on attendance issues.
      • To liaise with the EWO.
      • To follow-up immediately any unexplained absence by contacting parents/carers.
      • To inform senior staff of concerns in a timely manner
      • To send daily attendance reports to Head of School/ CAFO/ Taxi Co-ordinator.
      • To produce termly attendance reports for the Head of School.
      • To produce and send termly (Fortuna) monthly (Athena) reports for EWO and advise of any actions taken, and to act on recommendations made.
      • To produce attendance concern letters, including Fixed Penalty Final Warning Letters on behalf of Head of School, EWO as instructed.
      • To produce termly attendance reports for parents, with year to date and term attendance data.
      • Advise Head of School / EWO of any absence that may fall under Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children Board CME procedures, from Lincolnshire County Council Children’s Services March 2021.


      • Governors are provided with school attendance details at each full governing body meeting and also discussed in a separate item at the safeguarding and standard committee meetings with specific information in the report.

      Education Welfare Officer (EWO)

      The EWO:

      • Will regularly liaise and consult with the school regarding attendance issues, this includes receiving termly reports via email and termly meetings with Administrative Assistant/School Attendance Lead.
      • Will provide advice regarding the regulations governing the part-time employment of school children.
      • Will prepare and recommend legal proceedings in cases of irregular school attendance including fixed penalty notices and Education Supervision Orders.
      • May request medical evidence if the authenticity of an illness is in doubt and request a medical view should further support be required.
      • May undertake home visits to meet with parents/carers to discuss concerns related to school attendance.

      Data Protection

      The Fortuna and Athena Federation follow this policy alongside the data protection policy.

      Nothing in the legislation prevents a school sharing information with the Police or Social Care where it is believed that a child or young person under the age of 18 is at risk of harm or is in need of safeguarding.


      The Fortuna and Athena Federation follow this policy alongside the child protection and safeguarding policy.

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