Special Needs

Aims of Special Needs Programmes

The aims of our Special Needs Policy are to:

  • Promote the emotional, social and physical well-being of students by developing self-esteem, personal responsibility and the ability to live and work with others.
  • Pursue the highest educational standards attainable by each student in our care.
  • Ensure that education takes place in an inclusive environment.
  • Increase the awareness of all staff of the needs of students with SEN.
  • Involve parents/guardians in decision making about the education of their children.
  • Involve students in decision making about their education.
  • Ensure that students with SEN leave school with the life skills they need to participate fully in all of the educational, employment, consumer, reactional, community and domestic activities in society and to live independent and full lives.
  • Promote self-esteem and self-confidence.

Continuum of support

The intensity of additional support that is provided for students with low achievement and students with special educational needs is be based on their needs and is provided differentially through the continuum of support process. Pupils may move up or down the continuum of support depending on their needs at any particular time. Parents/guardians and students are encouraged to liaise with SEN team in designing the student’s programme and to contact principal/SEN team where they have concerns.

School Support for All

Subject teachers have the first line of responsibility for the education of all students in their classes. Teachers use various differentiation methods in order to address the diverse needs within the classroom.

School Support for Some

Where classroom support for all has not fully succeeded, a student will be deemed to require intervention at stage II. We allocate teachers to students in line with students’ needs ensuring that those with the greatest need get the highest level of support.

Additional teaching resources will be provided for: 

  • Students with a percentile rank of 10 or less on standardised tests of reading or mathematics and whose needs have not been met at stage I.
  • Students with learning difficulties, including pupils with mild speech and language difficulties, pupils with mild social and emotional difficulties and pupils with dyspraxia, ADD, ADHD, needs have not been met at stage I.
  • Students with an exemption in Irish arising from learning difficulties or students with reduced curriculum receive support at this time.

School Support for Few

Where stage II support has not full succeeded, a student may be deemed to require intervention at stage III. Having an assessment from an outside agency is not a prerequisite for being at this stage of intervention.

At this level students will receive

  • Individualised and differentiated learning programmes tailored to student’s needs.
  • Liaising with outside agencies, as students at this level may benefit from a multi-disciplinary approach.
  • Option of L2LP to students who meet Department criteria and who in the opinion of teachers, parents/guardians and outside agencies involved with child, are unable to follow the Junior Cycle Programme to exam level.
  • Access to SNA to students who meet Department criteria and who in the opinion of teachers, parents/guardians and outside agencies involved with child, need this level of support to safely and successfully participate in school life.

Autism Specific Classes

Students in Autism Specific Classes will receive

  • Highly individualised and differentiated learning programmes tailored to student’s needs.
  • Liaising with outside agencies, as students at this level will benefit from a multi-disciplinary approach.
  • Offering L2LP to students who meet Department criteria and who in the opinion of teachers, parents/guardians and outside agencies involved with child, are unable to follow the Junior Cycle Programme to exam level.
  • Access to SNA to students who meet Department criteria and who in the opinion of teachers, parents/guardians and outside agencies involved with child, need this level of support to safely and successfully participate in school life.