Well, after successfully getting on the correct train this time, unlike my trip to @abcdoes last week, my arrival to Bolton was off to a great start. The Premier Inn provided me with a great double bed with fresh crisp sheets and with a divine Indian Restaurant down the road, the SLT and I were set for a good evening.

The highlight of the two day conferences and seminars were without a doubt the ‘Engaging Every Teacher’ workshop led by Lorraine Peterson. This inspiring woman really enforced the importance of professional standards and us as professionals having true ownership of our children and the learning / progress they make, whether they are or are not Special Needs. Although obvious to myself, it really brought it home that some practitioners were not aware that the progress that their SEN children make it still there responsibility.

Lorraine also targeted and highlighted that when we plan for our children, obviously we need to plan, differentiate and personalise our lessons to ensure we engage them if we want them to progress. Teaching should be structured and managed according to the needs of the pupils and the learning objective.  

Being within this workshop was a great benefit, as it allowed me to reflect on my own practice in the classroom and step back and think ‘Do I actually full engage my children? Is my planning personalised and effective?’ This will be something I will be taking to my fellow senior leaders to have a look and scrutinise with me.

Naturally, on an SEN course, there was a lot of talk on intervention and the impact that these have on the children and in the classroom. Are the methods that we use in the intervention in place within the classroom too? Is there the consistency for our SEN children. Do the people who are carrying out the intervention know the true needs of the children and how to cater best for their needs? Are they fully aware of their targets? It all came back to the teacher and the accountability aspect.

An interesting encounter during the course was the new introduction to Assess, Plan, Do, Review. This new core approach within the new SEN Code of Practice reminds me and is similar to the ‘Plan Do Review’ approach I have in my EYFS setting for my child initiated learning. Seeing the approach in a ‘whole school’ / ‘bigger school’ image and mirroring what EYFS practitioners do gives one comfort and great satisfaction in the practice that is happening within EYFS classrooms.

It is great to see, in my opinion, EYFS terminology and practices in place in higher school settings.

A great and eye opening course overall 🙂

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