Taunton Opportunity Group

Moving On

Planning For Starting School

Thinking about which school to choose for your child can take some planning and is not always an easy decision to make. For some families it can be a fairly easy decision as there will already be older brothers and sisters already in school. For other families it will be their first time at deciding which school.

Many children from TOG will attend their local primary school with support whilst some families may choose specialist provision.

Physical Needs

If your child has physical needs and may need a school to make some adaptations such as ramps or changing facilities then planning for school needs to start fairly early. To support families who will need this we can refer to the Advisory Teacher with the Physical and Medical Support Team, (PIMMS Team), and they will meet with families 4 terms before their child is due to start school.

Choosing a Specialist Provision

If parents choose a special school for their child then they will need a Education Health Care Plan(EHCP). This is a legal document setting out a clear description of children’s needs, their objectives and the provision needed to meet their needs. Planning for this is best started in the Autumn Term prior to children starting school the following September.

SENDIAS (Special Educational Needs and Disability Information, Advice and Support Service) produces a very helpful leaflet on this process. We have the leaflets at TOG.

Choosing a Local Primary School

Admission arrangements for starting school vary from year to year but generally, parents are sent information about the process early in the Autumn Term with a deadline date for applications to be in by January. Many schools have Open Days now or ring for an individual appointment. You may wish to arrange to meet the school’s SENCO and go with a list of questions about how they will support your child.

If you want your child to attend your local primary school but are concerned about their level of needs being met then you may want to consider requesting an EHCP (see specialist schools), we can provide support around that.