Supporting the Curriculum
Mrs Shaw - Speech, Language & Communication Support Assistant
Early intervention is key when providing language support for children who speak no or very little English when they come to Diamond Wood Community Academy.
Mrs Shaw is our Speech, language and communication support assistant. Her role is very varied, supporting children throughout the Key Stages with both literacy and language skills including speaking and listening.
She works with children both in the classroom and in 1-1 sessions. She helps children with ‘English as an Additional Language’ to improve their knowledge of English and she also helps children with their phonics skills.
Click here for details of our SALT Interventions
Click here for details on iCan, information for parents/carers for children with difficulty speaking
Mandy Farrar - Safeguarding & Wellbeing Officer
Mandy provides pastoral care and support to our children and their families. She is our Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead. Mandy will work with any child and family who may need short or long term support whether that is due to issues with attendance, punctuality, behavioural issues, home situations, bereavement or illness. The aim of the support is always to encourage and develop engagement and communication between the school and families. Through this engagement the aim is for the children to feel better supported and more able to access all the learning opportunities available to them at Diamond Wood Community Academy. She also works with families to help and guide them through processes of working with external organisations, such as Early Help, Family Support, School Nursing, Kirklees Young Carers and others agencies.
Mandy is always around early in the morning before the school day begins and can be found in the playgrounds before and after school. She is always willing to listen to any questions, worries, concerns or queries that you may have. Her door is always open.
Interventions & Boosters
At Diamond Wood Community Academy we have a ‘three-phased approach’ to teaching and learning. These phases are as follows;
- A whole school approach
- Personalised response
- Deep recovery
Although our initial and main approach to teaching involves whole class dynamic teaching, we understand that not all children develop at the same rates. Therefore, where our pupils are unable to engage in the curriculum, we may need to enter ‘Phase 2: A personalised response’. This is when ‘interventions’ or ‘booster’ sessions will be arranged at school level for the children to enable their needs to be met. If it becomes apparent that children are still showing no or slowed progress on review of this additional support, children may need to enter ‘Phase 3: Deep recovery’. This is where specialist support becomes available with the support of our school SENDCO.
At Diamond Wood Community Academy we ensure that all interventions we ‘take on and implement’ are driven by research and evidence. This is to ensure any time spent out of the classroom environment for children will be effective and have a high impact. When the need for an intervention is identified, time is taken by leaders and teachers to speak to other professionals and research interventions which are proven to have the most impact. Training for staff is then provided to ensure the interventions can be delivered as intended. Once the intervention is in place it is reviewed on a regular basis to analyse impact and ensure the children’s needs are
As well as specific research-led and evidence-based interventions, children working within ‘Phase 2: Personalised response’ may benefit from accessing booster groups. Boosters are different to interventions in that they provide time to recap, consolidate and apply knowledge and skills learnt during whole class teaching. They are not a ‘package’ provided by specialists. They are a session planned for by the class teachers themselves to provide additional support. For example, having a fine-motor skills group for children who may benefit from this in addition to handwriting practice. Another example is our ‘Guided Reasoning’ sessions in Maths where children need additional support to read the questions presented to them and apply known strategies to answer them. They work in a smaller group with adult support rather than the whole class environment.
For more information on the interventions and boosters in place at Diamond Wood Community Academy see specific subject/ curriculum documentation.