Disability Equality Scheme
Through a positive caring environment, we provide the opportunity for every child to reach their full potential. We embrace Christian values and ensure all children are ready for their next steps.
The school is committed to ensuring equal treatment of all its employees, pupils and any others involved in the school community, with any form of disability and will ensure that disabled people are not treated less favourably in any procedures, practises and service delivery. Furthermore our school will be proactive in securing the best provision possible for members of our school community in order that they are able to access our provision and other provision on our site to the full.
This school will not tolerate harassment of people with any form of impairment and will show consideration to pupils who are carers of disabled parents.
1.1 What do we understand by the term ‘disability’?
‘Disability is a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out ordinary day-to-day activities.’
The Disability Equality in Education Act recommends that all pupils with SEN and those with long term medical needs be treated as disabled for the purposes of the act and for equality. This is in addition to those with long-term impairments, which have a significant impact on their day-to-day activities.
1.2 Schools Strategic Priorities
Our school is committed to the inclusion of all children in our community and will endeavour to secure the best possible provision to enable them to access the curriculum and any related activities with dignity. Our vision (see above) means we have a relentless drive to raise standards by giving every child the best opportunity to achieve their highest potential regardless of disability.
2. The General Duty
We will seek to:
Promote equality of opportunity between disabled persons and other persons
Eliminate discrimination that is unlawful under the Disability Act
Eliminate harassment of disabled persons that is related to their disabilities (this cross-references to our anti-bullying policy where harassment of any person will not be tolerated)
Promote positive attitudes towards disabled persons-This means not representing people in a demeaning way, and also not pretending that people with disabilities do not exist and not representing them anywhere at all.
Encourage participation by disabled pupils
Take steps to take account of a person’s disabilities even where that involves treating a disabled person more favourably than other persons. (DDA 2005 A49A)
3. How we will meet the General Duty and the Specific Duty
The production of this disability equality scheme provides us with a framework for integrating disability equality into all aspects of school life and demonstrates how we are seeking to meet the specific duty i.e. to produce a Disability Equality Scheme for our school.
Developing a voice for disabled pupils, staff and parents/carers.
Children on the Code of Practise are included in the SEN review process and they and their parents/carers are involved in three meetings per annum. In addition class teachers meet with parents on two or three formal designated meetings per year. Parents and children are involved in target setting which can relate to children coping with particular difficulties. As we are a small school all staff have an awareness of children’s particular needs and so are able to keep a watching brief on children throughout the day including talking to the children.
The Governing Body
Parents are well represented on the Governing Body both as parent governors and as governors representing other branches of the community who are also parents. The role of the Governing Body is outlined in the Parent Handbook. The governors send out an annual questionnaire to gather parents’ opinions on various aspects of the school, the results of which, and any remedial actions that may be put in place, are sent to the parents by the head teacher on behalf of the Governing Body.
The school will ensure that physical, curriculum, and information barriers are removed through monitoring questionnaires and discussions with children, staff, parents and other members of the school community and refining the School Disability Access Plan. Where we have members of the school community with disabilities related to sight we will ensure an alternative form of communication is available to them whether taped or Braille.
Disability in the Curriculum
Planning at Hartpury takes account of different learning styles and all staff communicate well together to modify any activities as necessary to enable all pupils to participate at their appropriate level.
Staff are familiar with ‘P ’scales, target setting and assessments for pupils with disabilities. Where appropriate, pupils with disabilities have an IEP (Individual Education Plan) which will be drawn up in conjunction with parents and other involved agencies outlining specific targets against which progress can be
measured. These IEPs are reviewed formally three times a year with the SENDCO and with input from the child. (See SEND Policy)
The school ethos is Christian based and we also operate a values system and explore a key value each term such as compassion, trust, hope. SEAL materials are also used to support these values and further children’s social and emotional development and awareness of the needs of others. These systems mean that we are continually developing positive attitudes in children. Each class meets at least once a fortnight in circle time to discuss personal development issues and promote positive attitudes still further. Posters, books and literature around school should portray people with disabilities in a positive manner. E.g. sports players. The school will include disability issues as part of their PHSCE programme e.g. promoting an understanding of the discrimination and negative attitudes that may commonly occur.
Trips, Visits and other activities
Risk assessments are made in advance of all trips, visits and particular activities to ensure that all members of the school party can participate. Extra support would be put in place to help those with a disability but keeping the risk as low as for other trip participants. If any activity should prove inaccessible or the risk too great, the school would do their utmost to ensure an alternative activity was provided. Children would be encouraged, but not forced to participate. e.g. A wheel chair user could not climb the tree to reach the start of the zip-wire, so arrangements were made for her to be hoisted to the top of the zip wire and then participate as the other group members.
Eliminating harassment and bullying
We have an anti-bullying policy which supports the school in dealing with any incidents of bullying. Minor, one off incidents will result in a child being spoken to by the Head Teacher or her representative and being made to see how their behaviour is inappropriate and unkind. Repeat offences will result in the child’s parents being called into school and appropriate sanctions being taken which could ultimately result in exclusion if reforms in behaviour are not made. If an adult is found to have harassed or bullied another person disciplinary procedures will be put into place in accordance with employment law.
The school will negotiate with parents and outside agencies to ensure that adjustments can be made that will be of benefit to the well-being of the child. These adjustments may take the form of access to physiotherapy or similar treatments during the school day or flexibility in the system to allow for children with differing needs to attend extra-curricular clubs and to fully participate in lessons by visiting teachers or coaches as well as school trips and visits including residential visits.
Where a member of staff has a disability that prevents them from engaging in a particular activity the school will negotiate with the member of staff alternative duties
that are mutually acceptable. E.g. Where a member of staff is unable to accompany very physical activities they could swap duties with a more physically able person or work with another child with different needs.
Visitors to school may reasonably expect that special provision be made to accommodate their needs E.g. including a wheelchair in the audience at a public event.
School Facility Lettings
Anybody using or hiring the school premises is subject to the school’s Disability Equality Scheme and must ensure that disabled people are not treated less favourably than any other person as set out in the scheme. It will be the school’s practice to make the staff car park available for use by people with disabilities in addition to the marked space.
Contractors and Procurement
a. Visitors and contractors working in the school are subject to the school’s Disability Equality Scheme. Any contractors found to be harassing or bullying school personnel will be subject to the DDA law and if necessary will be reported to the appropriate authorities.
b. Catering and cleaning staff will be made aware of children whose disability difficulties may affect their behaviour or their needs. Catering staff will be made aware of those children whose disabilities may relate to food allergies and intolerances.
3.11 Parents and Carers
a .It is expected that parents will co-operate with the school in helping the school meet their children’s needs by supporting the school’s efforts to fully integrate their children. An example of this support might be by providing an alternative ingredient for cookery, or an allergy free item.
b. Parents are responsible for ensuring medication and other necessary items are regularly up-dated and replenished to ensure staff have the necessary resources to keep their children fit, well and as safe as possible.
c. All medication must be kept in the school office or under the direct supervision of support staff where immediate access is required.
d. Parents should work with the school to draw up a protocol and care plan that is clear and acceptable to both parties. It should ensure that all children in the school are safe and that parents are confident that the school will take (and have the means to take) the appropriate care and if necessary emergency action in their absence. Initial protocols will be reviewed and revised as the need arises.
e. The school may draw up a risk assessment to protect the child, other children in the school and/or members of staff.
f. Whilst respecting confidentiality staff will be made aware of disabilities on a need to know basis in order to make the most effective provision for the children, the school and other community members.
3.12 Information, Performance and Evidence
a. Pupil Achievement
In addition to data collected, analysed and evaluated by children on the SEND register the school will consider the performance of other children with disabilities and seek to provide sufficient support to ensure progress is maximised.
b. Admissions, Transitions, Exclusions
The school will work with pupils, parents, carers and other agencies to help children start school with any essential support that will ensure that the child has the best possible experience. The school must take any necessary steps to ensure the Health and Safety of all the children in school and exercise its duty towards safeguarding staff from being placed in situations where they will find themselves in a position of vulnerability through lack of training or insufficient protocol. (See under parents and carers)
Transitions to other schools will be conducted with due sensitivity and every effort made to take advantage of outreach and pre-entry visits
Exclusions at Hartpury School are kept to a minimum as we recognise our responsibility to do the best we possibly can to engage and teach all the children in our care, we will however monitor exclusions to ensure that children with disabilities are not over represented in our figures.
c. Social Relationships
The Christian ethos of the school, supported by CPHSE, promotes positive social relationships between all pupils including those between pupils with disabilities and those without disabilities.
Children are called upon to show compassion towards others.
Where appropriate a child with disabilities could be assigned a buddy or the school could call upon the educational psychologist to help organise a circle of friends.
d. Employing, promoting and training disabled staff
In accordance with employment law the school will undertake to employ the best candidate for any vacant position irrespective of disability. All staff are given the opportunity to undertake CPD in line with SDP priorities, Appraisal, and individual interest as funding will allow. Staff with disabilities will be treated in the same way as staff without disabilities. Opportunities for promotion within school would be open to all suitably qualified candidates.
e. Staff Training
All staff will have disability awareness training to ensure they have a clear understanding of the needs of colleagues and children with disabilities.
As many staff as appropriate will be trained to support a variety of disabilities so that a team of staff can support each other e.g. epipen, diabetes, epilepsy.
3.13 Impact Assessment
The school will assess the impact of the policy through feedback from parents, carers, staff and children. This feedback will be sought via the review system, questionnaires, staff meetings and discussions.
As policy documents are reviewed as per the schedule they should be checked for provision for children and others with disabilities.
Engagement in school activities will be monitored to ensure that children with disabilities and others are successfully encouraged to take a full and active part in school life including the school council.
Results of impact assessment and initiatives undertaken under this scheme will be published annually on our web site.
This document needs to be reviewed each year by the Resource & Business Management Committee with a full review every three years.
The document will be monitored by collecting the responses of children, staff, parents and carers and acting upon their views where they are reasonable and manageable.
Steps already taken:
Dropped kerbs installed
Pathway to the Wildlife Area laid
Pathway to the field improved
Raised beds purchased for planting
Contrast paintwork in corridors
Re-surfacing of internal car park
Marking out of car parking space
Specific toilet facility for people with disabilities
Temporary measures used that could be re-employed:
Stilts to alter desk heights
Writing slopes for children with dyspraxic tendencies
Rulers with handles
Use of computers for recording
Removing barriers to the curriculum:
Use of percussion in orchestra
Wheel chair user taken to PGL-risk assessment available-accompanied by TA
Wheel chair user included in dance and other PE lessons
Risk assessments for including children in trips and visits