At Oakley Cross we understand the importance of a smooth transition for all children, as well as those children who may need extra support.
We recognise that transitions can be difficult for a child with SEND and take steps to ensure that any transition is as smooth as possible.
Transition into Nursery is based very much upon an individual child’s needs. We want all children to feel safe, secure and happy at Oakley Cross and for that reason starting nursery may look different for many children. Each child will be welcomed along to nursery, with family members, prior to starting nursery. While children play, supported by a member of staff, parents have the opportunity to ask any questions, receive key information, buy uniform and sign any consent forms. From then, children will initially attend Nursery for an hour on their first day, then typically for an hour and lunch club the following day and then a full session on the third day. However, for some children this may change and having them attend short nursery sessions for an extended period may be necessary in order to support their needs.
Transition into reception class is supported throughout a child’s time in nursery. Staff frequently visit nursery to engage with the children, and the children often go into the reception classroom to talk to staff and sometimes play with the children. However, there is time set aside in June/July for nursery children to attend reception class for their usual nursery session, when they get to familiarise themselves with the environment, play in the areas and spend time with staff. At the start of a year children will attend reception class for half a day including lunch, moving on to attending till 2 o’clock and eventually attending full sessions in school.
Just as between nursery and reception, there is a very positive relationship between reception and year 1. Children regularly visit year 1 when they are in reception class, to share their work achievements with the staff and children. Furthermore, children will have the opportunity to spend short sessions in year 1 towards the end of the summer term in order to prepare them for the transition. Children typically visit year 1 on ‘Class Swap Day’, a day when children spend a full day in their new class.
Transition within school from class to class is supported so that the children have met with their new teachers and are familiar with the new classroom environment and organisation. This usually takes the form of several transition lessons over a few weeks culminating in a ‘Class Swap Day’ where children spend the entire day with their new class and class teacher.
It is sometimes necessary to provide children with a transition booklet including information regarding their new class teacher and photos of their new classroom environment. Additional arrangements may also be made to ease children’s anxieties during the transition process.
We work in close partnership with our secondary schools to provide an enhanced level of transition for those who we feel would benefit. This may take the form of additional visits for pupils or one to one or small group working with secondary school staff.
The period of transition depends on the individual needs of the child. If it is felt appropriate, secondary school colleagues will attend Annual Reviews to meet the current class teacher, parents and most importantly the pupil. We are particularly keen to involve parents as much as possible in their child’s transition to secondary school. School staff will also take opportunities to work alongside parents to visit secondary schools in advance of secondary placement applications being submitted to the Local Authority. This ensures parents can make the most informed placement decision for their child. When a secondary school has been allocated to the child, parents are fully involved and consulted at all stages of the transition process.
If you would like to discuss your SEND requirements in detail please contact the school to arrange an appointment.