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Academy Life

Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Disability Information

Fairfax is committed to ensuring every student with SEND while at school has the opportunity to be happy, healthy and achieve their fullest potential, with the aim to enable them to participate in and contribute to all aspects of school life.

Fairfax aims to meet the needs of all students with special educational needs and or disability, in line with the guidance provided by the local authority and the Code of Practice. Through quality first teaching we strive to ensure all students, irrespective of their needs, make progress in all aspects of school life; academically, socially and emotionally.

The SEND policy and the Accessibility Plan can be found on the policies page, here.

What are special educational needs?

“A learning difficulty or disability is a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age.”

We provide SEND support for students with significant needs in the following areas:

SENDIA: SEND Inclusion Award

We are delighted to announce that we have achieved the prestigious National SENDIA Award for Inclusion. To be awarded this status, the school had to demonstrate over the past year how effectively they abide by the SEND Code of Practice, show that progress of our SEND students is greater than the national progress data and demonstrate effective management and leadership of the provision for our students.

The assessment days in June were rigorous and involved the assessor speaking with pupils, observing lessons, talking to staff, meeting our Associate link, reviewing evidence from our outside agency work, as well as scrutinising data and examining feedback from parents.

Within the feedback to the school, the assessor said, ‘Fairfax Academy is undoubtedly an inclusive school. An ethos of inclusivity is a lived reality in this school, where teachers show a strong knowledge of SEND best practice and deliver this consistently for pupils with a wide range of mild, moderate and profound needs. All pupils with SEND receive a broad and balanced curriculum, rooted in high aspirations.’ They also stated that ‘The Academy’s provision for pupils with SEND is exemplary. As such there are no aspects of school life that pupils with SEND are not able to access and enjoy. During the verification days there were numerous examples of case studies where pupils with profound physical needs were not only engaging in demanding physical activities but thriving and trail blazing. The school has an impressive range of activities on offer to pupils and pupils with SEND routinely engage in these activities alongside pupils without SEND’.

This award is a testament to the amazing students and staff here at Fairfax, who live and breathe our school motto of ‘Sincertas Laboris’. We are very proud of our SEND students, and we will continue to strive to provide the best possible care, support and challenge for our students.

SEND staffing at Fairfax

The department is run by our SENCo, Mrs K Corbett, who can be contacted on 0121 378 1288, or



H. Williams

Assistant Principal – Inclusion and well being

K. Corbett


A. Panesar

Assistant SENDCO

H. Button

Literacy and Dyslexia Teaching Assistant

M. Beach

Hearing Impaired Teaching Assistant

A. Franks

SEMH Teaching Assistant and Wellbeing

J. Hart

LAC Teaching Assistant

J. Hanumunthadu

TA – Languages and English specialist

D. May

ASC Teaching Assistant 

J. Woodings

Teaching Assistant

C. Preston

Teaching Assistant

R. Rundle

Teaching Assistant

M. Nash

Teaching Assistant – Maths Specialist

T. Taylor

Teaching Assistant- PE specialist

L. Skipp

TA – Maths specialist

SEND Information Report

At Fairfax we believe in inclusive education and that the best place for students to learn is within the classroom with their expert teachers and their peers.  Work is made accessible by the teachers whether that be through the use of technology, differentiation and support from a TA to name a few.  PE is differentiated or adapted to ensure that all students have a PE offer too that challenges them yet supports them.

 In some cases, some students require additional timely targeted intervention. This may be in the form of support for English/ Maths or specific SALT interventions.    Targeted interventions may also include time within the well being suite working on interventions based around lowering anxiety, supporting SEMH needs, and friendship groups.  All out of classroom interventions will be for a particular length of time and will be agreed with parents prior to them starting.  They will be monitored for impact and changes made if appropriate.

We believe in early intervention and as such we run clubs before school to support students with their up coming days.  We also work closely with our parents to ensure that any issues from outside of school are not brought into school.

  • Speak to your child’s form teacher/subject teacher;
  • Referral to the SENDCo if there are still concerns. The SENDCo at Fairfax is Mrs Corbett. Tel: 0121 378 1288

Points which you may want to consider before meeting with the SENDCO:

–  why you think your child has SEN/disability

–  whether your child learns at the same rate as other children their age

–  what the school can do to help

–  what you can do to help

  • Speak to your doctor if you have any concerns about your child’s learning/ behaviour /well-being
  • Also, if you have any medical paperwork which may be appropriate, please bring it with you to the meeting.
  • You will receive school progress reports on a regular basis
  • Contact via telephone/letter if there are any concerns about your child from a member of staff
  • Parents evenings
  • School reports
  • You will receive Student Passport/Learning Plan Paperwork for a child with a statement/Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) or SEND Support.
  • At transition, paperwork is exchanged between schools
  • Teacher’s/TA’s/SENCO’s visit primary schools to gather information
  • Schools make contact with external agencies at transition regarding pupils within their service using information gathered from Year 6 Annual Reviews
  • Year 6 students undertake the Access Reading Test to give us a baseline for their reading comprehension levels
  • KS2 Results/Teacher Assessments
  • Referral will be made to the SENDCO from subject teachers after differentiation and intervention within the classroom.

Communication via one or more of the following:

  • Contact from teaching staff via letter/phone-call/email
  • Parents evenings
  • Invitation to a meeting with appropriate staff members
  • Letter/phone-call from Special Educational Needs Department (SEND)
  • Outcome from meeting could result in:

– Plan/Do/Review meeting

– Student Profile

  • We will write to you about Exam Access Arrangements for your child

The school actively works with our school community to prevent bullying and teach kindness (one of our Arks values) and tolerance.  All teachers teach our students to be kind to each other, to understand our differences and celebrate them.

Student voice is very important to us here at Fairfax and there are lots of opportunities for students to be heard, such as our school council, equalities group, LGBTQ+ Pride group and house council.

There is also a lot of support for our students from the work our pastoral support does, to that our school peer mentors do with individual students.    The school deals with all bullying in line with our Antibullying policy.

  • Visit the school website and the links to relevant information
  • Check homework planner regularly
  • Encourage your child to attend homework/revision clubs
  • Know your child’s targets and actively encourage your child to work towards them
  • Encourage your child to engage in extra-curricular activities
  • Follow advice given by staff/external agencies
  • Attend planning and review meetings
  • Take responsibility for their learning
  • Keep their homework planner up-to-date
  • Talk to form teachers/subject teachers/TAs when they have a problem
  • Select their options carefully at the end of Year 8
  • Undertaking relevant assessments to qualify for intervention
  • Be involved in the writing of their Student Profile Sheet
  • Discussions with staff/TA’s about how their education could be improved i.e. what intervention is necessary to enable them to achieve their targets
  • Identified children (at SEND support level or with an Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP)) will plan/do/review their progress

Fairfax closely monitors all aspects of school life from extracurricular trips to house participation to ensure that students with a disability are not being treated less favourably than other students.

Below are some of the steps that Fairfax take to prevent disabled students from being treated less favourably that other pupils:

  • Appropriate Access Arrangements for exams in line with JCQ guidelines.
  • Ensuring that all students have access to all school trips. Where adaptions to trips have to be made, for example D of E expeditions, these are made in conjugation with parents / guardians.
  • Monitoring of attendance and early intervention to support if there are any long-planned absences.
  • Within the House system there are additional activities that students can take part in, if they cannot access some of the sporting events.

Primary Transition

  • General/SEND information requested from primary schools
  • Primary transition meetings with Y6 teachers and/or SENDCO
  • Transition sessions in primary schools run by secondary subject teachers
  • Year 6 Transition Day
  • Extra transition visits for nominated students from primary schools
  • Review meetings e.g. Annual reviews/CAFs
  • Y6 New Intake Information Evening Arrangements for the admission of disabled students.All students in year 5 with EHCP are welcome to visit Fairfax to meet and discuss on an individual basis their particular needs.  If your child has a disability, but does not have an EHCP, please feel free to contact the SENDCO to arrange a meeting.Students with a disability often require more support with transition to ensure their needs are met.  Once placed at Fairfax, Fairfax will work closely with the primary school and any health care professionals involved to ensure a smooth transition occurs.Fairfax facilities to help disabled pupils to access the schoolFairfax is a fully accessible mainstream school.   We have the following facilities to help disabled students access the school:
    • Lifts in all buildings
    • Ramps into buildings
    • A large number of fully accessible toilets. We have hoists in two toilets.
    • A physio room
    • Physiotherapy
    • Wheelchair room
    • Accessible mini bus
    • Disabled parking
    • The majority of our doors are now on maglocks
    • First Aid room.
    • Student passes
    • Calm break out rooms
    • Accelerated progress area

Post-16 Transition

  • Liaison with Careers advisor in school
  • Careers education including information about post-16 education options
  • Information about sixth forms, colleges, training providers is given
  • Transition meetings are arranged and relevant information is shared with support staff at college

As outlined in our SEND policy, there is graduated response to meeting the needs of all students with SEND.  The views of the student/ parents / guardians are at the heart of our decision making when reviewing appropriate provision.  Examples of ways in which we match the curriculum are shown below.  (This is not an exhaustive list):

  • Quality First Teaching.
  • Differentiated planning
  • Additional in-class support in appropriate lessons
  • Subject specific intervention sessions
  • Use of Student Profile Sheets to inform staff
  • Specialist equipment provided for students where appropriate
  • Exam Access Arrangements
  • LEXIA lessons
  • Specific interventions.
  • CBT-type interventions
  • Emotional coaching
  • Morning and afternoon briefings
  • Homework support
  • Physiotherapy
  • Tracking student progress
  • For students with SEND but without an Education Health and Care Plan (ECHP), the decision regarding the support required will be taken by the SENDCO in consultation with staff and the Senior Leadership Team (SLT)
  • Change in a student’s circumstances which has an effect on their well-being may lead to certain interventions being arranged
  • For students with a statement of educational needs or ECHP, the decision will be reached when a plan is being produced and the needs have been identified.
  • Recommendations resulting from assessments by outside agencies
  • All staff are teachers of SEND and are trained to enable them to meet the variety of needs of students within the classroom
  • In-class support from TA’s
  • Small group support
  • Availability of accessible resources and equipment
  • Exam Access Arrangements
  • External agency support e.g. Speech and Language Therapists, Autism Outreach, Visual Impairment Team, Hearing Impairment Team etc.
  • Provision of specialist resources where an identified need is established

At Fairfax we review each intervention to ensure their effectiveness.  This may be on a student level in preparation for a review or at an intervention level to ensure that the specific intervention is having the desired impact.  Where there is no / little impact then that intervention will be changed or stopped to ensure impact.

  • In-house and specialist training is provided for all staff. Over the past year this has included:
    •  Epi-pen training
    • Safe Guarding
    • Dyslexia friendly classroom training
    • ADHD awareness
    • Autism Training
    • Literacy
    • Diabetes


  • In school we also have some staff trained in:
  • ASC Lead Practitioner training
  • Qualified first aiders
  • First aid mental health
  • CBT-type intervention
  • Emotional Coaching
  • Personal care needs
  • Literacy and numeracy interventions.
  • Peer tutoring
  • Continuing Professional Development training as per Performance Management Reviews
  • TAs with specialisms
  • SENCO attends the termly SENDCO update run by Birmingham Local Authority
  • There is an Associate with specific responsibility for SEND.
School·         SENDCO


·         Experienced TAs

Independent Advice·         Parent Partnership – provide support for


parents in pupil meetings

Local Authority Support Services



·         Pupil and School Support (PSS)


·         Educational Psychology Service

·         Hearing Impairment Team (HI)

·         Visual Impairment Team (VI)

·         Physical Disability Support Service (PDSS)

·         Occupational Therapist

·         Communication and Autism Team (CAT)

·         Social Services

Health Services



·         School Nurse/GP


·         Children and Adolescent Mental Health

Service (Forward Thinking)

·         Speech and Language Therapists

  • Your child is invited to access extra-curricular activities at lunchtimes and after school
  • Form tutors will inform their class about extra-curricular activities
  • Completing relevant risk assessments for out of school activities
  • Planning for appropriate transport and reasonable adjustments to make sure that all pupils are able to take part.

Please contact the SENDCo if the complaint is related to SEND provision.

Please follow the standard school complaints procedure. This is found on the school website.

  • Birmingham City Council website

  • Parent Partnership

This is not an exhaustive list, other sources are available.