Choosing a setting for a child is an important decision to ensure that they get the best out of their education, and one that many parents find difficult. When choosing a school, there are a number of things to think about which may or may not have an impact on its suitability for your child. The best way to determine their suitability is by finding out as much information as possible about the school and making your own judgement about it.
One parent's idea of what makes a school ideal, can be very different to another parent. It's a bit like buying a house - you wouldn't buy one because someone said you should, without having a look first! And the things you might not be able to see, might come out in a Surveyor's report (or in this case, maybe an Ofsted report, SEN Information report, exam results tables, or transport details etc) - it's all about what is important to you and your child.
Within these pages you can find a few things to think about when deciding on your preferences. And remember, there is no set timetable for when to start thinking about it - the earlier the better!
The Information, Advice and Support Service can offer parents impartial advice about aspects of the process of applying for school. Parents and carers of children with Special Educational Needs may find the Visiting a New School Checklist helpful.
We have produced a Visiting a New School for parents and carers of children with Autism (ASD) Booklet with the Complex Communication Team (CCT) which you may find helpful when you are completing your Primary School Admissions form (by January 15th of the year they are due to start school).
The transfer from primary to secondary education is particularly important for children with an Education Health and Care Plan and it is necessary for parents to plan well ahead for secondary transfer.
The process of deciding on a school for your child, whether it be a mainstream or special school, can seem daunting, but starting your preparation and planning early can help you make a well informed choice. There will usually be a discussion about school preference for Secondary school at the Annual Review in Year 5 with the plan having to be finalised by February 15th of Year 6.
The SEND IASS leaflet Visiting a New School Checklist may be helpful to identify a suitable setting.
The Coventry Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Local Offer brings together information for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families. The SEND Local Offer will cover services available to the public across education, health and social care: