We understand that transitioning from primary to secondary school can be difficult and daunting at the best of times for both the students and their parents especially when you throw a learning difficulty into the mix! We aim to provide as much support and advice as we can along the way to try and make that transition as smooth as possible for all involved.
Starting with our entrance assessments for our incoming first year students. Students will complete the Cognitive Abilities Test 4
(CAT4) which assesses in four areas:
- Non-verbal Reasoning
- Verbal Reasoning
- Quantitive Reasoning
- Spatial Ability
It is a diagnostic assessment that is designed to help students and their teachers understand how they learn and what their academic potential might be. It assesses how students think in areas that are known to make a difference to learning. While many tests focus on a child’s attainment in core subjects, CAT4 is designed to give schools a much broader, more rounded view of each child, their potential and how they learn. Results help teachers decide about the pace of learning that is right for a student and whether additional support or challenge is needed.
We will then review any and all reports and information that has been supplied by parents in the application process. It is vital that all of this information is passed to us as soon as possible to allow us to properly plan for the needs of your child.
In April of the academic year before a student is due to start the SFL Co-ordinator will arrange a meeting with the parents to discuss information in the reports, supports currently in place in primary school and to generally find out about him as a learner and an individual.
Following that meeting we will arrange to visit the primary school he is currently attending to meet with his classroom teacher and his learning support teacher if applicable.
This all helps us to build a clearer picture of the student and to ensure as much as possible that the correct supports are in place from the start.
All the information gathered will then be compiled into Support for Learning file that is circulated to his classroom teachers once the school timetable has been completed.