Acre Rigg Academy

We are a junior school for children aged 7-11 years, serving the area of Peterlee.

Our school is a single floor building with 12 classrooms on a semi-open plan basis, an assembly hall, dining hall and kitchen. We have extensive grounds with two play yards, two enclosed garden areas and two large playing fields. We share the site with our feeder school, Acre Rigg Infants.

Who to contact

Contact name
Mrs J Craggs
Contact position
0191 586 2915

Where to go

Acre Rigg Road
County Durham

Other details

Related links
Ofsted reports

Local Offer

Local Offer description

At Acre Rigg Academy we are committed to the equal inclusion of all pupils in all areas of Primary School life. We recognise the diverse and individual needs of all of our pupils and take into account the additional support required by those children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

We recognise that all pupils are entitled to a quality of provision which will enable them to achieve their potential and enjoy well-being as enshrined in the outcomes of “Every Child Matters” - be healthy; be safe; enjoy and achieve; make a positive contribution and achieve economic wellbeing.

We believe in positive intervention: removing barriers to learning, raising expectations and levels of achievement and working in partnership with other agencies in order to provide a positive educational experience for all SEND pupils.

The Government has asked all councils in the UK to publish, in one place, information about the services and provision they expect to be available in their area for children and young people from 0-25 years who have Special Educational Needs and/or a Disability (SEND). This is known as the send information report. Further information about the Local Offer can be found on the County Durham Families Information Service website.

Contact name
Mrs V A Simpson
Contact telephone
0191 586 2915
Contact email
SEND at Acre Rigg Academy

How do you identify Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)?

How does the setting/school/college know if children/young people need extra help and what should I do if I think my child/young person may have special educational needs?

We understand that children learn and develop in different ways. Teachers and teaching assistants recognise this and use different teaching styles, resources and plan different levels of work in the classroom to cater for the various ways children learn. However, many children, at some time in their school life, need extra help.

Because of this we offer the following support for SEND children:

We talk to parents/carers if they think their child has a special educational need and let them know what special help the school is giving. Mrs Simpson is appointed as the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO). We have a written Special Educational Needs Policy – a copy should be made available for parents and is included on our website.

Each child’s teacher will be finding ways to support them such as:

  • Changing the way activities are planned and delivered.
  • Matching activities to the ability/need of each child (differentiation).
  • Adapting learning materials such as equipment and activities to suit each child’s needs.
  • Offer small group support to promote skills identified in the child’s Individual Education Plan.

With the permission of parents we may seek additional advice from outside specialists such as health professionals, specialist teachers or educational psychologists who would:

  • Carry out further assessment of the child’s needs
  • Provide advice to schools on how to best support the child
  • Suggest resources that would help the child make progress

Our teachers/teaching assistants work in partnership with parents and the SENCO to find ways to support each child with their needs, including giving parents ideas on how to help and support their child at home.

Our school staff will set outcomes for SEND children which will be discussed with parents, either during Parents’ Evening or a Review Meeting.

How will you support my child with their special educational needs and disability?

How will early years setting/school/college staff support my child/young person?

A support plan will be written especially for any child with SEND. It should include:

  • Short term outcomes for the child which are linked to their needs
  • Details of any extra support the child will get
  • Who will give the child help
  • How often the child will get help
  • How and when the school will look at the child’s progress again

After consultation with parents, outcomes are agreed and signed and parents are given a copy of the Support Plan. The outcomes of the Support Plan are discussed with the child and further amendments if necessary are made.

If a child’s needs are very complex and/or severe we may ask the council to carry out an Education, Health and Care Assessment.

This is a very detailed assessment of each child’s needs. Parents or carers, the school and a range of professionals will all be asked to provide written reports.

At the end of the assessment phase the council will consider these reports to help decide whether or not to issue an Education, Health and Care Plan for the child.

Parents/carers also have the right to ask the council to carry out this assessment although it is usually best if you can do this with the support of the school.

An Education, Health and Care Assessment is only appropriate for a small number of children. Your school SENCO or SENDIASS will be able to advise you about this.

How will you make sure my child's education meet their needs?

How will the curriculum be matched to my child's young person's needs?

All pupils follow the National Curriculum at a level and a pace that is appropriate to their abilities. Our SEND philosophy places SEND children at the heart of personalised learning and our curriculum is tailored to meet individual pupils needs. All pupils in school receive quality first teaching.  This means that a range of teaching and learning styles are used and that appropriate learning objectives are set for all children. At times and when it is felt appropriate, modifications to the curriculum may be implemented.

To successfully match pupil ability to the curriculum, we remain committed to: 

  • A range of teaching and learning styles.
  • Differentiated learning materials.
  • Access to ICT and Technology.
  • Additional in class support.
  • Additional out of class support.
  • Many enrichment and enjoyment opportunities to stimulate and motivate learning.
  • Flexible groupings – including small group support work.
  • An innovative and supportive curriculum.
  • The appropriate use of rewards and sanctions.
  • Mentoring and counselling.
  • A broad range of extra-curricular activities, including homework club, one to one support and booster/extension sessions.
  • Assessment procedures that emphasise pupils’ strengths and achievements.
    Applications during national testing at Key Stage 2 to obtain access arrangements as appropriate.

English classes are taught in mixed ability sets and our Maths classes are split into two groupings, with lower ability pupils being supported by teaching assistants. Pupils are also offered additional one to one tuition, small group work or catch up programmes where needed.

Our curriculum also includes the social and emotional aspects imperative for life long learning. This is delivered through the PHSCE curriculum, which includes SEAL and Jigsaw.

We have high expectations of behaviour, attitude and effort from all pupils. Some children may need additional support for a range of reasons and our Behaviour and Pastoral Support Manager will tailor programmes to the individual needs of pupils on a one to one basis or in small groups. 

Life skills are developed through a range of curriculum activities including Business Enterprise Days, completing application forms, undergoing interviews and training for roles such as Friendship Squad, Power Rangers, Time to Talk Mentors, team building, cooperation and resilience through problem solving in lessons, team games, residential activities etc.

How will we know my child is progressing?

How will both you and I know how my child/young person is doing and how will you help me to support my child's/young person's learning?

Monitoring and tracking of children with SEND is through assessment which is ongoing all the time, combined with more formal methods a termly basis. Identified needs are evaluated and discussed in light of assessment results, support plan sessions, pupil progress meetings and through staff discussion.

This is shared with parents on parent evenings throughout the year and the end of year school report.

How will you support my child's overall wellbeing?

What support will there be for my child's/young person's overall wellbeing?

Acre Rigg Academy has a Behavioural and Pastoral Support Manager who works with children either on a one-to-one basis or in a small group sessions focusing on a child's social and emotional wellbeing. A range of programmes are tailored towards the need of the child or children such as relax kids, therapeutic story writing, social skills, behaviour management, lego therapy and listening and concentration.

What specialist services and expertise is available at or accessed by the staff?

What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the setting/school/college?

We consult with a wide range of agencies and partnerships to ensure the pastoral, medical and social needs of SEND children are met.

We work closely with the following professionals in order to provide the highest level of support for pupils with SEND:

  • Special Educational Needs Inclusion Team
  • Colloborative work through Durham Communities of Learning and the Peterlee Partnership
  • Durham Educational Psychology Service
  • Peterlee One Point Hub
  • Health agencies
  • School Nurse Service
  • Central Durham Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Durham Autistic Spectrum Team
  • Future Steps - OT
  • Service for the Hearing Impaired
  • Service for the Visually Impaired
  • Social Workers
  • School Parent Support Advisor
  • Family Emotional Health and Well-being Worker
  • Special Educational Needs and Disabilities - County
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Medical Practitioners
  • Young Carers
  • Youth Offending Service                                 
  • School Counsellor/Barnados/Butterwick
  • EP Consultants

How are staff trained regarding SEND?

What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND have had or are having?

Members of staff all have Basic First Aid Training and Safeguarding Level 1. 

Identified staff have Paediatric First Aid training and Safeguarding Level 2/3 qualifications.

In addition, our SEND support staff have a selection of training relating to Autism, Movement Difficulties Programmes and specific training from Speech and Language Therapists.

Each year the needs of children within our school are carefully considered and training organised to up-skill staff, for example, Diabetes, use of Epi-pens, Asthma, Lego Therapy, Reading Inference, Dyslexia, Fine Motor Skills, Sensory, Therapeutic Story Writing etc.

What activities outside the classroom will there be?

How will my child/young person be included in activities outside this classroom including school trips?

We ensure that all children are offered the opportunity to participate with activities outside of the classroom by making reasonable adjustments to the organisation of these. For example, we ensure SEND children have an appropriate level of adult support if going out of school, we organise transport that provides appropriate access and staff complete a comprehensive risk assessment of any excursion to ensure all children are safe and included.

How will you support my child's needs?

How accessible is the setting/school/college environment?

Our school has ramped access to buildings directly from the main entrance and yards. Parents of children with SEND that require access of this type are permitted to use the main entrance. Please contact us if you have any questions about accessibility.


My child is going to be starting or leaving soon, how will you help them?

How will the setting/school/college prepare and support my child/young person to join the setting/school/college or the next stage of education and life?

We recognise how important a successful transition is to our pupils with additional needs.

We work in partnership with our feeder secondary schools to provide an enhanced level of transition for those who we feel would benefit from this. This may take the form of additional visits for pupils, one-to-one/small group working with secondary school staff or pupil mentoring from secondary schools. 

Some children may require alternative enhanced mainstream provision and school will support parents through the admission process and visits.

The period of transition depends on the individual needs of the pupil. 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 have found this strategy particularly useful in easing any worries or concerns parents and pupils may have. We are particularly keen to involve parents/carers as much as possible in their child’s transition to secondary school. School staff will take opportunities to work alongside parents/carers to visit secondary schools in advance of secondary placement applications being submitted to the council.

This ensures parents/carers 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.

Transition from each Year Group is supported so that the children have met with their new teachers and are familiar with the new classroom environment and organisation.  Consultations between the current teacher, new teacher for the following academic year and SENDCO take place in the summer term to ensure a smooth transition and each child's needs are met.

New starters for Year 2 children are provided with the following opportunities:

  • Parent Open Information Event
  • Children's visits to Year 3 class in the Summer Term
  • Pupils and Parents invited for transition meeting

What is available to help my child with their education?

How are the setting's/school's/college's resources allocated and matched to children's/young people's special educational needs?

The school funding formula is generated to include financial provision to specifically support pupils individual special needs.

This funding is prioritised to tailor make learning to ensure small steps of progress are continually made by all SEN learners. 
For those pupils with High Needs, Costed Provision Maps are created with detailed evidence of supporting resources provided in school. This builds a portfolio of the progress each child makes and additional funding and financial support can be applied for from the council.
Detailed assessments and target tracking ensure that all learners achieve and make progress at Acre Rigg Academy. Parents of children with SEND may meet with the SENCO to discuss any costed provision concerns they may have.

What support can I expect for my child?

How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child/young person will receive?

If it seems that your child may have special educational needs, your child’s class teacher or the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) will assess:

  • What your child is good at and what they need help with
  • What your child would benefit from learning
  • How best to help your child learn

Once provision is identified, time is allocated to individuals or groups to best suit their learning style, ability and need. This is monitored and can be changed once the impact is assessed.
Monitoring and tracking of children with SEND is through the same methods as identification. Assessment is ongoing all the time, combined with more formal methods a termly basis. Identified needs are evaluated and discussed in light of assessment results, support plan sessions, pupil progress meetings and through staff discussion.

How will I be involved in my child's education?

How are parents involved in the setting/school/college? How can I be involved?

We are fully committed to encouraging parents to be involved with all aspects of school life. We welcome parents into school at the beginning and end of a school day and they are welcome to arrange additional dates to meet with the teacher to discuss progress and provision.

We invite parents to our termly Parents Forum, school performances, our annual sponsored and Enterprise events, sports events, learning together mornings, family cookery sessions, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day lunches and in certain year groups we also have phonics training sessions during the year. They are also encouraged to help with our school garden as part of an after-school club.


Durham County Council's Families Information Service does not promote nor endorse the services advertised on this website. Anyone seeking to use/access such services does so at their own risk and may make all appropriate enquiries about fitness for purpose and suitability to meet their needs.
  • Acre Rigg Academy

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Address: Acre Rigg Road  Peterlee  County Durham

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