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At Westdene School we foster a welcoming, nurturing and supportive learning community where people feel valued and have a real sense of belonging. As an inclusive school, staff work in partnership with pupils and parents/carers to create a supportive and respectful environment, where inequality and discrimination is challenged and aspirations are high.

We recognise that there are similarities and differences between individuals and groups but we will strive to ensure that our differences do not become barriers to participation, access and learning. As a school community, we recognise that we all have equal rights, but may have different needs and we recognise that we need to ensure equality of opportunity for all pupils in order to provide for these.

Our SENDCO is Miss Kelly Arkrill
email: admin@westdene.brighton-hove.sch.uk


Westdene is an inclusive school and we work hard to support children with a range of additional needs. Our staff have experience in supporting pupils with communication difficulties including autism, specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, physical and sensory needs. We are an attachment-aware school, using a nurturing approach to support pupils with social and emotional needs. We recognise that the children with special educational needs require the greatest possible access to a broad and balanced curriculum - pupils with SEN at our school are included in all aspects of school life.  

Special educational needs are identified and assessed in partnership with parents/carers and class teachers; once a pupil's needs are identified, strategies and interventions will be put into place through an IEP (Individual Education Plan) which is shared regularly with the pupil and their parents/carers. Additional interventions are planned and delivered based on a child’s needs, and are carefully monitored to ensure the biggest impact on children’s progress. 

For some children, advice may be sought from external support services working alongside our school; such as the Local Authority's Inclusion Support Service and NHS Speech and Language Service. These services support pupils by being able to deliver specialist services or assessments, or by providing recommendations to inform a pupil's IEP. Referrals to these services are done in full consultation with the parents.  

Where required, we will work with parents to ask the Local Authority to undertake an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment. If a pupil has been receiving SEN support for some time at school but is making limited progress, or if they have multiple/complex needs, the local authority (LA) can be asked to carry out a statutory assessment to consider whether further assessment, support or funding is needed to help them be successful at school.





We welcome and celebrate the diversity that children from different cultures and countries bring to the school. Families with English as an Additional Language may be supported by the Ethnic Minority Achievement Service (EMAS), with whom we work closely. EAL pupils in Reception are offered an Early Language Acquisition group run by specialists from EMAS to help them develop their English. Older pupils may benefit from a bilingual assistant or from advice and support offered to teaching staff by the specialists from EMAS.


We have many diverse families in our school community, including those where children may have been fostered, adopted or where special guardianship arrangements have been made. We work closely with parents/carers and with external support services to help meet these pupils' specific needs and achieve their potential in our school. Pupils who are in care will be supported by termly meetings where a Personal Education Plan to ensure that they are able to access a broad and exciting educational offer that is suitable for their needs.

To view our policy for children that are looked after, click here.

Young Carers

At Westdene Primary School we believe that all children and young people have the right to an education, regardless of challenges within their home circumstances. Young carers are children and young people whose lives are affected by looking after someone at home. We acknowledge that there are likely to be young carers among our pupils, and that being a young carer can have an adverse effect on a young person’s education. Young carers at Westdene Primary are offered weekly support in our Young Carers Group, and staff understand that they may need to be flexible when responding to the needs of these pupils.

To view our Young Carers policy click here.

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