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Specific needs and wellbeing

The resources on this page focus on supporting learners with specific needs and their wellbeing. Working in the FE and Skills sector, we maintain our professional status through regular on-going training and development. When considering ourselves in the role of learner, we know we have individual learning preferences. We also know that some of us have specific learning needs and, we all will at some point within our career (or lifetime). We all know what it feels like to sit through a training session when we can’t fully concentrate because of anxieties about other aspects of our home or work life, some of our learners have concentration issues too - perhaps because of ADHD or mental ill-health. Considering our adapting our practice working towards inclusive learning benefits everyone and often small changes to support one specific need, can actually help many other learners too.

With a growing number of resources within Specific needs and wellbeing page we have created sub-pages for: Autism, Blind and sight loss, Deaf, deafened and hearing loss, Dyslexia, Mental health, Physical disabilities and Profound and multiple learning difficulties.

Toolkit to support learners with SEND achieve their ambitions

Supporting learners with SEND with their aspirations

The toolkit is a resource for IAG providers and teaching staff to help learners with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) fulfil their ambitions and aspirations. The toolkit includes information, support and tools to help you to:

  • support learners' aspirations
  • listen to learners with SEND
  • support learners into employment
  • learn more about Traineeships and Supported Internships and how to engage with employers

The toolkit is hosted on Foundation Online Learning; you will need to register which is free to access the resource.

Practitioner SEND self-assessment tool

All practitioners have a duty to plan and deliver a responsive and individualised provision for their learners, including learners with SEND. Use this self-assessment tool to help you own professional development; you will need to register for free on Foundation Online Learning. As you work through the tool, you’ll be directed to key information and resources to help you in areas you lack confidence and want to develop your skills and knowledge.

An image of the SEND practitioner self-assessment toolkit resource.

Supporting learners with additional needs

Enabling learners with additional needs to make good progress is as much about differentiated, inclusive teaching and learning, as it is about high-quality learning support. And additional support does not always have to take the form of an ALS practitioner, as learners’ needs can often be met through reasonable adjustments. We recognise that, as teachers, you need to feel confident about applying inclusive practices in your teaching and learning and have at your fingertips an array of strategies to test out with individual learners.

Supporting learners with additional needs: A three-tier approach was produced by Milton Keynes College for use within prisons conteains useful guidance for practitioners across the sector.

An image of the supporting learners with additional needs: A three-tier approach resource

Professional Development

Are you looking for specific training? As part of a mapping exercise of SEND CPD training and qualifications available from the Education and Training Foundation and a wide range of other organisations we have produced a CPD Mapping document. The information is provided to raise awareness to the SEND workforce of the variety CPD opportunities available. The inclusion of information from other organisations does not indicate a recommendation by the Education and Training Foundation of this offer.

Take a look at the ETF's offer to support the workforce:

Visit the News and Events page for the lastest course and event updates.

Are you a SET member? If so you'll have access to professional development webinars that cover a whole range of topics to help you support learners with SEND. 

Join the SEND conversation #SENDinFE

Quick links

In this section you'll find links to useful websites. Further links are available within each of the specific needs and wellbeing subpages.

Disability Rights UK - adjustments for disabled students factsheet.

SEND Guide for further education providers - A guide for further education providers on the support system for children and young people with special educational needs and disability.

SEND code of practice: 0 to 25 years - Guidance on the special educational needs and disability (SEND) system for children and young people aged 0 to 25, from 1 September 2014.

Related Resources

Image of the Supporting learners with additional needs resource

Supporting learners with additional needs: A three tier approach

Image of the SEND CPD Framework resource

SEND CPD Framework

Further education: guide to the 0 to 25 SEND code of practice

An image of the SEND Code of practice

SEND Code of practice

An image from the online SEND sources of support course

SEND Sources of support - Supporting learners' aspirations