ACE SEND school offer

ACE will work to ensure that the education students receive is tailored to meet their individual needs and designed to give them the skills to improve their chances in life. It aims to support the reintegration of students into full time education in school, further education or employment. The development of students’ personal integrity and self esteem is central to all our work.

We aim:

  • to develop students’ educational and personal potential in a safe, stimulating and supportive learning environment
  • to make good progress in learning
  • to prepare students for successful reintegration with school, further education or employment
  • to develop students’ personal integrity and self esteem
  • to identify and challenge aspects of behaviour that contribute to difficulties experienced in mainstream provision
  • to support mainstream schools in the development and delivery of effective strategies to support attitudes to learning

Please click here to view our latest SEN Report

Definition of Special Educational Needs (SEN)

“Children have special educational needs if they have a learning difficulty which calls for special educational provision to be made for them. Children have a learning difficulty or disability if they: –

  • Have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of the same age; or
  • Have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for children of the same age in school.”

Objectives of SEN provision within ACE

  • To provide the best possible experience for all pupils, within a safe, caring and stimulating environment to reduce barriers to learning.
  • To ensure maximum access and progress for all children.
  • For all practitioners to be teachers of pupils with additional needs and to differentiate according to the needs of the children in their care.
  • To meet the physical, emotional, mental health and intellectual needs of all our children.
  • To involve parents and carers in the implementation of programmes of support.
  • To involve external agencies as part of the school community in meeting the needs of the whole child.
  • To monitor progress of all children in order to enable appropriate action to be taken.
  • To use early identification, assessment and intervention as the key to meeting the needs of individual students.
  • To meet the diverse needs of all pupils ensuring they can access and contribute to the social and cultural activities of the school.
  • To involve children in decision making and problem solving in order to develop appropriate target setting through a person centred planning approach wherever possible.
  • To have due regard to the SEND Code of Practice 2015 and Part 3 Children and Families Act.

Info for parents. What ACE can offer.


ACE Mission Statement: ACE meets the needs of our students to produce: successful learners, confident and healthy individuals and responsible citizens, enabling a successful return to an appropriate school or college.

  • ACE is an external support service that mainstream and special schools can refer students to if they require additional support for behavioural, emotional, social, medical or mental health needs. Many of these needs may present as a barrier to learning and mean that these students are likely to be identified as needing special educational provision.
  • We cannot take referrals from parents or other professionals/ agencies.
  • Our students are between 5-19 years old, covering Key Stages 1-5.
  • We offer personalised support packages specifically tailored to meet the individual needs of students. This may be at one of our bases across the city that best suits the needs of the student or may be a more ‘bespoke’ provision.
  • We are aware that for many of the students we work with, their needs may change frequently. We hold regular reviews (at least every 6 weeks) for all our students and work on a flexible basis – If current interventions aren’t meeting the needs of the young person, then they can be changed.
  • Many of our students are only with us for a short term intervention; some will stay with us for longer periods.
  • We work closely with appropriate external agencies and parents/ carers in order to meet the needs of the child as a whole.
  • We aim to involve the student in decision making in order to develop appropriate target setting through a person centred planning approach wherever possible.
  • ACE monitor progress of all students with SEN regularly in order to enable appropriate action to be taken promptly.

Identification, assessment and monitoring

  • As ACE itself is an external support service that mainstream and special schools refer students to for additional support, all young people on roll with us are automatically registered as ‘School Action +’ or ‘Statemented’ (as appropriate).
  • When referred to our Service, in consultation with parents, and if appropriate other professionals who may be involved, ACE will decide whether additional SEN support is required and carry out further assessment to identify barriers to learning and the nature of their difficulties if needed.
  • ACE will pay regard to advice and information from students, parents and previous settings at transition points; liaising as necessary to continue the use of successful strategies and approaches .
  • The identification of a students strengths and difficulties is part of our standard admissions procedures.
  • We ensure that teaching and support staff have appropriate guidance around identification SEN. This may include access to appropriate checklists and information around the different SEN areas of need
  • ACE make use of a range of appropriate screenings and assessments to identify needs. If needed these will only be used by appropriately trained and qualified staff.
  • We will gather evidence around a students needs which may eventually lead to a Request for Statutory Assessment if felt appropriate.
  • Seek advice from advisory services and outside agencies including the Educational Psychology Service, CAMHS, Speech and Language Service, Local Authority support services etc.
  • In line with whole school policy, the academic progress of all students across the Service, including those identified with SEN is regularly tracked, reviewed and monitored using robust and clear tracking systems.
  • Baseline assessment and school data is used to ensure appropriate target setting is in place so that lack of appropriate progress is identified.
  • Interventions and actions are then put in place as appropriate.
  • We review and evaluate provision regularly in the light of the information gathered.
  • Good communication between staff is seen as vital and teachers are held responsible and accountable for pupil progress within their class. Key concerns are highlighted to Senior Leadership.
  • There is a set schedule of scrutiny of pupils work and teachers planning. Classroom observations are regular.

What support can ACE provide for pupils with SEN?

  • ACE believe in an inclusive approach towards education for all children regardless of their abilities ensuring they have a sense of positive well-being and above all feeling safe and happy.
  • ACE believe that every child has the fundamental right to access a broad, creative and enjoyable education experience thus enabling them to foster a love for learning.
  • The school offers a continuum of provision to meet a diversity of pupils’ needs.
  • When referred to us, we assess and identify each students individual needs and an appropriate personalised programme is put in place and reviewed regularly.
  • We run a number of Bases across the city, each with a specific focus of need. Students are placed within a particular base dependent on their Key Stage and appropriate identification of their main areas of need or if appropriate, personalised ‘bespoke’ packages can be put in place for more complex individuals if felt suitable.
  • Additional in-class support is available in all classes across the Service which is provided by TAs and Learning Mentors. This additional support is sometimes targeted at individual pupils as well as whole groups of pupils who are presenting a cause for concern with regards to Special Educational Needs.
  • Class size can vary dependent on the individual Base and needs of the student but tends to range from 4-12 students for each lesson.
  • Lessons will be appropriately planned and differentiated to meet the ability and potential of each student.
  • Suitable interventions and additional support (school based and external) will be put in place as needed to meet a students needs and enable progress to be made. Unfortunately there may be waiting times for some of these services.
  • We also work closely with a wide range of external vocational providers and services to offer students as wide a curriculum as appropriate to meet their needs.
  • We have a dedicated pastoral support team who work across the Service, supporting students, staff and parents as needed.
  • ACE looks to support the whole family in times of concern or need, this may result in a Common Assessment Framework (CAF) being put in place to formalise and identify the need for multi agency support and explore wider issues which may be affecting the child or young person’s ability to access education. We will seek to involve other professionals as appropriate with your permission and consent.
  • All students at ACE have regular meetings with key staff and parents (at least once every half term) to monitor, review and evaluate progress. We are happy to continuously review and adapt provision and interventions as needed in order to best support the child or young persons needs.
  • We will offer support with transition into other settings- whether this is a return to a mainstream school or post 16 provision.

Access to further external support

  • Further advice and professional support is sought and implemented as is considered necessary for the individual needs of the children, although there may often be a waiting list to access these.
  • Regular contact is maintained with a variety of outside agencies and professionals to discuss students who are deemed to be a cause for concern either socially, emotionally or academically.
  • As a direct result of this, many of our students may receive additional outside support from services such as CAMHS, Harbour, School Counsellors, Careers South West (CSW), the Multi Agency Support Team (MAST), health, Social Services, the Educational Psychology Service, Education Welfare Service, Youth Service, Family Psychotherapists, the Youth Offending Service and the Behaviour Support Team. We also regularly access advice and involvement from Plymouth Advisory Learning Support (PALS), Sensory and Physical Outreach services, Communication and Interaction Team (CIT), Special Services, Occupational Therapy and The Children’s Speech and Language Service. These are just some examples.
  • Parents may also be encouraged to contact the Parent Partnership Service if independent advice would be beneficial for them.
  • When we seek the help of external support services, those services will need to see the child’s records in order to establish which strategies have already been employed and which targets have been set and achieved.
  • The external specialist may act in an advisory capacity towards staff and parents, provide additional specialist assessment or be involved in teaching the child or young person directly.

Involving parents and students

  • Partnership with parents plays a key role in enabling children and young people with SEN to achieve their potential. ACE recognises that parents hold key information and have valuable knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs and the best ways of supporting them.
  • All parents of children with special educational needs will be treated as partners and supported to play an active and valued role in their children’s education.
  • The majority of our parents/ carers have weekly, if not daily contact from key members of staff involved with their child.
  • Parents/carers are invited to participate in regular review meetings (at least every half term) to discuss progress and to be involved in setting targets with appropriate intervention strategies to help the student both in school and at home. Our staff will happily visit you at home if this is more appropriate.
  • Children and young people with special educational needs often have a unique knowledge of their own needs and their views about what sort of help they would like to help them make the most of their education will be ascertained. They will be encouraged to participate in all the decision-making processes and contribute to the assessment of their needs, the reviews and transition processes when appropriate.
  • ACE use a person centred planning approach whenever possible when working with a young person.

How do I get more information?

  • The SEN Co-ordinator (SENCo) for ACE is Rachel Crozier.
  • She is responsible for supporting, coordinating, monitoring and evaluating provision for students with special educational needs across the ACE Service as well as supporting and liaising with staff and parents as needed.
  • For further information, parents are advised to speak to the relevant Base Manager, Pastoral Support staff or Class Mentor in the first instance.
  • If you would like to speak to the SENCo directly please contact the main office on 01752 396100 to arrange an appointment.

Appropriately trained staff

  • ACE work to the principle that all teachers are responsible for meeting the individual needs of all pupils that they work with, therefore all teachers and staff are equipped to deal with a diverse range of needs.
  • All members of staff attend relevant training to meet the specific needs of the children within their cohort or particular role. For example this may include behaviour management/ supporting literacy/ASD/ Mental Health/ Child Protection etc.
  • Specialist training is delivered on a regular basis by appropriately qualified staff (i.e. the SENCo) or specialist external support services such as CAMHS/ CIT as required.
  • Individual needs of staff are also identified and audited regularly to ensure that all staff training needs are met.

What if you’re not happy?

  • Any formal complaints or concerns that you as a parent may have regarding the provision available and in place for your child should be made in line with ACE’s complaints policy.
  • Further details and a copy of the Complaints Policy can be found here
  • Parents should feel free to contact the school to discuss any concerns which will be dealt with appropriately and promptly.
  • Our Head Teacher is Mrs Sarah Gillett. Please contact the main ACE office (on 01752 396100) if you wish to arrange an appointment to see her or speak to her directly.

The Local Authority’s Local Offer

  • The Local Authority are obliged to set out their local offer regarding the special educational provision that all early years providers, schools, post -16 providers and other institutions across Plymouth are able to provide to children and young people with SEN.
  • Further information on this is available on
  • For parents who reside in Cornwall use the link for the Cornwall Council Local Area Offer information page which can be found here