Specialist Services

There is a wide range of individual need consisting of ‘universal whole-school support’ through to support from a range of professionals for more complex children and young people. The different type of need is illustrated in the windscreen model of provision below.

For most children and young people, their additional needs will be met through universal and targeted school support. Further information about the roles and responsibilities of the school, outside agencies and families at the different tiers of provision is available in the Roles and Responsibilities for Tiered Provision document.

This section provides schools with an overview of the specialist services as well as specialist provision that is available for children and young people with ALN and/or a disability.

Where children and young people have more specific and complex needs, specialist support is provided from a range of specialist teams including:

Behaviour Emotional and Social Difficulties
Children with Disabilities
Communication Difficulties
Complex Learning Needs
School Counselling
Sensory Needs
Specific Learning Difficulties
Statutory Assessments and Statements of SEN
Educational Psychology Service
Looked After Children
English as an Additional Language (MEAS)
Gypsy Traveller
Elective Home Education

More information on these teams can be found in the respective sections below – click here.

In Pembrokeshire, for learners with more complex needs, a specialist placement in either the special school, a learning resource centre or the Pembrokeshire Learning Centre, provides wraparound care and educational support to ensure children and young people achieve their full potential.

Learning Resource Centres (LRCs)

All about LRCs

  • A Learning Resource Centre (LRC) is a classroom based within a mainstream school providing education for pupils with complex needs.
  • LRCs have been set up to provide pupils with a broad and balanced curriculum that is highly differentiated in order to support them in achieving their full potential.
  • LRCs are attached to mainstream schools giving pupils the opportunity to be part of mainstream activities and lessons and to socialise with their peers whilst their individual needs are supported and met.

Where are the Learning Resource Centres?

  • There are currently 7 Infants, 7 Junior and 3 Secondary LRCs across Pembrokeshire. 

Who can access a Learning Resource Centre?

  • An LRC is suitable for pupils with complex leaning needs.
  • When considering whether a young person is suitable for a placement, professionals will consider a range of criteria. Part of the criteria will be the student’s cognitive ability and their scores on standardised testing, as well as individual pupil profiles of needs.

How can the Service be accessed?

  • The County Council is the Admissions Authority for all Learning Resource Centres within schools.
  • Admission criteria for the Learning Resource Centres is set out in the admissions criteria booklet.
  • A panel of nominated school, Inclusion Service and Educational Psychology Service staff will discuss each pupil being considered for admission (‘the Panel’) and recommend the appropriateness of the placement.
  • Usually pupil’s will be admitted at the beginning of an academic year, but in exceptional circumstances, an extraordinary admissions panel will be convened to determine the appropriateness of the provision.
  • The referrals process starts in the Autumn term for the following September intake and places confirmed in March prior to entry.  

Who to Contact?

If you feel that our child has additional needs and would need an LRC placement, you would need to discuss this with the Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCO) at your child’s school. They will be able to give more information regarding suitability and application.

List of Learning Resource Centres 

Key

Stage

Type Location    Places
1 Autistic Spectrum Disorder Pembroke Dock CP School SA72 6LQ 6
1 Complex Learning Needs Fenton CP School SA61 1BZ 12
1 Complex Learning Needs Ysgol Glannau Gwaun SA65 9DB 12
1 Complex Learning Needs Gelliswick School SA73 3EW 12
1 Complex Learning Needs Monkton Priory CP School SA71 4LS 12
1 Complex Learning Needs Mount Airey CP School SA61 1PA 12
1 Autistic Spectrum Disorder Johnston CP School SA62 3PY 12
2 Autistic Spectrum Disorder Pembroke Dock CP School SA72 6LQ 6
2 Complex Learning Needs Fenton CP School SA61 1BZ 12
2 Complex Learning Needs Ysgol Glannau Gwaun SA65 9DB 12
2 Complex Learning Needs Gelliswick School SA73 3EW 12
2 Complex Learning Needs Monkton Priory CP School SA71 4LS 12
2 Complex Learning Needs Tenby Junior Community School SA70 8BZ 6
2 Complex Learning Needs Johnston CP School SA62 3PY 12
3 Complex Learning Needs Pembroke School SA71 4RL 24
3 Complex Learning Needs Ysgol Bro Gwaun SA65 9DT 12

Pembrokeshire Learning Centre

Pembrokeshire Learning Centre (PLC) is a Pupil Referral Unit and Anxious and Phobic provision run by Pembrokeshire County Council which caters for children and young people with Behavioural, Emotional and Social difficulties.

The provision includes early and short-term intervention for pupils in Key Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4. Provision for Key Stages 1 and 2 pupils is based at the Penally Centre; Key Stage 3 pupils are based at the Pembrokeshire Learning Centre at Neyland. Pupils in Key Stages 3 and 4 with high anxieties are also based in Neyland.

The PLC provides a broad and balanced curriculum which follows the National Curriculum and is appropriately modified and differentiated for the needs of the individual child.

The whole spectrum of children’s needs is supported through the involvement of many professionals. Speech therapists, Child and Adult Mental Health Team and the school nurse make regular visits to the Pembrokeshire Learning Centre. Other specialist consultants, educational psychologists and Social Services are seen as integral and indispensable contributors to the school programme.

Terina Thomas
Pembrokeshire Learning Centre
Neyland
Pembrokeshire
SA73 1SH

Email: terina.l.thomas@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01646 602 473

Portfield School

Portfield School is a day special school maintained by Pembrokeshire County Council which caters for children and young people with severe, profound and complex learning difficulties in the age range 3 -19 years.

The school provides a broad and balanced curriculum which follows the National Curriculum and is appropriately modified and differentiated for the needs of the individual child.

The whole spectrum of children’s needs is supported through the involvement of many professionals. Speech Therapists, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, School Nurse and the School Doctor make regular visits to the school, and other Specialist Consultants, Educational Psychologist and Social Services are seen as integral and indispensable contributors to the school programme.

Mr Paul Hughes 
Acting Head Teacher Portfield School
Off Portfield
Haverfordwest Pembrokeshire
SA61 1BS

Tel: 01437 762701

Website:   https://portfield-special-school.j2bloggy.com

Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Behaviour Support Service offers advice to primary and secondary schools across Pembrokeshire for professionals working with pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties.

The service comprises Specialist Behaviour Support Teachers (BST) based within a cluster of schools providing practical support for behavioural, emotional and social difficulties a child or young person is displaying.

Behaviour Support Teachers deliver training in schools, and where needed, work directly with groups or individual children. For example, it may be the class teacher wants some advice about a particular pupil, or a way to better manage a class of pupils.

The Team Around the Parent Pupil And School (TAPPAS) provides the opportunity for schools and Specialist Teams to meet every term. The forum provides solution focused drop in sessions for schools to seek advice in relation to any specific issues for supporting pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties. Parent drop in sessions also provide the opportunity for parents who would like specific advice on ways to support their child or have any concerns in relation to their education.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

Referrals are made through the child’s school in discussion with the Head teacher, Head of Year or Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo).

For further information contact:

Terina Thomas: Head of the PRU and Behaviour Outreach 
Email: Terina.l.Thomas@pembrokeshire.gov.uk
Tel: 01646 602473

Children with Disabilities

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Children with Disabilities Team offers a service to children between 0-19 and their families who reside in Pembrokeshire.

The Children with Disabilities Team comprises Social Workers who provide a social work assessment and care management service for families where there are children with significant disabilities and where the primary reason for the referral is the child’s disability.

Children accessing the Children with Disabilities Team have permanent and substantial disabilities such as a significant visual impairment, a significant hearing impairment, profound communication impairment, a severe learning disability and/or a significant physical disability.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

Access to the Children with Disabilities Team is through a referral to the Child Care Assessment Team.

Martin Reynolds

Tel: 01437 776322/776325/764551

Communication Difficulties

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Communication Team offers advice and guidance to primary and secondary schools across Pembrokeshire for children and young adults aged 3-19 years with speech, language and communication difficulties including Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC).

Within the Communication Team there are advisory teachers, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists and support workers who specialise either in speech and language difficulties or ASC behaviours.

Each cluster of school has a named speech and language therapist (SLT) and may be further supported by advisory teachers, speech and language therapy assistants (SALTAs), ASC support workers and an occupational therapist. There is a specific speech and language therapist who works with secondary schools to provide training, assessment and advice.

Advisory teachers offer advice and guidance to primary and secondary schools on materials and ways they can support pupils with speech, language and communication difficulties including ASC within the mainstream curriculum.

The Team Around the Parent Pupil And School (TAPPAS) provides the opportunity for schools and Specialist Teams to meet every term. The forum provides solution focused drop in sessions for schools to seek advice in relation to any specific issues for supporting pupils with communication difficulties. Parent drop in sessions also provide the opportunity for parents who would like specific advice on ways to support their child or have any concerns in relation to their education.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

Referrals are made through the child’s school in discussion with the Headteacher, Head of Year or Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo).

For further information contact:

Claire Bullock: Team Leader for Early Help for Communication and Specific Learning Difficulties
Email: Claire.Bullock@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Complex Learning Needs

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Portfield Complex Learning Needs team offer advice and guidance to primary and secondary schools across Pembrokeshire for children and young adults aged 3-19 years with complex learning needs.

Within the Complex Learning Needs team there is a specialist teacher and an outreach assistant.

On referral to the service, a student’s needs are assessed and suitable recommendations made. If necessary, a programme of support for staff and the pupil will be developed and the outreach assistant supports in the implementation of the programme. Programmes of support are re-assessed every five to six weeks to ensure that students are making good progress. The amount of time a student is involved with the service will vary dependent on the need of the young person.

The Team Around the Parent Pupil And School (TAPPAS) provides the opportunity for schools and Specialist Teams to meet every term. The forum provides solution focused drop in sessions for schools to seek advice in relation to any specific issues for supporting pupils with complex learning needs. Parent drop in sessions also provide the opportunity for parents who would like specific advice on ways to support their child or have any concerns in relation to their education.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to contact?

Referrals are made through the child’s school in discussion with the Headteacher or Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo).

For further information contact:

Alexis George: Assistant Head Teacher, Portfield School

Email: assheadportfield@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01437 762701

School Counselling

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Service consists of a group of qualified and experienced counsellors who are based across Pembrokeshire, working with young people to support their emotional well-being through counselling. Counselling offers children and young people the opportunity to talk about things that may be causing them concern and common themes involve relationships, stress or bereavement.

The service is targeted at children and young people who will benefit from a short period of counselling and for those emotional needs that are not considered significant enough to access other services available such as the Primary Mental Health Service or the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service.

The service follows professional ethical guidelines as well as safeguarding policies and practices so that what is talked about with young people will remain confidential unless the issues discussed involve harm to themselves or others.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

Young people attending a secondary school in Pembrokeshire can directly access their school-based counsellor by visiting the named counsellor at their school. Adults who know the young person, such as a teacher, can also suggest that a young person access school-based counselling, but a conversation will always be held with the young person prior to any involvement with a counsellor to seek their permission. Counselling will not take place without the consent of the young person. Every secondary school should have leaflets and notice boards advertising the service and how it can be accessed.

If it is felt that a child at primary school would benefit from support from a school-based counsellor then consideration will also be given to counsellor involvement following discussion with an Educational Psychologist and the primary school ALNCo.

Every secondary school in Pembrokeshire, including Portfield Special School, has its own named counsellor who has a base at the school and can be contacted directly there.

Primary School ALNCos are the point of contact for primary aged children.

For further information contact:

Lyn Herde: Personal Support Development Officer

Email: Lyn.Herde@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Phone: 01437 776473

Sensory Needs

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Sensory Needs Service is divided into three areas: Hearing Impairment/Deaf, Physical and Medical Needs, and Visual Impairment/Blind.

The Hearing Impairment/Deaf area and the Visual Impairment/Blind area provide peripatetic educational support, training, tuition and advice through Advisory Teachers who work with children and their families. The Advisory Teacher for Hearing Impairment/Deaf and the Advisory Teacher for Visual Impairment/Blind make educational provision for children and young people with mild to profound deafness or vision loss. They also offer support and advice to parents, schools and other educational establishments for children aged 0-19.

The Physical and Medical Needs Specialist Teachers work with children and their families, schools and health professionals to ensure that the child’s needs are being met within the school setting.

Liaison with schools and a range of health professionals ensures that the child’s needs are being met within the school setting. The Advisory and Specialist Teachers support children and families during transition into school and also between different phases of school life.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

Children are usually referred by health professionals, for example, Paediatricians, Audiology or Ophthalmology. Parents, pre-school settings and schools are able to refer to Health through GPs, Health Visitors and School Nurses for assessment. Referrals can also be made through the school Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo) and Early Years practitioners. Schools are able to contact all areas of the Service for support, advice and training on general sensory issues.

For further information contact:

Annette Thomas: Team Leader for Sensory and Complex Health Needs

Email: Annette.Thomas@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01437 770158

Specific Learning Difficulties

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) service offers advice and guidance to primary and secondary schools, learners and their families across Pembrokeshire for pupils with specific difficulties with reading, writing, spelling, co-ordination and numbers.

The service comprises a specialist teacher and occupational therapist. Support is provided through a programme of training and development that takes place each term to help schools and parents in supporting children and young people with SpLD.

The Team Around the Parent Pupil And School (TAPPAS) provides the opportunity for schools and Specialist Teams to meet every term. The forum provides solution focused drop in sessions for schools to seek advice in relation to any specific issues for supporting pupils with specific learning difficulties. Parent drop in sessions also provide the opportunity for parents who would like specific advice on ways to support their child or have any concerns in relation to their education.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to contact?

For support and guidance, the school Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo) is the first point of contact. In the majority of cases the ALNCo will be able to arrange the appropriate level of support.

Referrals are made through the child’s school in discussion with the Headteacher or Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo).

For further information contact:

Emma Wilson: Specialist Teacher for SpLD
Email: Emma.Wilson2@pembrokeshire.gov.uk
Tel: 01437 775288

Melanie Ferrier: Specialist Teacher
Email: Melanie.Ferrier@wales.nhs.uk
Tel: 01437 764551

Statutory Assessments and Statements of SEN

What is the Service and who is the Service for?

The Statutory assessment and Statements of SEN service is responsible for processing a request for formal assessment and maintaining a child’s Statement of SEN.

Wherever practicable, every attempt is made to provide the necessary educational provision for a child or young person without needing resource to a Statement of Educational Needs.

How can the Service be accessed?  Who to Contact?

For support and guidance, the school Additional Learning Needs Co-ordinator (ALNCo) is the first point of contact. In the majority of cases the ALNCo will be able to arrange the appropriate level of support in partnership with parents and outside professionals. If the advice from the school link Educational Psychologist and Advisory Teacher is to request a statutory assessment, then school or parents can contact:

Donna Davies:  ALN (Statementing) Officer
Email: Donna.Davies@pembrokeshire.gov.uk
Tel: 01437 775015

Educational Psychology Service

What do we do?

Pembrokeshire Educational Psychology Service is concerned with the development, learning, achievement and well-being of children and young people. Members of the team work with staff of pre-school settings, schools and with parents/carers, applying psychology to achieve better outcomes for all Pembrokeshire children through specialist consultation, advice and support.

The use of consultation, observation and a range of assessment techniques are used to gather information to help others, such as teachers and parents to resolve problems. The Service:

  • provides assessment and advice on children’s learning, social, emotional, behavioural and developmental needs to school staff, parents and other professionals
  • provides training on all aspects of child development, learning and behaviour
  • contributes to a range of initiatives to provide direct support to children, teachers and families
  • supports schools following ‘critical incidents’ such as a sudden bereavement
  • contributes psychological advice to the statutory assessment of children under the 1996 Education Act and the monitoring of progress of children with special educational needs
  • contributes to Local Authority policies and procedures relating to all aspects of education and children’s welfare.

How do we deliver these services?

Educational Psychology time is allocated to families of schools. All schools have a named educational psychologist who provides regular visits.

The Team Around the Parent Pupil And School (TAPPAS) also provides the opportunity for schools and Educational Psychologists to meet every term. The forum provides solution focused drop in sessions for schools to seek advice.  Parent drop in sessions also provide the opportunity for parents who would like specific advice on ways to support their child or have any concerns in relation to their education.

For further information contact:

Lorraine Silver : Principal Educational Psychologist
Email: Lorraine.Silver@pembrokeshire.gov.uk
Tel: 01437 776042

Education of Looked After Children

Due to difficulties in their family lives, what happens to children is often out of their control and can affect their schooling. They sometimes need help and support to make sure that their schooling is not disrupted and they are working to the best of their ability.

In Pembrokeshire every school has a designated teacher for Looked After Children. These teachers act as a link between school and the child, the foster carer, social worker and the birth family.

When a child becomes Looked After a Personal Education Plan is written to clarify what is needed to make school as smooth as possible for the child and to ensure maximum support for the child to achieve his or her educational potential.

Pembrokeshire also tracks the progress of all Looked After children in its schools. Two educational support mentors work with the young people, their families, their carers, and their social workers to make sure that their schooling matches their needs and that they do as well as possible through the LAC virtual school.

For further information contact:

Wyn Harries: Advisory Teacher for Looked After Children

Email: Wyn.Harries@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01437 770169

English as an Additional Language

Pembrokeshire Minority Ethnic Achievement Service (MEAS) supports schools with all aspects of English as an Additional Language (EAL) or Welsh as an Additional Language (WAL) and provides training, support and consultancy to ensure that schools raise the achievement of ethnic minority pupils with EAL/WAL.

The aim of the service is to develop the confidence and expertise in EAL/WAL for teaching and support staff to ensure that EAL/WAL pupils meet their targets in school.

Pembrokeshire has one co-ordinator and a team of seven part-time assistants who work with pupils, their families and staff in schools (as well as outside agencies) to monitor pupil well-being, ensuring that the pupil makes progress in line with their potential.

One of the key strengths is being able to work in families of schools according to identified needs. The service provides quick responses to requests for assessment and support for a newly arrived pupil with EAL/WAL. Pupil well-being is also part of the support work carried out in schools.

The MEAS service assistants speak a range of languages (such as Arabic, Serbian, Polish, Russian, French, Italian, Swiss, German, Finnish and Estonian). There are two Welsh bilingual assistants in the service who can support Welsh as an additional language. These support assistants support WAL pupils bilingually where possible or when necessary.

The team set language and academic targets alongside staff in schools and work closely with schools to track pupil’s progress and ensure that ethnic minority pupils identified as underperforming are supported as much as possible. MEAS staff may also work to support pupils during times of transition to secondary schools or when approaching end of key stage assessments or examinations.

MEAS staff also provide out of hours clubs to support pupils with home language exam preparation, social use of language, mentoring and language support or academic support, especially prior to exams.

In addition, the service supports pupils taking home language examinations and provides translations of letters or information relating to school for pupils and parents. Working with WITS, the Welsh Interpretation and Translation Service, the service is able to support families and schools with their interpretation and translation needs.

For further information contact:

Annette Thomas: Team Leader, English as an Additional Language

Email: Annette.Thomas@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01437 770158

SectionGypsy Traveller Education

The Gypsy Traveller Education Service works with the community by supporting families in maintaining regular attendance in all school settings and improving the capacity of schools to better meet the needs of Gypsy Travellers, narrowing attainment and opportunity gaps, improving academic achievement and ensuring equality of outcomes.

The Gypsy Traveller Education Service responds to any specific cultural needs or issues that may exist for children, young people and families in order to raise academic achievement, and to improve outcomes and life chances.

For further information contact:

Claire Arnold: Team Leader, Gypsy Travellers

Email: Claire.Arnold@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01646 685685

Elective Home Education

Educating your child at home

Some parents choose to educate their children at home, for a variety of reasons. The Local Authority (LA), supports the right of parents to educate their children at home.
In the first instance, parents wishing to educate their child at home should inform the headteacher of the school who should then inform the LA.

What are parents’ responsibilities?

Parents have a right to educate their children at home providing that they fulfil the requirements of Section 7 of the Education Act, 1996 which places a duty on the parents of every child of compulsory school age to cause him or her to receive efficient full-time education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude, and to any special educational needs that they may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise.

Support for EHE families:

The Local Authority has an Elective Home Education Advisor who provides an annual visit to discuss provision and offer advice or information if required. The Local Authority seeks to work co-operatively with parents to develop mutual understanding and trust that will safeguard children’s educational outcomes.

For further information contact:

Leonie Rayner:  Parent Partnership Service
Email: parentpartnershipservices@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

Tel: 01437 776354