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SEND Specialist Expertise

SENDCo and SEND Staff

Our Federation Deputy Headteacher and SENDCo is Mr Richard Sains. Mr Sains has completed the National Award for SEN Coordination and also has a Postgraduate Certificate in Vulnerable Learners & Inclusion.  

In the Durham Dales Federation, the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Co-ordinator (SENDCo):

  • Manages the day-to-day operation of the policy;
  • Co-ordinates the provision for and manages the responses to children’s special needs;
  • Supports and advises colleagues;
  • Maintains the school’s SEND register;
  • Contributes to and manages the records of all children with special educational needs;
  • Manages the school-based assessment and completes the documentation required by outside agencies and the LA;
  • Acts as the link with parents;
  • Maintains resources and a range of teaching materials to enable appropriate provision to be made;
  • Acts as link with external agencies and other support agencies;
  • Monitors and evaluates the special educational needs provision and reports to the governing body;
  • Manages a range of resources, human and material, linked to children with special educational needs.

More details of the SENDCo's role can be found in the SEND Policy, which you can find in the School Policies section of our website.

All staff across the Federation have regular training, known as CPD, to help ensure we are delivering the most up-to-date techniques and current practice within our schools. Our SENDCo, Mr Richard Sains, delivers most of that training in school from the training he attends in his role. At times, school staff will receive training from other agencies who work with schools to support our teaching and delivery for our SEND children. 

Staff are also committed to developing their knowledge and understanding of how to meet a child’s SEND (as the need arises) through self-led CPD. 

External Specialists and Other Bodies

The school enjoys good working relationships with a wide range of people who provide services for children with SEND and their families.

The external specialists may:

  • Act in an advisory capacity
  • Extend expertise of school staff
  • Provide additional assessment
  • Support a child directly
  • Suggest statutory assessment is advisable
  • Consult with all parties involved with the child

These include:

How We Secure Specialist Expertise

Our Additional Needs Budget is used to support children and young people with SEN. The notional budget for each of our schools is:


Hamsterley Primary School - £16,471.

Rookhope Primary School -  £4,306

St. John's Chapel Primary School - £12,879

Wearhead Primary School - £8,659


Hamsterley Primary School - £23,314

St. John's Chapel Primary School - £21,989

Wearhead Primary School - £9,228

Our Additional Needs Budget is used to support children and young people with SEND by:

  • Specialist training for all staff
  • Specialist training for SENDCo
  • Enabling the school to employ members of staff to support children and run programmes of intervention
  • Resources to enable children to meet outcomes
  • Buy in the services of specialists
  • Buy support packages
  • Purchase assessment and intervention tools

If a child has complex special educational needs, we could also receive additional funding from the Local Authority to meet the agreed outcomes. The additional needs funding is monitored by the Senior Leadership Team and Governing Body to ensure support is secured to meet needs and has a positive impact on outcomes for children with SEND.