Schools’ duties around accessibility for disabled pupils Schools and Local Authorities (Las)
need to carry out accessibility planning for disabled pupils. These duties are the same as
previously existed under the Disability Discrimination Act and have been replicated in the
Equality Act 2010.
Part 5A of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA) requires the governing body to:
- Promote equality of opportunity for all disabled people, adults and children,
- who use or may wish to use the school and prepare and publish a Disability
- Equality Scheme to show how they will meet these duties.
- This Accessibility Plan (AP) and the accompanying action plan forms a part of the
- Disability Equality Scheme (DES) and sets out how the governing body will improve
- Equality of opportunity for disabled people.
The SEN and Disability Act 2001 extended the DDA to cover education and since 2002 the
Governing Body has had three key duties towards disabled pupils under part 4 of the DDA:
- Not to treat disabled pupils less favourably for reasons related to their disability.
- To make reasonable adjustments for disabled pupils, so that they are not at a substantial disadvantage including potential adjustments which may be needed in the future.
- To plan to increase access to education for disabled pupils. This plan sets out the proposals of the Governing Body of the school to increase access to education for disabled pupils in the three areas required by the planning duties in the DDA.
- Increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum;
- Improving the environment of the school to increase the extent to which disabled pupils can take advantage of education and associated services;
- Improving the delivery to disabled pupils of information which is provided in writing for pupils who are not disabled.
As a requirement the school’s AP is resourced, implemented, reviewed and revised as necessary.
This plan incorporates the intention by the school to increase access to education for disabled pupils. In drawing up the AP the school has set out the following priorities:
- To provide safe access throughout the school for all, irrespective of their disability.
- To ensure that all of the teaching and learning environment and resources are suitable for all, tailoring these to suit individual needs.
- To provide training to all staff on the needs of disabled people and how to provide assistance to enable them to enjoy the school experience as fully as possible.
At New York Primary School we are committed to establishing equality for all and have developed a policy on Equality and Diversity to support this. It is the responsibility of the whole school community to implement these principles in a manner which promotes the inclusive ethos of our school.
Involvement of all
In preparing this AP, disabled people, including pupils, parents, governors and stakeholders were involved as described in the DES. It has been informed by analysis of pupil & staff data and additional information gathered. In accordance with the Act a “disabled person is defined as someone who has a physical or mental impairment which has an effect on his or her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”. The effect must be substantial, long term and adverse.
The DDA definition of disability covers physical, sensory impairments and learning disabilities.
New York School is committed to equal opportunities and inclusion. This strategy should be considered alongside the schools:
- Disability Equality Scheme
- Special Educational Needs
- Equal Opportunities
This plan considers the following three areas as identified in the introduction:
- Increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the schools’ curriculum by securing relevant staff training and ensuring appropriate classroom organisation.
- Improving the physical environment where needed, including physical aids to access education.
- Improving the delivery to disabled pupils of information which is already provided to pupils who are not disabled. This needs to be done within a reasonable period of time and in formats that take account of any views
- Expressed by pupils and parents about their preferred means of communication such as Braille, audio tape, large print and the provision of information communicated by word.
- Increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum.
The school SEND policy ensures that staff identify, assess and arrange suitable provision for pupils with disabilities and SEND. Working with the LA and Education Psychology Service, the SENCo manages the Statutory Assessment Process, ensuring additional resources are available where appropriate.
The school has a Pastoral Team providing additional support for pupils and families. These teams also support teachers in implementing strategies for improving pupils’ behaviour and access to learning.
The school works closely with specialist services that include:
- Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists
- Language and Communication Team (Speech and Language Specialists)
- Hearing Impaired Children’s service
- Visual Impairment Advisory and Support Service
- North Tyneside Council – Specialist Support Services Improving access to the physical environment of the school. The element of the Planning Duty covers all areas of the physical environment such as the building, grounds, fixtures and furniture. New York has been updated in recent years with accessibility in mind. The building is fully wheelchair accessible, on one level with toileting facilities already purpose built to accommodate most situations. The aim will be
- to maintain the current environment and enhance where possible to allow access to
all aspects of education offered by New York Primary School.
- Improving the delivery of information to disabled persons.
- Staff are aware of the services available through the LA for converting written
information into alternative formats.
This AIP is reviewed annually by the governors of New York primary School. In addition a
working party will review every three years following consultation with the larger school
community, the governors, School Council and data obtained via questionnaires.
A copy of this can be obtained upon request from the school office.