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Policy 009: Additional Needs and Disability
1.1 This Policy aims to ensure that ACM promotes and embodies the delivery of inclusive education across all it’s campuses, including Higher Education, Further Education and for all ACM students.
1.2 This Policy describes how the ACM meets the needs of students with additional needs and disabilities by:
- Providing targeted and specialist support to those meeting evidential criteria to access funding for Further and Higher Education support.
- Providing advice to students with an additional need during enrolment, on course and through progression.
- Working collaboratively and proactively with parents/guardians/stakeholders by adopting a multi-disciplinary partnership approach.
- Influencing organisational decisions ensuring adequate levels of inclusive practice and accessibility are considered.
- Advocating for students who have a protected characteristic as recognised by the Equality Act.
- POLICY DETAILS
2.1 ACM is committed to the provision of equal opportunities for students with additional needs and disabilities, and aims to create an environment that enables them to participate fully in Further and/or Higher Education. It recognises its duties to make reasonable adjustments as described in Section 20 and 21 of the Equality Act 2010.
2.2 ACM recognises and embodies a social model of disability. That everyone who has the capability to benefit from studying at ACM should have the opportunity to do so: this is the principle that informs ACM’s approach to widening participation in a range of areas, including disability.
2.3 ACM takes positive steps to ensure that disabled students can fully participate in the education and other benefits, facilities and services provided for students. This duty is anticipatory and continuing.
2.4 To encourage an inclusive approach to disabled students, ACM need to respond appropriately ensuring that:
- staff have appropriate training to review their own practices and adopt more inclusive learning, teaching and assessment approaches;
- staff understand their duties to make reasonable adjustments;
- staff are aware of the advice and support services for disabled students within ACM.
2.5 ACM does not deny admission to prospective students on the grounds of their disability and takes such steps as it is reasonable, within its means and capabilities, to avoid any disadvantage. In the event that ACM is not able to meet the needs of a particular student, alternatives will be discussed. Admission to the programme would be institutionally irresponsible if ACM is not able to make the necessary adjustments to ensure the well-being, safety and quality of experience for prospective students.
2.6 For all matters relating to this policy and inclusive practice please refer to the Additional Needs and Disability Department. They can be contacted via email on email@example.com or by telephone on 01483 501211.
- POLICY SCOPE
4.1 This policy applies to ACM students studying both Further Education and Higher Education. It is embodied in all three campuses and across the organisation as a whole.
4.2 It also recognises its responsibility to applicants, staff, visitors and contractors that may also have an additional need or disability.
- RELATED POLICIES
This policy is embedded across all organisational practices. All associated documents can be found on the ACM website under policies or by using the link. https://www.acm.ac.uk/policies/
Associated policies include:
- 008 Equality and Diversity010 Safeguarding
- 011 Fitness to Study
- 012 Learning, Teaching, Assessment and Attainment
- 013 Hardship and Travel Bursary Funding
- 015 Admissions Policy
- 020 Data Access and Protection
- 046 Risk Assessment
- 058 Student Withdrawal, Interruption and Internal Transfer
- 067 Looked After Young People and Care Leavers
It also directly relates to ACM’s Access and Participation Strategy. This can be found on the ACM website via the link:
- POLICY OWNER
6.1 This Policy is under the responsibility of the Student Engagement and Quality Committee. The responsible committee will ensure the cyclical review of this Policy is carried out under ACM’s Quality Assurance Framework. The Student Engagement and Quality Committee delegates operational responsibility to the Additional Needs and Disability department. They can be contacted via email on firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 01483 501 211.
7.1 Throughout this policy the term ‘Additional Needs and Disability’ is used to denote students with an identifiable additional need that may not be met by the core offer. It is interchangeable with the term ‘Special Educational Needs (SEN)’ and includes those with a learning disability, specific learning difficulty, mental health condition, health problem, physical/hidden impairment or a social care need.
8.1 All applicants wishing to study at ACM complete an admission form that includes details of any additional need or disability. We encourage applicants to share information on any condition that may inhibit their ability to access their chosen course/job role.
8.2 All applicants who have made a disclosure will be referred to the Additional Needs and Disability Department (AND Department) who engage with the applicant to ensure that they are given information and advice about the support available.
8.3 Students who have declared an additional need or disability are assessed by the AND department. Depending on the age of the student, the course they are undertaking and their individual needs a recommended support plan is then put in place.
8.4 Students that have an identifiable additional need or disability may be entitled to specialist support and/or equipment. It is the responsibility of the AND department to support students to apply for local and/or national funding.
8.5 Higher Education disabled students can apply for Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA). After they supply evidence of their disability they are invited to attend a Needs Assessment at a local Assessment Centre. The Assessor will write a report to outline what support is available.
8.6 Non Medical Help support includes Specialist Study Skills Tutors and Mentors.The Specialist Tutors are on the Association of Dyslexia Specialists in Higher Education (ADSHE) register, and the Specialist Mentor is accredited by the University Mental Health Advisors Network (UMHAN) ensuring they complete rigorous CPD and peer supervision. ACM offers remote study skills sessions and mentoring to all three campuses and face to face appointments in Guildford.
8.7 Students may also be entitled to assistive technology/software, printing costs, accommodation top ups and transport.
8.8 Further Education disabled students in receipt of an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) may be entitled to local authority funding. Learning Support Assistants and a Learning Support Officer may be allocated if required.
8.9 The AND Department is located in ACM’s Guildford campus. It has a separate entrance to the main teaching areas so students can attend discreetly. The AND Department aims to have a calm and positive environment, where students feel welcome and comfortable. In Clapham and Birmingham students may access support via remote communication or on campus by appointment.
8.10 All areas in ACM buildings have disabled access and toilets. Where disabled access is not available ACM are committed to finding an alternative arrangement.
8.11 There is a no-food-or-drink policy in all teaching areas, enabling attendance of students at risk of anaphylaxis.
Allocation of resources
8.12 Students with an additional need or disability are either supported/advised by the Learning Support Officer (for Further Education) or Disability Officer (for Higher Education). Both roles sit within the Additional Needs and Disability department.
8.13 The Additional Needs and Disability Department is responsible for regulating and monitoring the allocation of resources.
Identification of needs
8.14 Students who declare their support needs, and satisfy data protection requirements, are identified to teaching staff through the Insight program, which flags the student’s name on the staff registers, enabling teaching staff to have instant access to the information entered. Staff are also advised when this information is updated.
8.15 Teaching staff may refer any student to the AND Department if they have concerns regarding the student’s support needs.
8.16 AND Department staff keep detailed records of support given to students and the progress made.
Access to the Curriculum
8.17 ACM takes positive steps to ensure that disabled students can fully participate in the education and other benefits, facilities and services provided for students.
8.18 This duty is anticipatory and continuing – ACM plans ahead and anticipates reasonable requirements of disabled students. This includes providing all documentation in a digital format and providing alternative forms of assessment as required.
Evaluating the success of provision
8.19 Records are kept of the attendance, retention and achievement of all students, including those with additional needs and disabilities.
8.20 Complaints against ACM made by students are treated seriously and, if found to be valid, are acted upon to ensure that the students’ interests are protected as far as it is possible for ACM to do so.
8.21 Informal, and formal grievances can be made in accordance with the Student Complaints and Grievances Policy and Procedure. This can be found on the ACM website under policies or through the link https://www.acm.ac.uk/policies/
There are no further exhibits, appendices or forms relevant to this Policy.
- SUPPORTING INFORMATION
There is no further supporting information relevant to this Policy.
- DOCUMENT HISTORY AND NEXT REVIEW
Approved on: 07 September 2020
Approved by: Integrated Executive
Date of next review: August 2021