There are many excellent resources to support the writing of person-centred outcomes for learners with SEND. However, for children and young people with a physical disability, many of whom also have additional needs, there are further considerations. These need to be fully understood to ensure the long-term educational journey for an individual with physical disability (PD) is successful and is crafted to address an individual's unique/specific needs and requirements. For learners with PD, outcomes should:
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For learners with PD, we need to recognise that they are likely to have fine motor, gross motor, communication and/or mobility needs that require significant therapeutic intervention delivered during the school day. This could include physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and/or programmes related to sensory needs.
These needs cannot be overlooked and must be identified, considered within this process and incorporated into outcomes, as appropriate.
Hover over/click the cards below to uncover some challenges for learners with PD which their peers do not experience:
Developing independent mobility, e.g. may require equipment and mobility aids.
Holding and manipulating objects, e.g. use adapted pens and other equipment in the classroom.
Playing and exploring the world may be limited, e.g. have gaps in their understanding and knowledge of the world.
Articulating speech and communicating, e.g. may limit their ability to interact and talk with peers and adults.
What should we consider when planning the best possible outcome-focussed approach for learners with PD? Hover over/click the circles below to find out the four elements.
The learner's and their family's realistic hopes dreams and aspirations for the future.
The learner's needs and requirements, especially the need to maintain their health, mobility and wellbeing.
The difference made to an individual resulting from careful planning and delivery of support and interventions.
What needs to be provided and put in place to meet a learner's needs. This is in terms of educational, healthcare and therapeutic needs, enabling the outcomes to be achieved.
Whilst there are similarities between developing person-centred outcomes for all learners with SEND, there are additional and possibly unique considerations that need to be made for learners with PD.
An individual's needs and requirements arising from their physical disability or needs can be more complex and challenging, resulting in a profound impact on their experience of education.
Their route to independence, learning journey and/or rate of progress may be different from that of their peers.