Services for Secondary Schools

in Herefordshire and surrounding areas

Speech Language and Communication Needs can become slippery creatures at Secondary level. As children have adapted to what, to them, feels normal, they can become harder to spot. Young people may superficially appear ‘ok’ and use a range of strategies to cover up for their language needs.

Some signs that would make me consider whether a child has unmet Speech, Language or Communication needs:

-       Behavioural issues – young people may develop behavioural responses to cover up a lack of understanding, for example

-       Children who are very passive and persistently not reaching the expected standard – sometimes a child's language skills have been ‘good enough’ for a long time, but start to break down with increasing demands at secondary level. These children can easily slip through the net as they may not stand out in a classroom environment

-       Persistent social issues with friends – making or keeping them

Secondary is a time when social relationships become very nuanced and highly steeped in language. It’s a difficult time for everyone, but if a child is having more trouble than you might expect, it’s worth thinking about whether language might be an issue, especially if you see this in combination with other things

-       Difficulties with written work and with the equivalent skills verbally eg

o Lack of grammatical development – persistent simple errors in verb tense, pronouns and prepositions for example

o  Lack of ability to logically structure longer pieces of work

o  Lack of higher-level thinking skills in spoken and written work such as inferencing, summarising, predicting

-       Difficulties with skills such organising themselves and their work, getting to the right place with the right equipment etc. Children who have been struggling to process and remember spoken language may have got by through copying others and through routine. This strategy may let them down at secondary, where the number of demands increases significantly

It can also become harder for SENCOs and schools to access generic solutions at Secondary level, as they are much less available for this age range owing to the complexity of working with Teenagers and their language 

Available services

Please contact me if you require a service you do not see listed below

EHCP-specific work

In Herefordshire, children are typically discharged by NHS Speech and Language Therapy services upon entering Secondary school, even where this is named provision on their EHCP. 

EHCP-specified provision is not dependent on the availability of NHS services to meet the need, and continues to be a legal requirement.

Provision is the responsibility of the Local Authority, and needs to continue until such time as a qualified professional recommends removing it.

I work with children 1:1 where they have specific Speech and Language Therapy provision named on their plan.

This may be commissioned directly by the school, or via the Local Authority

Providing evidence for EHCPs /other funding

Sometimes children’s needs have been met at Primary level, perhaps with short-term funding, but become much more evident and start to impact on function at Secondary. This may be the first time an EHCP is considered, but you do not have access to NHS Speech and Language Therapy to support the process. I can carry out detailed standardised assessment and provide a suitable report that outlines need, outcomes and provision.

Group interventions aimed at independent learning skills

 Many children with SLCN in Primary have become dependent on adult support to learn, and their interventions have been focussed on very specific skill areas that may or may not have transferred to everyday situations.

Secondary interventions need to be focussed on the realities of being a young person with persistent SLCN, who needs insight into their strengths and needs, and to be able to function well with their existing learning profile.

This means skills such as:

-       Comprehension monitoring – noticing when you have not understood

-       Note-taking strategies

-       Developing receptive and expressive vocabulary, especially cross-curricular vocabulary and how to understand and use this in their work

-       Organisation and planning of written work

Understanding social situations, and emotional regulation work

These are skilled interventions to deliver that are time-consuming and need fine-tuning to the needs of the individual in ways that generic interventions often cannot.

I can develop and deliver group interventions, with aims that meet your needs as a school, and those of your students.

SEND register mop-up

Do you have children coming into your setting from Primary with SLCN listed as a need? 

In Herefordshire, they’ve probably been discharged by SALT.  Was that because they didn’t go to their sessions? Because they genuinely don’t need any more input?  Or did they just ‘drop off the end' of the local SALT criteria? It is often not very clear.

Want some help working out how to sift through these children, decide who has needs, what they are and then prioritise what to do about those needs?

I can help you with that!

Supervision and accountability sessions with SENCOs

Got a thorny SLCN-related issue that you need a bit of help thinking through? Don’t know where to start with screening, interventions or training your staff? Wish someone had an overview of these things and could help you make some decisions without having to spend hours researching, or just make a gut decision because you don't have time?

Or maybe you have a specific child or children you want to discuss in a bit of detail? A report to decode?

Is a staff member proving difficult to work with in regards to SEND? Or do you need to work through a difficult conversation with a family member of a child on the register?

Talking through these issues with someone with the right experience, who is not on your school staff and who has enough bandwidth to help you is invaluable.

What clarity could an hour's discussion buy you?

You can do these as one-off sessions, or plan follow-up sessions to help keep you focussed and accountable with your plan (because nothing throws your plans off course better than the average day in a school!)

Supervision is a professional requirement in healthcare roles, but the same is not true for equally complex and challenging SENCO roles. Why not find out what a supervision session could do for you in your role?

Sessions can be online or face-to-face and on or off your school site.


Want to to train your TAs or Teachers in something? Maybe you've got a specific idea about what that might be, maybe you don’t.

 Don’t worry, I can help you identify what is going to make most impact on your setting, and design training sessions, from 1 hour to whole-day and everything in between.


Prices for all services :

- £350 for a day (6 hours),

-£185 for a half-day (three hours), or

-£85 per hour. 

Contact me by email at [email protected], and I can give you a quotation for whatever service or combination of services you would like to buy for your school.    Generally speaking, the more time I am on site with you and/or the more consistent the booking, the more economical the package will be for your school.

I am always happy to discuss your school needs and whether my services are the right way to deal with them, no obligation. I would not dream of recommending Therapy services to you in general, or mine in particular, if I don't think they are the right fit for you.