We would like to invite forty mainstream primary schools in Somerset to be part of the Partnerships for Inclusion of Neurodiversity in Schools project (PINS).

Assessing and meeting the needs of children with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) in mainstream schools is the foundation for improving outcomes, parental confidence and delivering the financially sustainable SEND system, as envisaged in the SEND and Alternative Provision (AP) Improvement Plan.

This project has been created due to the success of the national Autism in Schools project. The approach of PINS has been developed around the key principles of the Autism in Schools:

  • Whole School Approach
  • Good quality training for staff
  • Parents Supporting Parents groups
  • Understanding students experience of schools

Partnerships for Inclusion of Neurodiversity in Schools (PINS) will bring health and education specialists and expert parent carers into mainstream primary settings to:

  • Help shape whole school SEND provision
  • Provide early interventions at a school level
  • Upskill school staff
  • Support strengthening of partnerships between schools and parent carers

The PINS project is testing a new model for supporting good outcomes in mainstream schools for Neurodiverse students and strength parent carer and school partnerships. The project will focus on strengthening knowledge, skills and improving environments to better meet the needs of neurodiverse children.  Through a focus on supportive learning environments and well-equipped schools we can improve the outcomes for this group of children.

Each school in the programme will complete the nationally agreed self-assessment tool for schools to identify priority areas for support: Partnerships for Inclusion of Neurodiversity in Schools (PINS) (somersetparentcarerforum.org.uk). Schools will collate the findings and use them to assess themselves against a number of high-level domains (including Leadership, Culture and Values; Mental Health; Readiness to Learn; Teaching and Learning; Environment and Communication).

Settings that would like to join this project please complete the Expression of Interest Form here by 5pm Thursday 18th April 2024. If you have any questions, please contact: pins@somersetparentcarerforum.org.uk.

Only mainstream primary educational settings can apply. Schools already involved in other interventions such as Autism in Schools, and ELSEC or who access support through Mental Health in schools Teams can be part of the project.

For more information, please visit Somerset Council’s SEND Local Offer Pages at : Partnerships for Inclusion of Neurodiversity in Schools (somerset.gov.uk).

Mother and toddler wearing red shirt playing together on a bed in the bedroom at home

About this article

March 27, 2024

Molly Venn