Communication and Interaction

Children and young people with Speech, Language or Communication needs can have difficulty interacting with others. This may be because they have difficulty expressing themselves or they do not understand or use social rules of communication. Children and young people with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, including Asperger’s Syndrome are likely to have particular difficulties with social interaction. They may also experience difficulties with language, communication, social interaction and imagination, which can impact how they relate to others.

Cognition and Learning

Support for learning may be required when children learn at a slower rate than their peers. Learning difficulties cover a wide range of needs including Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD), Severe Learning Difficulties (SLD), where children are likely to need support in all areas of the curriculum and associated difficulties with mobility and communication, through to Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD), where the children are likely to have severe and complex learning difficulties as well as physical disability or sensory impairment. Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) affect one or more specific aspects of learning. This encompasses a range of conditions such as Dyslexia, Dyscalculia and Dyspraxia.

Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties

Children and young people may experience a wide range of social and emotional difficulties which manifest themselves in many ways. These may include becoming withdrawn and isolated, as well as displaying challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. These behaviours may reflect underlying mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression, self-harming, substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. Other children and young people may have disorders such as attention deficit hyperactive disorder or attachment disorder.

Sensory and/or physical needs

Some children and young people require special educational provision because they have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided. These difficulties can be age related and may fluctuate over time. Children with Visual Impairment (VI), Hearing Impairment (HI) or a Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI) will require specialist support or additional equipment to access their learning.