The overlaps between Pupil Premium and SEND are clear and present in all schools. SENCO Garry Freeman looks at the crucial first step to all tailored provision – identifying needs – and also discusses working with parents and carers

How often do we, as educational professionals, hear the expression “closing the gap”?

We hear it and we use it when speaking of Pupil Premium (and Pupil Premium Plus) learners and when we speak about the progress made by our young people with SEND.

The phrase itself can become something of a hackneyed expression, all-too-often founded on a simplistic view of Pupil Premium learners as a single, homogenous group of students.

The difficulty for me, and for many with whom I discuss this issue, is that if we as SEND leaders in schools were to even contemplate addressing the needs of our SEND learners as if they were a single, homogenous group, all with the pretty much the same needs, then we would be ridiculed – and rightly so.

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