Learning Support


Where learners face specific challenges we encourage them to be ambitious, proactive and independent. Teaching staff at Cranleigh work together to identify and support all learner profiles. The primary role of the Learning Support Department is to provide Learning Support by facilitating this through small group lessons, occasional 1:1 support lessons and inclusive teaching.

Learning Support at Cranleigh

The main aim of the Learning Support department at Cranleigh is to help support pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) to achieve their potential and to take their place in the world with confidence in their own abilities.

As part of the school’s ethos of philosophical enquiry, the Learning Support department embraces the strategy of teaching through asking questions and students taking responsibility in part for their own learning.

Education is really aimed at helping students get to the point where they can learn on their own…

The department’s key role in the school is to:

  • liaise with the Admissions department on the transferring of SEND information from feeder schools to Cranleigh
  • promote SEND pupils’ self-awareness of their own needs and abilities and their independence by encouraging them to think for themselves
  • advise on  reasonable adjustments for SEND pupils in their education by reasonable means
  • liaise with subject teaching staff  to provide information about pupils’ needs and offer advice about and/or training on the meeting of those needs
  • act on pupil referrals by parents and teachers in a reasonable period of time
  • deliver 1:1 specialised  support and small group numeracy and literacy teaching sessions and provide in–class support, where necessary
  • work closely with the English and Maths departments to provide suitable numeracy and literacy support
  • offer ‘Breathing Space’ sessions to any student across the school who needs study skills support. The ‘Breathing Space’ Study Support Programme’s aim is to promote independent learning skills ready for the next stage of a student’s education at university level. As part of ‘Breathing Space’, the school also offers weekly sessions on Mindfulness which explore how students can train their minds, appreciate the here and now and use the power of silence to clear space to sharpen their minds and deal with the stresses of GCSEs and A levels.

Frequently Asked Questions

The department is in the process of implementing the graduated approach of the four part SEND Code of Practice cycle: Assess, Plan, Do and Review.

The Assess part of the process contains three elements:

  • a clear analysis of a pupil’s needs
  • information collection from the school’s assessments and experience of the pupil
  • identification of parents’ and pupils’ views

The Plan: Parents, teachers and learning support staff who work with the child should be made aware of their needs, outcomes set, support provided and any teaching strategies and approaches, which should all be recorded and monitored regularly.

Individual Education Plans (IEPs) are written for all students who are considered to need 1:1 or small group support.

The Do: Subject teachers and learning support staff remain responsible for the pupil and should work closely with each other to ensure the support is provided and monitor its effectiveness.

The Review: Regular reviews should take place at the start of the Lent Term and at the end of the Summer Term.

If a child has been assessed at their former school, it is important that a copy of the report is provided to us. We do however need to carry out our own school-based assessments and establish the pupil’s normal way of working. An updated assessment for access arrangements is required during year 10 at the school. At Cranleigh, we have two Specialist Assessors and one Educational Psychologist, who have an established relationship with the school and who can assess for exam arrangements and carry out detailed full assessments.

Please note that a privately commissioned assessment carried out without prior consultation with the school cannot be used to award access arrangements.

For further details about the Joint Council of Qualifications Regulations, please visit the JCQ website.

The Joint Council of Qualifications (JCQ) produce strict guidelines each year about how extra time can be awarded. It is the responsibility of the school to make a strong case for reasonable adjustments, based on the history of need, the normal way of working, and standardised assessment scores. Pupils who have had special access arrangements at Common Entrance will be reassessed in Year 10 at Cranleigh, to see if they qualify at GCSE, and a further review and application will need to be made at the beginning of their A Level course.

The school has to present a ‘compelling’ case that the student’s learning difficulty has ‘a substantial and adverse effect’ on the student’s performance in exams. This will generally require statements from subject staff that a student is underperforming in classroom tasks and tests, as well as evidence in the form of incomplete internal examinations and effective use of extra time. The student must also have made use of extra time over a substantial period of time and this is referred to as their ‘normal way of working’. Where a student is granted extra time for medical reasons, the SENCo must confirm in writing that the pupil has persistent and significant difficulties when accessing and processing information, and is disabled within the meaning of the Equality Act 2010. This needs to be supported by:

  • a letter from CAMHS, a HCPC registered psychologist, a hospital consultant, a psychiatrist; or
  • a letter from the Local Authority Specialist Service, Local Authority Sensory Impairment Service or Occupational Health Service; or
  • a letter from a Speech and Language Therapist (SaLT); or
  • a Statement of Special Educational Needs relating to the candidate’s secondary education, or an Education, Health and Care Plan, which confirms the candidate’s disability.

Under certain circumstances, a student may be allowed to use a word-processor in exams. The main criteria for deciding whether to grant the use of a word-processor are that it should be appropriate to a pupil’s needs and it should be the candidate’s normal way of working..

The school will need to have observed that the candidate has for example:

  • a learning difficulty which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on their ability to write legibly
  • a medical condition
  • a physical disability
  • a sensory impairment
  • poor handwriting
  • planning and organisational problems when writing by hand


The subsequent cost for 1:1 Learning Support or EAL lessons is £40.00 for a 50 minute lesson. There is no charge incurred for group or in class support lessons.

Please contact Krystle Flack, Head of Learning Support with any queries or requests for further information: KJF@cranleigh.org


Mrs K J Flack

Head of Learning Support