Admission Criteria

KCC Admission criteria to Special School for pupils with Behaviour, Emotional and Mental Health Needs

Portal House School Admissions Guidance.pdf The parent(s) decide they want non-mainstream education (i.e. place in a special school).
The duty imposed on the LEA by section 316 of the Education Act 1996 to educate the child in a mainstream school is lifted.
Parents express a preference for a particular maintained special school to be named in their child’s statement. Schedule 27 of the Education Act 1996 requires the LEA to comply with parental preference unless:
  • The school is unsuitable to the child’s age, ability, aptitude or special education needs
  • The placement would be incompatible with the efficient education of other children with who the child would be educated
  • The placement would be incompatible with the efficient use of resources.
In considering the parental request for placement within a maintained special school for pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties, the Local Authority must have regard to the following admission criteria: The young person will benefit from a placement at a school committed to reversing patterns of failure associated with school and learning.  These patterns of failure usually manifest themselves in emotional, behavioural and mental health needs as described in the SSEN using the QCA behaviour scales.  They will include students whose present needs are the result of deep seated and long term emotional needs in the pupils with attainment falling within the Normal (N) and Above Normal (AN) as defined by the QCA levels for that cohort. The young person will present with most of the following behaviours:
  • Distractibility that inhibits the progress of the young person even with significant adult support and increasingly individualised curriculum.
  • Unpredictably and intensity of the pattern of behaviours which significantly disrupt the learning of peers.
  • Behaviour which is a bizarre and/or self injurious and/or endangers others and leads to a significant level of rejection by peers increasing the social isolation of the young person
  • Significant unhappiness, stress and/or disaffection over a sustained period often accompanied by prolonged periods of absence associated with an increasing awareness by the young person of their situation, which has lead to a negative attitude towards education
The pupil may also be on the autistic continuum but responds well to BESD provision. The students will require an intensive multi-agency approach and appropriate out of hours support. The school will cater for Key Stage 3 and 4 students. Informed by psychologist assessment and/or pupil tracking pupils’ projected attainment should be:
Need Attainment End of KS2 End of KS3 End of KS4
BESD Normal/Above Normal L3-5 L5-7 5+GCSE a - C
Whenever possible, pupils will be given opportunities to access mainstream inclusion with the percentage of inclusion being determined by the pupil’s individual level of functioning, social and academic.  The amount of inclusion may well begin at a low level and for some pupils, this may remain appropriate.