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Assessing the provision of ICT for Inclusion: Overview 1 in a set of 8

An overview of special educational needs and ICT provision

This checklist provides you with an overview of recent developments in special educational needs
policy and tells you where to find the key documents that relate to the use of ICT.

A checklist for teachers
1 Are you familiar with the fundamental principles of the Special Educational Needs (SEN) Code of
Practice?

2 Do you know what the National Curriculum says about inclusion and ICT across the curriculum?

3 Do you know about the implications of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001 for
learners who have special needs?

4 Do you know what ICT can offer learners who have special needs?

5 Do you know where you can find resources on the web to help you meet the needs of learners
who have special needs?

1. What guidance does the SEN Code of Practice give?
The SEN Code of Practice sets out these fundamental principles:

• A child with SEN should have their needs met.
• The SEN of children will normally be met in mainstream schools or early education
settings.
• The views of the child should be sought and taken into account.
• Parents have a vital role to play in supporting their child's education.
• Children with SEN should be offered full access to a broad, balanced and relevant
education, including an appropriate curriculum for the foundation stage of the
National Curriculum.

Where can I find out more?

• SEN Code of Practice can be downloaded from the DfES SEN web site
[http://www.dfes.gov.uk/sen/viewDocument.cfm?dID=260].
• DfES SEN Toolkit 2001, see in particular Principles and Policies,
[http://www.dfes.gov.uk/sen/viewDocument.cfm?dID=263] contains practical
advice on how to implement the Code.
• Code of Practice On-line Conference [http://forum.ngfl.gov.uk/cgi-bin/webx?vtc-
14@@.ee712f4] is a web-based discussion group that has been set up to inform
SENCOs, teachers and other education professionals of the implications of the
new legislation.
• See also: What is the Code of Practice and How can I use ICT to support the Code of
Practice

© Becta 2002 http://www.ictadvice.org.uk page 1 of 3
published March 2002
Becta | ict advice | timesaver | Assessing the provision of ICT for Inclusion: Overview

2. What does the National Curriculum say about inclusion and ICT across the
curriculum?
The National Curriculum Teaching Requirements on inclusion [http://www.nc.uk.net/inclusion.html]
state that schools have a responsibility to provide a broad and balanced curriculum for all pupils.

National Curriculum Teaching Requirements on the use of ICT across the curriculum
[http://www.nc.uk.net/use_ict.html] state that pupils should be given opportunities to apply and
develop their ICT capability through the use of ICT tools to support their learning in all subjects.

3. What are the implications of the Special Educational Needs and Disability
Act 2001 for learners with special needs?
The Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001
[http://www.legislation.hmso.gov.uk/acts/acts2001/20010010.htm] makes it unlawful for education
providers to discriminate against disabled pupils, students and adult learners, or put them at a
disadvantage.

The Code of Practice [http://www.drc-gb.org/drc/InformationAndLegislation/Page34A.asp] for
implementing the SEN DDA Act in schools (as well as the Code for post-16 provision) can be
downloaded from the web site of the Disability Rights Commission.

4. What can ICT offer learners who have special needs?
ICT can be a motivating learning medium. Many learners are attracted to computers and want to
learn through them. Software applications incorporating colour, pictures, animations, sound and
humour can build on that interest, creating attractive learning opportunities to engage pupils.

ICT presents information in different ways. Students learn through different channels so information
presented in multimedia form gives them more opportunities to connect. Information can be
accessed through text, graphics or sound to suit the students' individual learning styles and strengths.

ICT offers an opportunity for social interaction. Students can work together around the computer,
focusing on the learning task. Through this medium they can develop their language and social skills
as well as learn from one another.

ICT provides a range of assistive technology tools. Hardware and software enable many learners with
access difficulties to overcome barriers. Physical, sensory and learning difficulties can be supported
by the use of ICT.

See the other timesavers which focus on how ICT can meet the various individual needs of pupils
with special educational needs.

5. What can ICT offer teachers of learners who have special needs?
ICT offers a tool for differentiation.

Why should I do this? What exists to help me do this?
Many software applications offer different levels of Increasingly software developers are putting materials
difficulty to suit different needs. Tasks created by on the web that you can download and use with the
teachers themselves can be saved, and then software they produce. These can then be
adapted to provide the level of support required by individualised further (see the document ‘Where to find
an individual learner. free Sen software’).
Becta | ict advice | timesaver | Assessing the provision of ICT for Inclusion: Overview

ICT offers a means of creating relevant teaching materials of a high standard.

Why should I do this? What exists to help me do this?
Images taken with a digital camera, recorded The Teacher Resource Exchange offers teachers the
voices and appropriate text can all be incorporated opportunity to share electronic materials they have
into software packages to create resources that created [http://tre.ngfl.gov.uk].
learners can relate to through their personal
experiences.

ICT offers access to freely available information and materials.

Why should I do this? What exists to help me do this?
The Internet is a source not only of free materials There are lots of places you can start. Your LEA web
to enhance the curriculum but also of information site will suggest sites to visit as do the other
about a wide range of special educational needs. timesavers on this site.
E-mail and web-based forums offer channels The Inclusion site [http://inclusion.ngfl.gov.uk] is a
through which teachers can connect to a wider catalogue of resources you can use to meet individual
society and find professional support. needs. It also lists e-mail forums that focus on SEN
and inclusion.

ICT offers an efficient way of keeping records.

Why should I do this? What exists to help me do this?
Record keeping of individual pupil progress and See the 'How to use ICT to support the Code of
contacts with outside agencies is an important part Practice' information on this site.
of the work of teachers of learners with special
educational needs, but it is also time consuming.
Using a word processor or specially designed
software can save valuable teacher time.