The Engagement Model

The DfE has now released the final guidance on The Engagement Model.
The guidance describes the formative and summative assessment of children as “not engaged in subject specific learning”. It will be statutory assessment in schools for those children and young people.

The guidance is an output of the Rochford Review , who have piloted the Model. It builds on the research led for the ‘DfE’, by Professor Barry Carpenter as part of the Complex Learning Disabilities and Difficulties project.

This project identified, through a systematic review of the international literature around learning in children with SEND, that ‘engagement was the single best predicator of successful learning in children with special needs/disabilities’ (Carpenter et al, 2015.)

From this solid evidence based, a pedagogy evolved through systematic research across UK schools, and a series of International trials , which created the Engagement Framework for Learning, ( www,engagement4learning.com) This includes the ‘Engagement Profile’ which aids baseline assessment, and gives insight into the learning pathways of the child with Complex Needs. The Engagement Profile is a classroom based planning tool which links to formative assessment . Both are compatible, and indeed inform , the summative assessment opportunities of the new Engagement Model.

Professor Robin McWilliam , Professor, Special Education and Multiple Abilities at the University of Alabama, USA , and a prolific writer on the subject of  Engagement  said of this new DfE publication ,”You are to be congratulated! In the U.S., we have “alternative assessment” for what, in the U.K., is known as pupils with complex needs. But states differ on what they use and none of them that I know of are focused on engagement. So, well done!

Professor McWilliam and Professor Carpenter, will present further on Engagement for Learning to an International Conference in Turkey in April, 2020 . The UK, which leads the World in so many aspects of special and inclusive education, has a major contribution to make in the area of assessment for children with Special Needs through this ground-breaking work from the Rochford Review.

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Inquiring Minds: Adapting mental wealth journals for pupils with additional needs

This beautifully crafted article by Jo Egerton and Bev Cockbill describes a school based inquiry, generating an evidence base, from which professional judgements can be made about the effectiveness of emotional well being journals as a resource for promoting positive mental health is children with SEND.

It is timely as it addresses practical approaches to Mental Heath in schools, but also demonstrates the power of classroom-based inquiry as a key approach to professional learning for teachers and teaching assistants.

Link Below:

https://www.butterflyprint.co.uk/inquiring-minds/

 

“Let’s Talk Autism”

New article: ‘Let’s Talk Autism’ -a school-based project for students to explore and share their experiences of being autistic

Kathryn Stevenson, Katie Cornell and Vivian Hinchcliffe

Understanding what autism means on a personal level can be an important process for young people on the autistic spectrum, and being able to reflect on this and discuss with autistic peers can be particularly helpful. However, opportunities may be restricted by reluctance to talk about diagnosis and because of difficulties in communication inherent in autism. This article describes a therapeutic media project within an ASD school that attempted to support young people to reflect together about what autism meant for them and create resources to share with others.

The process is described and main themes of discussions analysed using thematic analysis. Main themes emerged of making sense of diagnosis, experiences of difference and transition to adulthood. Various strategies to manage diagnosis and negotiate identity also emerged. Issues around informed consent and confidentiality and the therapeutic value of such groups are discussed.

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