SENCO Clusters and Provision Mapping
What are SENCO Clusters?
In order to use the experience and expertise of SENCOs in Sutton schools, the Local Area implemented ‘SENCO clusters’ in September 2020. Funding has been agreed to support the development of SENCO clusters for a minimum of two years. Below is a summary of the functions that the SENCO clusters will undertake - not all of the functions of SENCO clusters are operational at this stage but this is the intention over time.
SENCO Clusters are groups of SENCOs from mainstream schools across Sutton that meet regularly throughout the academic year to fulfill the following functions:
- Sharing best practice and expertise in meeting needs across schools through case study information
- Sharing best practice across the clusters through peer reviews and Quality Assurance processes
- Developing a consistent understanding of provision in settings using consistent approaches to provision mapping
- Moderating across their schools to ensure consistency and common understanding of levels of need
- Considering any cases seen as ‘exceptional’ and give advice, support or confirm that level across the group
- Coordinating any central allocation of resources such as EP time, or therapies or contingency fund for transition and planning their use
- Coordinating and managing central funding for eg SENCO conference, training, Lead SENCO work
- Pooling monies to share/purchase resources across the cluster as agreed
- Be the first stage moderation of requests for exceptional needs funding with cluster leads then attending a Borough-wide final decision meeting (with key officers attending).
Which schools are in which Clusters and when do they meet?
There are 7 clusters across the Borough and a programme of meetings have been agreed. The 2020/21 programme and list of schools by cluster can be found here. Schools are organised primarily around phase (primary and secondary) however cross phase clusters meet to help address thematic cross phase issues such as transition,
Cluster Lead SENCOs
The Local Authority has appointed 7 Lead Cluster SENCOs working across the LA and the Cluster one day each week. Lead SENCOs are drawn from existing schools in Sutton to play a lead role in the development and facilitation of clusters.
The contact details of each of the Lead Cluster SENCOs can be found on ‘Knowledge Hub’. Knowledge Hub is a private online collaborative platform run by Sutton SENCos for Sutton SENCOs. Visit the Knowledge Hub website (external link). The platform brings together an online forum, SENCO calendar and a library of resources or key information. If you are a SENCO and do not yet have access you can click on the link above, register, then find the Sutton SENCO forum group and request to join. Alternatively you can contact your Cluster Lead SENCO.