Information about Learning Support at Clearview

At Clearview Primary School we recognise the diverse learning needs of our students and the need for barrier-free access to education. We work with students and their families/whānau to identify and address any barriers that may stop students from accessing, participating in, or remaining engaged in education. This includes Māori and Pasifika learners, disabled learners, and those with learning support needs (NELP Priority 3)

Every child learns in different ways and at different rates. If your child doesn't seem to be learning in the same way as other children or is having difficulty with speaking, hearing, seeing, moving about, or with their behaviour then they may need some extra support to learn and develop.

Clearview Primary staff work hard to get to know your child and we provide most of the support for children with learning support needs. As a parent, you're usually the first to notice differences between your child and others of a similar age - you’re their first teacher after all. You'll want to know if there is an issue and if there is, what can be done to help your child, who to go to for help and how to navigate this support.

If you're concerned about your child’s learning and development, your first place to go is to your child's teacher. They can answer questions and if there is a need for further support, they may wish to involve the Learning Support Coordinator in future discussions or meetings. The below flowchart shows the process for gaining additional support at Clearview Primary.

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) 

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a culturally inclusive framework. Although UDL has been developed in the USA, it resonates for us here in Aotearoa. UDL takes a people-first approach to planning learning. It asks us to think about who we will teach and what those learners bring with them before we think about what we will teach and how we will teach it. UDL is focussed on ensuring all learners get a chance to learn in ways that work for them. It is about removing barriers and opening doors to learning.

Here is a video to explain more about UDL & the New Zealand Curriculum.

Identifying Learning Support Needs

Every student has the right to achieve success and make progress at school, regardless of their ability. At Clearview, we use a UDL model (Universal Design for Learning) so that students are able to use a range of supports and resources and teachers can use a range of strategies to support student learning.

The Ministry of Education's Learning Support Action Plan 2019–2025 sets out priority actions that help ensure children and young people get the right support, at the right time. Learning should be a positive experience for every young person, including those with learning support needs.

Students who may need learning support include:

  • neurodivergent learners
  • learners with disabilities,  specific learning difficulties, communication or behaviour difficulties, and/or sensory or physical impairments
  • gifted learners
  • English language learners (ELL)
  • those who are not achieving, or at risk of not achieving
  • those at risk of disengaging.

Collaborative Action Plans

When a student needs more focused targets and reviews of their learning or behaviour then a collaborative action plan (CAP) is developed. This process involves parents, teachers, and other support agencies as appropriate. 

The CAP is a collaborative process of goal setting and reviewing. It may include:

  • who will be working with the student, their role and what they will do
  • how the student's learning can be supported at home
  • teaching strategies that will support the student to learn
  • resources or special equipment the student might need
  • what success for the student and team working with the student will look like.

The CAP acts as a document detailing what is in place for a student, so that everyone can be clear about their goals or next steps, who is helping and how they are being supported to achieve these goals.

Teaching Assistants (TAs) at Clearview Primary

Our Teaching Assistants (TAs) are a valuable resource. We currently have 12 part time TAs on our team and they are funded from various sources to support our diverse learners. The funding is directed to be used with that student.

Sometimes other people from outside agencies might recommend that your child has a TA to support them (such as your GP or if you have had a professional report for dyslexia or other learning need).  Unfortunately, schools in NZ are not funded in this way and so this may not be possible.

What we try to do as a school is to pool our wonderful TA resources so your child may benefit from a small group or else your child’s teacher may be able to spend time taking a small group while the TA roams around the class. This way means that your child can get some extra support even if they don’t have a TA directly allocated to them.

Of course, this is dependent on the needs across the school and we have to prioritise how this is used.

This is a report from our school inspectors ERO which talks about the best use of TAs and we follow these guidelines.

What you need to know about teacher aides: A guide for parents and whānau

Laura Johnson - Learning Support Coordinator (LSC)
Kia ora koutou,

I took over the Learning Support Coordinator role at Clearview part way through 2023, having moved from Burnham School where I was working as their LSC. Prior to becoming an LSC, I was a classroom teacher and the Special Education Needs Coordinator (SENCO) role at Yaldhurst Model School and spent several years working in South Auckland where I developed my passion for ensuring equity and inclusion for all students.

In 2020, the government announced they would be funding 600 Learning Support Coordinators throughout NZ. Our Kāhui Ako schools cluster group was part of this allocation which resulted in our school being funded one full time LSC, which is my role.

As Learning Support Coordinator I work with the other LSC’s across our Kāhui Ako Cluster of schools (Ngā Peka O Tauwharekākaho). This includes LSC’s from 8 primary schools including Clearview, Rolleston school, Burnham, Weedons West Rolleston, Rolleston Christian school, West Melton and Rolleston College.  We meet at least twice a term to bounce ideas off each other and share new learning. Our mission is to work together to pool resources and ideas for the students in our Kahui Ako. Attached is our vision statement. Through much discussion, we decided the key aspects of our role are Advocate, Support and Partner.

The role is focused on ensuring that children and young people with additional learning needs have access to the services they need.There is an action plan that the Ministry of Education is working on with LSC’s around the country:

Learning Support Action Plan 2019–2025

New Learning Support Delivery Model: six elements

My role is to work collaboratively with teachers, families/whānau and support agencies, such as;

  • Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour (RTLB), 
  • Resource Teacher of Literacy (RTLit), 
  • Mana Ake, 
  • Public Health Nurses
  • Child, Adolescent & Family (CAF)
  • GP and other community organisations.

If you have any concerns regarding your child's learning or emotional well-being, your first point of call is always your child's home base teacher so please contact them first.

I will often be involved in meetings with you or other agencies regarding your child's learning and I am available to support with advice and resources.

He waka eke noa- We are all in this together

Ngā mihi nui

Laura Johnson

Learning Support Coordinator

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