Accessibility Policy

Link to School Aims

The mission statement for St Wilfrid’s Catholic Academy is:

“Learning and growing together in faith and friendship.”

To this end the Academy committee and the school will work to make sure all students, staff, parents, and other stakeholders are able to access the physical environment, the curriculum, and information provided by the school.

Legal Framework

The Equality Act 2010 places a legal obligation on schools making it unlawful to discriminate against students, staff and other stakeholders with a disability. This Act brings together several different equality laws including the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001(SENDA), the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA) and the Equality Act 2010.

The Act also places an anticipatory duty on schools to consider what reasonable adjustments need to be made to improve access to the schools’ services for any stakeholder with a disability, including pupils, staff, parents and carers and any other visitors to school, without waiting until the adjustment is actually needed.

The Academy committee of St Wilfrid’s Catholic Academy is committed to a fair and equal treatment of all individuals able bodied or disabled and, on a continuous basis, will work towards improving access to the physical environment, to the curriculum and to the provision of information in order to work towards access for all.

Aim of the plan

The aims of this statement and the Accessibility Plan are to ensure that St Wilfrid’s Catholic Academy continues to work towards increasing the accessibility of provision for all pupils, staff and visitors to the school. The Accessibility Plan will contain relevant actions to:

·         Improve access to the physical environment of the school, adding specialist facilities as necessary. This covers improvements to the physical environment of the school and physical aids to access education.

·         Increase access to the curriculum for pupils with a disability, expanding the curriculum as necessary to ensure that pupils with a disability are as, equally, prepared for life as are the able-bodied pupils. This covers teaching and learning and the wider curriculum of the school such as participation in after-school clubs, leisure and cultural activities or school visits. It also covers the provision of specialist aids and equipment, which may assist these pupils in accessing the curriculum.

·         Improve the delivery of written and electronic information to pupils, staff, parents and visitors with disabilities. Examples might include handouts, timetables, textbooks and information about the school and school events. The information should be made available in various preferred formats within a reasonable time frame.

Action Plans are attached, relating to these key aspects of accessibility and showing how the School will address the priorities identified. These plans will be reviewed and adjusted on an annual basis. New plans will be drawn up every three years.

St Wilfrid’s Catholic Academy follows guidance from the Equality Act 2010 which states:

“The Act defines disability as when a person has a ‘physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on that person’s ability to carry out normal day to day activities.’ Some specified medical conditions, HIV, multiple sclerosis and cancer are all considered as disabilities, regardless of their effect.”

Furthermore;

“They must not discriminate and they must make reasonable adjustments for disabled children and young people."

To ensure that the Equality Act 2010 is implemented across the Academy all policies refer to the above statements.

Involvement of disabled people in developing a Disability Equality Scheme

It is the intention to consult with all stakeholders (students, parents/carers, regular visitors to the school) with disabilities to form the Action points in our Accessibility Plan. The Accessibility Plan will be available to all stakeholders and the progress made will be reported annually. Monitoring, review and evaluation will be an integral part of the scheme. Stakeholders specifically involved in the various aspects will be asked to contribute at the planning/implementation/review stages.

Reviewing/Monitoring

The Accessibility Plan will be reviewed annually and monitored through the appropriate committee of the Academy committee. The plan will be fully revised every three years.

1. Increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum

Target

Strategy

/Action

Timeframe

Resources

Person Responsible

Outcome

To improve staff awareness of disability

Staff meeting to audit and train staff on Disability and the Equality Act 2010

By Jan 2015

Audit

Staff time

Training materials

CS

Staff confident and aware of different disabilities.

Greater awareness and confidence in supporting pupils with disabilities

Make links with local special school to arrange Outreach support if required

Jan 2015

Transport

Staff time

 

CS

Staff aware and confident in accessing Outreach programmes to improve outcomes for pupils with disability.

 

2. Improve the physical environment of the school for the purpose of increasing the extent to which disabled pupils are able to take advantage of education and benefits, facilities or services provided or offered by the school.

Target

Strategy

/Action

Timeframe

Resources

Person Responsible

Outcome

Identify improvements for staff, pupils, parents and carers with hearing and visual impairments.

Contact SENDs advisor to make reasonable adjustments to school environment.

April 2015

Professional advice

Funding

CS

Pupils, staff, parents and carers able to access the services and facilities.

 

3. Improving the delivery to disabled parents/pupils of information which is readily accessible to parents/pupils who are not disabled

Target

 

 

 

Strategy

/Action

Timeframe

Resources

Person Responsible

Outcome

To ensure that all written communications state that information can be requested in an alternative format

Office staff to insert phase “If you require this information in an alternative format please let us know”, this should be in a large font

November 2014

Office staff time

CS

All parents can access resources in required format.

To broaden communication routes between parents/ teaching staff

Audit parents on their preferred methods of communication e.g. text, email and explore possibilities of using social media e.g. Facebook

Audit Jan 2015

Outcomes of audit March 2015

Staff time

Audit

Letters

CS

Increased number of parents able to access shared information.

To improve signage

Identify areas for signage and order/install

Sept 2016

Funding

Professional Advice

Contactors

CS

Improved navigation around school.

 

Policy Written                                               October 2014

Approved by                                                  Senior Leadership Team

Academy Committee

Approved on                                                

To be reviewed annually

To be rewritten                                              October 2017