Moving between phases of education
Support at home
Moving between different phases of education, such as primary to secondary school, is often referred to as transition. This can be an exciting and anxious experience for your child and your family.
Before your child starts a new school, there are some things you can do before to help prepare:
- talk positively about the move, discuss the things that will be the same or the things that will be different
- encourage them to share any anxieties they may have about the move so you can address these at the earliest possible opportunity
- get a map of the school to check where different rooms will be, such as their form room or science labs
- practice the journey to and from school, especially is this involves public transport
- look at the school prospectus or website together to help become familiar with the new school
- follow the school on social media
- attend any events the new school might be hosting, to help to get know the school.
Support into school
Before your child starts a new school, there are some things you can do to prepare:
- check arrangements are in place so information about your child’s needs and the extra help that has been in place are shared.
- find out if your child can take part in any transition activities the school might be running.
- make sure areas of progress and successes and any special interests and skills your child has are highlighted.
You could also create a simple profile to be shared with staff to support a shared understanding of needs and provide continuity of approach, it may include:
- areas of strength and personal interests
- things that might cause them anxiety and stress and the impact of this on behaviour
- strategies that help soothe and calm
- how they like to be helped - what has worked well and how can this be replicated in a different school
- how they communicate - verbally and non-verbally, for example visible signs of stress and anxiety.
Phase transfer reviews
In year 6, your child's school will hold a phase transfer review (which is also the annual review) of your child’s educational, health and care (EHC) plan. The aim of this review is to discuss future placements, as well as to review the EHC plan.
As part of the annual review paperwork, it is important that you include your request for the next school or provision. When this is submitted to us, we will consult your preferred school or provision and potentially other schools or provisions that may be able to meet your child’s needs.
Find out more about the phase transfer review meeting and process.
Support from us
We are here to answer any questions you may have about your child starting a new school. For support, you can contact:
- Derby SENDIASS
- your SEND Officer if your child has an EHCP.