Some children with SEND benefit from a longer and slower start to school than other children. Sometimes a part-time timetable could offer a gentler start to school. You may agree with school that a part time placement is a good thing initially, but when your child is statutory school age they have a right to a full time place. We therefore recommend that any arrangements like this have a clear aim and an agreement about when the part-time placement will end and the child will start full time.
You can find out more about the age children start school here as well as the possibility of a deferred start.
Similarly, if your child has a medical condition or is recovering from illness, you may agree that part time provision or a session at home to recuperate is appropriate. Again this must be done with your consent and with clear objectives.
Some children are affected by anxiety or autism-related meltdowns which means they can’t always cope in school. In many cases like this, where the child is so overwhelmed by school it seems like they cannot cope full time without becoming upset or showing challenging behaviour, what may work better is full time attendance at school, but with significantly reduced demands; for example, being allowed to work on the computer or play outside most of the day, with a planned very gradual increase in more formal activities. For other children with these difficulties, a short-term part-time timetable might be considered. This kind of provision must also be short-term and regularly reviewed, with clear measures of progress in the child’s wellbeing to check that the programme is working.