SEN provision: role of teaching staff

Understand the role of teaching staff in the graduated approach to SEN support. Be clear on their responsibilities so you can give your staff the confidence to support pupils with SEN.

Last reviewed on 20 September 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 12730
  1. Follow the 'graduated approach'
  2. 1. Identify pupils who need SEN support
  3. 2. Agree a plan of support for the pupil
  4. 3. Put your plans into action
  5. 4. Review current support arrangements 

This article is based on the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) code of practice, which applies to all schools.

For support with helping your teaching staff understand their responsibilities under this code, use our 30-minute briefing.

Follow the 'graduated approach'

Your school's support for pupils with SEN should follow a 4-part cycle called the 'graduated approach':

1. Assess - identify pupils who need SEN support
2. Plan - agree on support you'll provide for a pupil, in consultation with the pupil's parents 
3. Do - put your plans into action
4. Review - look at the effectiveness of your support and its impact on the pupil's progress

Although your SENCO will support teaching staff throughout the 4 stages (e.g. by providing training), their role is mainly strategic. The class or subject teacher remains responsible for working with the pupils on a daily basis, and has overall responsibility for their