Skip to main content
Coronavirus | Updates, advice and resources for families and practitioners

Epping Forest College (Local SEND Offer)

As part of the Children and Families Act 2014, all colleges in Redbridge are required to make available their Local SEND Offer to families which details how they can support young people with a special educational need and/or disability (SEND).

Scroll down or click on the headings below to see details of this college's local SEND offer:

An overview of the College

Our college

  • Epping Forest College is a medium sized provider of further education offering a broad based curriculum to meet the needs of the extended local community.
  • The college is a striking building nestling amongst trees in the Loughton area of North East London, close to Debden Central Line station. The college is fully accessible to wheelchair users and with a structured pedestrian crossing system to ensure safe access to independent travellers.
  • Over 3,000 students attend Epping Forest College and the student population is made up of a diverse cultural and ethnic mix.
  • It is a testament to the inclusive culture of the College that the diverse backgrounds are valued and Ofsted noted the ‘harmonious atmosphere’ that pervades the institution.
  • Learners with disabilities are warmly welcomed by the college and fully integrated into college life and able to access our curriculum which includes certificated programmes of study supporting the development of   literacy and numeracy and employability, complemented by leisure based units of study.
  • All EFC learners with additional needs [SEN] enjoy and achieve!

Our response to the SEND developments

  • Epping Forest College is an active member of the NEL partnership and has formed  a network of links with local authorities and partner agencies across the region
  • We are fully prepared to meet our new duties under the SEND  Code of Practice and we look forward to enabling all our learners with learning difficulties, differences and disabilities to realise their full potential and achieve the best possible outcomes

Our courses for learners with additional needs

  • Learners are welcome to enrol for any programme of study for which they fulfil the entry requirements.
  • In addition, we have a wide range of full and part time programmes specially designed for learners with learning difficulties and disabilities.
  • Programmes of study range from pre-entry level to Entry 3 Level with good progression onto a range of Progression courses that prepare learners to either continue to study in a vocational area of gain employability skills.
  • These programmes aim to promote independent living skills, employability skills and life skills - with embedded English and maths.
  • In terms of employability we prepare learners to work in the hospitality, retail and catering industry and focus on performing arts. All full time programmes are accredited and lead to gaining a qualification.
  • We have specialist teaching staff and work closely with learning support to ensure the needs of individual learners are met. We are a lead member of the ICE project (Inclusive Communication Essex) and specialise in promoting adaptive technologies
  • Full time programmes for 14-15 include:  Personal Progress Pre-Entry-Entry 1, Exploring Arts Entry 1, Diploma in Life Skills Entry 2, Diploma in Independent Living Entry 2, Skills for Working Life (Hospitality, Retail and Catering) Entry 3
  • Part time programmes  on offer for 14-15 are: Next Step provision. This is a combination of accredited (Award in Independent Living) and non-accredited leisure based courses. These range from Out and About, Gardening, Animal Care, Volunteering, Household Skills, Decorative Crafts, Meal Preparation and Cooking , DIY and Fitness for Life

Identifying additional needs

How will the college know if a young person needs additional help and how do they keep parents/carers informed?

  • At application, in person, on line or by post applicants can disclose their learning support needs
  • On receipt of the application, college admissions send out SENCO forms for  schools  to provide info on learners history of need; current support and transition plans-including copies of Assessment Reports ,Transition Reviews, 139a forms and [from 14-15] EHCP forms
  • The ALS leader monitors and tracks these- and phone consultations, pre enrolment visits and tasters are organised by our Student Liaison Facilitator
  • Further assessments may involve a specialist such as the Educational Psychologist, Student Counselling Service or Speech and Language Therapy service; students are encouraged tp discuss specialist assessment reports with their support worker and/or ALS Leader
  • On programme, emerging needs can be raised  by a parent/carer, by the teaching staff or by the young person at any time and support needs can be re-assessed and  support modified
  • Initial  Assessments, Pen Portraits and Support Plans are produced for learners  and can be shared with teachers, support staff and parents

Dedicated contacts at the college

Who should parents/carers contact if they have any questions or concerns about SEND?

Linda Chesters
Learning Support Leader
0208 502 8607

Sally  Pearce
Student Liaison ALS Facilitator

Kathryn Lowe
Section Head PLW

Involving young persons and parents/carers in planning support

How does the college involve students and parents/carers in planning to meet SEND?

  • Planning and review meetings
    Support staff informally  review academic progress and well-being on daily basis

    Formal Termly reviews are conducted and all staff and destination planning is standard practice for all learners

  • Individual pupil/ teacher conversations
    These are standard practice and students are encouraged to play an active and dynamic part in the planning of their learning and support.

    Students voices and views are important to us at EFC and  teachers especially value the input from learners with additional needs

  • Parent Support Advisor
    There is ongoing liaison with many parents and  Parents/carers are encouraged to discuss progress or any significant changes needed to ensure support is effective

    The young person and parents/carers are invited to meet the Tutor and Learning Support staff and participate in planning discussions at key  stages throughout each learner’s journey

There is ongoing liaison with all external agencies connected with EFC  learners with SEND.

Range of support available to pupils with SEND

What different kinds of support are available to young people with SEND?

  • Curriculum adaptations/differentiation
  • Specific teaching interventions
  • Support for behaviour
  • Specified individual support
  • Monitoring for health needs/ storage of medication
  • Assessment for examination access arrangements
  • Individual 1-1 support or counselling
  • Specialist teaching groups
  • Assessment & Support for communication needs/assistive technologies

Measuring progress

How will the college know how well students are doing and how will they inform parents/carers about this?

  • Learners progress is measured through individual targets based on an assessment of their needs
  • Targets and set and monitored and tracked on  “E-Tracker” an online system for monitoring learner progress
  • E-tracker is also used to carry out Progress Audits on a termly basis and is accessible to students and their parents
  • Learning Support Assistants and the ALS Leader attend department meetings and discuss student progress on a regular basis; offering recommendations for appropriate teaching strategies and  inclusive approaches that help to personalise the learning experience  for students with additional needs 

Support and training for staff

Have any staff received specialist training in SEND?

  • Teaching and support staff are recruited for their specialist training, experience  and passion for working with learners with additional needs
  • The college offers a range of training to promote inclusive teaching and learning and all staff have a monitored  CPD programme
  • In the past year  25 LSAs have  attended training on neuro-diversity with a special focus on optimising support for learners with Aspergers
  • The  highly qualified team of Communication Support Workers have recent training in new assistive technology for sensory impaired learners
  • The ALS Lead is a dyslexia specialist and former Inclusive learning consultant from an  outstanding college;  since taking up her post this year has trained the LSA team  in the production of Support Plans for learners with SEND and provides regular updates following the passage of the Children & Families Act and the colleges new duties

Accessibility of the college

How is the college accessible to young people with SEND?

Epping  Forest college is fully accessible and offers full facilities for learners who require personal care


How does the college ensure that young people with SEND are included in all activities, social events, sport and recreation, field work and vocational experience?

  • All students enrolled at Epping Forest College have full access to the facilities and activities on offer.
  • The college canteen is fully accessible with height adjustable tables for wheelchair users and the restaurant offers a wide range of meals catering for various dietary needs
  • We provide support during break and lunch times so that there is always someone the students know should they need assistance
  • Students with additional needs are fully supported on visits and work experience –including the provision of communicators /signers /carers as appropriate - and all related technology
  • Risk Assessments are carried out across the  year as appropriate and external agencies are provided with full details in advance
  • Teaching staff , and the ALS support team  work together to ensure a fully inclusive experience   


How will the college support pupils with SEND to make a good start and eventually to move on to further training or employment and independent adult living?

  • Careful consideration is given to preparing students with SEND for transition at all stages
  • Across the academic year, The  ALS Student Liaison Facilitator  co-ordinates all aspects of transition for those learners applying for our specialist courses, or those  with more complex needs
  • Initial contact is made with the school in the student’s final year and before if appropriate
  •  Applicants are able to  visit the college with their parents/carers and meet saff and students during the spring and summer terms
  • The Facilitator organises drop-in sessions to discuss transition, arrange a  tour of the area and college facilities and to discuss any related concerns.
  • EFC staff devote much effort to preparing our students educationally, socially and emotionally well in advance of their enrolment.
  • Our transition services enable  prospective students and their families to  get a  feel of what  EFC can offer and how by working together we can ensure an enjoyable transition for every learner with additional needs
  • In their first week at college, students complete our induction course which is tailored to individual needs. New students are able to get to know their peers, staff, and the college surroundings involved in activities which are both good fun and informative
  • When moving on from college, staff will liaise closely with parents/carers, and share information with new providers as requested – to ensure the best possible preparation for that vital next step 

Support and training for parents/carers

What support and training is available to parents and carers?


Further information for families and practitioners

Please refer to the college website for further information or contact staff detailed in dedicated Contact Section

Who to contact

020 8508 8311
Epping Forest College Website

Where to go

Epping Forest College
Borders LaneLoughtonEssexIG10 3SA
IG10 3SA

Other Details

14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 and over
Back to top Powered by Open Objects © Open Objects Software Limited