0-5 SEND Support Service including Portage and Sheffield Early Years Language Centre

Portage

A Council-run service providing SEND support across all areas of need.

Supports children: 0–3 years.

Referral reason: Referrals are made for children aged 0-3 years old with significant and complex special educational needs and/or disabilities.  This is to help parents who are asking for support to encourage their child’s development and to help find an appropriate educational setting for the future.

People involved: Portage Senior Home Visitor and Portage Home Visitors   

Offer: The service offers practical advice and support to parents.

It will offer an initial home visit to explore possible offers and help parents to understand their child’s additional needs.  Then fortnightly home visits will offer practical support for example, using special toys to encourage development through play.

The service will also signpost to other support services as appropriate, and support families where children need joint further assessments – such as applying for an Education Health and Care (EHC) Plan.

How to refer to the Portage service

Referrals are not made directly to the Portage Service but to the 0-5 SEND Support Service.  Click here to open the flowchart for the referral process.

Referrals are usually made by medical professionals. Others are made by agreement after a telephone discussion with the Senior Portage Visitor or 0-5 SEND Support Service lead.

The portage service provides intervention at key points for children they support.

Children who are displaying social communication difficulties are allocated to an Early Years Inclusion teacher.

Click here to open the referral form.

Telephone: 0114 273 6411

E-mail 0-5SEND.SupportService@sheffield.gov.uk  

5 cartoon people, one is in a wheelchair

0-5 SEND Service

A Council-run service providing SEND support across all areas of need.

Supports children: 0–5 years old (until end of reception class).

Referral reason: Concerns about the special educational support needs for children aged 0-5+ years old.

The service supports children whose needs are at levels 3 and above on the Early Years Sheffield Support Grid

People involved: Inclusion teachers, Inclusion Assistants and Portage Home Visitors

Offer:The service provides advice, support and training to educational setting staff.

This support might include:

  • Early identification and assessment of complex needs
  • Onward referrals / joint assessments with medical professionals
  • Advice about targeted support strategies
  • Packages of support
  • Advice about monitoring and reviewing support
  • SEND training and development for staff
  • SENCo briefings
  • Reports and referrals for statutory assessments
  • Transition planning/ support (please also see Mainstream Education and young people with Education, Health and Care plans)

Early Years settings need to complete the Sheffield EYFS Transition Record for each child who is moving into Foundation Stage 2/Reception and share this with their new school. 

This gives information about the child.  This includes any support that is currently in place, with parental consent. This is to help make transition to school more successful.  It will be completed for all Early Years children.

The Sheffield EYFS Transition Record should also be completed if children move to a new Early Years setting, at any time of the year.

If a child is currently supported by the 0-5 SEND service, we will provide a transition offer.  This will be supported by the Early Years Inclusion Teacher and Assistant.  This is both before, and after transition. 

You can access the Sheffield EYFS Transition Record by clicking here.

How to refer to the 0-5 SEND Service

Referrals can be made for children at levels 3-5 of the Early Years Sheffield Support Grid for children in nursery groups, and for children at levels 4 -5 of the grid for children in reception classes.

Click here to open the flowchart for the referral process.

Children referred should have a learning difficulty or developmental delay as part of their profile of needs.

Referrals are made by health professionals, educational settings, Council services and parents.  Click here to open the referral form.

(Children with behavioural difficulties need to be referred to MAST. Reception children with social communication difficulties need to be referred to the Autism team).

Where agencies are unsure about a referral, we welcome a telephone call to help. 

Telephone: 0114 273 6411 (Monday to Friday)

E-mail 0-5SEND.SupportService@sheffield.gov.uk  

Term Time Dedicated 0-5 SEND Phoneline

The phoneline is operated by the Early Years Inclusion Teachers.  It is available on Monday, Wednesday and Friday 1pm-4pm term time only.

Parents and professionals are welcome to use this service.

Contact number: 0114 2037773

Out of these times you can call 0114 273 6411 to speak to a member of the Business Support Team who will be able to request a call back from one of the 0-5 SEND key workers.

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Sheffield Early Years Language Centre (Ucan)

Sheffield Early Years Language Centre (Ucan) is funded jointly by the NHS and Sheffield Local Authority.

Supports: Pre-school children and children up to reception

Referral reason: Referrals are made for pre-school children with identified developmental language disorder  (DLD).

People involved: speech and language therapists from the NHS and a teacher and assistant from the 0-5 SEND team.

Offer: A place to support the child and provide training for parents and Early Years practitioners in meeting children's needs.

The centre is based at Primrose Family Centre, Creswick Street, Sheffield.

How to refer to the Sheffield Early Years Language Centre

Children are referred to the centre by Speech and Language Therapists.

Children are assessed by a speech and language therapist and evidence is provided by the therapist and teacher (who will have sought parents’/carers’ views) about the child’s needs and their impact on the child’s well being and development. All the evidence is then taken to the centre admissions panel where the severity of the child’s needs and the appropriateness of a place at the centre is discussed and a decision is arrived at. The therapist will already have talked with parents about the provision at the centre.

For more information, contact the 0-5 SEND Team:

Telephone: 0114 273 6411

E-mail 0-5SEND.SupportService@sheffield.gov.uk  

The section 23 referral is to be used for the sole purpose of the NHS fulfilling its statutory obligation to notify the Local Authority of a child 0-to-5 years-old who has, or is likely to have, special educational needs or a disability (SEND). This duty is set out in the Children and Families Act 2014 (legislation.gov.uk).

This notification will result in the child’s details being added to the Council’s children's services database. Parents and carers will also be contacted to give them information about funding and support pathways.

A range of pathways exist for 0-19 health services and health services to refer into local authority SEND services. There are also existing processes in place for pre-school children to access support early on. For this reason, in Sheffield the Section 23 notification form is only required when:

  • the local health professional (i.e. GP, Clinic Nurse, Health Visitor, Community Midwife), has not already notified the Local Authority.
  • the family are not accessing a Local Authority service, such as the 0-5 Special Educational Needs and/or Disability service (includes Portage).

However, if there is any doubt about whether to make a referral, send a notification form to  0-5SEND.SupportService@sheffield.gov.uk

Click here to download the referral form.

A copy of the privacy notice can be found here: Privacy notice | Sheffield City Council

Available under the Links and documents section on this page

  • 0-5 SEND Service structure
  • 0-5 SEND Service offer
  • Decision making process for referrals
  • Early Years Sheffield Support Grid
  • Transitions - Early Years toolkit
  • The graduated approach for Early Years
  • Childcare funding for children with SEND
  • Using a Zones of Regulation approach at the Sheffield Early Years Language Centre

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