Imperial Avenue Infant School

Imperial Avenue Infant School

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Designated Specialist Provision

Click on the link below for even more information about our DSP class. 

Imperial Avenue Infant School – Designated Specialist Provision


Imperial Avenue Infant school has not got control over who is admitted to the DSP, this is decided by the Special Education Service (SES) at panel meetings.  Children who attend Imperial Avenue Infant School do not have priority access to a space in the DSP.  Within the City there are other Infant and Primary DSPs which specialise in communication and interaction difficulties too. 


Staff in the DSP


Mrs C Woolman– Teacher

Miss N Gutteridge – Level 3 TA

Miss L Pope – Level 2 TA

Mrs M Malin - SENCo and PPA cover

Designation – Communication and interaction needs

Age range – 3- 7yrs (F1 to Yr2)

PAN 10


Aims and Purpose of the DSP

  • Provide children with specialist teaching targeted at those with communication and interaction difficulties
  • Provide a structured and supported environment where the children feel secure, develop confidence and reach their full potential
  • Provide a curriculum that meets individualised children’s needs using a wide range of teaching methods and strategies
  • Provide opportunities for individualised intervention groups or 1 to 1 sessions
  • Allow children to join their peers in their class age range for specific lesson where appropriate
  • To work in close partnership with parents, carers and other professionals
  • To provide as many inclusion opportunities as possible alongside their mainstream peers. 


Admission criteria

The DSP is for children who may already have an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) or be undergoing assessments to apply for one, which details the need for communication and Interaction. Included in this criterion are children with

  • Interaction difficulties
  • Communication difficulties
  • Children on or diagnosed on the ASD pathway


Children who are likely to be offered a place will be at the following points within their development on admission: 

  • Children who have a minimum Language level of between 18 months - 2 years (The Communication Trust, Universally Speaking) 
  • Children who have a foundation of interaction skills which we can support them to develop further.  This ensures that inclusion into the mainstream environment is possible, meaningful and purposeful for each child. 
  • Children who are able to access a Semi-formal  taught curriculum


Admissions will not be decided by the school. Children requiring a place will have to do so through SES admissions route and through their EHCP meetings. Children who gain a place will mostly be from Leicester City or Leicestershire.

The DSP is unable to cater for children with complex sensory, physical and medical needs. 


Provision and Facilities

The DSP caters for 10 children across early years and into key stage 1.  Most children will have an EHCP but we do have spaces for assessment of children who have communication and interaction needs. The DSP base has a large teaching area, a kitchen area, a changing and toileting area and a multi-sensory room.


Home to school transport.

If needed, transport will be provided in accordance with the Local Authority SEND transport policy.


Identifying and reviewing Need

The DSP will operate within the framework of the revised SEND code of practise 2014 and Local Authority Guidance. All children with an EHCP will have individualised targets. Progress towards these targets will be continually monitored. They are formally reviewed 3 times a year (once will be at the annual EHCP review process) with parents/carers. At these meetings, new targets may be set in collaboration with professionals, parents/carers and the child where appropriate. Children’s targets will be communicated with all professionals involved with the child.

Children may also undergo other formal and informal assessments, where appropriate, by the DSP staff team, SENCO and other agencies.


Access to other curriculum areas and strengths for the individualised child

We see inclusion as a strength in our school. The DSP is a valued and integrated part of the Imperial Avenue Infant School community.  Children will have specific lessons in the DSP but will then have lessons, where children have strengths, in the school with their peers in their year group. These lessons will be meet the requirements of the EYFS and National curriculum.  Children will receive the levels of support needed to enable them to progress within the mainstream environment. This will ensure that the individual needs of the children are met.  The curriculum will reflect the needs of the children and provide them with focused and meaningful learning which addresses the social, communication and interaction needs for each child.


Home school links

Parent/carers are actively encouraged to be involved with all aspects of their child’s education. Parents evening are held twice a year (October and February), EHCP reviews are held yearly but targets reviewed three times a year. Parents/ carers are welcome in school at any time.  Appointments can be made via the school office to arrange a meeting with the teacher at their convenience.

In school we use the Weduc App to communicate with parents. Teachers are able to send messages to parents and vice versa.  Teachers may also post updates on what has been happening within the classroom that week. Children will be set homework. 

Link Beyond School

Staff will have access to training and a full range of service from the Local Authority and Specialist Education Service (SES). We are also to be linked with a specialist provision locally soon to be confirmed.



The Communication Trust - Universally Speaking 0-5 years