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24-02-2022 - - 0 comments
5 Tips for SENCos

Working as a special education needs coordinator (SENCo) can be a rewarding role. However, it can be difficult to balance the ever-changing demands of students and staff, your work-life balance and your more holistic plan for the school year.


We have some advice as to how you can deal with all of these commitments successfully.


Ask for your colleague's input


Communication is key to having your team run smoothly. By asking your colleagues what they think about your special education needs (SEN) department you can make improvements to the way you function. One of the best ways you can get your colleague’s true opinions is to have more informal conversations for example at lunchtime or when carrying out a duty.


Some of the questions you could ask might include: “Do you think the SEN register is in a user-friendly format?” or “Do you feel like the SEN information you need is easily accessible?”.


Simplify your systems


Over time you may want to simplify your SEN systems. We advise you to start with your referral system, your referrals can build up quickly so having a slot where referrals can be actioned every week will stop you from getting overwhelmed.


Furthermore, ensure you are communicating with colleagues so that they can understand the outcome of their referral.


Lead with care


You should take the lead but also ensure you see yourself as part of the team. As a leader you aren’t expected to know all of the answers, utilising each person in your department and working with those outside of your department on problems is essential. Our blog on tips for being a good role model may help you get into this mindset.


Check-in with your team regularly to see what your colleagues are enjoying and find difficult and work together to alleviate pressure points, you want everyone to enjoy coming to work so making each individual’s work as pleasant as possible is a good place to start.


Seek support


There is a multitude of SENCo forums that will be available in your local area. Building support systems will help you stay up to date on local and national developments within the SEN sector and having an experienced mentor for the earlier months can be an invaluable experience.


Remember your own needs


Being a Senco can very demanding so it’s integral to look after your own well-being. Without taking time for yourself each day you won’t be as productive during the hours you do work. Make sure to take time to move your body every day and eat your meals away from the computer screen (as tempting as it may be to carry on working). 

 

We hope this advice will help you succeed in your SENCo role and if you’re looking for a new role to put this advice into action have a look at our latest roles.

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