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Glossary

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    Additional Needs
    A child with a condition or disability that requires extra support. Children with additional needs may face challenges across a number of areas including their physical health, mental health or ability to learn.
    ADHD
    A group of behavioural symptoms that include, hyperactivity and impulsiveness. ADHD can occur in people of any intellectual ability. People with ADHD may also have additional problems, such as sleep and anxiety disorders.
    Anxiety
    An intense or overwhelming feeling of fear or discomfort often accompanied by physical symptoms, such as a pounding heart, sweating, nausea, rapid breathing, dizziness, or numbness.
    ASC
    ASC stands for autistic spectrum condition (autism).
    ASD
    Autism and ASC is also referred to as Autistic Spectrum Disorder.
    Asperger syndrome (AS)
    A disability related to autism and often characterised by awkwardness in social interaction and slowness in speech, with a preoccupation with very narrow interests.
    Attachment Disorder
    A broad term that describes disorders of mood, behaviour and social relationships arising from a failure to form expected attachments to primary care giving figures in early childhood.
    Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
    A behavioural issue primarily in children, including symptoms such as poor concentration and learning difficulties
    Autistic Spectrum
    Conditions such as Autism and Asperger’s operate on a spectrum, meaning the conditions cover varying degrees of severity.
    BESD - Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties
    BESD is an acronym used for children with Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties. Letters are sometimes rearranged into SEBD.
    Cognitive
    The process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought. Does not consider sensory or feelings based responses.
    Confidentiality
    To keep something secret, or private, except to those with correct authority to access the information.
    Conflict
    A serious disagreement or argument. Conflict can be verbal or physical.
    Consistency
    Something happening the same way again and again. Consistency is very important for SEN children.
    During transport this might involve taking the same routes, sitting in the same seat, having the same driver and pupil escort.
    County Lines
    County Lines is a term applied where illegal drugs are transported from one area to another, often long distance across police and local authority areas, usually by children or vulnerable people who are coerced into it by gangs. Often, taxis and minibuses are used to try to avoid raising suspicion.
    Crisis
    When describing a child as in ‘crisis’ it means that the child feels as though they are in immense danger or difficulty.
    CSE - Child Sexual Exploitation
    Child Sexual Exploitation is a form of child sexual abuse.
    It occurs where an individual or group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person into sexual activity
    (a) in exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or (b) for the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator. The victim may have been sexually exploited even if the sexual activity appears consensual.
    Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology.
    DBS Certificate
    ‘DBS’ stands for Disclosure and Barring Service. All licensed vehicle drivers and people working with children are legally required to have a DBS certificate.
    Depression
    An illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and that affects the way a person eats, sleeps, feels about himself or herself, and thinks about things.
    Disclosure
    The action of making new or secret information known. For adults on home to school transport any disclosure must be responded to appropriately, recorded and reported as part of your Safeguarding duties.
    Discrimination
    Unfair/unjust prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, colour, age, or sex.
    Distress
    Feelings of extreme anxiety, sadness, or pain.
    Duty of Care
    A legal obligation to always act in the best interest of the individual you have responsibility for. So, as an example, your employer has a duty of care to you, as their employee, and transport teams have a duty of care to the people they’re transporting.
    Dyscalculia
    Severe difficulty in making arithmetical calculations.
    Dyslexia
    A general term for disorders that involve difficulty in learning to read or interpret words, letters, and other symbols, but that do not affect general intelligence.
    Dyspraxia
    A developmental disorder of the brain in childhood causing difficulty in activities requiring coordination and movement.
    Echolalia
    Is the repetition of phrases, words or parts of words. Echolalia may be a sign of autism, a visual impairment or a developmental disability. For example, if you ask ‘how are you?’ the response would be ‘how are you’ rather than ‘I am very well'.
    Emotional Wellbeing
    The state of being emotionally comfortable, healthy, or happy.
    Empathy
    The ability to understand and/or share the feelings for another. Often people on the autistic spectrum struggle to have empathy.
    Epilepsy
    A neurological disorder marked by sudden recurrent episodes of sensory disturbance, loss of consciousness, or seizures, associated with electrical activity in the brain.
    Financial Abuse
    Financial Abuse includes theft, fraud, exploitation (including modern slavery), pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.
    Friendly
    To be kind and pleasant to someone.
    GAD (Generalised Anxiety Disorder)
    Is characterised by excessive, exaggerated anxiety and worry about everyday life events with no obvious reasons for worry.
    Learning Difficulty
    Difficulties in acquiring knowledge and skills to the level expected of those of the same age, especially because of mental disability or cognitive disorder.
    Legislation
    Laws, considered collectively.
    Mainstream Schools
    Schools or academies which are not specialist provision schools.
    Makaton
    A language programme using signs and symbols to help people to communicate. It is designed to support spoken language and the signs and symbols are used with speech, in spoken word order.
    Material Abuse
    Material Abuse includes theft, fraud, exploitation (including modern slavery), pressure in connection with wills, property or inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits.
    Mental Health
    A person’s condition regarding their psychological and emotional well-being.
    Mental Illness
    A condition which causes serious disorder in a person's behaviour or thinking
    Moderate Learning Difficulty (MLD)
    A child with a moderate learning difficulty will have a level of academic attainment significantly lower than their peers. They may have difficulty acquiring literacy and numeracy skills.
    Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI)
    Someone with more than one sensory impairment: eg deaf and blind
    Non-verbal communication
    Communication without the use of spoken language. Non-verbal communication could include gestures, facial expressions, hand and body movements.
    OCD - Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
    People with OCD feel the need to check things repeatedly, perform certain routines repeatedly ("rituals"), or have certain thoughts repeatedly.
    People with OCD are unable to control these thoughts or the need to perform these activities.
    ODD
    A pattern of angry/irritable mood, argumentative/defiant behaviour, or vindictiveness in children and adolescents. ODD is an ongoing pattern of uncooperative, defiant, and hostile behaviour towards authority figures that seriously interferes with the young person’s day to day functioning.
    Organisational Abuse
    Organisational abuse is the mistreatment of people brought about by poor or inadequate care or support, or systematic poor practice that affects the whole care setting. It occurs when the individual's wishes and needs are sacrificed for the smooth running of a group, service or organisation.
    Panic Attack
    A sudden period of intense fear that may include palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, numbness, or a feeling that something bad is going to happen.
    PDD - Pervasive developmental disorder
    PDD is no longer used by Doctors and has been replaced with ASD – Autism Spectrum Disorder.
    PECS
    PECS stands for Picture Exchange Communication System. It is a commercial alternative communication package for people with autism and associated speech and developmental disabilities.
    Physical Disability
    A physical disability is a limitation on a person's physical functioning, mobility, movement or stamina. Other physical disabilities include impairments which limit other parts of daily life, such as respiratory disorders, blindness, epilepsy and sleep disorders.
    Professional Relationship
    A professional relationship is an ongoing interaction between two people that observes a set of established boundaries or limits that is deemed appropriate under governing ethical standards.
    Psychological Abuse
    Psychological abuse is a form of abuse, characterised by a person subjecting or exposing another person to behaviour that may result in psychological trauma, including anxiety, chronic depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder.

    Psychological Abuse includes emotional abuse, threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, isolation or withdrawal from services or supportive networks.
    PTSD - Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
    A mental health condition that is triggered after a person experiences or witnesses a terrifying event. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.
    Risk Assessment
    A process of evaluating the potential risks that may be involved in a projected activity or undertaking.
    Self Esteem
    Confidence in one's own worth or abilities.
    SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health
    Introduced in the Special Educational Need and Disabilities (SEND) Code of Practice in 2014. It replaced the terms BESD (Behaviour Emotional Social Development) and EBD (Emotional & Behaviour Difficulties).
    SEMH needs are a type of special educational need where a child communicates through behaviour in response to unmet social, emotional or mental health needs. Children with SEMH needs often have difficulties in managing their emotions or their behaviour. They can show inappropriate responses to their emotions. They can feel scared, anxious and misunderstood.

    Some behaviours children with SEMH needs might display could be
    • Anger
    • Frustration
    • Verbal or physical aggression
    • Lashing out
    • Self-harming
    • Withdrawing
    • Possible law-breaking such as stealing or vandalism
    People who work with these children should
    • Try to slowly build a relationship of trust
    • Provide clear and fair boundaries and stick to them
    • Help the child to identify their own challenges and give them strategies to develop self-responsibility
    • Make every day a fresh start
    • Be consistent and say what you mean
    SEN - Special Educational Needs
    The needs of a child who has a difficulty or disability which makes learning harder for them than for other children their age.
    SENCO - Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator
    A SENCO is responsible for the day-to-day operation of a school's Special Educational Needs policy.
    SEND - Special Educational Needs and Disability
    As above, with the addition of a physical disability.
    Sensory Issues
    Issues where the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information from the five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch.
    Sensory Processing Disorder
    A disorder in which the brain can't respond properly to information that comes in through the five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch.
    Sign Language
    A system of communication using visual gestures and signs, often used by deaf people.
    SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty
    Young people with severe learning difficulties have very significant intellectual or cognitive impairments. Their cognitive and/or academic levels are normally at or below the 0.01 percentile. This has a major effect on their ability to participate in the school curriculum without support. Learners with SLD may also have difficulties in mobility and co-ordination.
    Social Worker
    An academic and practice-based professional that seeks to facilitate the welfare of communities, individuals, families, and groups.
    Stress
    A state of mental or emotional strain or tension that results from being subjected to negative or demanding circumstances.
    TA - Teaching Assistant
    An individual who assists a teacher with instructional responsibilities. Teaching assistants often help the main teacher by managing students with SEN.
    Tourette’s Syndrome
    Tourette’s syndrome is a neurological condition (affecting the brain and nervous system), characterised by a combination of involuntary noises and movements called 'tics'. The sufferer has little control of things they may say.
    Trauma
    A type of damage to the mind that occurs as a result of a severely distressing event. Trauma is often the result of an overwhelming amount of stress that exceeds one's ability to cope, or integrate the emotions involved with that experience.
    Vigilance
    The action of keeping careful watch for possible danger or difficulties.
    Vulnerable (adult or child)
    In need of special care, support, or protection because of age, disability, or risk of abuse or neglect.
    Wellbeing
    The state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy