What is additional learning needs (ALN)


Additional Learning Needs (ALN) at St Ethelwold’s VA School

Here at St Ethelwold’s VA School, we operate an inclusive policy with regard to Additional Learning Needs (ALN) provision where all pupils are given equal access to every aspect of school life.

The school has a designated ALNCo as well as a team of Learning Support Assistants (LSA’s) who are involved in providing a range of interventions for pupils. These interventions are tailored to meet the specific needs of pupils, which will usually include literacy and numeracy interventions, as well as a range of other interventions to address other needs e.g. developing greater emotional literacy through ELSA interventions.

Pupils who have an IDP, which recognises a specific educational need may also, if stipulated in their IDP, receive specific support from LSA’s provided by the local authority (1:1 support).



Additional Learning Needs as we know it has been on a journey over the last few years. A New ALN Bill and Code of Practice came into effect as of September 2021. At St Ethelwold’s, we are continuing to adapt in line with these changes in a number of ways. We recognise the importance of parents as stakeholders in their children's education and we believe that children should be at the heart of all we do, voicing their opinion whenever possible. We hope that you find the information presented in the publication below useful in helping you to understand the changes.





A one-page profile is a single sheet of paper with three headings – what people like and admire about me; what's important to me; and how best to support me. At St Ethelwold’s VA School, we (on occasions) also include targets where necessary to support our learners in the best possible way. These targets may be addressed through in class intervention, or small group intervention which takes place beyond the class. 



You may be used to your child receiving an IEP in previous years; however, this will now be changing and identified children will be supported through an Individual Development Plan (IDP).

What is an IDP?

The Individual Development Plan (IDP) is a single plan that is put in place after determining that a pupil has ALN. The IDP includes a description of the child/young person's ALN, and the Additional Learning Provision (ALP) put in place in order to meet those needs must be noted.

How is the IDP drawn?

A Person Centred Review is undertaken in order to ensure that learners and their families are placed at the centre of planning, reviewing and making decisions about what matters in their lives, and the support, namely the additional provision, they require in order to achieve their aspirations (further details can be found in PCP section below). 

Who will be present?

Usually, everyone who works with the child will be invited to attend, e.g. parents, child/young person, ALNCo, Educational Psychologist, Health, Teaching Assistant, Class Teacher, Head of Year, i.e. any professional who is contributing to the child/young person’s support.

What will happen at the meeting?

There is a laid-back environment in a Person Centred Review. A facilitator will guide everyone through the process in order to contribute information and agree on person centred outcomes and actions.

You will be asked to discuss...

  • What you appreciate about your child
  • Your aspirations for your child
  • What matters to your child
  • What matters for your child
  • The best way to support your child
  • What works and what does not work from your point of view
  • Any questions you may have

At the end of the review

By the end of the Review, the facilitator will ensure that everyone has agreed on Person Centred outcomes, and on actions that need to be achieved. The aim of the Action Plan is to ensure that everyone can see what needs to be done to support your child/young person to learn and fulfil their dreams.

The Individual Development Plan will say...

  • What support your child needs to learn and develop.
  • Who is responsible for ensuring that he/she receives the support they needs.
  • Where they will receive this support.
  • How we will know if the support has helped your child in the way it was intended.

What’s next?

Following the review, the Plan is shared with all partners. This will be a live electronic document that will be reviewed regularly as required and every 12 months at least. Access to the electronic document will be granted to everyone involved with the child.



Further information about the Person Centred Reviews can be found in the document below. 


If your child is receiving targeted / specific provision, you may be invitied to attend a PCP meeting. You will be informed well in advance if this is the case. 


ALN Explained

The four main areas of need associated with additional learning needs (ALN) are:


  • Communication and Interaction - Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN), Autistic Spectrum (ASD)
  • Cognition and Learning - General Learning Difficulties (GLD), Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD), Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) - dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia, Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)
  • Social, emotional and mental health - Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attachment disorder / difficulties
  • Sensory and /or physical needs - Visual Impairment (VI), Hearing Impairment (HI), physical disability

Pupils are identified as having ALN if they have a learning difficulty that requires additional learning provision (ALP) which is ‘additional to’ and ‘different from’ that which is provided across the school. Information is collected through a number of different communication routes, including transition between classes, teacher feedback to the ALNCo, parental concerns, and regular diagnostic assessments to track progress. Once identified as having a barrier to learning which impacts upon the progress they make, pupils will be closely monitored using a graduated response of provision suited to their individual need. A one page profile (some of which contain specific targets) may be created and reviewed twice a year if they are receiving targeted provision. These documents are designed with the pupil at the centre and are carried out using a person centred approach. Parents are also involved in the creation and reviewing of these documents, which will be shared with parents during parents evenings / arranged meetings. Those receiving universal provision are tracked and monitored in other ways. 

St Ethelwold’s has a team of trained Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) who are involved in providing a range of interventions which focus on a number of different areas of need. Pupils who have a recognised additional learning need may also, if agreed, receive 1:1 support from LSAs. 

Please access the documentation attached for more details and do not hesitate to contact Mrs Rebecca Ellis if you have any questions or concerns regarding ALN,  or call the school on: 01244 812932


Files to Download

Who Are We

The school vision at St Ethelwold's VA School is to: "Be The Best You Can" "Bwddwch eich gorau". This vision cascades throughout the fabric of the school and is central to the work of the school. The school community believes that a strong commitment to effort will lead to high standards of attainment and achievement and also to the important life skills of perseverance and resilience. Effort will be both reported on and rewarded.

Where Are We

St Ethelwold's VA school

Melrose Ave,