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Early Help Offer

Early Help Offer


What is Early Help?

Early Help means providing help for children, young people and families as soon as problems start to emerge or where it is likely that issues will impact negatively on children’s outcomes.

Early Help…

  • is for children of all ages and not just the very young,
  • can be very effective in supporting a child, young person and/or their family to step down from statutory services as well as preventing the escalation of issues.
  • is important because there is clear evidence that it results in better outcomes for children.

Leicester City Council  recognises that Early Help is a term that describes much of the everyday work of schools.


Early Help in Leicester

The vision of all partner organisations working with children and families in Leicester is to improve children’s lives by working in partnership to raise aspirations, build achievement and protect the most vulnerable.

This is based on the belief that:

  • Children, young people and families develop resilience if there are protective factors in place such as: a positive relationship with an adult; good literacy and communication skills; good school attendance; and, parents in or actively seeking/ready for work
  • Children’s needs are best met when help is offered in a universal setting within a socially mixed group and early on when problems start to emerge
  • Children and young people’s needs are best met when addressed in the context of the whole family, meaning that parents/carers/siblings’ needs are addressed with consent as part of a holistic and integrated Early Help response

Early Help services should support and strengthen families so that they can thrive.


The Role of Schools


Day to Day Support

Most families, most of the time, can get on with their lives quite happily with little or no outside help. If they need help it is usually provided by universal services, such as schools.


Focused Pastoral Support

All families can have times, however, when difficulties arise and they either may not recognise it or may not know how to start putting things right. Schools play a role in supporting families to address these difficulties through more focused pastoral support, which might include bringing in support via an external agency.


Early Help Assessment

For those children and families whose needs and circumstances make them more vulnerable, or where schools need the support of other agencies to meet the needs of the family, a coordinated multi-agency approach is usually best. In Leicester this is achieved through undertaking an Early Help Assessment and assigning a Lead Practitioner to work closely with the family to ensure they receive the support they require. Schools should be a key partner in any multi-agency work to support families


The following four commitments are the core elements to Spinney Hill Primary School’s Early Help Offer.

By implementing these commitments Spinney Hill Primary School aims to ensure:

  • Pupils, parent/carers and staff are clear on the Early Help support available through the school
  • Clarity for partners, supporting improved multi-agency working
  • Delivery approaches of Early Help support for more vulnerable families are up to date with local offers
  • Commitment to the personal development and well-being strand of the Ofsted Framework



The following lists show what Early Help Support is available at Spinney Hill Primary School:



Primary Offer

  • 100% attendance rewards
  • Attendance data is monitored by assigned staff (Headteacher, Assistant Head for Inclusion, Educational Welfare Officer, School Attendance Officer)
  • Attendance Network Meetings with other schools attended by Assistant Head for Inclusion or Attendance Officer
  • Regular reporting to Governors around attendance
  • ‘Lates’ letters home treated as a measure of disadvantage
  • Letters home at 95% attendance, followed up by warning letters
  • EWO (Educational Welfare Officer) attends threshold meetings every two weeks with school attendance officer and / or Assistant Head
  • Family Support officer who works with families around attendance concerns
  • First day calling
  • Home visits for attendance concerns requiring investigation
  • Monitoring groups in high mobility or absence requests
  • Parent contracts for pupils who are persistently absent
  • Personal attendance plans e.g. for pupils who are recovering from operations
  • Weekly Class Rewards for good attendance and punctuality
  • School nursing service referrals for medical conditions that affect attendance.

Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Overall and individual pupil attendance improves
  • Improvement in PA (Persistent Absence) data
  • Reduction in number of leave of absence requests
  • Reduction in number of penalty notices issues
  • Lateness data shows reduction in number of interventions
  • Whole school targets are met



Primary Offer

  • Extra visits / induction for vulnerable students to their new school
  • Family Support meetings with Health visitors / school nurse, EYST (Early Years Support Team) for vulnerable pupils in the Early Years Foundation Stage before entry to school
  • Induction Days
  • Pupil Passports and other records passed from school to school
  • SALT (Speech and Language Therapists) reports and targets transferred between schools
  • Assistant Head for Inclusion liaises with SENCOs from other schools to pass on records and information about pupils on the SEN Register
  • Support for online school applications for parents
  • Transition programme with designated link teachers e.g. for pupils with special educational needs or disability
  • Visits for prospective families
  • Work with key partners
  • Induction with Family Support Worker

Measurable outcomes across key stages

  • Pupils obtain a place at their chosen school
  • Support for families with appeals
  • Family needs are met whilst awaiting placements




Social, Emotional and Mental Health Needs

Primary Offer

  • Qualified Mental Health First Aiders (Leona Wallace, Bernie Ranzetta, Hasina Shaikh)
  • ALGEE approach to Mental Health (Approach, Assess, Assist, Listen without judging, Give help and advice, Encourage outside support, Encourage support in school)
  • Bereavement counselling available to pupils
  • Referrals to Primary Social, Emotional and Mental Health Team (at New Parks House)
  • Referrals to CAMHS (Children, Adolescent Mental Health Service)
  • Referrals to Educational Psychology Service
  • Family Support worker support for a variety of mental health needs
  • Laura Centre (external bereavement support)
  • Lego and play therapy support from Social Emotional and Mental Health Team
  • Pastoral Support Programme
  • Staff training in dyslexia, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), ASD (Autism)
  • Access to Virtual School Team for Looked after Children
  • Counselling service for school staff

Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Pupil learning data shows improvement
  • Reduction in number of safeguarding disclosures
  • Reduction in number of both high and low level behaviour incidents
  • Increase in pupils self-help skills
  • Few if any fixed term exclusions
  • Assessments show that social, emotional, mental health needs are met e.g. through Boxall Profile, SDQ, Coventry Assessment

Staying Safe

Primary Offer

  • Relevant policies and procedures e.g. Safeguarding, Child Protection, Special Educational Needs and Disability, Anti-Bullying,  GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) in place
  • Routes to Resilience network supports pupil and staff mental health and well-being
  • Schools Advisory Service (SAS) support for staff mental health and well-being
  • Ten Keys to Happiness approach for good mental health and well-being
  • Worry Woos characters to identify feelings and emotions
  • Learnful activities for mindfulness
  • Children’s Mental Health Toolkit  / WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) and support from qualified Mental Health First Aiders
  • Advice point and Early Help response through Family Support Worker
  • Anti-bullying champion (member of PSHE Team)
  • Assemblies on themes around staying safe e.g. ‘Stranger Danger’ 'Anti-bullying'
  • Care plans for vulnerable pupils and individual healthcare plans for pupils with medical needs regularly monitored and reviewed with Assistant Head for Inclusion
  • ‘Bikeability’ programme for road safety
  • EVOLVE system to ensure safety on school trips
  • PEEPs (Personal Evacuation Plans) and Risk assessments for vulnerable pupils
  • DAS (Duty and Advice Service) for safeguarding concerns
  • Access to support for families living with domestic violence
  • Access to support for families living with alcohol or drugs abuse
  • E-safety policy and procedures and filtering system
  • Home visits for families of children starting nursery
  • Library leaders and Playground Champions
  • Link PCSO (Police Community Support Officer) at Spinney Hill Police Station
  • Literacy champion (English Lead)
  • Parent workshops
  • PEP (Personal Education Plan) and LAC (Looked After Children) review meetings led by designated safeguarding teacher
  • PSHE curriculum (through Cambridge PSHE scheme)
  • Prevent issues awareness and training for concerns around radicalisation
  • FGM (Female Genital Mutilation), CSE (Child Sexual exploitation), Forced marriages awareness and training
  • School nurse drop-ins and referrals
  • Tracking, recording and analysis of incidents e.g. through CPOMS
  • Whole school safeguarding training

Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Greater awareness of bullying within the community and a zero tolerance approach to bullying incidents
  • Increase in turn-over of families accessing Social Services / Family Support Worker
  • Welfare and neglect issues on Social Services caseload is reduced
  • All staff have signed and are adhering to the AUP (Acceptable User Policy)
  • Quality displays evidence pupils' new learning and promote 'resilience' vocabulary / school drivers
  • An increasing percentage of parental engagement
  • An up-to-date rolling programme of CPD (Continued Professional Development) in relation to Safeguarding / Training for all staff (2 years – DSP and 3 years – all staff)

Supporting Families

Primary Offer

  • Bereavement counselling
  • Induction meeting with Family Support Worker (Leona Wallace)
  • Translation for main community languages 
  • Curriculum days / evenings
  • School-based full time Family Support Worker
  • Support for form completion including financial support and housing
  • Home visits for families with children starting nursery
  • Parents evenings
  • Pastoral support from Family Support Worker
  • SENCO support for families of children with special educational needs or disability
  • Access to SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice Support Service)
  • Signposting to external agencies and training
  • Family Support Workshops led by Family Support Worker

Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Pupil learning data shows improvement
  • Uptake of support services increases
  • Reduction in number of DNAs (Did Not Attend) to appointments
  • An increasing percentage of parental engagement


The Local Community

Primary Offer

  • Community events e.g. school fair
  • Donations from community e.g. sponsored events
  • Governor with responsibility for developing community links
  • Community Links such as Fire, PCSO (Police Community Support Officer), Sports and local businesses
  • Religious groups
  • Supporting charities


Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Families have a better understanding of the wider community
  • Reduction in the percentage of Anti-Social Behaviour incidents
  • Reduction in PCSO call outs


The Curriculum

Primary Offer

  • Access to one-to-one support, paired and group work where needed
  • Themed Assemblies
  • Academic coaching
  • Interventions for vulnerable pupils
  • Citizenship and PSHE delivery
  • Inter-school events
  • Topics and themes driven by pupils' apsirations, relevance to both own culture and the local area, key questioning and development of language skills
  • Access to school library before and after school
  • Homework clubs

Measurable outcomes across key stages:

  • Increase in percentage of children attending a school club
  • Pupil learning data shows improvement



Leona Wallace (Family Support Worker)

Bernie Ranzetta (Assistant Headteacher for Inclusion)

Tel: 0116 2737047