Here you can learn about one of the four broad areas of need as described in the SEND Code of Practice (2015): sensory and/or physical needs. The area includes all pupils who have a disability, including hearing or visual impairment, multi-sensory impairment, or physical disability, if they require ongoing support and equipment to access opportunities available to their peers and require special educational provision.

What do you understand about the relationship between disability and SEN?

Does everyone with a sensory and/or physical disability have learning difficulties? What does this mean in practice?

What experience do you have of someone with a sensory impairment? How does this impact on their life?

How often might you expect to encounter a pupil with a sensory and/or physical impairment in your classroom?

What support should be in place for pupils with HI, VI or MSI? How do you think you could make best use of this support?

What teaching and learning activities might be challenging for someone with a physical disability? How could you make these more accessible for them?

How confident do you feel that you understand what effective classroom practice for someone with a sensory and/or physical need looks like? Are there any of these strategies that you think you would struggle with implementing? What could you do about this?

Do you feel you still need or want to know more about this area? Do you know where you can go to for more information and support?

SEND Gateway: The videos on the Whole School SEND area of the SEND Gateway provide the best introduction to this area for trainee and new teachers.

Vist the SEND Gateway website here.

nasen miniguide: Understanding the eye care and vision needs of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.

PD Net free online training.

Visit the PD Net website here.

The Whole School SEND area of the SEND Gateway has condition-specific videos, including for PD, VI and HI.

Visit the SEND Gateway website here. 

Physical disability, including free online training. 

Visit the Physical Disability website here.

Hearing Impairment/deafness: National Deaf Children’s Society provide a range of resources particularly the ‘Information for professionals’ page (please note some of the resources do require membership to access).

View the National Deaf Children's Society website here. 

The National Sensory Impairment Partnership is a partnership of organisations working together to improve outcomes for children and young people with sensory impairment.

View the National Sensory Impairment Partnership Website here.

Visual impairment/blindness.

Visual impairment/blindness and MSI.

MSI/complex needs.

Sensory and/or Physical Needs: Information