ALN – Additional Learning Needs

Pupils who need specialist educational support (SEN)

Vale of Glamorgan ALN:

All pupils are different and have different needs.  Here in Pendoylan we understand this and offer access to our universal provision for all pupils.  First and foremost, we ensure that the children have high quality teaching and learning provision.  Our Universal provision includes:

  1. Whole Class Teaching
  2. Effective differentiation
  3. Collaborative peer work
  4. Individual and small group interventions

If your child requires additional support to make progress they may have additional learning needs.

They may be receiving extra support in school, to help them in their learning, or they may have a statement of special educational need. The approach to supporting children who have difficulties with learning is changing.

The Welsh Government has passed new legislation, called the Additional Learning Needs (Wales) Act, and Additional Learning Needs (ALN) Code, which will replace all of the legislation and guidance about special educational needs.

As part of the Additional Learning Needs Educational Tribunal (ALNET) (Wales) Act 2018 the Welsh Government has replaced the term ‘special educational needs’ (SEN) with ‘additional learning needs’ (ALN).

However, the definition of ALN is different and you may find that your child currently has SEN but will not have ALN.  This should not affect the support and help they receive in school to access learning.

ALN will cover those who:

  1. have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age
  2. have a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of the educational facilities generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream maintained school or Further Education Institution.

The Act introduces a clear duty on local authorities to support you as parent/carers and your child to contribute to the planning for additional learning needs.

Resources for Parent/Carers and those supporting children with ALN

A booklet is available to you in order to explain the new legislation, and how this will change the way that we will work with you to identify and support your child’s needs.

See Document: ALN-Information-Advice-and-Guidance

Getting Support

  1. Speak to your child’s teacher – If you think that your child has Additional Learning Needs (ALN) talk to your child’s teacher first or our ALN Coordinator (ALNCo) who is Mr Parry. For further details and information, please watch the video guide.
  2. Create an Individual Development Plan (IDP) together – If we agree with you that your child has ALN, we will work with you and your child to create an IDP.
  3. Discuss any concerns with the us or the local authority – If we do not agree that your child has ALN, or you are dissatisfied with your child’s IDP, discuss it with us or the local authority.
  4. You can have access to an advocate – If the local authority agrees with us but you are still unhappy, they can point you to independent advocacy services.
  5. You have a right to appeal – All children and young people and their parents or carers have the right to appeal against decisions to the Education Tribunal of Wales (ETW).

Please refer to the following Poster guides:

Poster 1 Do you understand what the teacher is asking?

Poster 2 Not happy with the support you’re getting at school

Poster 3 A step by step guide

ALN and Dispute Resolution

In the Vale of Glamorgan we are always keen to try to address any concerns, worries or issues as soon as possible, and this should be done by raising any issues with us, as a school, in the first instance. As far back as the draft ALN Code (2017) principles for good practice in the avoidance and early resolution of disagreements around Additional Learning Needs. (WG, 2017. pp. 169) were identified.

These good practice principles are:

Support to ensure parents can attend and contribute to meetings

Ensure communication is inclusive and sensitive so parents feel like equal partners so concerns and misunderstandings are dealt with early on

Face to face meetings to plan the way forward

All parties have the same information from the same trusted source

Timely and consistent communication so trust is built

Positive, open and constructive dialogue

Explanation of the legislation underpinning decisions and signposting to further information

Decisions are properly explained in inclusive language to parent and child / Young Person

Supporting the examination of the IDP so decisions are transparent and all evidence has been considered

We have staff trained in dispute resolution strategies to support this process.

A short film produced by the Welsh Government providing an overview of the avoiding disagreement and early dispute resolution aspect of the ALN Bill now Act can be found at

Following these strategies should help parents and school work together in a mutually supportive and honest partnership, with the child at the centre to disuses and resolve any issues.

Parents can seek further advice from

SNAP Cymru provides information, advice and support for parents, children and young people who have, or may have, Additional Learning Needs or disabilities

SNAP Cymru provide the following impartial, confidential and free services:

Helpline Information, Advice and Support

Specialist Casework

Discrimination Advice and Casework

Independent Specialist ALN Advocacy

Disagreement Resolution

Children, young people or parents can contact  SNAP Cymru on:

0808 801 0608  or visit   an ALN enquiry can be submitted using the form on

To request a dispute resolution service

email:  or for more information on dispute resolution see


Pendoylan CIWPS