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What is Tools for Schools? How can the Inclusion Framework and OAIP support my setting?

Find out more on our info page

Early Years and the ‘Ordinarily Available Inclusive Practice’ guide

Have you heard of the ‘Ordinarily Available Inclusive Practice’ (OAIP) guide? The OAIP is a key document that has been developed with schools, settings and other partners as part of the SEND and Inclusion strategy. Schools and other education providers, including early years settings, have been invited to pilot the document to test how useful it will be.

As part of this pilot, we have been working with early years providers to see if the OAIP needs to be adapted to suit Early Years settings. We recognised that early years settings may well have a different culture, provision and practice.

During the summer holidays, local government representatives began to develop specific content for early years settings (this was by no means a finished document). The early years specific content has now been shared with representatives from early years settings at several task and finish group meetings and network meetings. The participants were able to suggest further amendments and additions.

“Would be a super planning tool for individual planning and next steps.”

We have looked at it and agree you can look through it for ideas for specific help or children. The links are v helpful. and it would be great if more links could be added as websites/documents come out. I think different staff would get different things from it. It also confirms that we are doing loads already.

“I like the term ‘Tools for Schools’, but I do realise it could be seen as for schools only”

“Don’t usually read a West Sussex document, but this was really good.”

It is also a good reminder of what we as settings can provide without extra funding, a reminder that we are capable and this provides easy support

In response to early years feedback the following actions are being proposed.

Section 1, the quality first teaching part of the Ordinarily Available Inclusive Practice’ guide will be updated to include Early Years specific terminology. It has been recognised that much of this feedback is relevant to all age phases. The changes will be made to the online version for the start of the spring term.

Section 2, the strategy section, needs to include more tailored approaches that can be made to meet the individual needs of an early years child. These tailored approaches can be put into place without the provider needing to request additional funding or an Education, Health and Care Plan. For ease of use, an additional online Early Years version of Section 2 will be developed as an OAIP annex. This will again be ready by January 2021.

During the spring and summer terms of 2021, we will be asking West Sussex early years schools and settings to pilot these documents. Please do get involved and let us know what you think by emailing us at [email protected] Please also watch this space for some specific information sessions that we will be running in January 2021.

A series of free online information sessions to find out the use of the OAIP in Early Years will be held on:

  • 11th January – 10-11 am

  • 11th January – 1.30-2.30pm

  • 12th January – 4-5 pm

  • 12th January – 7.30-8.30pm

Please book your place at an information session through Eventbrite, using the links above.