'Reporting provides clear, positive and constructive feedback on learning and progress to parents and learners, and creates an agenda for discussions about next steps in learning.'
Building the Curriculum 5
Staff supporting learners who require additional support are familiar with this kind of reporting whether for review meetings, evaluating plans and targets with learners or as a report for parents or carers.
Important factors to consider when reporting:
- All reporting has to be done sensitively as it is important not to convey either stress or worry to parents and learner
- Include the strengths of the learner
- Parents and carers must be treated respectfully as equal partners
- Maintain clear records of the autistic learner’s progress
- Support collaboration on what is done in school and what is done to support the schoolwork at home. Ensure any ‘homework’ is engaging and appropriate.
- Highlight supports in place
- Include recommendations/next steps
- All learning and teaching approaches and strategies that have been used should be recorded in the appropriate forms. (these will vary across local authorities).
Parents/carers should be:
- Aware of any information that is held in paper form – including assessments
- Fully aware of what is happening
- Included in deciding the best approaches and strategies to be adopted. This needs to be dealt with in a sensitive way to avoid any possible over-reaction and distress to either the parents/carers or their child. Be aware and sensitive that the concern and distress will be real and may be justified.
There are important questions to consider about the format of reports for autistic learners and information they contain.
- Is information recorded in variety of formats - written, photos, video, speech bubbles with comments etc?
- Do reports reflect progress in strategies used to support any barriers to learning through impact of autism – do they have targets in communication / interaction / flexibility of thinking?
- Do reports recognise small steps or those from pupil’s personal development?
- Do assessments and reports inform planning for individuals?
- Do reports include views of parents/carers and other agencies as appropriate?
- Are parents/carers given time to consider reports before meetings?
- Are views of autistic learners included in reports?
- Do reports continually simply reflect the same issues for a learner which may be due to impact of autism – ‘difficulties joining group discussion’, ‘regularly does not hand in homework’ , ‘tends to be on his own’ . Is there information on how autistic learner is being supported in these areas?
- Does any standardised report have ‘tick’ boxes which reflect continued failure? Could these be reviewed, and adjustments made to the format.