What ‘special educational needs’ means?
‘Special educational needs’ is a legal definition and refers to children with learning problems or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children the same age.
Special educational needs (SEN) teachers work with children and young people who need extra support, or require an advanced programme of learning, in order to reach their full academic potential.
They work with individuals who have physical disabilities, sensory impairments (i.e. hearing or visual), speech and language difficulties, learning difficulties, conditions such as autism, social, emotional and mental health needs, or have a combination of these difficulties.
They also work with gifted and talented individuals.
A key aspect of working in this field is identifying individual needs and being responsible for creating a safe, stimulating and supportive learning environment.