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Admissions to Brent Knoll School are governed by the Special Educational Needs Code of Practice. Pupils are admitted to Brent Knoll following an assessment of their special educational needs. If the assessment results in a Statement of Special Educational Needs or an Education, Health and Care Plan that indicates a placement at Brent Knoll might be appropriate, Lewisham Education Authority asks us to consider whether or not we feel we can meet a child’s needs. All referrals are considered by senior staff and the pupil is visited at their current setting if necessary. Following careful consideration of all the evidence, a decision will be made as to whether or not we feel Brent Knoll can meet their special educational needs.

The decision to place a child at Brent Knoll is made by the Lewisham SEN placement panel. While we attempt to maintain optimal numbers in each year group, we can be directed to admit pupils over this number by the local authority or a SEND tribunal. We encourage all prospective parents to visit the school at one of our regular Open Mornings. Attendance is by appointment only, and parents should contact the school office for dates and times. The final decision on placement at Brent Knoll rests with the SEN placement panel. Prior to admission, the school will arrange a series of visits or events to prepare the young person for the transition to Brent Knoll. During this time, parents will be invited into school to complete the admissions form, consent forms and the home-school agreement.

Our admissions criteria are as follows:

  • Brent Knoll is a specialist school for children with autism or social communication and interaction difficulties who do not have a clinical diagnosis of autism but who would benefit from the strategies and interventions employed in meeting the needs of children with autism.  Brent Knoll also meets the needs of children with speech, language and communication difficulties who would not be socially disadvantaged by being within a peer group of children with more significant social and communication needs and significant learning difficulties.

Children admitted to Brent Knoll will demonstrate:

  • Significant attention difficulties and difficulty to engage
  • Limited independence and awareness of health and safety concerns
  • Rigidity of behaviour and thought
  • Language and communication difficulties which are enduring and impede learning
  • Confident intentional communication
  • Limited communication with or interest in peers
  • Rigidity and resistance to social interaction
  • Limited expressive ability
  • Receptive language processing difficulties

Typical cognitive abilities of children admitted to Brent Knoll:

  • Entry in to Reception Class
    • Using Development Matters and focussing on Communication & Language, Personal, Social & Emotional Development, Understanding the World, Literacy and Maths
    • Children working at predominantly 16-26 months
  • Entry to Year 7
    • Children working at predominantly P8 to beginning of year 3 expectations

 Brent Knoll does not meet the needs of children who:

  • Have a diagnosis of autism but are high functioning and demonstrate a potential to access learning at a mainstream level
  • Demonstrate social, emotional and mental health difficulties that are not as a result of an underlying complex social, communication and interaction difficulty
  • Have a global developmental delay that restricts their access to a mainstream curriculum but who are socially confident and motivated to engage

Further details on special school admissions can be found on the Lewisham website.

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