We are a LAN (learning & additional needs) special school for students between the ages of 11 and 16 with an Education, Health & Care Plan (EHCP). Our students have a wide range of needs including moderate learning difficulties, autism, Down syndrome, speech, language and communication needs, ADHD and other conditions associated with learning difficulties and / or medical needs.

Please note that we do not cater for students whose primary need is behaviour, social, emotional and/or mental health difficulties.

All of our students are working at a key stage 1 or low key stage 2 level on entry to the school in year 7. Typically, our students are working 4 to 6 years behind age related expectations as they progress through the school.


Admissions Process

The Local Authority overseas the SEND school admissions process. Students are placed at The Abbey after a process of consultation and assessment between the Local Authority (LA) and the school. All students must have an Education, Health Care Plan (EHCP). Consultation paperwork is sent through to the school for consideration by the Headteacher and/or other members of the senior leadership team who will make a decision on whether the school can meet the needs of the individual child or young person. Our responses are then sent to the SEND Admissions Team for key-stage transfers and the SEND Placements Team for in-year admissions.  Parents are a major part of this process and their views are actively sought by the LA.

Details can be found at

Prior to this, most prospective parents visit the school when their child is in Year 5. Individual admissions are made during the year if the school has appropriate places but this is not often. In the summer term, before September entry to year 7, there is a two day induction programme to ensure that students feel confident about starting in September. In addition, students’ primary schools are involved in the transition process and all new students receive a welcome book to help the transition to The Abbey. Very occasionally the school accepts a student on an assessment placement.