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Learning and cognition bases

Learning and cognition bases form part of the Specialist Resource Base (SRB) programme. These are commissioned services funded by the us and delivered by Norfolk schools. They are for learners with high level special educational needs who are educated in mainstream schools.

The focus of all specialist resource bases is:

  • Working in partnership. This is keep pupils in mainstream schools with support and intervention
  • Building special educational needs capacity. This is to better meet the needs of learners
  • To provide high quality education for up to eight children attending the SRB who have identified learning difficulties
  • To enable Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 children attending the SRB, to make sufficient progress to enable return to their mainstream home school without the need for a EHC plan
  • To provide outreach advice and support to mainstream infant, junior and primary schools. These are the ‘home’ schools for children at the SRB. This is to ensure consistency of approach between the two settings
  • To provide a traded outreach service to mainstream infant, junior and primary schools on curriculum differentiation, support strategies and best practice in supporting children with a wide range of learning and cognition needs



  • A period of short term intensive support from the SRB, generally two terms in length but this is not always the case
  • Smaller class sizes of up to eight learners at any one time
  • The standard operating model is four days per week support in the SRB, with one day in the home school
  • A transition plan is agreed to support the successful reintegration back into the home school
  • The SRB forms part of a countywide network of SRBs. They work in partnership to share good practice
  • Access to specialist partner support from Parkside School.
  • The SRB also has access to dedicated educational psychology time

Learners who access support and/or provision through the SRB would typically fit the following profile:

  • Be in primary phase and referred prior to Year 6
  • May or may not hold an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan
  • Live within 45 minutes travel time by car to the SRB
  • Have assessed additional needs which primarily relate to learning difficulties. However they may also encompass a range of secondary needs such as speech language and communication, specific learning difficulty, physical, medical or sensory needs
  • Be on roll at a mainstream school which has already used delegated school and cluster resources to support the learner, without improving outcomes
  • Have the potential to reintegrate into a mainstream school setting relevant to their age and stage of development and benefit from a differentiated mainstream curriculum
  • Would not meet the criteria for complex needs schools
  • May have persistent difficulty developing a specific skills, necessary to access the curriculum, despite ongoing support and targeted intervention
  • Will have an identifiable barrier to learning which has contributed to their lack of ‘adequate progress’
  • May have difficulties with independent learning skills, (including fluency, generalisation and organisation) or present with low self-confidence as a learner
  • The schools own strategies for inclusion will have been exhausted along with any additional support accessed directly from the cluster. This will need to be evidenced as part of the referral
  • Referrals for SRB are made by the home school the child attends
  • Parents and carers must be involved in discussions about SRB placements and agree to any referral
  • If you consider an SRB is appropriate for your child, please discuss this with your child’s class teacher or school SENCO in the first instance
  • If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan Co-ordinator, you can also discuss this with them
  • During the pre-referral stage you may consider arranging a visit with your child to the SRB. This must be done at a pre-arranged time
  • No referral should be submitted to any SRB without first having a discussion with the relevant lead teacher
  • The home school must read and agree to the interschool agreement that sets out the terms and conditions for the placement
  • Referrals and admissions are managed by a county wide admission process including half-termly admission meetings
  • Referrals are considered at half-termly SRB admission meetings
  • Clear concise minutes are taken at each admission meeting
  • As soon as the minutes are finalised, SRB business support team issue letters to parent carers. This details the outcome of the meeting and these are copied to the home school and relevant SRB
  • Transport will be arranged if the child meets transport criteria under our home to school transport policy

The above links to each school take you through to more detailed information about each of the learning and cognition bases.

For detailed guidance aimed at school professionals visit the Norfolk Schools SRB web pages.

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