Because St. Malachy’s High School provides for pupils with a wide range of Special Educational Needs, the arrangements for the majority of pupils with SEN are consistent with the school’s general arrangements for all other pupils.

In the event of over-subscription, a child with SEN is not given lower priority than another applicant. It is important to note that because St.Malachy’s High School caters for a wide spectrum of pupils, those with SEN (with and without statements) may be placed in any of our teaching bands.


(i) Pupils with Statements

Pupils with statements of SEN are placed in the school at the request of the SEELB Special Education section (contact person: Mr. Danny Morgan). When seeking to place such a pupil in the school the SEELB must take into consideration the ability of the school to meet the child’s specific needs; the provision of efficient education for other children in the class/school and the most efficient use of resources. The school is asked to consider whether or not it can meet the child’s needs and this decision is given to the Board, who has the final say when placing the child.
In St. Malachy’s High School, a child with a Statement may be placed in Mainstream or in the Special Learning Unit (for pupils with Moderate Learning Difficulties). Those pupils who are allocated a Mainstream place are then the responsibility of the SENCO, who co-ordinates appropriate provision for the child; those in the Special Learning Unit are the responsibility of the Unit Staff.

(ii) Pupils Without Statements

Many of the pupils in St. Malachy’s High School have SEN but are not Statemented. Many have short-term and long-term medical needs; have different learning styles which can be accommodated without additional support or alternative provision; have support from outside agencies for learning difficulties or social/emotional difficulties etc. These pupils are all taught in their Mainstream classes and their subject teachers are made aware of their needs and appropriate strategies for dealing with these needs.

The Special Learning Unit

The Special Learning Unit caters for Statemented pupils with Moderate Learning Difficulties. They are allocated to the Unit by the SEELB’s Statementing Officer (Mr. Danny Morgan).

There are 5 full-time teachers and 5 classroom assistants working in the Special learning Unit.
At Key Stage 3, English Maths, French, History and Geography are taught in the Unit setting. The pupils then integrate with their own Mainstream classes for the other subjects (this constitutes a level of 50% integration). When integrating, the pupils are supported by either their teacher or one of the classroom assistants. Individual pupils may integrate for additional subjects if it is felt that they could cope. Pupils in Years 11 and 12 are more fully integrated, but support continues to be provided according to prioritised need.

Pupils in the unit join in the full range of school activities. They are free at break and lunchtime to mix with al the pupils in their year groups, within the junior/senior divide. They join their peers on school trips and are represented on the school sports teams. At their Annual Reviews, pupils’ individual integration arrangements are discussed and at times, some pupils are de-statemented and fully re-integrated back into Mainstream.


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