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Accessibility Plan and Policy






Accessibility Plan 


Date of policyAutumn Term 2022                                                            
Date reviewed by the Governing Body/Committee


Member of staff responsible in Cerne Abbas CE VC First SchoolAlex Ryan
Review dateAutumn Term 2024


1. Introduction

All schools must have an Accessibility Plan. This is required by law (the Equality Act 2010).


Accessibility Plans set out how, over time, a school will:


a) increase access to the curriculum for disabled pupils;

b) improve the physical environment of the school to increase access for disabled pupils; and

c) make written information more accessible to disabled pupils by providing information in a range of different ways.


This is our school Accessibility Plan.


2. School context

The school is small with an Early Years Class (FS1 and 2), a KS1 class (Years 1 and 2 together) and a KS2 class (Years 3 and 4 together). It is set in the beautiful village of Cerne Abbas. It is a Church of England, Voluntary Controlled School with strong links to the church and the church community. This close knit nature is reflected in the school with our children knowing the values that we have. Our vision is to be the best we can be. Our living Christian values are:


Friendship, Trust, Peace, Joy, Courage and Forgiveness.


Although small, we offer every aspect of the National Curriculum and more besides! The teaching staff and supportive Governing Body regard your child’s social and emotional as well as their academic progress as crucial to both the child as an individual and to the future of society as a whole. We aim to achieve high standards of English and Maths to enable the children in our care to access further learning throughout life.


Pupils achieve exceptionally well. OFSTED comments include 'high quality teaching and an exciting curriculum.' 'Excellent care, guidance and support lead to a very positive personal development for pupils.' 'Pupils’ outstanding spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is reflected in their consideration for others and the environment.' 'Pupils are courteous, friendly and respectful.'


The school also offers before and after school clubs, many educational visits both in our beautiful surrounding village and further afield, an excellent range of information technology, a full programme of outdoor education and games (often supported by outside expertise), and a Christian ethos strengthened by our church links. Both the staff and pupils enjoy working with other local schools to our mutual benefit.


Here at Cerne Abbas CE VC First School we strongly believe in creating a positive, purposeful atmosphere where children are enthusiastic and fully engaged in their learning. We want and expect our children to thrive, to be happy and to feel challenged and excited by their school day.


We are the oldest working school in Dorset build around 1836 – we have buildings on different levels which means we are only about 30% accessibility for wheelchair bound and no access to toilets at present.


3. Vision and aims


Our aim is for everyone at Cerne Abbas CE VC First School to feel welcome, valued, confident and included in the school community. We are committed to providing an accessible curriculum and environment to make this happen. We want our pupils with a disability to:


  • be fully included in school life
  • actively take part in high quality learning
  • thrive and enjoy their learning
  • develop the skills to go on and lead fulfilled lives as adults
  • be empowered, confident and able to function as independently as possible.


We want our pupils with a disability to access all elements of school life, including school clubs, activities and trips. We recognise that we may have to do things a little differently to make this happen.


4. Objectives


At Cerne Abbas CE VC First School all staff and governors will be aware of the duty to support pupils with a disability, in line with the Equality Act 2010.


Staff will work to remove disadvantage faced by pupils with a disability by adopting a ‘can do’ attitude, having a flexible approach to teaching and by incorporating modifications into the curriculum and environment.


Our focus is to enable SEND children to enable children to show their knowledge and understanding without the barriers of literacy preventing them.


Person-centred systems will be in place to support the inclusion of pupils with a disability, for example, Intimate Care Plans, Individual Healthcare Plans, Communication Pictures and Transition Plans, Social stories, enhanced transition.


Trauma informed schools approach helps with mental and emotional wellbeing.


We will continue to improve the physical environment and facilities on offer to enable pupils with a disability to fully access the school site.  Hopefully with the proposed build of a Learning Resource Centre on the inside playground will help with accessibility issues.


5. Other policies


Our Accessibility Plan complements and supports our:


  • Special educational needs and disability policy and related SEN information report;
  • policy for Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions; and our
  • Equality Information and Equality Objectives.


It can also be read alongside the following school documents:


  • Child Protection Policy
  • Curriculum Policy
  • Staff Development Policy
  • Health & Safety Policy (including off-site safety)
  • Behaviour Policy
  • School Development Plan


6. Pupil data


We ask for information about any disabilities or health conditions in early communications with new parents and carers, in addition to carefully observing our pupils’ progress.


Current pupil data shows that at the start of the 01/09/2022 academic year, 38 percent of our pupils were regarded as disabled under the Equality Act 2010. Our pupils have the following areas of need:


List areas of need

Glue ear                                1

Chronic fatigue                   1

ASD/ADHD/Autism            3

Organ specific                     6

Speech& Lang                   11



All children are able to access clubs and school trips.


7. Audit


To help us develop our Accessibility Plan, we undertook an environmental audit of Cerne Abbas First School on 8th December 2022.



8. Consultation


In developing our Accessibility Plan, we have consulted with:


  • our SEND Lead
  • other staff at the school, including the leadership team
  • our governing body



9. Current good practice


Access to the curriculum


At Cerne Abbas CE VC First School, we have improved access to the curriculum for pupils with a disability through the following means:


  • Our focus is to enable SEND children to show their knowledge and understanding without the barriers of literacy preventing them.
  • Classroom are designed to meet the needs of all children with uncluttered, simple displays.
  • Calm spaces available.
  • Chunking of information and scaffolding learning.
  • Developing independence with use of support materials.
  • Dual coding.
  • Senior SEND TA.
  • Children with Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, ADHD and ASD (low spectrum) can easily access classrooms and resources but some areas not accessible with physical disability.
  • Lessons are responsive to pupil diversity with lesson modifications, ICT provided through the non-negotiable classroom essentials list.


The physical environment


At Cerne Abbas CE VC First School, we have improved the physical environment of the school to increase access for pupils with a disability by:


  • Classroom are designed to meet the needs of all children
  • New lighting
  • Developing a Pod to include sensory equipment
  • The new Learning Resource Centre should give access to more of the site.
  • Secure EYFS outside area to allow for independence free flow of indoor and outside environment



Access to information


At Cerne Abbas CE VC First School, we make written information more accessible to pupils with a disability by:


  • Dual coding
  • PECS and picture boards and timetables
  • Zone of regulation in Early Years
  • Simple work sheets where needed
  • Uncluttered
  • Information chunked.


10. Sources of advice and information


Our Accessibility Plan has been written following guidance from the Local Authority and taking into account the Dorset Local Authority Accessibility Strategy.



11. Implementation and monitoring


Our Accessibility Plan shows how we will continue to improve accessibility at Cerne Abbas CE VC First School for pupils with a disability (and for staff and visitors to the school) over the next 3 years. It may be used to inform other school planning documents.


We will work in partnership with the Local Authority in implementing the Accessibility Plan. Where necessary, environmental works will be guided by relevant buildings regulations.


Sufficient resources will be allocated to implement this Accessibility Plan.


The Accessibility Plan will be reviewed regularly and updated if needed. It will be monitored through the Governing Body.


The School Complaints  procedure covers the Accessibility Plan.  


12. Accessibility Action Plan


Increasing access to the curriculum

What needs to be done?How will this be achieved?Who is responsible?When will this be done?



How can we tell if this is successful?Date Complete

Staff need further awareness training of the disabilities supported within school.


Staff need further specialist training to support all pupils



Training will be arranged through National College


National College and Outreach training


Headteacher and SEND Lead


On going 




National College membership


Staff more confident in managing children’s needs




Recent diversity Questionnaire illustrated need for images of diversity around the school.

Visual images of diversity around the school.


All Staff


Spring Term 2023



£50Evidence of visual diversity to include disabilities 

Diversity in the curriculum

To include representations of diversity throughout the curriculum subjects taught.

Buying books for children that include diversity
Teaching staff2023-2024£130.00Diversity included in all curriculum subjects taught 



Improving the physical environment

What needs to be


How will this be


Who is



will this

be done?



How can we tell

if this is successful?

Date Complete
A new school – only approx. a third of the building is accessible for wheelchairs – no access to toilets or Early Years. Not all doors are wide enough to allow wheelchair access to the classrooms.New learning resource centre might improve the percentage accessible for physical disabilities.

Dorset Council

Summer 2023UnknownMore areas accessible to wheel chair users. 
Edges to steps need to be highlighted

Steps to Ducklings need to be edged in white.

Bernie Edwards

Spring Term 2023

Paint £22

Rubber edging costs to be investigated
Painted steps 

Continue to ensure that Classrooms are designed to reduce distraction and sensory overload .


Calm spaces for pupils to withdraw if necessary 


Lighting improved to help visually

Continue to ensure all classrooms have reduced clutter and business – a non negotiable.


Eden Pod with sensory equipment – but used 75% for group work and other 

intervention. So limited access.

All lighting in classrooms replaced with LED bulbs.



All Staff








Dorset Council


Ongoing and continuing










No cost











Dorset Council paid

Calm surroundings for children to learn to the best of their ability. 


Making written information more accessible

What needs to be done?

How will this be


Who is


When will this be done?Cost (estimate)How can we tell if this is successful?Date complete

Continue to keep written information in simple language

Visual timetables in classrooms.  Now and next boards as necessary.All staffOngoingNo CostAll children calm and engaged and aware of routines 

Opportunities to reduce written information if required


ICT explored to its full potential

Phone calls could be made if necessary.


Current area of development from the SEND evaluation.  Cerne Valley Young Peoples Trust to be approach to purchase 3 laptops.

Admin Staff



All staff

When required



Spring 2023





All parents accessing information at all times.


Children with SEND able to evidence their knowledge without having to record information in writing.



Document version control 

Document title: Accessibility Plan Template
Date approved: 13.07.2021
Current version no.:Version 3
Approving body: Practice, Policy and Procedure Group 
Document owner: Education Services
Review date: July 2024
Lead author:  Kelly Lambert



A positive, purposeful and enthusiastic atmosphere

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