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Early years targeted and specialist services

The majority of young children with special educational needs and/or disability (SEND) can have their needs met in the wide range of inclusive nurseries, pre-schools, child-minders or universal pre-school clubs and activities available in Bromley.

Bromley pre-schools and nurseries can access advice and training from a range of professionals to support them to be fully inclusive such as the Area Special Educational Needs Coordinator (Area SENCO) and the Sensory Support Teachers (Visual Impairment & Hearing Impairment).

Early years education support services for young children with special educational needs and/or disability work with other services in health, early years education, social care and the voluntary sector to ensure quality, timely, coordinated access to support and early intervention for children and their parents & carers. High quality family friendly services, information and support are offered with a particular focus on children with more severe or complex disabilities.

Early Years Targeted and Specialist Local Offer

For children who are resident in the London Borough of Bromley with severe or complex SEND, a range of targeted or specialist education services/provision is available.

This includes:


Portage is a high quality home visiting education and assessment service. It offers regular weekly or fortnightly visits, when the family and Portage Home Visitor work in partnership to assess what the child can already do and then plan specific learning goals to meet the child’s individual needs in liaison with other involved professionals e.g. health therapists and sensory support.

Find out more about the Bromley Portage Service.

Phoenix Pre-School Assessment Classrooms

The Phoenix Pre-School assessment classrooms (PPS) provide part-time placements for children with a wide range of severe or complex needs. Each class has a qualified teacher with teaching assistants and specialist health support assistants.

Find out more about the Phoenix Pre-Assessment Classrooms [PDF, 737KB].

Outreach and Inclusion

The Outreach and Inclusion Service provides quality support to enable children with a range of special educational needs and disabilities to be included in Bromley mainstream pre-school settings. Specialist Outreach Teachers (Area SENCOs) carry out observations, assessments and teaching of individual children in liaison with staff in the mainstream setting, working with Health, Social Care and parents to set appropriate learning targets.

Find out more about the role of the Early Years Area SENCO [PDF, 597KB].

Find out more about Inclusion Support Workers [PDF, 473KB].

Supporting Inclusion In Pre-Schools (SIPs)

Where children with severe and complex needs attend a Bromley mainstream pre-school provision and require additional support to fully access the Early Years Foundation Stage the setting they attend may be eligible to apply for an inclusion grant.

Find out more about the Supporting Inclusion In Pre-Schools [PDF, 379KB].

Find out more about the Disability Access Fund

Sensory Support Service (Hearing Impairment & Visual Impairment)

Sensory Support Service offers advice and support at home and in the pre-school settings to families who have a child with a visual or hearing impairment. The service runs baby sign and baby play sessions at Griffins which parents/carers can bring their pre-school children to as well as the use for the sensory room for the development of vision.

Find out more about:

Educational Psychologists

Educational Psychologist’s work with young children individually, observing them both at home and in pre-school settings as well as carefully listening to families and other professionals concerns about the child’s needs.

Recommendations and advice are suggested in order to encourage a child’s development, learning and prepare a child for school.

Click here to find out more about the Educational Psychologists in Bromley

Early Support Full Programme

Children with the most complex needs or children/families who require a period of Intensive Keyworking support and co-ordination of services can be supported by the Early Support Full Programme team.

Find out more about the following services:

Initial Assessment

Following referral the appropriate professional will contact the family to arrange a visit to carry out an Initial Assessment of the child’s need and discuss potential support options.

This will include gathering information about other agencies supporting the child/family e.g. from Health or Social Care and where necessary referring into other appropriate services.

The Initial Assessment may take place over several visits particularly if a child attends a pre-school setting.

Children with complex health needs

Children who are cognitively age appropriate but who have complex health needs can be referred to the ESPSP.

The keyworker will assess the support they need in pre-school, monitor that support and assist in preparing for transition to mainstream school.

Group Support

Parents and their children who have been referred through ESPSP also benefit from support given in a variety of parent/child groups.

The group sessions aim to support children to learn, be part of a group and empower parents to meet their child’s needs.

Groups currently available are:

  • Stay and Play for children under 2 years with complex SEND - find out more by downloading a leaflet [PDF, 277KB]
  • SCIPS (Social Communication Interaction Play Skills) for children with social communication needs - find out more by downloading a leaflet [PDF, 279KB]
  • Sensory Group for children with more profound sensory needs e.g. profound and multiple learning difficulties or profound Autism - find out more by downloading a leaflet [PDF, 386KB]
  • SPARKLES for children with a wide range of SEND - find out more by downloading a leaflet [PDF, 273KB]
  • Mini Griffins for children with visual impairment
  • Sing & Sign for children with hearing impairment

All children who receive a service from any early years specialist support service will be allocated an Education Keyworker link to leaflet, who is the central point of contact for the family and early years setting in relation to educational services and provision.


Transition to School

All children known to the above services will be offered a supported transition to school.

The Education Keyworker will discuss with parents/carers the support options available to their child once they have started school.


Special Educational Needs Assessment and Statutory Assessment

More information on Special Educational Needs Assessment can be found on the Assessment for Special Educational Needs page of this website.

A small number of children may require a formal Statutory Assessment known as Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment. More information on Education, Health and Care planning can be found on our Education, Health and Care Plan page.



Need more help?

Find out who to talk to

Contact the Information, Advice and Support Service for free, impartial information, advice and support for parents and carers of children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). Support is also offered to children and young people with SEND. They can also help provide information in a non-web format.

E-mail: iass@bromley.gov.uk

Call: 020 8461 7630

Visit our IASS page

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