QuickRead: Assessment for pupils with SEN

Read the basics about assessment for pupils with special educational needs (SEN) on 1 page. You can also download this QuickRead as a ready-made resource to share with colleagues.

Last reviewed on 2 July 2024
School types: AllSchool phases: AllRef: 36786

Most pupils with SEN will be assessed under the same performance metrics as everybody else, but their progress may look different to their peers.

However, there are separate statutory assessment tools for pupils working below National Curriculum assessment standards, or who can’t access the curriculum.

The engagement model 

The engagement model replaced P scales 1 to 4 from September 2021. It's a mandatory assessment tool for all maintained schools, academies and pupil referral units (PRUs). 

The model must be used for pupils in Key Stage (KS) 2 who are:

  • Working below the standard of the National Curriculum assessments, and
  • Not engaged in subject-specific study

Your school can use it for pupils in Key Stage (KS) 3 onwards,

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