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How to help students with the transition from primary to secondary school

The transition from primary to secondary school can be particularly stressful for a student with medical or mental health needs. To minimise potential difficulties transition planning should begin in year 5. 

How schools can help


  • Advise parents to visit potential secondary schools early in year 5 so they can look at facilities and speak to the SENCO/ Medical Needs Lead. 
  • Encourage parents to ask the secondary school what support would be available for their child’s medical / mental health needs

  • Respond promptly and fully to secondary schools that make enquiries once the student has enrolled.


  • Ensure clear home-school communication systems are in place. 

  • Liaise with feeder primary schools and gather relevant, up-to-date information to facilitate planning for individual students.

  • Provide information packs which give details on subject curricula, extra-curricular activities, resources, school procedures.

  • Provide mentors to support vunerable Year 7 students.

  • Provide opportunities for subject teachers to learn about specific medical needs and establish a formalised system for the dissemination of appropriate information to teachers.

  • When a student is newly diagnosed disseminate information quickly to staff that need to know. 

  • Ensure there is a clear and effective anti-bullying policy in place and that students understand the process.

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