Social Emotional and Mental Health (Ref. 6.32/6.33 Code of Practice)

Level 0

  • development in line with the typically developing child or young person (CYP)
  • CYP engages successfully in learning and general school life for majority of the time
  • CYP is able to maintain stable social, emotional and mental health, responding to strategies and support
  • CYP may experience some difficulties in the areas of social skills, empathy, expression of feelings, motivation, self- awareness that is managed through school policies
  • CYP responds appropriately to school policy and rewards for majority of the time
  • CYP may encounter transitions and changes to life situations which may require a differentiated approach for a small length of time
  • CYP demonstrates mild difficulties in maintaining stable social, emotional and mental health. There are difficulties in any of the following areas:
    • social skills
    • friendships
    • relationships with adults
    • empathy
    • expression of feelings
    • motivation
    • fear of failure
    • low self-esteem
    • attendance
    • self-regulation
    • self-awareness
    • organisation of learning
    • CYP may find it hard to develop the age appropriate behaviour for learning skills needed to focus, start and complete tasks
    • CYP's actions may interrupt the learning of others. This may be in certain areas only and sporadic
    • CYP may find it hard to express themselves emotionally and let others know how they are feeling
    • difficulties with managing emotions might manifest in inappropriate ways, for example disruptive and or disturbing behaviours, minor risk of self-harming or withdrawal / isolation but this can largely be managed in the school environment with appropriate support and strategies
    • CYP usually responds to school's effective behaviour management policy consistently implemented in the classroom
    • CYP responds to targeted support arrangements and rewards for the majority of time
    • CYP may require access to an additional adult at targeted times to support curriculum access or emotional regulation
    • CYP responds to close modelling and external rule reinforcement from an adult

Level 2

  • CYP has significant and/or persistent difficulty in one or more of the 12 Social, Emotional and Mental Health descriptors from Level 1 and which regularly (e.g. at least 2x a week) cause barriers to learning. These may be linked to the following:
    • withdrawal or isolation
    • challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour
    • difficulties with learning or communication
    • mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression, hidden behaviours such as self-harming (actual/threats), substance misuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained
    • attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), ADD, ODD, ASD or PDA
    • attachment difficulties
    • trauma, domestic violence, abuse and neglect as well as issues such as housing, family or other domestic circumstances
    • inability to communicate their emotional and social needs in a way that is socially appropriate compared to their peers
    • difficulties in making and maintaining friendships, relationships with children and or adults which may include bullying
    • verbal and physical aggression as a result of difficulties in self-regulating emotional responses
    • difficulty in complying with reasonable requests from adults and whole school expectations
    • verbal and physical aggression as a result of difficulties in self-regulating emotional responses
    • depressed and uncommunicative
    • high levels of anxious/obsessive behaviour (OCD)
    • low self-esteem
    • CYP may have particular difficulty in focusing on task and require repeated adult re direction. Progress is inhibited
    • CYP is unable to respond to the school's effective behaviour management policy consistently implemented in the classroom without a high level of additional support
    • CYP inconsistent with their response to targeted support arrangements and rewards
    • CYP inconsistent in their response to close modelling and external rule reinforcement from an adult
    • CYP requires access to an additional adult to support curriculum access or emotional regulation

Level 3

  • CYP has severe and / or persistent difficulties in any two or more of the areas of the SEMH descriptors at Levels 1 or 2 and which on a frequent basis (e.g. daily) cause significant barriers to learning. This may link to the following:
    • attachment difficulties: the case history should demonstrate evidence of long term, severe and unusual attachment difficulties
    • trauma: there is evidence from professionals of substantial trauma experienced by the child or young person, acting as a barrier to learning and making relationships
    • verbal and physical aggression as a result of being unable to self-regulate emotional responses
    • refusal to comply with reasonable requests from adults and whole school expectations
    • CYP displays coercive and controlling behaviour targeting vulnerable peers
    • CYP is at risk of exclusion or may have been excluded for a fixed period
    • CYP may have poor attendance
    • CYP is unable to respond to individualised behaviour management without additional adult support
    • CYP is unable to respond to targeted support arrangements and rewards without additional adult support
    • CYP is unable to access the curriculum without on-going access to an additional adult
    • CYP may display some sensory regulation difficulties which results in heightened anxiety
    • CYP requires 1:1 support at all times to maintain safety and wellbeing in a mainstream setting

Level 4

  • CYP has severe and profound difficulties in two or more of the SEMH descriptors from Levels  1, 2 and 3 and which persistently cause severe barriers to learning (e.g. daily/throughout the day) these behaviours can be intense, volatile and enduring with sudden onset
  • CYP may have a medical diagnosis known to cause emotional behaviour difficulties
  • CYP may display high risk behaviours/ high risk self-harm behaviours which significantly impedes their access to learning and compromises safety (their own or others)
  • CYP finds it extremely difficult to cope with most learning situations as an individual or part of a group despite a high ratio of adult support
  • CYP displays sensory regulation difficulties which results in heightened anxiety
  • CYP likely to be at risk of permanent exclusion
  • CYP is likely to have poor attendance or be a school refuser
  • engagement in learning is on the terms of the CYP. Extrinsic rewards are not motivating
  • CYP requires a tailored curriculum with specialised approaches which may require adjusting on a daily basis
  • CYP shows very little regard for own or other's possessions or property when in crisis. Crisis takes time to work through and is distressing to the CYP and others
  • CYP threatens and may resort to physical aggression targeting vulnerable peers, staff and/or family members
  • CYP has limited relationship with adults and or peers and social interaction is impeded
  • coordinated multi-disciplinary approaches are required to provide a personalised programme
  • significant impact on the CYP's independent life skills
  • progress in all areas is significantly impeded by SEMH needs
  • CYP is involved in criminal activities that put themselves or others at risk.
  • CYP is known to the police
  • CYP is involved in Child Sexual Exploitation
  • CYP will usually require a specialist placement to maintain safety and wellbeing