Whole School Approach

Members of the Communicate Team can support schools to meet universal, targeted and specialist Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN).   

We work in collaboration with children, young people, parents, school staff and other professionals to understand needs of pupils and the priorities for the whole school.  

Helping children develop communication skills is one of the most important things you can do. That’s because the ability to communicate underpins just about every aspect of a child’s development.” 

(Why Chatter Matters, 2018)  

In areas of deprivation at least 50% of children have Speech, Language and Communication Needs."

(Bercow, 2008).

"Whilst many of these children will not require direct SLT intervention, they need good quality communication environments and short-term, high quality boost interventions to catch up with their peers."

our bespoke service may support: 

  • Assessments and Screening allowing early identification and intervention for SLCN across the school.
  • Interventions / Therapy for individuals and groups of pupils.
  • Workforce Development providing training, modelling and coaching to increase the staff’s confidence, knowledge and skills.
  • Enhancing the Communication-Friendly Environment promoting high quality interactions, routines and activities so every child can be successful in communication and learning throughout the day.
  • Working in Partnership with Families and other Agencies maximising support by working together for the child and young person.
  • Leadership using national and international best practices to promote whole setting initiatives e.g. The Communication Commitment, Word aware etc. throughout the school.

Our interventions may include:

  • Engaging pupils to establish their perspective and agreeing achievable goals and plans.
  • Direct therapy with a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) or SLT Assistant.
  • Supporting school staff or parents to provide intervention.
    Evidence based interventions and programmes.
  • Individual, small group or whole class approaches.
    Flexible delivery online where required.
  • Coordinating activity with other professionals involved e.g. Teachers or NHS staff.
  • Monitoring progress, reviewing effectiveness of approach and providing reports.
  • Embedding the skills in the environment where pupils live and learn.

For more details please visit our Working with Children and Young People page.


Members of the Communicate Team are licenced to deliver a range of international and national evidence based training, including:

  • Elklan 0-3, 3-5, 5-11, CFS etc.
     Hanen Teacher Talk® or Learning Language and Loving It® 
  • ICAN Early Talk; Early Talk Boost (Pre-School); Talk Boost (KS1); or Talk about Talk (Secondary)
  • Nuffield Early Language Intervention
  • Signalong
  • Wordaware (Early Years and KS1) approach to whole school vocabulary learning

We are also experienced in delivering bespoke workshops to meet local needs, including: Autism Awareness; Colourful Semantics, Blank  Level Questions; Narrative; Sensory Needs; Visual Support and WellComm etc. 

For more details, please visit our Training and Development page.

We work with our schools to design and agree targets, activities and outcome measures in order to demonstrate positive outcomes for children, the workforce and the whole school.

What service users say:

“SLT service is one thing that is going really well at the moment.  Making really good contacts with parents, creating useful resources for school and home. Loads of evidence of impact in school. Keeping working well with OT." 

Head of a Special School in Merseyside 

“You’ve been great and I really appreciate all the help. It’s been so useful for me to take a step back and look at how we support the children and make some really positive changes - you’ve given us so many great ideas.” 

Nursery Manager  

“I just wanted to say a big thank you for the course today. I found it really interesting and have come away feeling more confident in supporting the children in our setting.” 

Teacher (following an online workshop)

Example case study - Enhancements in whole school approach to vocabulary teaching were made in the school by:

  • Understanding the priorities and needs of individual children, staff and school leadership.
  • Auditing classroom practice.
  • Providing a range of whole schools training and smaller workshops.
  • Further modelling, coaching and support as needed.

Follow-up audits one term later showed higher staff awareness, changes in practice and anecdotal evidence of impact of children. 

For more information about the Communicate Team and the Speech and Language services we provide please contact: Caroline Coyne, Director and Specialist Speech and Language Therapist