"Every SEMH provision should have a set of the Fagus developmental guides, they are such an invaluable resource when undertaking school to school support.
• The guides themselves are well designed and presented which make them easy reads and superb for use in staff induction and ongoing staff training.
• We also use the developmental steps to inform our target setting and writing our SEMH support plans (pupil risk management documents)
“In the past it has been hard to create SMART targets for our pupil plans, especially when dealing with personal, social and emotional needs, but for the first time, using Fagus, the school is now able to put specific targets into the pupil plans tailored to each individual need.
Targets can now be set easily as Fagus indicates areas of need for a specific child and they give a more complete picture than the results from the SDQs. I can now share this data with the play/drama therapist and all work towards the same target, it is also a lot easier to make the targets SMART and very appropriate for the child.
I found that Fagus isolates an area of need and then it is much easier to set a goal especially when you couple it with the proactive therapists’ interventions. It makes it clearer for the therapists to know what to concentrate their time on and along with target setting, everybody can see clear visible evidence of the impact of the intervention and show real value for money.”
Deputy Head & SENCo
“The Fagus survey tool lets us instantly see where our children are in their social and emotional development - whether they are acting age appropriately or delayed.
We have used the Developmental Guides to help us devise specific interventions and it has been very encouraging to see the difference these are having. For the first time we have been able to observe our children's social and emotional developmental progress in specific and measurable ways."
Family Support Worker
“We have found the Fagus Developmental guides to be very comprehensive and easy to use. The fact that they are suitable for our very youngest children enables us to offer support for vital areas of child development which can be frequently overlooked and not understood. We are therefore able to promote the holistic development of all our children."
Assistant Head Teacher & FS2 Leader
“Using the Fagus resource, we have had real success with one of our Year 6 students. We have set an appropriate goal based on one of the statements in the Coping guide and this has enabled us to focus on one behaviour and reaction”.
“The layout of the guides and checklists are broken down into different age categories and this comprehensive structure has been very useful when sitting down with a child’s parents and helping them make sense of and understand their child’s behaviour.”
“The Developmental Profile provided us with the proof that the pupil was struggling in the areas we anticipated and does indeed have some complex needs that require further intervention.”
“For one particular child, we completed the set of Fagus online checklists and the social and emotional domain that was flagged up indicated that they had a ‘weakness’ in self-control so we decided to concentrate on this particular aspect as we felt that this would help their development in other areas”.
The Developmental Guides are so useful when trying to set a goal that is relevant to a child, not only are they really user-friendly, they have helped focus our mind on how we assist certain children and alter behaviours positively.
We took the self-control developmental guide to create a table that sums up the child’s needs, we then chose a relevant target which concentrated on helping the child be more patient in class, alongside this, we outlined a plan on how we were going to get the child to reach the target, this included explaining to the child why patience is important, using praise and recognition every time the child demonstrated actions on the plan and using gentle reminders on how to help the child achieve the goal, it also included a reward chart. The child in question has made a huge amount of progression and we have all been pleasantly surprised by the outcome.”
Pupil & Family Liaison Officer
“Fagus has been helping Hope School support the social and emotional developmental needs of the young people in our care and inform best practice.
We are using the Fagus Developmental Profiles to get more of a thorough insight into some of our pupils’ individual SEHM concerns and this in turn has supported individual target setting as we can start to pinpoint their primary social and emotional difficulties.
The Developmental Guides are a great resource for helping us set specific targets and focus on which interventions and approaches to embed to encourage emotional and social progression in the individuals who are struggling.”
Inclusion Lead - Hope School, Liverpool
“Fagus is a very useful tool for us to understand our children’s social & emotional development at a deeper level. The online checklist surveys are self-explanatory and give you clear visual evidence of what is going on with each child and where we need to concentrate our interventions.
At the beginning and end of each term we look at the pupil’s visual graphical results of their Fagus Developmental Profiles to individualise their social and emotional targets and feed the results into their Educational Care Plans. This approach is solution-orientated and enables us to keep a close eye on how well each pupil is meeting their goals and helps us inform and adapt our therapeutic interventions. It is also a brilliant way for us to present information to key-workers and other practitioners who are also very involved with the welfare of our children.”
“We worked with the Fagus Coping Guide and recognised that the student we were working with aged 16 was working developmentally at about age 8. We then worked out what behaviours we wanted to improve and set targets for the next 4-6 weeks. This has resulted in a great reduction of poor behaviours and in particular the flight reactions that had been exhibited. He is very proud that he has not had any after school detentions recently.”
Secondary School House Leader & Key Worker
“I have found the materials really useful. The materials allowed me to realise just how under developed she was and that I was basically teaching a 10 year old child with the emotional intelligence of a 3 year old! This in itself was shocking but it ultimately allowed me to appreciate how best I could move forward and help her to progress in those areas that were identified through the use of the Fagus materials.”
Year 5 Class Teacher
“Fagus gives really clear guideline’s as to where children are in key areas of their development which in turn helps us to set smart targets to individually support that child in appropriate ways. It’s also very easy and clear to use.”
"Using the checklists was hugely insightful for schools in gaining a shared understanding of the child. They have been “incredibly useful” to demonstrate that a child’s developmental age is different from their chronological age."
“Without the guides I wouldn’t have been able to set such a specific goal which was developmentally appropriate.”
“I’ve seen huge changes in pupils at the school. Since giving the children their Fagus goals, they are so much happier and able to access the full educational curriculum to reach their potential.”
Jack Rider, Assistant Head and Teacher
“The guides are fabulous. They allow you to dip into any specific area of a child’s development and increase your knowledge. You can investigate a child’s current point of development and identify specific behaviours that you think they could improve.”
Sue Wells, Specialist Teacher
“The staff at Beech Lodge School understand my son’s emotional needs and can support him appropriately.”
Margaret Smith, parent of a son who attends Beech Lodge School
“Fagus is an incredibly powerful tool. It has helped staff, parents and the whole school community have a deeper and broader understanding of typical social and emotional development in children and improve learning outcomes.”
Lucy Barnes, Head Teacher
“We have conducted an evaluation of the Fagus developmental guides and can confirm their academic rigour; the authors have accessed a wide range of appropriate psychological research articles to create the resource. The information is presented accurately, clearly and in an accessible format.
The developmental guides will be a helpful resource for professionals working with all children. They can be also applied in educational settings in particular to:
Support the professional development of school staff regarding children’s emotional and social development.
Assist teaching staff when they are setting goals for children in relation to their social and emotional functioning.”
The group of reviewers consisted of:
Dr Alana I. James: Lecturer, Royal Holloway, University of London
Professor Patrick Leman: Professor, Royal Holloway, University of London
Dr Rebecca Lucas: Lecturer, Royal Holloway, University of London
Dr Yvonne Skipper: Lecturer, Keele University
Dr Dawn Watling: Senior Lecturer, Royal Holloway, University of London
“Fagus provides a clear and comprehensive framework for teachers to support a child who feels disconnected from the educational environment because they are not emotionally and socially equipped to cope. By applying Fagus tools and checklists, teachers can assess a child’s current development and in so doing, acquire a deeper understanding of their challenges. Then the Fagus resource can be used to develop a clear pathway – punctuated by achievable objectives – to help the child attain the skills they need to build emotional resilience, improve mental welfare, succeed academically and ultimately, feel happier at school.”