Local Inclusion Forum Team

The Specialist Teaching and Learning Services is accessed by early years settings and mainstream schools through the Local Inclusion Forum Team meetings (LIFT).

There are 6 School LIFT groups and 3 Early Years groups each meet once each term. The Groups are chaired by the Inclusion Co-ordinator for the STLS, and attended by multi-agency partners, including:

  • Early Help
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Educational Psychologists
  • School/EYs SENCos
  • Specialist Teachers

The following link will take you to the KELSI Special Needs Page


Mainstream Schools – LIFT

Click on the link below to download the LIFT meeting schedules


Below is a flow chart to help schools work their way through the LIFT Process:

SSW flowchart
C I Guidance Flow Chart Jul 21
C and L Guidance Flow Chart Jul 21
SEMH Guidance Flow Chart Jul 21

A request form and parent/carer consent form will need to be completed to bring a case to a LIFT meeting for discussion. From April 2021 there is a new form that includes the parent consent. Click on the link below for the new form:
 School LIFT request & ATE form April 2021



Click on the links below to down load the EYs LIFT meeting schedules:

Dover EYs LIFT Schedule and Groups 2023-24

Below is a flow chart to help EYs Settings work their way through the LIFT Process:

EY LIFT Referral Guidance Flow Chart Flowchart 2021

A referral form and parent/carer agreement to engage form will need to be completed to bring a case to a LIFT meeting for discussion.
EY-LIFT-Referral-Form November 2020
Agreement to Engage Form

The following link will take you to the KELSI Early Years and Childcare page:
KELSI Early Years

An expected prerequisite for the STLS taking a referral is that early years settings and schools demonstrate that they have used their resources and best endeavours to meet the child/young person’s needs, the role of the LIFT meetings is then to offer advice and support though solution focus discussions. There are four main outcomes from a LIFT discussion:

  • Advice, support and ideas from the discussion at the meeting to take back and try
  • Access to training programmes or the opportunity for bespoke training
  • Support from another school
  • Specialist Intervention from a specialist teacher, special school outreach teacher, Educational Psychologist (through the core discretionary offer or commissioning), Early Help involvement or other district based SEND provider.

If a referral is accepted expected outcomes are agreed to form the basis of the STLS work.

STLS Clinics
STLS is very aware of the increasing pressure and workloads on SENCOs.   In order to provide early intervention and speed up waiting times for schools and settings, STLS will be offering termly combined C&L/C&I consultation clinics, SEMH Consultation clinics, EYs Consultation Clinics, River School SRP will be offering Speech and Language Clinics and Whitfield Aspen SRP will be offering Sensory Clinics. Please click on the links below for more information (Details for the Speech and Language Clinics are not yet available):

STLS Clinics for 2023.24

Whole School Training
Requests for whole school training by STLS can be made, please click on the link below for the form.
STLS Training Request Form 2023.24 May 23

Please go to the Training page for the District core programme.


Oversight and Quality Assurance – LIFT Executive

Dover District LIFT and the STLS is accountable to the LIFT Executive, which is a Head Teacher Group, currently chaired by John Dexter (Headteacher of Elms School). The LIFT Executive have agreed the STLS priorities from 2019 are these:

  • To reduce exclusions, increase attendance and reduce gaps for vulnerable groups
  • A greater focus on Early Years settings to identify early and provide support for a best start for children.
  • To ensure the district offer of support is robust so it builds parental confidence and enhances parental engagement.
  • To use data and local intelligence to target local resources.
  • To extend ‘Dimension Champions’ model to build additional support capacity
  • To improve mental health and wellbeing using research, evidence-informed approaches, resources and multi-agency training to support CYP and families with high levels of SEMH.
  • To ensure all schools have the capacity to adhere to the transition principles to best support vulnerable groups.

The schools who’s Headteachers are currently part of the LIFT Executive are:

  • Astor College
  • Aycliffe School
  • Deal Parochial
  • Dover Christ Church Academy
  • Eastry 
  • Elms School
  • Enterprise Learning Alliance
  • River and Lydden Federation
  • Treetops Pre-school
  • Whitfield Aspen School
  • Wingham and Preston Federation

The challenge for the Dover District LIFT Executive is how to use communication to move the local inclusion agenda forward to achieve the priorities for our local children and young people. 

Our approach has been the development of four drivers for inclusion. Each of the drivers articulate a behaviour and these behaviours can be present at all levels within the school system. For example, informing how a teaching assistants approaches supporting a child or young person in a classroom or how different agencies consider the planning of new initiatives. All drivers are of equal importance and interact with each other.

Our four drivers are:

  • Thinking through the eyes of a child or young person;
  • building relationships (with children and young people, parents and agencies);
  • building capacity through training;
  • effective communication.