We support professionals working in the Special Educational Needs Sector (SEN)


We are still open and providing support to schools, parents and carers.

If you are an EQUALS member and you don’t have access to your login details
please email admin@equalsoffice.co.uk
or you can ring 0191 272 1222 – 8 am – 9 pm – 7 days a week.

Has your school already purchased licences for some of our
curriculum and assessment materials?

If you don’t have access to these, contact us and we will
email over any links so you can continue to use these.

Are you new to EQUALS?  please get in touch and we can arrange
a free scheme of work for you to use at this time.


Hello friends, we hope you are all staying safe and well in these uncertain times?
Behind the scenes there is a great deal of activity between the DfE, DfH and specialist groups advocating on our behalf. If you have any issues you want us to clarify on your behalf in relation
to the Corona 19 virus and its impact on schools, please get in touch and we will
help represent your views and concerns.



Hello friends

Happy Easter and I hope you are all keeping safe and well? I am just writing with some sad news that one of our colleagues and friends Michael Thompson sadly died on Friday after a serious cycling accident with a car which left him critically injured. Michael was with his wife Pauline and daughter Sarah listening to his favourite Bob Dylan music as he peacefully passed away in the RVI.

Michael just recently retired from a very successful teaching career which culminated with his Headship at Priory School in Hexham where he built an outstanding community of specialist education. Michael had also taught in a number of schools in Northumberland and Washington and was committed to our children, young people and their families.

Alongside Keith Humphreys, Michael was instrumental in establishing what we now know as EQUALS and was a pioneer in promoting collaborative approaches with colleagues sharing best practice and developing the curriculum we now take for granted in our schools. He was also my best mate, the kind of friend everyone would want, loyal, caring, funny, challenging full of wisdom and full of love. He leaves behind a wonderful legacy with Pauline, David, Steve, Pete and Sarah and his beloved grandson ‘little Mike’. He also leaves behind a fantastic community at Priory who will also be grieving his loss. I am sure you would like to pass on your best wishes to all at Priory and to his wife Pauline and to all those that knew and loved this special man.

Chris Rollings,
EQUALS Chairperson & Head Teacher of Hadrian School, Newcastle upon Tyne.



The SEND Forums

The SEND Forums are three independent e-communities (SLD Forum, SENCO Forum and The SEND & ICT Forum) for those involved in the education of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). Whilst all three forums reside on the same platform, they are independently moderated and each has its own home page. When you sign up for an account, you will have access to all forums, so please be aware that any messages you write will be viewable by other members of the forums.

You can create a private discussion group by contacting a forum moderator or contacting the forum administrator at thesendforums@nasen.org.uk.

click here to learn more or to find out how to register



Social distancing and PPE guidance for staff

“These safety steps have been agreed with my union the NEU, for staff working in special schools – I am not aware that any other unions have issued specific practical guidance yet.

Click here to view the guidance from Co-op Academy

Dominic Wall

Executive Principal & SEND Lead for Co-op Academies Trust

Co-op Academy Southfield



News Item from Chris Rollings – EQUALS Chairperson


News item- FLSE- How special heads are dealing with Coronavirus


Dear Colleagues,

In these uncertain times I am sure you are all wrestling with key decisions and worrying how on earth we protect our vulnerable children and young people as well as the interests of our staff. The link above is from our friends in Special Schools Voice, Medicines in Special Schools (where I represent EQUALS), FLSE, NASEN, SSAT etc. represents our shared voice for our schools. If you have any thoughts, feedback, suggestions that you would like answers to I am happy for you to contact me directly on the following email address.


I appreciate there are still unresolved issues about opening over the Easter break and ultimately our School Leaders will do what is right for your children and young people. Keep supporting each other, please don’t judge anyone’s well intentioned actions and most importantly of all, stay safe.

Best wishes, Chris Rollings, EQUALS Chairperson.



Minister Ford’s open letter to the SEND sector 24th March 2020

Please find here an open letter to children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), their parents, families and others who support them from Vicky Ford, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families. The letter signposts key Covid-19 guidance published over the past week.



Home Learning


Click here you can view a selection of Useful Links from EQUALS.


If you would like to include a link on the EQUALS website
please email admin@equalsoffice.co.uk

We are especially interested in any links for ‘Home Learning’ and ‘Supporting Pupil Behaviour’
at this time for pupils with PMLD, SLD and MLD.

Any help would be very much appreciated.



EQUALS Membership

EQUALS is a not-for-profit registered charity, first formed in 1994, committed to supporting the work of teachers, TAs, schools and parents/carers of pupils with profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) severe learning difficulties (SLD) and moderate learning difficulties (MLD).

Being a member of EQUALS enables you to:

    • be a part of an internationally recognised body actively campaigning on issues
      related specifically to PMLD, SLD and MLD
    • save £100s of pounds when ordering Curriculum and Assessment
      materials/licences for PMLD, SLD and MLD
    • enrol on high quality CPD provided in your area and geared to your local needs
    • save £100s of pounds when booking places on EQUALS national conferences
    • register for Accreditation/Certificate of Achievement Schemes for pupils with PMLD, SLD and MLD
    • advertise SEN Job Vacancies for free at www.equalsmembers.org
    • secure access to a News and Discussion Forum for PMLD, SLD and MLD.


click here to learn more about the benefits for EQUALS membership.



New Engagement Model – Rochford Review

The new engagement model guidance has now been published.

The guidance provides detailed information on how to use the engagement model as the new statutory form of assessment for pupils working below the standard of the national curriculum assessments and not engaged in subject-specific study at key stage 1 (KS1) and key stage 2 (KS2). The engagement model will replace P scales 1-4 from the 2020/21 academic year subject to consultation and amendments to the relevant legislation.

The engagement model has five areas: exploration, realisation, anticipation, persistence and initiation; it combines a formative and summative approach whilst encouraging the identification and celebration of pupil progress.

Click here to access the new guidance

Please can you pass on this information to your colleagues.

Please  address any queries about the guidance to:




EQUALS Formal Curriculum

This Curriculum has been specifically written for pupils working consistently and over time below age related expectations, especially those who struggle with literacy and numeracy.



EQUALS Semi-formal SLD/MLD Curriculum


EQUALS has published a ‘Brand New’ Semi-Formal Curriculum, specifically designed and written for learners of all ages with SLD/MLD.

To learn more about our brand new SLD/MLD curriculum please click here
Or contact Paul Buskin at the EQUALS office on 0191 272 1222
or email paul@equalsoffice.co.uk

Below is a short video of just over 11 mins by Peter Imray; our Director of Developments. Peter Imray talks about our brand new Semi-Formal (SLD/MLD) Curriculum.

EQUALS is also now offering Twilight CPD Semi-Formal (SLD/MLD) Curriculum courses by Peter Imray in eight more locations throughout the UK. Places are available from £19 ex VAT

click here to read more



EQUALS Pre-formal PMLD Curriculum

EQUALS has published a new Curriculum for pupils with PMLD.

For pupils with a profound learning difficulty, learning is best done when the learner is placed at the centre of the Curriculum.

“Let’s focus on the things that matter”.


A Person-Centred and Holistic Curriculum for Learners with
Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties.

A Curriculum of ideas for learners with profound and multiple learning difficulties
to help teachers/TAs to:

    • build routines
    • facilitate change
    • offer alternatives
    • observe and guide

Our aim is to put the learners in control by giving them an environment that they can understand and they are allowed to keep changing in order to encourage development.

Click here to read more or to place an order



Mathematics, English and Science – 2018 Editions

Formal Subject-specific Schemes of Work for PMLD, SLD and MLD.
For the National Curriculum – For pupils working below age related expectations.

Click here to view previews or to place an order




MAPP – Mapping and Assessing Personal Progress

There is a new version now available
MAPP (Semi-Formal)  is a suite of materials developed to facilitate the planning, assessment and recording of progress in relation to personal learning intentions.

Below is a short video of almost 11 mins by Mike Sissons; the author of MAPP – Semi-Formal.

Mike Sissons talks about the new MAPP – Semi-Formal.


Click here to learn more about MAPP Semi-formal


EQUALS Highlights

Why not take a look at our latest news, browse our webshop or view our upcoming events.

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We have a range of training options to suit every one. Take a look now.

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What Our Members Say

We have thousands of satisfied members since we began in 1994

Online CPD Sessions

“Love these courses, it is like having a university lecture/tutorial”

“I love listening to the evidence based information”

“All the information was presented simply and efficiently. It was interesting and the time passed very quickly. An excellent training session”

Rodney House School – Manchester

We feel the online training delivered by EQUALS have been WONDERFUL.  The relevance and depth of the sessions has been fantastic, Peter is a very knowledgeable man. Having training delivered online has enabled all our teachers to attend and have discussions after the event rather than one teacher attending and disseminating which can water down the content.
Thank you so much and keep them coming!

Peter Imray

“Lets focus on things that matter”.

“For those with a profound learning difficulty (PMLD), learning is best done when the learner is placed in the centre of the curriculum”.

Priory Woods School – Middlesbrough

“The Semi-formal Curriculum meets the needs of our special children and we feel more able to promote what the children need rather than being constrained by subject areas”.

“Freedom to be creative and concentrate on individual needs with a focus on independence”.

Pedagogy, Curriculum and Assessment of Pupil Progress for Children and Young People with SLD and PMLD

“Great delivery – motivational speaker, thank you’
“A fantastic workshop with many learning and thinking points!’
“Excellent informative course”
“Information about different kinds of assessment models”
“Thought provoking ideas on SLD curriculum”
“Analysing what we teach and why?”