If a learner is identified through the filling in of the Learner Profile as being at risk, it is the responsibility of the teacher in consultation with the parents/caregivers and the Institution Level Support Team (ILST) or School Based Support Team (SBST) to complete the Support Needs Assessment Forms (SNA).
For learners with disabilities, the Diagnostic Profile must be completed. If parents are not able to arrange for this profile to be completed by a medical or health practitioner, the District Based Support team must organise for this to be done.
Before starting to assess the support needs of any learner, teachers need to have a sound understanding of what can constitute barriers to learnning and development.
If the education system is to promote effective learning and prevent learning breakdown, it is imperative that mechanisms are structured into the system to break down existing barriers. Such mechanisms must develop the capacity of the system to overcome barriers which may arise, prevent barriers from occurring, and promote the development of an effective learning and teaching environment. Read more about Barriers to Learning before starting to fill in the Support Needs Assessment.
The SIAS Orientation Manual can be used for the orientation of teachers, district and provincial officials on the structure and intent of the National Strategy on Screening, Identification, Assessment and Support (SIAS), 2008.