Specific Additional Learning Needs

Who receives this service?

Children and young people who have significant difficulties in the literacy and numeracy field.

The service supports pupils in:

  • Primary schools
  • Secondary schools


What does the service provide?

The Specific Additional Learning Needs (Specific ALN) Service works with parents/carers, schools and other professionals to ensure that every pupil:

  • Has the same opportunities as those provided for their friends who attend schools.
  • Develops the specialist skills that they require.
  • Fulfills their potential and develop into independent learners.
  • Benefits from a specialist service that addresses the pupil’s educational needs.
  • Is taught in an environment that is conducive to educational inclusion.
  • Receives appropriate and timely support.                  

The  Specific ALN service also collaborates with schools in Gwynedd and Anglesey to ensure the inclusion of pupils who have specific difficulties in the curriculum. The service tries to reduce the impact of the difficulties on any academic progress.

To achieve that, the service sets the following aims;

  • Provides key staff within schools with training in skills development and use of appropriate resources when working with the pupils.
  • Provides a service that assists Specific ALN pupils in primary and secondary schools to ensure that they achieve their maximum potential.
  • Monitor the pupil’s development and ensure that the required skills are robustly developed.
  • Ensure that parents have a key role in any support provided.
  • Develop the Specific ALN team’s specialist knowledge and skills to maintain the levels of specialization required to support the pupils requirements.


Who's in the team:

Specific ALN Specialist Teachers

Einir Wyn Owen

Iona Angharad Edwards

Siân Pritchard Roberts

Sara Llwyd Davies

Senior Specific ALN Specialist Teaching Assistants

Ann Jones


How can be service be accessed?

School referrals are discussed based on the service’s access criteria at ALN&I Area Forums.


What is the Educational Psychologist's role?


What is the Quality Officer's role?


What is the school's role?

Every school has a responsibility to create a safe and caring environment that enables pupils to develop happily and confidently. In order to provide a environment friendly for learners who have Specific ALN, schools are expected to:

  • Provide an inclusive and welcoming learning and social environment.
  • Address requirements at different levels through considering any reasonable specialist advice.
  • Evaluate progress made by pupils who receive interventions to show their effectiveness.
  • Use standard and directed assessments to observe progress and decide on the most appropriate support.
  • Ensure that any strategies/recommendations from the specialist service are implemented.



Who else can help?

The school’s ALN Co-ordinator (ALNCo)

Educational Psychologists

Quality Officers

SNAP Cymru 









What can you do at home?

Working with families and securing parents co-operation is key for a successful relationship with any pupil.  

Talk to your child

Read to/with your child 

Learn nursery rhymes

Play games

A pack of activities/ideas on request