Axcis Tip of the Week: Ask for a copy of the Positive Handling Plan (PHP)

Susanna Gray is thrilled to be heading to Australia to recruit staff for the schools Axcis work with

Susanna Gray tells us to always ask for the PHP if there is one

This week, our weekly tip comes from Susanna. Susanna is the Business Development and Team Teach Manager for Axcis and works in our London office. Susanna works with some of our busiest schools so always has some fantastic vacancies to tell you about – but she also manages our Team Teach training courses across the company, which are always extremely popular – especially with those working with challenging or confrontational children. Her tip is to always ask for a copy of the PHP (positive handling plan) when doing one-one work with SEND students who may require you to use positive handling techniques.


When working on supply, staff often find themselves thrown into the deep end. This means you may not always have chance to read all of the school policy and procedure documents before you commence work. If you are doing one to one support with SEND students, as many of our fantastic TAs do, it is a very good idea to ask if there is a PHP in place – if there is, ask for a copy! This can really make a difference to your day and help you to get off to a good start when trying to build rapport with a student.


A positive handling plan should contain information about the student, including their medial conditions (if any) and trigger behaviours. For example, if certain stimuli are known to potentially trigger a physical outburst from a student, knowing about these in advance can help you to manage potentially challenging situations, and can help you prevent escalation to the point where positive handling is required. The plan should also include the strategies being used, how successful they are and what targets the student is working towards. All of this information combined can make a huge difference to the level of success you achieve when working with a challenging student on a one to one basis. As a result, the student is much more likely to be happy, settled and able to do their class work, and you are much more likely to be offered more work with them!

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