News and FAQs (SEND and the Local Offer)
It's Deaf Awareness Week (DAW) 2020. This year's focus was around recognising and celebrating those with acquired deafness. But with all going on, The UK Council on Deafness are running an online campaign instead to engage with their members and encourage them to celebrate Deafness, raise awareness of best practice and use the week for demonstrating change and positivity. Here we've brought together some resources from education to leisure. Share on Social Media using the hashtag #DAW.
From 1st May, for at least one month, the Section 42 duty has been eased. This means that there is no absolute duty to provide the help in Section F. Instead, education providers under the direction of Buckinghamshire Council must use ‘reasonable endeavours’ to provide the help. ‘Reasonable endeavours’ means they must do what they reasonably can to provide the help – it might not be possible to provide it exactly as written in Section F. For example, it may be that it is not possible to provide face to face one to one support for children at the moment. If this is the case, educational settings will need to work closely with families to find other ways of giving support to children. Support can also be accessed via EHC Coordinators, should there be any difficulties with this.
We've pulled together updates from the Integrated SEND Service and links to useful information from health and wellbeing to home learning.
On 7 November 2019, Buckinghamshire held its first Shout Out for SEND conference for young people. The aim was to provide opportunities for young people with SEND to share their views on their experiences of living and being educated in Buckinghamshire, to enable a co-produced, new SEND and Inclusion Strategy for the local area. Now you can read the conference report for more information about the day and what was learned
On 28 November and 6 December 2019 tow Autism Strategy Engagement sessions were held with representative and experts from multiple organisations. This involved discussion around several key themes and the report details the summary feedback.
An update from the Head of Integrated SEND Service at Buckinghamshire Council, Hero Slinn.
SEND Home to School Transport | Information Sessions
In June 2019 the Council held four information sessions for parent and carers of students aged 16 to 18 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). These sessions provided more information on the changes to school transport policy following a public consultation which ran from 31 October 2018 to 4 January 2019.
World Autism Awareness Week | 1 to 7 April 2019
World Autism Awareness Week was held between 1 to 7 April 2019. The Buckinghamshire Family Information Service and Local Offer supported the week and took the opportunity to raise awareness of The Autism Toolbox which brings together Autism information and services in Buckinghamshire.
Autism is much more common than many people think. Around 700,000 people are on the autism spectrum in the UK –more than 1 in 100. Handy, localised information and services around autism.
The Children's Short Breaks Strategy for 2018 to 2022 is now available. This document tells you how the council want short breaks to help disabled children and young people. It also tells you how short breaks can support parents, carers and families.
Free, Inclusive PE training for school staff and teachers
Sainsbury’s Active Kids for All ran an Inclusive PE Training Programme in Beaconsfield for schools and teachers in Buckinghamshire on Tuesday 12 February 2019. The initiative hoped to ensure young disabled people are included in PE and school sport within mainstream schools by training PE teachers, school staff and trainee teachers.
The South Bucks School Sport Partnership have released their December 2018 newsletter featuring many great SEND stories. Take a look now.
Short Breaks Consultation: have your say via the survey and drop-in sessions
Now we have agreed the strategy we need to decide what short breaks will be offered and how they will be allocated. If you use short break services, it is very important that you have your say about this.
Independent Support Program to close at the end of July
Have your say on the draft “Children's Short Breaks Strategy 2018 to 2022”
Proposals for improving Special Educational Needs and Disabilities facilities in Buckinghamshire
Formally: The Buckinghamshire SEND Local Area Newsletter
Includes a section on SEN and disability
What is the Local Offer?
The Local Offer brings together a wealth of information from social care, health, education and other services about the support they are expected to offer to children and young people aged 0-25 years with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), including those who do not have an Education, Health and Care Plan, and how to access those services.
The Local Offer has two key purposes:
To provide clear, comprehensive and accessible information about services available.
To ensure local services involve and listen to children and young people in Buckinghamshire with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities and their parents and carers when they develop and review their services.
The Local Offer has been developed in conjunction with children and young people, parents, carers and local services.
This video made by young people in Buckinghamshire explains what the Local Offer means to them.
The Local Offer Briefing Note provides further detailed information about the Local Offer.
The Local Offer Presentation gives an overview of the Buckinghamshire Local Offer for professionals.
How is the Local Offer kept up to date?
Services and organisations can keep their records up to date at any time. We have a dedicated Local Offer Information Officer who works with teams and services to regularly review the information pages, and check for broken links and accessibility criteria. Our Local Offer Advisory Group has representatives from different services including FACT Bucks and meets every term to review different areas of the Local Offer. We work closely with the SEND Youth Forum so they can share their views on things to improve. You can have your say by sending us your feedback.
What should I do if I am unhappy with a school?
If you are unhappy with a school you should raise your concern directly with that school and follow their own process for making a complaint.
Where can I find activities for young people?
Find out about activities for children and young people with SEND.
You can use filters to narrow your search by age, location, type of activity, time of week ad so on.
Watch videos about local activities made by young people.
If you know about clubs and activities that aren’t listed on our website, let us know!
How can I get my child tested for dyslexia?
There are a number of ways to get your child assessed. The British Dyslexia Association can provide resources and professionals who can make formal assessments. Many schools have specialist teachers qualified to undertake formal dyslexia assessments. It’s always worth discussing with a local SENCO to see if they can find out more about locally qualified assessors. Bucks Educational Psychology Service does not routinely undertake ‘dyslexia assessments’, but the service will, as part of its work, assess any specific learning difficulties a child or young person may present with.
Does an early years setting have to take disabled children?
An early years setting cannot refuse to admit a child aged under five years who has a disability, if the reason is related to the disability. Such action could amount to discrimination under the Equality Act.
For a child with an EHC plan, there is a difference between maintained nurseries and private, voluntary and independent provision. A maintained nursery can be named in an EHC plan and if it is, the nursery must admit that child. For private voluntary and independent provision, the local authority can ask the provider if they are willing to admit that child. The provider can say no.
What happens where a four-year-old isn’t toilet-trained? Will they be allowed to go to school?
Most children are toilet-trained by the time they start school but there are a small number who are not. All schools must admit these children and work with the family to help the child develop this skill. The school might need to make reasonable adjustments to their teaching and support programme, and they might liaise with the health visitor, depending on the child’s needs.