Update on SEND and alternative provision

Source: FASD Hub South West

An interesting debate was held in Parliament following the petition circulated a short time ago which gained thousands of signatures nationally to support the statutory requirement for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (SENCOs) to have a higher level qualification, to embed Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) training in teacher training and to have additional support for families with SEND in every local authority.

The Minister for Children, Families and Wellbeing, David Johnston, says:

“it is not a target to reduce EHCPs by 20%”

Reference point timing at 15:23 where the Minister states this very clearly in Parliament.

The debate falls short of the radical reform that is needed, where an application was requested to extend this debate and it was unanimously agreed.

The ‘SEND and Alternative Improvement Plan’ has been published and is currently in play (link below). There are plans in it to increase Specialist Schools, there will be ‘National Standards’ relating to EHCPs regarding to timely and content, Ofsted will be drilling down into the SEND provision of every School in local inspection where their standards have been revised to support this.

The Minister for Children, Families and Wellbeing, David Johnston, states that they will not get ‘Outstanding’ status without SEND provision being supported well in Schools, so it ‘should be’ of highest priority in every School Governors agenda for change.

Other Ministers challenge the Children’s Minister on behalf of parents, giving good examples to ask the Government for a further debate which was unanimously agreed. This means that there will be other debates in Parliament about all areas of SEND provision.

Further reading and links including details of:

  • A £2.6 billion investment in special school provision and capital funding.
  • Developing national standards of support for special educational needs, beginning with one for speech and language, which will be released later this year.
  • Publishing a local and national inclusion dashboard, through which parents will be able to monitor their local area.
  • Reviewing the Core Content Framework and the Early Careers Framework for teachers.

UK Parliament further information.