SEND Review: Rights or Wrongs

SEND Review: Rights or Wrongs

‘Right support, right place, right time’ is the government’s choice of tagline for the SEND Review published 29th March this year and points to its intention to address issues around equity for SEND pupils in schools, reverse the growing trend of numbers of children being commissioned to alternative provision and improve the overall processes as part of the SEND system for pupils, parents and schools. Anyone can share their views about the proposal during a 12-week consultation period which ends in July.

So, what are the proposals?

A key one aims to improve consistency in provision through a new set of national SEND standards which will provide clarity for schools in the support they need to have available. Alongside this is the aim to slash bureaucracy by digitalising EHCPs which should improve the way data is collected and recorded, form part of a ‘dashboard’ of inclusion for transparency and allow for outcomes to be tracked more efficiently.

Navigating the SEND system as a parent promises to be less complex with proposals and parental preference in terms of settings for their child is to take a greater precedence when it comes to allocating places, although this seems more vague given that their choices will be made from a list that has been ‘tailored’ for them.

Currently the NASENCO, a programme which qualifies you as SENDco, allows for considerable variation in trainees’ experiences, so the Review proposes it be replaced by an NPQ (National Professional Qualification) which seems to make sense if it aligns with other nationally recognised educational professional qualifications.

Notably too, the way funding is organised would change. Types of provision would be clustered into a national framework of tariffs, instead of LAs organising their own system. Also, receiving funds as a school would rely less on council budgets. Amounts of funding would instead derive from a set formula and schools would be clearer about the funding they should expect to receive. The aim is that with the right pricing structures in place, high costs for expensive provision can be kept under control.

What’s your reaction?

A summary of the SEND Review is indeed a helpful read and it is crucial that your views be known while the review is in consultation. Parents, carers, children and young people and people working in the SEND and alternative provision system can get involved in the consultation up until 22nd July this year. Have your say.

By Emma Gardner

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