You will have heard in the national news and The Queen's Speech that there is much happening on Special Educational Needs Reform. Following the publication of the SEN and Disability Green Paper – Support and Aspiration – in Spring 2011, the Department of Health and the Department for Education launched a national pathfinder to test proposed reforms to of support for disabled children and young people and those with Special Educational Needs.
The SE7 area is one of the 21 pilot areas and makes up almost 25% of the national project. Each area will test different approaches but will work together to share expertise and agree some activity and core expectations together. Parent carer involvement and engagement is at the heart of the pathfinder activity along with the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS). Challengers and The Children’s Trust contribute to the national pathfinder in two ways:
By representing the VCS on the local Change Board in Surrey and its workstreams
By representing the VCS on the Regional SE7 steering committee together with Amaze
1. Develop a new, birth to 25, assessment process and single Education, Health and Care plan
2. Provide a personal budget for those families who wish to have one by 2014
3. Identify how the VCS could be used to improve the process
4. Ensure the full engagement of children, young people, and their parents and families.
We are committed to doing what we can to make sure that we make the most of the opportunity to improve support and provision for families. We take our role very seriously and as such work hard to make sure that all VCS organisations in the SE7 area are made aware of the work and have an opportunity to become involved. To make sure that we achieved this we organised a conference in July 2012 that was oversubscribed and had a line up of heavy hitters to share their knowledge and hear what the VCS had to say.
More will follow as it was well received and clear that the organisations had a lot to contribute! For further information on the pathfinder the following websites are where you need to go...