SEND reforms: Transformation or Missed Opportunity?

blackboard image with story title: SEND reform, A transformation or an opportunity lost?

A research paper discussing the 2014 special educational needs reforms in England, has raised serious questions about the legislation’s ability to improve inclusion and equality for those it was designed to help. In his paper, Nick Peacey, Visiting Research Associate, at UCL Institute of … Keep Reading…

Dropping SEN figures and the ‘waiting room’ category: the DfE replies

sen figures

A couple of weeks ago, we reported on the latest SEN figures for England that were released by the Department for Education. We noticed that there had been a rather steep drop in the number of children with SEN – 2.5%. … Keep Reading…

SEN figures show 2.5% drop in children with special educational needs in England

SEN figures infographic

Just as we agreed to go down to two posts a week over summer (with a week off in August), the Department for Education dropped the 2015 SEN figures. Sigh. So, we’ve made an infographic to make it easier to … Keep Reading…

Why SEND department targets mean ‘culture change’ reform may never happen

The Keer boys

Today’s guest post, from father of two deaf sons, Matt Keer, may shock you. It may, as it did to me, bring you to the edge of angry tears. It’s like the plot of a Kafka novel, surreal and senseless. But … Keep Reading…

4000 and counting: Did you have a satisfactory EHC plan issued last year?

EHCP transfer

Last week, the Department for Education released its Statistical First Release – Statements and EHC Plans. This statistical first release (SFR) publishes data from the annual SEN2 data return, which is mandatory for local authorities to complete. The return is … Keep Reading…

Parents must advocate for each other to make the new SEND system work

KEEP CALM ADVOCATE

I was invited to speak at a conference last weekend called #RoadMapforLife at Swiss Cottage school, a special school in north London. Writing the presentation, I was reminded that even though we’re all busy with our lives and especially our … Keep Reading…

What does Participation look like? A Circle or a Ladder?

Circle of Involvement

As I sat scrolling through Twitter a few weeks ago, I came across a conversation that set me thinking. Kath Evans (Head of Patient Experience at NHS England) was asking if people preferred an image showing “the ladder of participation” … Keep Reading…

The SEN Minister responds to your feedback of the special needs reforms so far

ed timpson letter

I received a letter from Ed Timpson, the Minister for Education with responsibility for SEND reform yesterday. It follows the trip Renata and I made to The Department for Education in January to conduct a video interview with him. If … Keep Reading…

A game-changer? Will ruling of illegal Local Offer force councils to do better?

LO ruling

On Thursday afternoon, we brought you an update from a High Court Judicial Review hearing which found that Warwickshire’s SEN & Disability Local Offer plans were so rubbish that they actually broke the law. By the date the new SEND reforms … Keep Reading…

The Local Offer and SEND funding: 3rd part of our video chat with the SEN Minister

Our last of the three sections of our video interview with Ed Timpson, the Education Minister with responsibility for SEND reform focuses on both the Local Offer and SEND Funding. We have covered these topics before of course, most recently … Keep Reading…

Accountability and the SEN reforms: SNJ asks the Minister, Ed Timpson (Part 1)

Tania, Ed Timpson, Renata

As regular readers will know, Renata and I went along to the Department of Education recently to interview the Minister responsible for Special Educational Needs, Ed Timpson. This week we’re going to bring you the interview in three parts, all … Keep Reading…

Carter Review makes recommendations to improve SEND teacher training

carter review

We mentioned in a post late last year that a consultation was being carried out into Initial Teacher Training and hope that many of you had an opportunity to contribute. The report,  the Carter Review of Initial Teacher Training (ITT) headed by … Keep Reading…