Please bring us some very special gifts this year. We'd like every child with SEN or disabilities to be educated in a suitable, caring, environment with the support they need to thrive. We'd like families of disabled children to be treated with dignity and compassion. We'd like local authorities to obey the law and in a timely fashion, so children get well-written, meaningful plans...
It's an ambitious wish-list and I'm not sure Santa has the ability to deliver, but I just thought I'd ask, anyway... Do add your family's SEND wish-list in the comments and also, as I am about to, feel free to write your thanks to someone you know who has made a difference to you this year.
Our SNJ thanks
This is our last post of the year, although we'll be sharing on social media some of our favourite posts from 2016 over the Christmas holiday.
Thanks for all your support this year. Thanks to my co-director, Renata Blower for being there to listen and guide and for being a wonderful friend. Thanks to another friend, Angela Kelly, our Mental Health Editor, for her continual support with social media posting and her brilliant posts that have helped so many people.
Thanks to our fabulous columnists (in no particular order), Helen & Liz who write as SpeechBlog UK, Hayley Goleniowska, Marguerite Haye who has also been out and about with me at events this year. Marguerite also answers our EHCP Clinic questions along with Helen Gifford, Barney Angliss, Bren Prendergast, Mr Boo's Mum, Matt Kerr, who has also spent much time distilling our Code of Conduct campaign responses (more on this in 2017), Zoe Thompson of Bright Futures School for her fascinating series with Guiding (more to come in 2017 too), Malcolm Reeve, Beth McCleverty of Genetic Alliance UK, Robert Pleticha of RareConnect, to Nicky Goode, our book reviewer and to Charlie Mead (currently missing, last seen on the golf course).
Thanks also to our volunteers, Susan Mason who helps with our SEND Research feature and Sarah Smillie, who is working on advertising leads (if you are a company or school in the SEND arena and want to advertise, or if you would like to offer sponsorship, get in touch. )
Thanks also to Julie Moktadir at IPSEA, for our Ask IPSEA feature and to those who have contributed guest posts during the year that have helped make the site so diverse in what we can cover. A final thanks to Debs Aspland for her three+ years of work and help with SNJ.
Help us continue in 2017
EVERYONE who writes for, or helps us, at SNJ does so voluntarily. Until recently, all of the web hosting and related costs have been paid for out of my own pocket, or rather, our family income, which is unsustainable. Thank you to those kind people who have donated to us over the year; you have helped keep the site live. Hosting costs are yearly and are increasing because of our ever-growing popularity. If our information has been interesting or helpful to you and you can make a donation to our running costs, however small, we would be very grateful. You will help ensure we can keep the site live in 2017 to help thousands of families who rely on us. 🙂
If you have grant application experience and time to volunteer and help us, do please email me.
Our thanks go most of all to you all for reading, commenting, sharing and coming back to do it all again, post after post. Without your support, our information and features would not find half as many parents and practitioners as they do. THANK YOU!
Have an amazingly blessed, peaceful and happy Christmas and I hope 2017 brings all of us joy, laughter and GREAT OUTCOMES for our children!