Further investment for Independent Support is confirmed for 2017/2018.

Further investment for Independent Support is confirmed for 2017/2018.

Department for Education funding announcement

Department for Education has announced a further £15 million for the Independent Supporters programme in 2017-18 to be run by the Council for Disabled Children.

The DfE announcement can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/funding-for-special-educational-needs-support-confirmed

Our CDC statement by Dame Christine Lenehan can be found at: http://bit.ly/2ivTdfF

In terms of next steps, there is some work I need to do with DfE before we can agree arrangements with suppliers, but as you know I have asked for funding proposals by Friday this week in anticipation of this announcement. Please do keep to my deadline where possible and expect more details to follow in due course.

New report shows that Independent Support has become an invaluable element of embedding SEND Reforms across the country

This funding news comes as The National Development Team for Inclusion (NDTi) publish their own independent evaluation of Independent Support. NDTi’s national evaluation highlights that Independent Support has become highly valued by young people and parents, as well as the range of professionals involved in the care and support of disabled children and young people across the education, health and social care system. Amongst the 5 recommended development priorities in the report, which was commissioned by DfE, is a call for continued Independent Support to be embedded in the entire Educational Health and Care planning process as evidence shows that it can act as a catalyst for change, leading to a transformation in people’s lives and their experience of local services.

The full report can be found at: http://www.ndti.org.uk/publications/ndti-publications/independent-support-final-report-findings

NEW RESOURCE: Education, Health and Care Plans: examples of good practice

I would also like to take this opportunity to remind you of this new resource which can be found on the CDC website at http://bit.ly/2goreQh. In fact we posted out some hard copies to you last week.

The content of this document is based on 45 EHC plans submitted to us from Independent Support agencies, which were then analysed. At the same time, the DfE SEND Adviser team collected examples of good practice from their work with local areas. These examples form the basis of this document, along with an exemplar plan developed by the College of Occupational Therapists. We consulted the Independent Panel for Special Education Advice (IPSEA), the DfE and the College of Occupational Therapists; and we discussed our analysis with IS providers and Information, Advice and Support Services at five regional workshops in September and October 2016.

This first part of this document includes excerpts from real EHC plans. In the second part there are two EHC plans draw on real examples but the plans themselves relate to fictional children. We expect these examples to be useful to those contributing to EHC needs assessments and to those writing plans as well as to parents, children and young people and those supporting them. We intend this document to provoke a debate about the key features of high quality EHC plans. We invite other organisations to identify good EHC plans that exemplify the best for children with a range of different needs and for whom a wide range of outcomes are sought. In turn, we hope that this will build a body of evidence about what works.

Please note that this document provides examples for discussion and is not advocating any particular approach to meeting needs. We were not party to the information and advice provided in support of the plans and are therefore making no judgement as to whether the particular provision is or is not appropriate for any particular child or young person.