Children and Families Bill

Kids First parents have been invited to engage with officers from the London Borough of Merton (LBM) to discuss the Children and Families Bill and its implications for services in the Borough. The Bill provides LBM with an opportunity to re-design current special educational needs systems and processes, agree ways to better support families and reduce or eliminate some of the current statutory bureaucracy. There are six workstreams which are attended by representatives of Kids First: Assessments, EHC Plans, Local Offer, Preparation for Adulthood, Personal Budgets and Programme Board.

There are also sessions to which all parents are invited. These are the Parent Strategy Group and Open Parent Feedback. The Parent Strategy Group meetings are run by Kids First for parents only – we need to feel confident that what we are saying is indeed what most parents feel and think. The Open Parent Feedback meetings will be run by the LBM for both parents and professionals.

This process is very important and it is a real chance to make a difference to the lives of SEN children and young people and their families.

To find out more, please see our Useful Links page.

New personal budgets resource available

Document one of personal budgets toolkit ‘An offer of personal budgets by September 2014’

This is the first document (An offer of personal budgets by September 2014) of a Personal Budgets Toolkit which has been developed in partnership by In Control, Mott MacDonald and Pathfinder Champions, supported by the DfE. This has been added as a new appendix to the SEND Pathfinder March 2014 Personal Budgets Information Pack and can be accessed here.

Download the document

Children and Families Bill KF Newsletter July 2014

You can now download the Children and Families Bill Kids First Newsletter for July 2014.

Code of Practice final version

The final version of the Special educational needs and disability code of practice: 0 to 25 years has now been released. Read it here

Local Offer Documents

A number of documents relating to the Local Offer are now available for download

Read more →

Local Offer Feedback

Submitted by: AM
On: 7 Jun, 2014 @ 11:05 AM

  • Meeting Date (Day): 6th
  • Meeting Date (Month): June
  • Meeting Date (Year): 2014
  • Meeting Summary: This is an example of what the Schools & Colleges will be needing to answer in their Local Offer. It will include the following information:

    Questions to be answered by settings, schools or colleges
    1. How does XXXXX School know if children or young people need extra help?
    2. What should I do if I think my child or young person may have special
    educational needs?
    3. How will I know how XXXX School supports my child or young person?
    4. How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s or young person’s needs?
    5. How will the school know how well my child or young person is doing?
    6. How will I know how my child or young person is doing?
    7. How will you help me to support my child’s or young person’s learning?
    8. What support will there be for my child’s or young person’s overall well-being? How will my child’s or young person’s medical needs or personal needs be met?
    9. How will my child or young person be able to contribute their views on how things are going?
    10. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the school?
    11. What training have the staff supporting children and young people with SEND had or are having?
    12. How will my child or young person be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
    13. How accessible is the school environment?
    14. How will the school prepare and support my child or young person when joining XXX School, transferring to a new school or planning for the next stage of their education, employment or training?
    15. How are the school’s resources allocated and matched to children’s or young peoples’ special educational needs?
    16. How is the decision made about how much support my child will receive? How will I be involved?
    17. How will I be involved in discussions about and planning for my child’s or young person’s education?
    18. How will my child or young person be able to contribute their views on how things are going?
    19. How can I be involved in the school more generally?
    20. Who can I contact for further information?

  • Actions: Colleges and special schools will have a slightly different template

Local Offer Feedback

Submitted by: AM
On: 7 Jun, 2014 @ 11:01 AM

  • Meeting Date (Day): 6th
  • Meeting Date (Month): June
  • Meeting Date (Year): 2014
  • Meeting Summary: What is the Local Offer?

    The Children and Families Bill will become enacted in 2014. Local authorities will then be required to publish and keep under review information about services they expect to be available for children and young people with special educational needs (SEN) aged 0-25. This is the ‘Local Offer’.
    The intention of the Local Offer is to improve choice and transparency for families. It will also be an important resource for professionals in understanding the range of services and provision in the local area. A further key role for the Local Offer will be to inform the joint commissioning for children and young people with SEN and disabilities by setting out in a single place what is available locally.
    
What will change and why
    Originally introduced some 30 years ago, the concept and definition of special educational needs (SEN) will remain. However, familiar terms and procedures such as ‘school action’, ‘school action plus’ and ‘statement’ will be replaced by the Local Offer, Education, Health and Care Plans and the option of personal budgets.
    One of the key intentions of these changes is to improve parental accessibility, choice and control in a system which can be seen as being overly complex and time consuming. The small proportion of children with special educational needs who currently have a statement will have a single assessment and an Education, Health and Care Plan. Those whose needs are met through school action and school action plus will form a single broad group of children whose special educational needs will be met through the Local Offer.
    So, the Local Offer will be very important in providing information and advice to parents about what arrangements, services and provision they might expect to be normally available to meet SEN in children and young people whose needs do not require an Education, Health and Care Plan.
    
What the local authority must do
    The local authority must work together with:
    children and young people;parent carers; & local services,
    including the voluntary and community sector, to develop their offer and keep it under review. This is called ‘co-production’.
    The Local Offer must include information about the provision the local authorities expects to be available in its own area for children and young people with SEN. It must also include details of services provided outside of its area for the children and young people for whom it is responsible, regardless of whether or not they have Education, Health and Care Plans.

    The Local Offer will cover:
    special educational provision;
    health provision;
    social care provision;
    other educational provision;
    training provision; and
    arrangements for children and young people to travel to schools, colleges and early years education.

    Regulations will set out:
    information local authorities should include;
    how it is to be published;
    who is to be consulted in preparing it; and
    how the authority will involve children and young people with special educational needs and parents of children with special education needs in preparing it.

    Local authorities may have to include:
    information on how to seek an assessment for an Education, Health and Care Plan; and
    information on how to make a complaint about provision in the Local Offer.

  • Actions: See the Draft Code of Practice Section 4

Local Offer Feedback

Submitted by: AM
On: 7 Jun, 2014 @ 10:56 AM

  • Meeting Date (Day): 2nd
  • Meeting Date (Month): June
  • Meeting Date (Year): 2014
  • Meeting Summary: For those unfamiliar with the Local Offer, please access ‘What is the Local Offer’ document.
    The schools Local Offer template has been submitted to Merton’s 54 schools for them to fill out. The deadline for return is 5/6/14. See the Local Offer for schools template.
    The Local Offer template for FE Colleges has been sent out (see Preparation for Adulthood notes)
    The Local Offer template for Merton’s 3 special schools Perseid, Cricket Green and Melrose is in draft form (any input from parent carers will be gratefully received) & will be sent out shortly.
    On 2/6/14 A presentation was made by Kids First workstream reps to approx 35 members from health, leisure and services sector on the parent expectations of the Local Offer for Service Providers A copy of the presentation is accessible here.
  • Actions: On 23 June there is an IT meeting to start talks about the IT front end element of the Local Offer website. Any person interested in being involved in this sub-workstream should contact Kids First.

Personal Budgets meeting 26th June 2014

The next Personal Budgets Workstream meeting will be held on 26th June 2014, venue to be confirmed.

Minutes from Personal Budgets meeting 22nd May 2014

Minutes from the Personal Budgets Workstream meeting held on  22nd May 2014 can be downloaded here:

Minutes from Personal Budgets 22/05/2014

 

Useful Documents from Outcomes Workshop on 19th May 2014

Useful documents for parents who weren’t at the Outcomes Workshop on 19th May. If you have any questions about the content, please either contact Kids First, or raise your query at any of the Children and Families Bill parent meetings. Please note, the content may be especially useful for families who are part of the pilot programme who have a right to an independent parent supporter.

Outcomes Workshop Presentation (PDF)

Skills For Adulthood Checklist