31 August 2010

Parents of children with special educational needs are being asked to give their views on proposed changes to the service through a consultation run by Northamptonshire County Council.

The county council embarked on a review of services to children with special educational needs to ensure that they continue to provide the best possible education for all its children and young people. This review aims to provide a platform for a number of issues to be discussed.

The first half of the review has now ended and a number of recommendations have been proposed, including keeping pupils with moderate learning difficulties in mainstream schools and providing a single point of contact for parents during assessments.

Two consultation events have been planned for September and parents and other interested parties are invited to come along and give feedback on the county council’s recommendations.

Each session will include a brief presentation about the results of the review and representatives from children and young people’s service will listen to views and answer questions from the audience.

Councillor Andrew Grant, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “Northamptonshire is committed to providing the best possible quality of education for all its children and young people.

“We want to welcome as many people as possible to this meeting, to offer parents the chance to have an input into how the future of special education in the county will be run.”

Further recommendations include:

  • Supporting schools with inclusion at a whole school level and supporting the progress of individual children
  • Providing a swift and rapid response to the statutory process
  • Improving transitions for pupils with special educational needs
  • Improving information to parents of support available to schools, to improve confidence that a child can be supported
  • Consider changes to the way Northamptonshire provides funding for children with SEN in schools

The responses to the review will be brought together to form part of the final proposal for a cabinet decision which will be made in November.

The meetings are being held on Thursday 23rd September from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Kettering Conference Centre, Thurston Drive, Kettering and Monday 27th September 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Guildhall, Northampton.

Anyone who would like to attend please contact Gwyn Botterill, Parent Partnership Service Manager on 01604 636111 or email gbotterill@northamptonshire.gov.uk See the report at www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/SENreview