Nottinghamshire Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Policy (2020-2023)
The Nottinghamshire SEND Policy was approved by the County Council’s Policy Committee on Wednesday 30 September 2020.
The Nottinghamshire SEND Policy builds on over 30 years of learning and best practice in Nottinghamshire. In recent years, the SEND landscape has changed significantly, and this Policy has been developed with the Council’s key stakeholders, including parents and carers, in response to these changes:
- there are now more children and young people with SEND
- the SEND needs of some children have become more complex, especially around social, emotional and mental health
- new legislation stipulates that the Council must now plan support for some young people with SEND until the age of 25 years.
Underpinning the SEND Policy is the Council’s continuing commitment to inclusive practice. The Council’s inclusive approach ensures that most children and young people with SEND receive their education in local mainstream settings and access resources without the need for an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
The SEND Policy also considers the recommendations of the Review of the High Needs Block, which was commissioned by the Council and the Schools Forum in 2018, and the feedback from the subsequent consultation with parents/carers and other key stakeholders. The High Needs Block is part of the Dedicated Schools Grant and supports provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) from their early years to age 25. The High Needs Block Review made the following recommendations:
- engagement with parents and carers should be increased
- the quality of mainstream SEND offers should be improved and made more consistent
- decision making should be based more in local areas
- a more focussed strategy around High Needs Block spend should be developed
- the Council should reduce reliance on high cost Independent Non-Maintained placements
- the Council should make the case to national Government for an increase of Nottinghamshire’s share of available funding.
The SEND Policy’s vision is for ‘Nottinghamshire to be a place where children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) will be safe, healthy and happy, have a good quality of life and opportunities to fulfil their aspirations, develop their independence and make a positive contribution to society’.
The SEND Policy sets out the values and principles which will shape the Council’s work with children and young people with SEND and their families and identifies 12 essential outcomes to be achieved over the next three years. These values, principles and outcomes have been strongly informed by the feedback received from parents and carers.
To deliver these outcomes, the SEND Policy identifies six broad steps. During the next few months the Council, together with parents/carers and other key stakeholders, will be developing an action plan to support the delivery of the Policy’s outcomes. This action plan will be owned and monitored regularly by the Nottinghamshire SEND Accountability Board.
You can read the policy by clicking here.
The SEND Accountability Board was established in January 2017 following the joint Care Quality Commission and Ofsted Local Area Inspection in June 2016. Read about about the main findings of the inspection, including areas of strength and areas for further improvement or by clicking on the icon below:
The purpose of the SEND Accountability Board is to lead and co-ordinate the continuous improvement of Nottinghamshire’s implementation of the Children and Families Act 2014 and the SEND Code of Practice. Read the terms of reference for the group, which includes its vision and purpose or by clicking on the icon below:
The SEND Accountability Board’s vision for the local area is for children and young people with SEND to be safe and happy, to have a good quality of life and opportunities to achieve their aspirations, to develop their independence and make a positive contribution to society.
The partnership is committed to the co-production of services with families and listening to the voices of children and young people.
The Board has a number of responsibilities including:
- To facilitate partnership and multi-agency leadership of SEND in the local area.
- To develop and monitor the delivery of the multi-agency local area SEND Strategic Action Plan (SSAP).
- To monitor the local area’s continuous improvement approach to the implementation of the SEND reforms.
- To consider and approve the actions required to progress ‘areas for development’ as identified by the Joint Care Quality Commission and Ofsted Inspection in June 2016.
- To ensure the recommendations of the 2015/16 Nottinghamshire SEND Review and the Improving Outcomes for Children and Young People with Disabilities Programme are implemented in full.
- To approve the annual update of the SEND Local Area Self Evaluation document, to ensure that an accurate picture of performance and progress is maintained.
- To ensure that the views of children and young people and their parents/carers inform the work of the Board and its action plan.
- To inform the focus of future triennial statutory review of SEND arrangements.
- To ensure agreed actions are aligned to the key responsibilities of all statutory partners and their duty to co-operate as outlined in Section 28 of the Children and Families Act 2014.
- To support, monitor and approve the work of the SEND Strategic Development Lead.
During 2015-2016, three significant reviews of SEND services in Nottinghamshire took place resulting in a number of recommendations for the development of services in the local area which are listed in Appendix A of the SEND Strategic Action Plan, which can be viewed by clicking on the icon below. These reviews were:
- The Care Quality Commission and Ofsted Joint local area SEND inspection
- The Nottinghamshire Review of Arrangements for Special Educational Needs and Disability
- The Improving Outcomes for Children and Young People with Disabilities Programme
The reviews identified a number of common areas for development, and the County Council’s Children’s and Young People Committee agreed to develop a multi-agency SEND Strategic Action Plan (SSAP), to be monitored by a SEND Accountability Board.
The areas for development in the SSAP are grouped into four initial work streams:
- Plans & Pathways
- Education Provision (which has two strands: sufficiency & quality)
- Preparing for Adulthood
Read the SEND Strategic Action Plan or by clicking on the icon below:
You can read the minutes of SEND Accountability Board meetings by accessing the Local Offer page containing the minutes.
Read the SEN Code of Practise Glossary of Terms document or by clicking on the icon below:
The Local Offer has been always been part of the wider Notts Help Yourself working group. However, it was felt that a more specific Local Offer development group was needed with the main purpose to set out the ambitions and priorities for Nottinghamshire’s Local Offer and any subsequent development work. This would also align the development of the Local Offer with Council strategic priorities and statutory requirements. The Local Offer Development Group was therefore formed with the inaugural meeting being held on July 1st 2019.
The membership of the group consists of relevant professionals from different service areas and representatives from the Nottinghamshire Parent Carer Forum (Notts PCF). There will be representation from education, health and social care to ensure that collective responsibility and decision making can be taken in terms of priorities and development work.
You can read the Terms of Reference document, which outlines the specific purpose, objectives and responsibilities for the group or by clicking on the icon below: