Monday, January 23, 2012

Take a look at the Department for Education’s new transition scheme

A new website has just been launched for Preparing for Adulthood, a Department for Education scheme launched as part of their SEND Green Paper. Over the next two years, Preparing for Adulthood will advise on transition for young people with SEN and disabilities – helping them move easily into independent living, employment and integration with the community.

Preparing for Adulthood will mainly work with the pathfinder areas trialling the Green Paper’s proposals, focusing in particular on the combined ‘Education, Health and Care Plan’ providing support from birth to 25. They plan to develop a programme of work with each participating pathfinder area, and will be posting updates of their progress with each one over the coming months.

Outside of the pathfinder areas, they’re also looking to share information around transition and promote good practice across the country. They are keen to share resources, and already have some case studies of well-managed transitions uploaded onto the site.

The site has just launched, but we’re looking forward to seeing more extensive content in the coming weeks. In the meantime you can have a look at, or sign up for their e-bulletin here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Take part in SEN research to inform Government reforms

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Autism (APPGA), a cross-party group of MPs and Peers focusing on autism issues, has launched a commission to advise the Government on access to the right education for children with autism. The group wants to hear the views of students, parents, teachers and other professionals which they will use to form recommendations for Government Ministers and civil servants.

The Government is proposing major changes to the special educational needs (SEN) system in England, making this a timely opportunity for parents, teachers and young people with autism to tell ministers about the challenges involved in getting the right support at school and what they think most needs to improve. 

The NAS's recent Great Expectations campaign found that 48% of children with autism have had to wait over a year to get appropriate educational support, and more than half of teachers have previously said that they do not feel they have had enough training in the disability.

Sarah Teather MP, Minister for Children and Families, said: “We want to improve services for all children with special educational needs (SEN), including those with autism. We have proposed a number of reforms in our SEN Green Paper and we’re listening to children, parents and professionals. I look forward to hearing further views in the commission's report which will help us as we develop the reforms and create a system which works for children and their families.”

Let’s make sure the Government gets SEN reform right.

This consultation closes on Friday 10 February.