You said. We did
You said- “We want more awareness of Autism and neurodiverse needs.”
- We are launching the Autism Book Club. There are books for children and young people with SEND, their siblings and peers, parent carers, and professionals to broaden their understanding of Autism and other neurodiverse needs. This will be launched at four local libraries over Autism Acceptance Week where parent carers can see the books on offer and meet the wider SEND Team.
- Autism Acceptance Week 2022 is the 60th anniversary. For the occasion, we are challenging 60 school staff to take the Autism in Girls training that we have purchased from the National Autistic Society.
- As well as frequently promoting our Autism in Schools work we are promoting Autism Acceptance Week widely online, our social media and through our partners and key services, internally on the Council’s platforms and more.
You said- “We want more creative and fun things to work with you on.”
We contacted all local schools to get students involved in a competition to design the new SENDIASS logo! See the submissions on the Local Offer when the new service starts in April!
You said- “I want to know how my child’s views are incorporated into everything. I want to know that if a professional is filling in an EHCP on their behalf, that it is true to what they are saying.”
We have made the Capturing the voice of the Child page. NELC SEND Local Offer | Capturing the voice of the child (nelincs.gov.uk)
It goes into detail about how to facilitate discussions for children and young people of various ages and abilities, including those who are non-verbal. It covers how to make the most of discussions and tackle certain situations like difficult topics, short answers and more. It covers how to make the child comfortable, the need to review and follow up, and more.
This was raised at the SENDCo forum, parents weekly meeting, and has also been highlighted as an area that we could create a video on to show parent carers first-hand what we do and why it works.
You said- “We would like an Easy Read Written Statement of Action (WSOA).”
The Easy Read WSOA includes summarised bullet points that simplify the key messages. It also has images that help to illustrate what the text is saying. It can be found on the SEND Local Area Inspection page.
You said- “We would like to know more about what activates are on locally.”
Climb4 came to speak to our parent carer group. They had a great youth club that was inclusive to SEND and we were able to make them aware of parent queries about how accessible clubs were.
They also made us aware of their Peer Mentor Training which we have since purchased and have had many applications for.
You said- “I often feel more comfortable speaking to another parent than a professional.”, “We get lots of info from other parents.”, “I like to help other parents but sometimes find out that a service that I used has changed. It would be good to know the details about certain services offered to make sure that I’m giving them the right info.”
We are training local parent carers to be Peer Mentor Volunteers. They will join us at our coffee mornings and events.
You said- “I would like to know where I can learn Makaton.”
We had several parent carers and professionals ask about where they can learn the sign language system, Makaton.
We added and promoted a news article featuring a local Makaton tutor who offers training. We also added the link to the database where all training can be found. NELC SEND Local Offer | Learn Makaton (nelincs.gov.uk)
The training was also added to the ‘Events and Training’ page.
You said- “We want Autism to be better represented. We want more awareness of autism and SEND in general. Better training and knowledge for parents carers, professionals in all areas including schools, and for children and young people.”
We were successful in securing our bid for the Autism in Schools Pilot project.
Ten local schools and their parent carers are working with us to lead the way on these improvements.
We have regular parent carer forums. Parent carers are helping us to develop our training, what we offer in schools, how we review and ensure the quality of our provision. Children and young people are at the heart of this in the ‘Understanding myself’ part of the project we capture the voice of the child and this includes their siblings and peers.
The lessons learnt from the Autism in Schools pilot will be extended across the borough.
You said- “It would be helpful to have more training on things like ADHD and issues and behaviours to do with SEND.”
- The Young Minds Matter (CAMHS) training has been added to the Local Offer ‘Events and Training page’. This includes key area parent carers requested like ADHD and autism.
- Franklin College came to speak to our Wednesday morning parent carer meeting about their courses that included autism, mental health problems, children and young peoples mental health, working with people with learning disabilities, and adult social care.
These were promoted on the Local Offer, our local groups, newsletter, and social media.
You said- “We would like it to be easier to get information about Speech, language and communication needs. Especially if there is a need but your child isn’t being seen by someone at the hospital.”
There is a review of Speech language and communication needs services. This includes a survey that was coproduced with parent carers and improved to shorten it based on parent feedback about engaging through surveys.
We improved the information on SLCN on the Local Offer.
The new service logo is being coproduced with local children.
The language of any new content will reflect that services are inclusive to the needs of children that have a need but are not diagnosed with a condition, and do not have an EHCP.
You said- “We would like more information on Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)/ Dyspraxia.
You said- “I would like more information on Tourette Syndrome (TS).”
You said- “I would like more information on ADHD.”
You said- “I would like more information on Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
Parent carers asked for a range of information on different Neurodevelopmental Conditions.
A new section called ‘Neurodevelopmental Conditions’ has been added under the ‘Health and wellbeing’ section of the ‘Parents and carers’ page.
See the new information on DCD. NELC SEND Local Offer | Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) (nelincs.gov.uk)
Sarah Harding, Designated Clinical Officer, is working with parent carers that have been advised that their child has or may have FASD to understand their experiences of accessing assessment and advise to help us improve local support for families.
You said- “We would like quick links to navigate straight to central parts of the website to make it easier to find what we need.”
We have added three quick links under the main drop-down menu that link to the parts of the site that parent carers recommended. These are, ‘Help and Support’, ‘I’m concerned my child has SEND’, and ‘Access pathway’.
You said- “We want the whole Preparation for Adulthood process to be clearer. We want to know what services we see and when, what information and support to expect, and this includes things like health and social care.
We have planned a series of Question and Answer events for professionals from various services to link in with local schools to ensure that everyone has the right information and any service understand the bigger picture that parent carers are looking at and feel confident signposting them to the right services.
The first of these was the post-16 provider Linkage College who joined Focus, adult social care. Parent carers and children and young people were invited but the attendees and promotion was targeted primarily at professionals.
Further events with link other local schools with employment, transport, housing etc. These are recorded and shared on the Local Offer to build an archive of valuable content that can be shared across services.
You said- “We want professionals to have a better knowledge of local services.”
Our SEND Engagement Team have visited all local services directly related to SEND. We are working through wider services to understand what they can or do offer for SEND.
This will be made into social stories and video content. We will push this out as widely as possible so that all local services can become more aware of SEND and therefore more inclusive.
The EHC Hub
You said- “I’m not tech savvy.”, “I haven’t used the EHC Hub before, I would like help to navigate it.”, “I don’t have access to a device to use the EHC Hub.”, “The EHC Hub is hard to use on my phone.”
We now provide a tablet for you to use at our coffee morning drop-in sessions. Abi Fleming can help you with technical support.
We offered a series of online sessions
This was and continues to be widely promoted. We respond quickly to any queries about the Hub.
We have improved the web page by adding:
- Troubleshooting guide on the page
- Common problems and best-practice use of the hub
- Instructional video’s
- Clear log in button
This was all based on queries and feedback from parent carers.
Making it easier for you
- We have regular parent carer and professional feedback sessions on Teams with Hub users.
- The Hub developer has attended these to work with us on the Hub.
- A professional from Idox is going to attend a parent carer coffee morning.
Our team are working with parent carers on the Idox 30 page guidance document to make it into easy read segments.
You said- “We would like more events.” and “We want engagement to be convenient” suggesting to see “several services in one place.“
We had a successful pop-up event at Pheonix Park Academy at their Harold street site. This Pupil Referral Unit was eager to improve engagement with their parent carers.
Parent carers wanted engagement to be convenient. To be flexible, we made it a drop-in event for a whole morning, and we also had soft-play for those who had other childcare responsibilities.
We invited all of the services that parent carers recommended including SENDIASS, mental health and wellbeing provider Compass GO, an EHCP Co-ordinator, VANEL’s Community Project Manager, the SEND Engagement Team, and the SENCO’s from each of the Wellspring Academy Trust schools.
The event was a success, parent carer feedback was positive, several parent carers came to meet one service but spoke to several and were introduced to new services that they found helpful, and staff said that the turnout was good.
You said- “In the context of Special Schools, parent carers said that they would like information on continence, nappies, and wheelchairs.“
This information was added in the relevant sections of the Local Offer.
Parent carers of children in mainstream school also asked for information about continence.
Information about continence was added to the weekly newsletter.
You said- “It would be good to know more about drugs that our children might be vulnerable to.”
We hosted a session on basic drug awareness for parents of adolescents. The session, called Heads Up, was delivered by our Young and Safe Street Based Team.
You said- “We need more information on the Local Offer for preparation for adulthood and employment.”
The SEND Local Offer Coordinator is working with Angie Kershaw, Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Statutory Process Manager, to enhance this information.
Examples of this are local stories of young people who have successfully moved from supported internships and employment into paid employment. These stories will put the various pathways into context and simplify the many options.
To help young people get involved in their choices we are adding video content from local educational settings like Learning4Life-Gy, Linkage, and Cambridge Park.
You said- “What information, advice and guidance is available on helping your children to sleep.”
We added more information to the ‘Social, emotional, and mental health page’ of the Local Offer.
To make it easy for you to find this new information we added it to the weekly newsletter, a news post on the Local Offer, and posted it on our social media.
We have also promoted sleep workshops for parent carers and a range of workshops or training for professionals.
You said- “We would like more opportunities to share what we want and need. We need engagement to be convenient. Coffee mornings would be good. We would like pop-up events. Your team could have a presence at local events. “
In addition to the many other ways we engage with you we have added new events.
We are holding coffee mornings twice a week during term time at two Family Hubs.
We now have pop-up events at local schools and other areas with our network of local services.
You said- “There should be a dedicated role for engagement with parents to understand their needs.
We coproduced the role profile and interview questions with you. We also had parents involved in the selection and interview process.
We appointed Abi Fleming as our SEND Parent Engagement Champion.
You said- “Children and young people want more changes to celebrate SEND.”
The SEND Young People’s Advisory Group (YPAG) planned the SEND Award Ceremony.
It has been a positive an uplifting experience for all. Children and young people, their families, and professionals who support them, and who have won and been nominated are all very excited.
It also gave us an unexpected chance to see lots of the local accomplishments relating to SEND and we are excited to showcase these.
You said- “We want transitions to be clearer and easier and to get all the right info at the right time from schools.”
The Specialist Advisory Service worked with local schools and services to review and improve the Transition guidance which has been added to the professionals section on the Local Offer.
You said- “We want more video’s on the Local Offer.”
We have added more video’s to the Celebrating SEND page and will be incorporating them and additional videos throughout the site.
You said- “We want it to be easier to find information on Education Hearing and Vision.“
The Educational Team for Hearing and Vision (ETHV) worked with parent carers to find out what they wanted and how they wanted it displayed.
This was duplicated on the website and further improvements are being developed with parent carers.
You said- “We want professionals to have a better idea of what life is like for us as a family of a child with SEND.”
A local parent the admins a SEND Support Facebook group for parent carers launched a survey on this subject. Her results were published in our newsletter, Local Offer and social media.
She also took it to meetings across education, health and social care to share the view points of parent carers so that professionals have a better understanding of the challenges that families face.
This included insight into how it affects families relationships and more.
You said- “We want more local stories of real people. It would be nice to see other parent carers like us and success stories of local children.”
Check out the Celebrating SEND page. We added stories from children and young people, and parent carers all of whom have various backgrounds to show the diversity, challenges, and successes of SEND.
You said- “Having better information on travel and transport would be easier.“
We had two Transport officer from the Council attend our Wednesday parent carer meeting.
They were able to answer your questions and we improved the website content to make it easier for you to navigate.
We are currently undergoing a transport review which is based on engagement with children and young people and parent carers.
We have included parent carer queries from previous requests like free travel for carers of children of any age and free transport for disabled children of any age.
You said- “We [the Education Team for Hearing and Vision] would like a link to our page to be added to the Professionals section.
A link to the page for the Education Team for Hearing and Vision has been added to the Professionals page under ‘Support’.
You said- “Can we have the SENDIASS Children and Young People’s page added to the SEND Local Offer Children and Young People’s page so it’s clear that SENDIASS also help young people.”
– Children and young people’s feedback through SENDIASS
We have added a link to the SENDIASS Children and Young People’s page under the ‘Education’, ‘Health and Wellbeing’, and ‘Preparing for Adult life’ tabs on our SEND Local Offer Children and Young People’s page.
You said- “It can be really hard to know what support is out there if you are a carer. Sometimes you are the sole carer for parents and children at the same time. I’ve picked up more caring responsibilities since COVID and i’m an unpaid carer for someone with completely different needs.”
Our team are making calls to every single person whose child has an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP Plan). These are calls to check on the wellbeing of your child, you and your family. If you help us understand your needs we can signpost you to the right support. Feedback from these calls have been outstanding.
We have Grandparents Plus, Kinship Care support to the Local Offer under the ‘Getting Help’ tab of the Parents and Carers page. We are also regularly adding news articles with information relevant to carers like registering with your GP, udpates of how to access services, the kinds of support you can get and how to benefit from it.
You said- “Please can you add Center4 and Carers Support Center to your benefits page.”
We have updated our Money and Benefits page to include Center4 and Carers Support Center. This page also has information on concessionary travel, Free School Meals, Carer’s Allowance and more.
You said- “Sometimes we’ve got school, and childcare, other caring roles, work, and more. It feels like you have to figure it out on your own and just get on with it when we could use more support for COVID home learning and some understanding of everything thing we do. We don’t want to get in trouble for not doing enough.”
Our team have proactively been making calls to see how every child with an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP Plan) and thier family have the support they need. We care about your wellbeing and welfare as much as anything else. Parents feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. For some families we have been the only person who has asked how they were and they are very grateful. We know that taking good care of yourself and family is central to doing well academically, socially, and at home. We can help with things directly related to SEND and wider links to support.
You said– “We could use more information about wellbeing while home learning and caring.“
We have included more and varied sources of support to the Parent Weekly Update (formerly newsletter) as well as frequently updating the News feed.
You will see tools for carers, self-care and simple wellbeing as well as more targeted mental health, national campaigns, and community support for welfare, befriending, and more.
You said– “We want to see the timescales relating to each stage of the Access Pathway.“
The Access Pathway has been updated with timescales relating to each stage of the journey. This is the subheading “What happens and when?”.
This will help you understand how long your referral is with each part of the Access Pathway. We have included the details of who to contact if you would like an update of your referral.
You said– “The intro to the EHCP Annual Review feedback form could be simplified.
I would like a stronger link to the data privacy notice.
It would be more useful to have the child befined by age not year group.
I would like Carers Support Centre to be added to places people get support.
Could you add the option to leave your details for a follow up.“
We simplified the introduction and added a link there to our data privacy notice. You will tell us your child’s age. Carers Support Centre is now an option of places you get support. You can chose to leave your details for a professional to follow up with you.
You said- “We want a quick way to give feedback.“
We have added an instant ‘Vote up/Vote down’ feedback button to the bottom of every page on the Local Offer.
We will look at these to see how well each page is performing and hope you will take a minute to give us a few more details on the Local Offer Feedback form so we can get it right for you. You’ll find a quick link to the feedback form just underneath the button in the blue footer.
You said- “We want it to be easier to see who to contact in the Access Pathway and how soon the queries are answered. “
We have made the contact details for the Access Pathway Team more visible by moving it to the top of the page. We have also made it easier to see that your queries will be answered within five working days.
You said- “There’s a gap before people know about the Local Offer. We think there should be a leaflet given to GP’s, food banks, Carers Support, and other services.“
We are developing a flyer with details about the Local Offer and key services for support that will be given to all schools, GP’s, charity and volunteer sector, Carers Support and other relevant services. This is being coproduced with parents so check back to the ‘Have your say page’ to see current projects you can give feedback on.
You said- “Simplify the feedback form.”
We have simplified the form so it’s easy for you to let us know what you think whether you are a child or young person, parents or carer, or a professional.
Leave us your feedback on our ‘Have your say section.’
You said- “SENCo’s asked for advice on medical needs in schools.
Sarah Harding, the Designated Clinical Officer, worked with the School Nursing Team to develop the Managing medical needs in schools page.
You said – “Can you share information and resources on how to support children and families during the COVID-19 pandemic and provide links to other websites with useful information on money and benefits”
We created the COVID-19 page with useful information and links for parents/carers, young people and professionals.
There are also pages from the specialist teaching teams who have created specific pages to support parents, supporting children with specific needs, such as deaf/hearing impaired or children with autism.
We now include regular money, benefits and financial support information on the weekly SEND newsletter published on the Local Offer. This includes national and local options. We recognise that some families may need help to access these sources of support and have links to Early Help and The Carers centre who can give guidance on form filing and applications.
You said – “Can we have access to the new weekly parent/carer SEND newsletter through the Local Offer?”
Yes. We have created a news feed on the first page of the Local Offer which includes the weekly SEND parents/carers newsletter information.
You said – “The layout of the local offer is really confusing and some links don’t work”
We have redesigned the local offer and fixed all the links. We have asked parents to tell us what they think of the new look draft SEND Local Offer and look forward to their feedback in December 2020.
You said – “The search facility is poor and leads you to very old information”
The New Local Offer has a brand new search option which takes you to the latest related information. We have a Local Offer Co-ordinator to help keep the Local Offer up to date and relevant to users.
You said – “There is no information for teachers and other professionals. The old local authority website ‘The Lighthouse’ used to have useful resources for teachers. This should be brought back.” and “There should be a chance to share SEND teaching resources on the Local Offer a bit like on the TES website.”
The new Local Offer has a section aimed at providing resources that teachers may find useful. We also encourage professionals to send us resources they would like to share with colleagues and rate their usefulness. Parents/carers can also access these and take a look at anything that they might find useful to use at home.
You said – “There is nothing much about Early Years, Child Minders or childcare vouchers”
The new Local Offer has an Early Years section that is regularly updated. The Early Years team attend our weekly parents/carers meeting and information on SEND Early Years funding is shared in the SEND weekly newsletter and published on the Local Offer.
You said – “The information on personal budgets isn’t clear and doesn’t tell me what my options are”
A review of our personal budget information is taking place in Oct/Nov 2020. The new information will be published on the Local Offer in December 2020 after we have asked parents/carers to help us make it as accessible as possible.
You said – “Nobody knows about the Local Offer. Schools don’t use it and neither do the Family Hubs, health or social care. It’s pointless having it.”
In December 2020 we will be launching the new SEND Local Offer and a communication strategy to ensure best possible use is made of the Local Offer and that our local communities are aware of what it is and how it can help them.
You said – “I have been looking for help for SEND issues but I have not known where or who to turn to. The local offer doesn’t help because nobody knows about it .’ and ‘I have never heard of the Local Offer. How can it help me if I don’t know about it.”
We created links to support for a range of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.
We asked SENDIASS to help promote the Local Offer with parents/carers. All education officers in the LA added the Local Offer link to their email footers. We asked schools and academies to ensure they have a link to the SEND Local Offer on their school websites.
You said – “I have never seen a SEND newsletter but my child is on the school’s SEND register” and “I would like a SEND newsletter from my school with what is happening in our local area.”
We added the NELPFF/SENDIASS bi-annual SEND Newsletter to the SEND Local Offer for all parents/carers to access. We also asked SENCos to ensure all children and young people on their SEND register were signposted to the newsletter or given a hard copy.
You said – “The Local Offer doesn’t have any useful information about short breaks.”
We have a review planned of the Short Breaks offer and will include the revisions in the Local Offer.
You said – “I don’t know when things are happening. The Local Offer doesn’t tell me about any workshops or events.’”
We added an events page with links to Eventbrite so parents/carers and professionals can see in advance what events are being offered, where and when.
You said – “Parents of young children don’t use the Local Offer because it doesn’t have the information we need on it for Early Years.”
We worked with parents and a range of Early Years professionals to audit our Local Offer using the Children’s Disability Service Audit Tool. We made changes to the Early Years Information that is available.
You said – “Young people don’t want to use a local authority Local Offer, we want links to websites that are more set up for Young People, particularly about Mental Health.”
We developed a Young Minds Matter and Futures in Mind social media, text and on line offer and published details of these on the Local Offer.
You said – “We want some information about Sleep Difficulties’.
We provided a link to Sleep Solutions Services in our Local Area and links to relevant Sleep Support websites.
You said – “Schools do not use the Local Offer to signpost parents’.
We asked SENCOs at the SENCO Forum to help us promote the local offer and use it to support parents in their decision making.
You said – “The Local Offer is needs icons to help navigate the pages.”
We asked Barnardo’s Young People’s M and M group to help us add suitable logos to the tabs on the Local Offer.
You said – “We would like more videos on the Local Offer because not everyone likes to do a lot of reading.”
We added Barnardo’s information Videos, Children’s Disability Service videos and other You Tube information in video format to the Local Offer.
You said – “Parents cannot find the information they need from schools and academies about SEND their SEND offer.”
We asked all educational settings to review their websites and ensure their SEND Information Reports were up to date. We provided the updated links to all educational settings on our Local Offer.
You said – “Parents and carers still don’t know what the local offer is.”
We asked NELPPF and SENDIASS to help us promote the NE Lincs SEND Local Offer when they speak with parents/carers. We gave social care and health care professionals the link to the NE Lincs Local Offer and some training about what it is and how they can use it to signpost parents/carers.
You said – “There is not enough information about Social Care Short Breaks on the Local Offer and the information that is there is too confusing.
We asked the Children’s Disability Service to update the Local Offer provide relevant information in a plain English.
You said – “NELPPF’s SEND Newsletter is not on the Local Offer.”
We have made sure all past and future SEND Newsletters are published on the Local Offer.
You said – “There is nowhere to easily give feedback about SEND on the Local Offer.”
We created a feedback button for all users of the site to give feedback.
You said – “Teachers would like a professionals page with useful information about SEND.”
We have given all schools and settings a passcode to a professionals SEND section.
You said – “There is no information about out of area schools on the Local Offer.”
We have put links to a range of out of area provisions on the Local Area to support parents and carers with informed decision making.
You said – “Parents at the SENDIASS steering group meeting stated that they don’t know what ‘The Local Offer is and that a search for ‘SEN’ on NE Lincs website would be more useful.”
We titled our Local Offer as Special Educational Needs – Local Offer.
You said – “NELPPF asked us to make available a paper copy of the Local Offer.”
We are currently exploring the best way to do this.
You said – “The contract lead for the carers support service contacted us on behalf of their carers to ask us to update details of the service.”
We provided a brief summary of the service, attached the most up to date Carers Alert card leaflet 2016, deleted the outdated information regarding pathways.
You said – “NELPPF asked us to update our Social Care.”
We have asked our partners in school care to develop this area of the Local Offer and aim to have this in place by January 2017.
You said – “Parents told us the language used in the Local Offer was to technical and full of jargon.”
We invited parents and SENDIASS to form a ‘Local Offer Working group’ to rewrite the information about Special Educational Needs, Education Health and Care Plans and support in their own words. The part of this project has been published on the Local Offer. Further work continues.
You said – “Parents asked us to provide a link to social media for SEN.”
We now have a Facebook link on the Local Offer.
You said – “Parents from a local Special School asked us to put the Disability Register on line on the Local Offer.”
We have put the form on line accessible through the Local Offer. All families who sign up will receive a free MAX card.