15:02, Friday, 2nd April 2021

SEND weekly parent/carer update

This is the SEND weekly parent/carer update for 29 March to 04 April.

Autism Awareness Week

World Autism Awareness Week, 29 March to 4 April, has been a widely celebrated awareness campaign week in England and accross the world.

The week has been a chance for many to learn more about autism and celebrate the diversity of people with autism.

Student life as a teenager with autism

“Because she was older and with support from her mum, she was able to identify and communicate what was going wrong at school and with her friends.”

Laura * was diagnosed with autism as a teenager in Year 9. She was then triaged to the Specialist Advisory teacher for support by the school’s SENCo as there were concerns about her lack of academic progress and social vulnerability.

The Specialist Advisory Teacher said: “When I first met Laura her head was bowed, she had hunched shoulders and she cried when we talked about her diagnosis of autism.

“I worked with the SENCo, Laura and her Mum to identify the difficulties she was experiencing at school and in her social life.

“Because she was older and with support from her mum, she was able to identify and communicate what was going wrong at school and with her friends.”

Based on the discussions with staff, Laura, and her mum strategies were suggested to help Laura both at home and at school.

“For example, one of her challenges was letting go if she faced a setback in class. Once teachers understood how to approach her needs, she was then able to move on.

“When we last met I could tell she had come on a long way. She was smiling, and her posture showed that she was feeling positive and confidant.”

*Names have been changed in this article

To read more stories of our wonderful local children and young people who have autism visit the Local Offer SEND Stories page.

Sign up for the Teen Life programme

The Teen Life Programme is a virtual delivery programme for parents/carers of young people aged 10 to 16 years on the autism spectrum.

Did you know?
You can bring another person with you to the training. For example, an aunt, grandparent or older sibling of your child might like to know how to support them better when they are with them.

What is the Teen Life Programme?

Teen Life is a programme for parents and carers of young people on the autism spectrum aged 10-16. The programme includes information on understanding autism in teenagers and covers a range of topics that are relevant to this age group. This is a version of the programme that will be delivered online.

Topics covered include understanding autism in teenagers, women and girls, self-esteem, spending time with other people, stress and anxiety, behaviour, puberty, independence skills, education strategies and planning for the future.

Find out more and make contact to sign up.

Parent Steering Group with Healthwatch

Guest speaker Tracy Slattery from Healthwatch North East Lincolnshire joined the meeting.

She will be facilitating an independent steering group with parents and professionals

  • There will be more parents on the steering group than professionals
  • They will have at least 50% power in all decision-making processes
  • There will be no votes done without 50% representation on the group
  • Professionals cannot override parents decisions
  • Young people’s voices will also be heard
  • Anny associated documents will be received by parents in good time so they have time to redigest and bring forward questions
  • The steering  group sits two weeks before SEND Exec
  • There will be Admin support from the Local Authority

Contact Tracy Slattery to for more information and to join the group tslattery@healthwatchnortheastlincolnshire.co.uk.

North East Lincolnshire Parents Participation (NELPPF)

NELPPF have been handling queries and requests for support about students returning to school.
They have also been receiving calls relating to health and wellbeing.
They are continuing to receive calls and give information about lateral flow testing.

Email: nelppf@gmail.com
Telephone: 07583 474892

School

Lateral flow testing is being rolled out to school staff and pupils.

Read the latest National COVID guidance and local guidance.

Follow the Department for Education on social media for back-to-school updates.

Contact Jennifer.steel@nelincs.gov.uk if you have a query about school exclusions.

EHCP Hub

The EHCP Hub continues to be updated with children and young people’s plans.

All children in Secondary and Special Schools who have a plan are on the hub. Most of the Out of Area plans are on. Children attending our Primary schools and who are in receipt of a plan continue to be updated. The final group of students who are having their plans uploaded will be those in post-16 and will be done ready for September when they attend their setting, which may change over summer.

There are new training sessions for parents and carers to see a demonstration of the site and to learn how to use it for themselves.

Join an EHCP Hub demonstration to learn how to use the EHCP Hub.
All sessions are the same, so you only need to sign up for one.
Wednesday, 21 April, 1-2pm 
Thursday, 22 April, 6-7pm
Friday, 30 April 9:30-10:30am

The link to all sessions and other training available relating to SEND is on the ‘Events’ page of the SEND Local Offer.

SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs Disability Information Advice Support Service)

SENDIASS have been receiving queries from parents whose children didn’t get their first choice of school.

They are also helping parents who are struggling to get children back into school due to anxiety.
One person was referred to Compass Go for this kind of support and the family have found them very helpful. The school now have a better understanding of the need and are supporting the child.

They have also been recieving queries about the Access Pathway.

SENDIASS provides free impartial information, advice and support to disabled children and young people aged 0-25, and those with SEN. Get in touch Monday-Thursday, 8.30am- 4.30pm. Friday 8:30am- 4pm. Leave a message and we’ll get back to you within three days.
Email: nelincs@barnardos.org.uk
Facebook: @NELSENDIASS

SENDIASS has been receiving enquiries about school admission appeals.
If your child didn’t get a place at the school you wanted there is a standard appeals process.
If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), you cannot appeal through this process and procedures and deadlines are different. Parents/carers should contact the SEN Assessment and Review Team on (01472) 323166 or for more advice please contact SENDIASS.

If you decide to appeal, there are some basic steps to follow:

  1. Accept the place you have been given and go on the waiting lists for the other school you would like.
  2. Download the appeals form from the Local Authority School admission appeal page.
    • State your reasons for appeal clearly and concisely.
    • SENDIASS can support you with template letters to help you compose your appeal.
    • See the Ace Education website for ideas on what to include.
  3. ‘Submit the appeals form, by the due deadlines, to the admissions authority- details are on the appeals form’.
  4. If you don’t receive confirmation that your appeal has been received follow up with the school or Local Authority.

This information on school admission appeals can also be found on the SEND Local Offer ‘Appeal or make a complaint‘ page.

Health

If you are struggling or are worried that your child’s health needs are not being met in school please email Sarah Harding, the Designated Clinical Officer for SEND at designatedclinicalofficer@nelincs.gov.uk.

Useful contacts

The Sector Support ‘Community Service Fact Sheet’ has an extensive list of community support available for money, food, wellbeing, welfare and more.
See the Voluntary Sector Alliance COVID-19 updates page for more on financial support, health and wellbeing, local updates, COVID updates, community safety, volunteering and more.
• Report a concern online or call 01472 326292 (opt. 2)
• Support for those isolating without anyone to support them for supplies and more call the Council (01472) 313131
• Health – if you are struggling to manage your symptoms, call 111. If you are in urgent need of medical assistance, call 999
• Domestic Abuse (women and men). NEL Women’s Aid (01472) 575757, and Men’s Helpline, 0808 8010327
• Wellbeing– if you are struggling with your mental health, call (01472) 256256
• Carers’ Support Service (support for informal carers). Go online or call (01472) 242277

Alcohol

Parents/carers are aware that at this anxious time some families have reported struggles with mental health and sought support for the overuse of alcohol.
Alcohol change UK offers COVID tips on alcohol and mental health.
We Are With You provides support for drugs and alcohol. You can also get in touch if you are worried about someone else’s drinking or drug use. Chat online or call- 01472 806890. Local charges apply. They also have information on their Facebook, @wearewithyoucharity.

What’s new on the Local Offer?

There’s lots changing to the Local Offer every week.


If you have questions about SEND we are always here to help. Please don’t hesitate to email sen@nelincs.gov.uk. We always try to make sure that children and parents/ carers voices are heard.

These Weekly SEND parent/carer newsletters are shared with teams within education, health and social care as well as parents/carers SENCOs, the DfE and local charities.

If parents/carers or young people over 16 do not have access to the internet or if they prefer to receive paper copies only please contact sen@nelincs.gov.uk.

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