Your Norfolk

Pledge to further improve services for children with special educational needs

Dozens of school leaders and healthcare and education professionals from across Norfolk who work with children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) have joined parents and carers in virtual Norfolk County Council workshops to improve services for this group of children.

The workshops have focused on three key areas outlined in Norfolk’s first ever SEND Area Ofsted/CQC inspection in March. In common with more than half of areas inspected, it was determined that Norfolk should prepare an action plan to improve:

  • Delays in Education Health and Care Plans;
  • Provision for young people as they move into adulthood
  • Communication with parents and carers.

The outcome of each workshop will feed into the written statement of action, which must be produced by the beginning of September to tell Ofsted/CQC how Norfolk County Council and Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group plans to address the issues with a view to resolving them within 18 months.

Councillor John Fisher, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services at Norfolk County Council, said: “We have an ambitious strategy to address the report, which inspectors recognised. There are no surprises in this report, we know where improvement is required, and we are committed to achieving this.

“We’re already investing £120m in special educational needs and disabilities to create more specialist places and we’re increasing our support to schools, so that they can help their children earlier. We’ve also increased capacity in our specialist teams and, as inspectors said, this is starting to make a real difference to children and their families."

Inspectors found the county has an ambitious and well-planned strategy in place but said this was new in its implementation and had not yet had time to show a significant impact.

There was also praise for the challenge offered by parents’ support groups, as well as the “confident, and articulate children and young people with SEND” in Norfolk.

Read the full Ofsted/CQC inspection report.

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