September Issue :
From September 2019 the new OFSTED Framework will ask parents to respond to fourteen statements and questions. An SEN specific question is now included. Question seven asks:
‘Does your child have special educational needs or disabilities (SEND)? (yes or no)’
If yes, the survey asks parents how strongly they agree with the following statement: ‘My child has SEND, and the school gives them the support they need to succeed.’
The following link will take you to the OFSTED Parent View toolkit for schools: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/ofsted-parent-view-toolkit-for-schools#changes-to-ofsted-parent-view
To help you to understand and develop positive relationships with parents/carers it may be worth regularly checking in with parents and carers that:
- They know that their child is identified as having special educational needs.
- Where their child is within the school’s graduated response to SEND.
- What additional to and/or different provision their child accesses in terms of:
-What their child accesses.
-Why this provision was chosen.
-Who delivers it.
-Its intended impact.
-How often it is delivered.
- They have made appropriate contributions to their child’s current assess, plan, do, review cycle and have a copy of the relevant ‘paperwork’.
- Which professionals from other agencies are involved and what their role is.
It is important that the SEND processes in school are made explicit to parents so that they know exactly what is happening for their child.
Co-production: Supporting Parents Through the Assess, Plan, Do, Review Cycle
There is no fixed route to ensuring that parents are active partners in their child’s journey through your school’s graduated response to special educational needs. The bigger picture is that parents are actively involved in a dynamic process by where their voice is heard, valued and acted upon as part of a team approach to successfully identifying and meeting the needs of their child. At all stages co-production is the goal. Successful co-production is a process that adheres to the following key principles:
- All parties work collaboratively to agree outcomes, make recommendations, form plans, agree actions and the route to executing these actions as a collective. They become the team that is in that child’s corner to drive things forwards.
- All parties work for meaningful participation that has effective consultation and information sharing with all concerned at its heart.
- Everyone recognises that there is much to learn from everyone else and that supporting and challenging can be part of this.
- All parties recognise that co-production is a group process and occurs most successfully when there is equal value for every participant’s contributions.
- Everyone recognises that they all bring value through their expertise and has a part to play in securing the very best outcome for the child – co-ownership.
- The child is at the centre of the process.
It is important to recognise that some parents won’t be able to launch straight into co-production. It takes time to develop relationships and rapport. For many parents this is all new and can be overwhelming. You will need to work with them to develop their understanding of the processes, the language and what you can offer their child as part of your school’s graduated response to special educational needs. The following explores many different routes that can lead to developing meaningful co-production.
The following are some questions and topics that may help guide you in unpicking the views of parents/carers that can be used as part of a discussion so that parents can truly reflect and share their views:
What is working well?
- What do you think we are getting right (think about: learning at home and school, hobbies and interests, break/lunch times, after school provision)?
- What does your child like the most about school?
- How does your child like to spend their free time?
- When is your child at their happiest? Why is this?
- What support do they have right now that is of value to them?
Things we would like to change
- What could we do better?
- What could we do more of?
- How can we all help your child to be happier and to learn more effectively at school?
- Can we do anything to help you to help your child at home?
What we think is important to our child
- What is important to your child to help them feel happy, well-supported and able to learn at home and at school?
What we think is important for our child
- What will help your child to make progress from where they are at right now?
- What would you like to see happen in the future?
- How can we work together to make your child’s future aspirations happen?
Our Child’s Strengths
- What is your child good at?
- What is special about them?
- What are you most proud of (think about qualities, skills and talents not just academic achievements)?
- What are they most proud of?
Areas to Develop
- What does your child find tricky?
- How do you think we can all help them?
- What do you think they would like to be able to do even better?
Outcomes and Next Steps:
- What would you like to happen because of the support that we will put in place?
- What would you like to happen next for your child?
- Is there anything more we can help you with?
- Is there anyone else that you think should be involved or whose expertise that we need?
- What are your future goals and aspirations for your child?
The following link is to a ‘Parent/Carer Confidence in School’ questionnaire produced by Gareth D Morewood: http://www.gdmorewood.com/category/resources/