The Education Select Committee held a one-off session looking at the Green Paper SEND Review with experts from the legal sector, parent networks and local government. Presenting the viewpoint of the current issues with the adherence to the legal frameworks currently in place, Ali Fiddy of IPSEA stated that “No one should underestimate the significance of the proposals in this Green Paper and the extent to which they will entail a complete overhaul of the current SEND law framework to the detriment of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities.” There was a further call for the resources available within the SEND system to be reviewed, which is not a focus of the SEND Review.
Additionally the matter of inclusion and Ofsted’s role was raised with Mrunal Sisodia of the National Network of Parent Carer Forums stating that “If you look at the areas of attainment, attendance and behaviour, very often it is SEND children who are challenged in those areas—for reasons that we understand—often because they are not getting the right support. So there is a really clear incentive there for school leaders not to be inclusive. We can do whatever we want in the SEND system and the SEND reforms, but in the broader schools environment that SEND children live in, the tide is pushing the other way—against inclusion and against the incentives to school leaders and other systems leaders to be really inclusive and intervene early.”
The Green Paper consultation is the opportunity for the SEND sector, parents, children and local authorities to get involved in shaping policy for future years. We at nasen would urge you to have your say. Special Needs Jungle have created a series of supportive prompts that may aid your thinking.
Visit nasen's dedicated page, SEND Review in Focus, to find out more including our upcoming focus group events.