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Ofsted and CQC launch formal consultation: a new approach to area SEND inspections

14 Jun 2022|10:55

Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) have launched a consultation to seek the widest possible range of views from those who have an interest in, or expertise relating to, disability, special educational needs (SEN) and/or alternative provision around Local Area SEND Reviews. Ofsted and CQC jointly inspect local area partnerships to assess how they work together to improve the experiences and outcomes of children and young people. They are keen to hear from local authorities, clinical commissioning groups, professionals and practitioners involved in the commissioning and delivery of services to children and young people with SEND. They have created an easy read guide and a survey specifically for young people with SEND to give their views.

They are seeking views on proposals which aim to:

  • focus inspections not just on whether statutory obligations have been met but on the impact that a local area partnership’s SEND arrangements has on the experiences and outcomes of children and young people.
  • strengthen accountability and drive continuous improvement by introducing:
    • an ongoing cycle of inspections, which include full inspections, monitoring visits and annual engagement meetings
    • 3 inspection outcomes, which provide clearer information about how an area is performing, what needs to improve and who is accountable
    • an expectation that all areas produce and publish a strategic plan for SEND, which is updated following inspection
  • gather more evidence directly from children and young people and their families, ensuring that their views and experiences are central to our inspections
  • look more closely at arrangements for children and young people in alternative provision
  • include social care inspectors as part of inspection teams, to gain a more holistic view of the impact of SEND services in an area.

They are consulting on 9 proposals based on these aims and are also asking a tenth question about how to make surveys more accessible for children and young people who have SEND.