Meet the specialist - Ffion Robinson
How long have you worked in the education/SEND sector?
I began working in Higher Education and Further Education in 2005, and then qualified as a Secondary English Teacher in 2010. I took up my first leadership post in a Personalised Learning team in 2014, before becoming SENCO soon after.
What can you tell us about your background?
I have been fortunate enough to work with incredible practitioners and inspirational children and young people across a broad range of settings, including primary school, nursery and pre-school, and also in secondary schools.
Throughout my roles as teacher, SENCO, and Inclusion Manager, I have experienced first-hand the power and importance of adaptive teaching and learning, and the absolute need for early identification and intervention.
I have worked hard to be an advocate for parents and children, and have thoroughly enjoyed sharing my passion for inclusivity with colleagues in the settings where I have worked.
What do you enjoy most about working for nasen?
I love the variation and the opportunity to be part of such a wide range of amazing projects, all of which are striving to improve inclusivity and outcomes for all.
I particularly love the wonderful colleagues I am privileged enough to meet in the many settings with whom we work. nasen's work brings together like-minded practitioners to collaborate and problem-solve in an incredibly demanding sector.
What are the benefits of subscribing to the SENCO Support Service?
Being a SENCO can be an incredibly lonely experience at times. It can sometimes feel like we have the weight of the world on our shoulders! The SENCO Support Service is that link to specialists who understand the demands and the problems, and who can provide support which comes from a team who have a breadth of experience, understanding and knowledge of up-to-date guidance and research. It's nice not to feel alone!
Are there any SEND topics that you feel particularly passionate about?
I am particularly interested in how schools can better support sensory differences; I am keen to encourage settings to develop and share their knowledge and understanding about this area because it will improve the school experience for such a large number of children and young people.
Working in both primary and secondary settings has sparked my interest in the female presentation of Autism, ADHD and ADD; I feel strongly that we need to promote deeper understanding of these areas to prevent the mental health difficulties which can occur when females do not receive the correct support early enough. Mental health, more widely, is an area where I feel passionately that more must be done to remove stigma and allow children and young people to more easily access support that effectively meets the increased need.