PARENTS and carers of young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are being encouraged to make use of a new guide aimed at helping them prepare for adulthood.
The SEND 16+ Transitions Guide was designed for young people who receive SEND support or who have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). It is packed with helpful information covering a range of subjects including education options, travel support, social care, money management and funding, leisure and health. The easy-to-understand guide was created in partnership with parents, carers, service providers and young people with SEND in response to a demand for clearer information and advice. In addition to supporting parents, carers and young people, it also provides consistent and accurate information about transition for professionals working in SEND services.
Improving awareness of SEND services is one of the top priorities in Suffolk’s SEND Special Educational Needs and Disability Strategy 2017-2020. The strategy aims to improve provision for youngsters with SEND and ensure the organisations responsible for SEND services respond to the wishes and concerns of families.
Gordon Jones, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, Education and Skills, said: “This guide will help youngsters with SEND and their families by building confidence and making the journey towards greater independence and adulthood a positive experience.
“Suffolk County Council and the NHS Ipswich & East Suffolk, NHS West Suffolk and NHS Great Yarmouth & Waveney clinical commissioning groups co-produced this 16+ Transitions Guide with Suffolk Parent Carer Network and the SEND Young Persons’ Network.
“By working together we have produced a ‘go to guide’ all partners will be using throughout the county to support young people and their families with SEND.”
Lisa Nobes, Chief Nurse with the NHS Ipswich & East Suffolk and NHS West Suffolk clinical commissioning groups, said: “The guide focuses on supporting young people and their parents or carers through the challenging transition into adulthood.
“It is packed with helpful discussion plans, top tips, case study examples, useful information and links to all the relevant contacts, websites and helplines.”
Kate Chate of the Suffolk Parent Carer Network (SPCN) said: “This new guide is a great way for everyone involved in SEND to support young people with good, timely, consistent information on their journey into adulthood.”We would like to encourage all parties to use it and contribute to its ongoing development by feeding back on how it has helped.”
Since the publication of the SEND Strategy and Statement of Action in May 2017, SCC and the three NHS clinical commissioning groups in Suffolk have been working closely with SPCN to improve the support and services available for children and young people with SEND.
The Suffolk Local Offer website provides information about support services and local opportunities for children and young people with SEND all in one place.
Visit www.suffolklocaloffer.org.uk , follow @Suffolk_LO on Twitter or contact the Local Offer Advisor on 0345-606 1490.