Gateshead residents are being urged to have their say on special educational needs (SEND) support through an anonymous online survey.
Gateshead Council urge those with additional needs, their families, and SEND professionals to complete questionnaires so Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission can better understand the local services and experiences.
These agencies are currently inspecting local arrangements, provisions, and services in Gateshead’s SEND community.
Ofsted, or the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills, inspects and regulates educational and skills providers. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is an independent regulator of health and social care.
Council reports from January revealed that out of 27,148 children and young people in Gateshead, 4,478 had some form of special educational need – equating to around 16.5%.
In Gateshead, the top five areas of SEND help are:
- Speech, language, and communication
- Moderate learning difficulty
- Social, emotional, and mental health
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Specific Learning Difficulties
All five of those categories have seen increased demand over the past three years.
In the survey, children or young people with SEND are asked what help they receive at their schools, colleges, or places of work. Parents, carers, or guardians, are asked whether they receive professional help with regard to their SEND children and how aware they are about what services are available.
This group is also asked whether they believe their children were or have been assessed at the right time and if their children have ‘Education, Health, and Care Plans’.
Special educational needs professionals are asked, among other things, their views on how well SEND children are transitioned between child and adult services.
Gateshead Council’s cabinet member for children and young people, Gary Haley, said: “As always we at Gateshead Council are particularly interested to hear the views of parents and young people with SEND. I would strongly encourage as many of those people as possible to complete the survey.
“We are strongly committed to improving the offering for all children and young people with SEND across Gateshead.”
Residents have until 9 am on Tuesday, May 16 to submit their survey and make their experiences and thoughts on SEND provision in Gateshead known.
You can access the surveys here. For those who require an alternative version of the survey contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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