SEND Review Consultation Guide: What to include in your response
ALLFIE’s latest SEND Review campaign briefing includes a useful guide for answering the Government consultation survey.
- The SEND and Alternative Provision (AP) Review Government Green Paper was published on the 29th March – here is a summary of the document ”Right Support; Right Place, Right Time’
- The consultation deadline has been extended until the 22nd July due to late publication of accessible versions (listed below)
- We encourage our Members to submit their own response to the Government’s SEND Green Paper consultation survey
- The guide below will help you state the case for inclusive education
- Previous briefings will inform you further – ALLFIE’s SEND Review campaign homepage
Accessible versions of the green paper:
- Easy-Read to support those with learning disabilities
- British Sign Language (BSL) to support those who are deaf or have a hearing impairment
- Large print (pdf)
- Guide for children and young people
2. What you can do: Responding to the Government consultation
We need your assistance to help ALLFIE make the strongest case for why and how the SEND system must change, to recognize and realize Disabled children and Young peoples’ rights to inclusive education. The Department for Education (DfE) needs to hear from you about the impact the proposed SEND reforms will have for Disabled children and Young people’s right to inclusive education. We encourage our Members to submit their own response to the Government’s SEND Green Paper consultation survey.
We recognise that answering all 22 questions or selecting which questions you should answer in the SEND Review Green Paper may be a daunting task. We hope we have made this task easier to do by providing a suggested list of questions and areas to cover in your answers. Please feel free to answer one or more questions. If possible, it’s helpful if you can draw upon your personal experience and ideas as a Disabled student/person, parent, education practitioner, or in another professional capacity. As discussed in our members’ briefing for this SEND Review Green Paper, we ask that any responses focus on the following areas:
- Question 1: National SEND standards
- Question 4: Education, Health, and Care Needs Assessments (EHCAs) and Plans (EHCPs)
- Question 12: Develop and implement inclusive post-16 options
- Question 15 : The role of Alternative Provision
- Question 17: Key measures needed to evaluate the quality of inclusive education practice
- Question 18: Funding
- Question 22: Anything else about the SEND proposals
Question 1: What key factors should be considered when developing national standards to ensure they deliver improved outcomes and experiences for children and young people with SEND and their families? This includes how the standards apply across education, health, and care in a 0-25 system.
Focusing on Chapter 2 on the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education why a list of appropriate placements for disabled children and young people with different needs is wrong and will increase disability discrimination in education. Instead, what is needed are National Inclusive Education standards so that all children and young people can be included within mainstream educational settings. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- Personal experiences of Disabled children and Young people being sent to a specific school or college just because they are said to be good by the local authority.
- Any incidences where you believe Disabled learners are being sent to a special school or specialist college on disability-related grounds by the local authority.
- What is needed are national inclusive education standards covering all aspects of the SEND framework.
- The need for a legal right for all Disabled children and young people to be included within mainstream education settings, as well as the need to end segregated education.
- Inclusive education standards need to include a definition of inclusive education practice.
Question 4: What components of the EHCP should we consider reviewing or amending as we move to a standardised and digitised version?
Again, focusing on Chapter 2 of the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education how EHCAs and EHCPs can be improved so that they can be used to support disabled children and young people within mainstream education settings. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- The EHCA and EHCP formats must be accessible and inclusive of Disabled children and young people.
- The EHCAs should be carried out independently from the local authority responsible for the funding and arrangement of SEND provision/school placement.
- EHCAs and EHCPs must be underpinned by the social model of disability to remove ableist barriers and intersectionality (around your gender, race, etc)
- Identify not only the needs, but also the barriers and solutions needed to support the Disabled child/young person within a mainstream education setting.
- Cover all aspects of the school/college student experience such as friendships, extra-curricular activities, residential and day trips, and the like.
- Clear roles on who is legally responsible for the funding of the provision set out in the plan.
Question 12: What more can be done by employers, providers, and government to ensure that those young people with SEND can access, participate in, and be supported to achieve an apprenticeship, including through access routes like traineeships?
Focusing on Chapter 3 of the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education whether the focus should be on providing inclusive apprenticeships from the outset. The apprenticeship schemes should be flexible enough to accommodate any reasonable adjustments needed in performing the job role and undertaking the course (including curriculum differentiation) and assessment arrangements. Apprenticeships provide more choices and broader opportunities on completion than traineeships and internships. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- Experience and ideas on how to make the apprenticeships more inclusive of Disabled apprentices. Consider work experience, entry requirements, the interview process, and the like.
- Experience of internships and traineeships leading to or not leading to apprenticeship placement offers.
- Access to mainstream courses which allow Disabled young people to enter higher education, apprenticeships, or other life-long learning.
Question 15: To what extent do you agree or disagree that introducing a bespoke alternative provision performance framework, based on these five outcomes (effective outreach support, improved attendance, reintegration, academic attainment and successful post-16 transitions), will improve the quality of alternative provision?
Focusing on Chapter 4 of the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education that alternative provision such as Pupil Referral Units, Hospital Schools and Alternative Provision schools are just other forms of segregated education where Disabled children and young people leave with poorer outcomes than their non-disabled peers. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- Impact of being in alternative provision as a result of being moved out of mainstream education for whatever reason.
- From your experience, why alternative provision is no different from segregated education.
- Rather than having Alternative education, what should schools be expected to do with what kind of support for Disabled children and young people at risk of exclusion?
Question 17: What are the key metrics we should capture and use to measure local and national performance? Please explain why you have selected these.
Relating to Chapter 5 of the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education which key measures should be used to assess the quality of inclusive education provision. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- Policies and procedures are underpinned by the social model of disability and the principles of inclusive education.
- Evidence of the inclusivity of lessons, break-times, and extra-curricular and residential/day trips.
- Evidence of the quality of relationships between teachers and Disabled students, Disabled and non-disabled students, and between Disabled students themselves.
- Evidence of representation of Disabled students in democracy and roles of responsibility (school council, head ** MD pupil).
- Evidence of Disabled students’ progress and wellbeing
- Evidence of reflecting and learning from experience to create stronger inclusive education practices.
Question 18: How can we best develop a national framework for funding bands and tariffs to achieve our objectives and mitigate unintended consequences and risks?
Again, referring to Chapter 5 of the Green Paper, this question allows you to tell the Department for Education the barriers that funding policies create and how they prevent Disabled students from being supported in mainstream placements. Some suggested areas to cover within your answer are:
- Experiences of local formal or informal funding policies including the use of bands/tariffs in promoting inclusive education or the segregation of Disabled children and young people.
- Impact of the services and funding arrangements commissioned by local authorities and schools and how they negatively affect the quality of the SEND provision experienced by Disabled children and young people within mainstream settings.
Question 22: Is there anything else you would like to say about the proposals in the Green Paper?
This question allows you to tell the Department for Education what key proposals are missing that will support Disabled children and young people’s rights to inclusive education. Some suggested areas to cover with your answer are:
- Reconsider the purpose of education, to develop an inclusive society that welcomes all Disabled people.
- How the rights of Disabled people are being discarded, particularly those outlined in UNCRPD Article 24.
- How there is no definition of inclusive education.
- How intersectional experiences are not covered by the paper.
- How there is no reference to the implementation of the UNCRPD (on inclusive education) Monitoring Committee’s recommendations
- How there is no recognition of increasing respite services is a form of segregated provision that breaks a family setting.
- How none of the principles of the social model of disability were included to recognise the removal of disabling barriers
- How there is no reference to making inclusive education mandatory part of teacher training
- How there is no reference that segregated education needs to end if the Government wants increasing numbers of Disabled children and young people in mainstream education.