Sharing the Shropshire SEND Communities experience of school-based support during Co-vid 19


PACC has shared feedback on the Shropshire SEND communities experience of the response of schools during Co-vid 19, at the Performance Management Scrutiny Meeting on the 10th June.

The feedback firstly highlighted that the SEND community has been hit particularly hard by school closures due to Co-vid 19.  Supporting a young person who has SEND at home, without a break can be particularly difficult, especially if that young person is struggling with the loss of familiar routines. Providing specialist support for a young person’s education on top of this is for many parent carers impossible, unless they are well supported to do so by schools. 

PACC has been in regular contact with the Shropshire SEND community throughout the Co-vid 19 emergency.  We run a weekly Facebook Live chat session for parent carers to provide feedback on their experiences and to ask questions, we maintain an active presence on social media, via our own page and chat groups, and through links with a range of other SEND groups, in addition to this parent carers frequently contact us directly to share their concerns and to ask for guidance.  Through these discussions a clear picture is developing of a situation where in many cases SEND families are not getting the support they need from schools.  This will not be the experience of all SEND families and we are aware of some school which are providing individualised support which is making a real difference, however our concern is that too many SEND families are currently not being supported appropriately by their schools.

In particular the majority of parent carers are telling PACC that;

•            They are not receiving differentiated work for their SEND child and their child is struggling to access the work tasks provided.

•            They are being told that there will be no one to one support provided and they should not expect any of the provision outline in an EHCP to be delivered by the school.  While easements relating to the Children and Families Act do recognise that all provision detailed in an EHCP may not be provide in the current circumstances, they also state clearly that blanket approaches must not be taken and each child circumstances should be considered individually.

•            They or their child have not been given the opportunity to contribute to the risk assessment that should be carried out to inform how their child’s needs can be best met, either at home or in school.

•            They are being told that schools are still saying that they are only providing childcare despite Government guidance being clear that from this point the focus should be on delivering educational activity.

This feedback has also been shared with the Director of Children’s Services and the SEN Team at Shropshire Council and will be used to inform PACC’s ongoing discussions with Shropshire Council and education settings about improving the support available for SEND families.  

If you want further information about guidance relating to the support available during this time visit the Shropshire Local Offer

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