Accessibility Strategy 2022 to 2025
Increasing access to the curriculum
The joint commissioning of education, health and social care provision for children and young people required by the Children and Families Act 2014 has led to the development of more integrated packages of support. This is to assist children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities in accessing the curriculum.
Schools and other educational settings responsibilities
All schools and settings should provide a broad, balanced, and inclusive curriculum for all pupils, including disabled pupils. Most children and young people will have their needs met through universal mainstream provision for example, in school via SEN Support.
Buckinghamshire Council responsibilities
The Integrated SEND Service (iSEND), formed in September 2019, is part of Buckinghamshire Council’s local offer for children and young people with SEND.
The iSEND service includes Specialist Teachers, Educational Psychologists and Education, Health and Care Coordinators who carry out statutory services for Education Health and Care (EHC) assessment, planning, and monitoring. The service is organised across the county in area hubs, which are in Aylesbury, Wycombe and Chiltern and South Buckinghamshire.
The iSEND service works in partnership with schools, settings, and post 16 education providers. The purpose of the service is to support and facilitate effective SEND provision, ensuring that children and young people are enabled to reach their full potential.
The iSEND Service supports this vision with the aims of:
- Education settings;
- being supported to meet the needs of children and young people with SEND more effectively.
- settings increasing in confidence so that children and young people with SEND are included, and can achieve to their highest potential.
- building their own expertise through wider workforce development, leading to a highly skilled system of support.
- Parents/carers gaining a better understanding of the needs of their child and will have confidence that their child's needs are being met within the school/setting.
Education, Health and Care Plans provide support over and above that which is ordinarily available within mainstream education settings and aim to support access to learning and development of independence. The approach includes working with the most vulnerable children and young people, based on their individual needs.
The SEND Code of Practice 2015 defines the Graduated approach as:
“A model of action and intervention in early education settings, schools, and colleges to help children and young people who have special educational needs. The approach recognises that there is a continuum of special educational needs and that, where necessary, increasing specialist expertise should be brought to bear on the difficulties that a child or young person may be experiencing.”
The Graduated Approach sets out the differing ways by which all children and young peoples with disabilities may have their needs met, not just those children with Education, Health and Care Plans. The Graduated Approach aims to ensure all children and young people receive an appropriate education, one that is appropriate to their needs, promotes high standards and the fulfilment of potential.
In Buckinghamshire, work will continue to make the curriculum more accessible to all children and young people, alongside the principles of child-centred care and the Graduated Approach by:
- Working with all educational settings to embed the principles of the Graduated Approach. This is to develop personalised learning and a more child centred focus on planning provision for children and young people with SEND.
- Encouraging schools and settings to develop high quality teaching by providing opportunities for training and further professional development of teaching and support staff.
- Providing training for school SENDCOs to work towards establishing a fully accredited SENDCO workforce.
- Working with health colleagues such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists and the complex needs nursing team to support children and young people in their schools.
- Delegating funding to schools to provide support for children and young people with special educational needs.
- Providing information to schools and settings on how they should continue to support children and young people.
- Providing additional short-term high need block funding to support individuals in schools and settings in times of need or assessment. Provides funding to schools to support children and young people with an Education, Health and Care Plan.
- Arranging suitable full-time education (or as much education as the child’s health condition allows) for children of compulsory school age who, because of health needs, would otherwise not receive suitable education.
- Working with the Bucks SEND Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIAS) which offers impartial information, advice, and support to families of children and young people who have SEND.
- Working with Family and Carers Together (FACT Bucks) to engage with parents and carers of pupils with SEND to inform and develop good practice within settings.