A scrutiny review of inclusion and outreach support services for children with additional needs was endorsed at a meeting of Knowsley Council’s Cabinet on 17 January 2024.
In November last year, the Children’s Scrutiny Committee concluded its Review of Inclusion and Outreach Support Services for children and young people with additional needs or disabilities.
During the review, committee members visited a number of services and interviewed a range of staff, service users and partner agencies with the aim of understanding the role of services in schools and settings which support children and young people with additional needs, as well as to understand the challenges impacting these services.
In its report, the committee commended the range and quality of support of inclusion and outreach services and recognised the strong working relationships between them. It also highlighted the feedback from children, young people and their families regarding the positive impact of services.
The committee also identified 13 areas for development (recommendations) that would potentially support the council and its partners to extend services further to enhance outcomes for children and young people in Knowsley.
These include further work to engage with employers to offer and promote supported internships and apprenticeships and further promotion of the English as an Additional Language Service so that all families who would benefit from the service are aware of its existence and how it’s accessed.
The Committee also noted the importance of early intervention to ensure that children, young people and their families are provided with relevant and timely support, and that preventative work can avoid higher costs being incurred by the council and that this work should continue and be further encouraged.
You can read the committee’s recommendations on the council’s website.
Cllr Harvey, Knowsley Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said:
“Our commitment to children and young people to provide them with the very best support is evident in the findings of the Review and something we are proud of.
“The Review examined in detail all areas of the Inclusion and Outreach Service and allowed it to consider service strengths and areas of development. The committee’s recommendations will help to shape and inform our approach to future service provision.”
You can read the agenda item on the Council’s website.