Home Children and Young People Improvements made following SEND area inspection
Photo of two children with SEND

Improvements made following SEND area inspection

by Guy Murphy

In March 2022, Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) conducted the first local area inspection in Knowsley of Special Educational Needs and / or Disabilities (SEND) services and support provided across Health, Social Care, Council and Education providers.

The inspection team assessed the local area against the following criteria:-

  • The effectiveness of the local area in identifying children and young people’s SEND
  • The effectiveness of the local area in meeting the needs of children and young people with SEND
  • The effectiveness of the local area in improving outcomes for children and young people with SEND

The inspection highlighted that leaders were passionate about improving outcomes for children and young people with SEND in Knowsley; the Knowsley Parent Carer Voice (KPCV) engages closely with leaders of many workstreams and agencies to ensure that the voice of parents and carers is heard; and that co-production was at the heart of the SEND strategy.

The inspection also highlighted a number of areas for improvement which formed the basis of a Written Statement of Action (an action plan to ensure that the local area continues to improve at pace). This included improving the 0-25 universal public health offer to ensure that the identification of SEND is timely; reducing the waiting time for assessment of neurodevelopmental needs and improving communication with parents/carers/children and young people; and strengthening the planning for and communication about preparation for adulthood for young people with SEND.

Two years’ later, the Department for Education and NHS England has reviewed the progress made against the Written Statement of Action. This included meeting with staff from the Integrated Care Board and also the Knowsley Parent Carer Voice.

The review concluded that progress has been made in addressing and embedding the necessary improvements identified in the Ofsted and CQC inspection of March 2022 – a view that was also endorsed by the Knowsley Parent Carer Voice.

Formal progress monitoring is no longer necessary.

Jonathan Jones, Executive Director for Children’s Services, said “This latest feedback clearly demonstrates that improvements are being made, and importantly, the improvements noted by the review team were also acknowledged by the Knowsley Parent Carer Voice.

“Ensuring children and families with SEND receive the right support at the right time is a key priority for us and we know that there is still a lot that needs to improve.

“We will continue to work with our partners and the Parent Carer Voice to provide the very best services and support to our children, young people and their families.”