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SEND Information Advice and Support Service

1. SEND Information Advice and Support Service

Buckinghamshire Special Educational Needs and Disability Information, Advice and Support (SEND IAS) Service (formerly Parent Partnership).

All local authorities, by law, have to provide children and young people with SEN or disabilities, and their parents, with information, advice and support. Buckinghamshire SEND IAS Service is the information, advice and support service here. Our service is free, confidential, impartial and at arm’s length from Buckinghamshire County Council.

We offer accurate and up to date resources and information about the law on special educational needs and disability. This covers:

  • education, health and social care
  • national and local policy
  • the Local Offer
  • your rights and choices
  • your opportunities to participate
  • where you can find help and advice
  • how you can access this support.

Sometimes information alone is not enough. You may want help to gather information, make sense of it and apply it to your own situation. We call this advice and we offer this service by email, on the telephone, face to face and through work with groups or in training.

We can also offer more intensive support if you need it. This can include helping with letters, attending meetings with you or supporting you in discussions with the local authority, school or other setting. We work closely with the Independent Support team, who can offer you help with Education, Health and Care Plans.

Legal principles

Buckinghamshire SEND IAS Service is a statutory service provided by Buckinghamshire County Council in response to the Children and Families Act 2014:

Local authorities must arrange for children with SEN or disabilities for whom they are responsible, and their parents, and young people with SEN or disabilities for whom they are responsible, to be provided with information and advice about matters relating to their SEN or disabilities, including matters relating to health and social care.

SEND Code of Practice 2014, DfE

Section 19 of the Children and Families Act 2014 makes clear that local authorities, in carrying out their functions under the Act in relation to disabled children and young people and those with special educational needs (SEN), must have regard to:

  • the views, wishes and feelings of the child or young person, and the child’s parents
  • the importance of the child or young person, and the child’s parents, participating as fully as possible in decisions, and being provided with the information and support necessary to enable participation in those decisions
  • the need to support the child or young person, and the child’s parents, in order to facilitate the development of the child or young person and to help them achieve the best possible educational and other outcomes, preparing them effectively for adulthood
SEND Code of Practice 2014

What is a disability?

You’re disabled under the Equality Act 2010 if you have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on your ability to do normal daily activities.

What is a special educational need?

Children and young people with SEN all have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children and young people of the same age. These children and young people may need extra or different help from that given to others.

How we help

  • Signposting children, young people and parents to alternative and additional sources of advice, information and support that may be available locally or nationally
  • Individual casework and representation for those who need it, which may include:
  • support in attending meetings, contributing to assessments and reviews and participating in decisions about outcomes for the child or young person
  • directing children, young people, parents and those who support and work with them to additional support services where needed
  • Help when things go wrong, which includes:
  • supporting children, young people and parents in arranging or attending early disagreement resolution meetings
  • supporting children, young people and parents in managing mediation, appeals to the First-tier Tribunal (Special Educational Needs and Disability), exclusions and complaints on matters related to SEN and disability
  • making children, young people and parents aware of the local authority’s services for resolving disagreements and for mediation, and on the routes of appeal and complaint on matters related to SEN and disability
  • Provision of advice through individual casework and through work with parent carer support groups, local SEN youth forums or disability groups, or training events

2. Contact SEND IAS Service

3. Updates on SEND IAS Service

 

News about Independent Support and the new Information Advice and Support Programme (IASP)

The Independent Support programme closed on 31st July 2018 in line with Government policy.

Bucks SENDIAS Service is now part of the Information Advice and Support Programme which is a new Government initiative. The programme is designed to ensure that, in every local authority area, children and young people with SEND and their parents have access to impartial and free information, advice and support on all matters relating to SEND – including through a dedicated free phone service. Led by the Council for Disabled Children on behalf of the Department for Education, the programme will be delivered through a partnership arrangement which brings together the Information, Advice and Support Network and the ‘Helpline’ run by Contact. The programme will also work with Independent Parental Special Education Advice (IPSEA) as a core training provider.

 

Ofsted/CQC Area SEND Inspection

Did you know there will soon be an Ofsted and Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection of this local area's effectiveness in identifying and meeting the needs of children and young people who have special educational needs and disabilities?

 

Bucks SENDIAS newsletter

 

SEND Reforms newsletter

 

Bucks SEND IAS Service Annual Report

 

Memorandum of Understanding: Bucks SENDIAS, Adviza, FACT Bucks, BCC SEN team

 

 

4. Volunteer SENDIAS Adviser

Duties and responsibilities of a Volunteer SENDIAS Adviser:

Volunteer SENDIAS Advisers are trained volunteers who offer support to parents/carers of children and young people who have, or may have Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.

A Volunteer SENDIAS Adviser can help by:

  • Explaining letters and reports
  • Helping parents/carers with preparing letters and paperwork
  • Explaining jargon or how Local Authority processes work
  • Helping parents/carers prepare for meetings
  • Attending school or LA meetings with parents/carers
  • Helping parents/carers express and record their views
  • Talking through procedures, choices and the implications of choices
  • Helping parents/carers to be fully involved in the assessment and EHC Plan process

A Volunteer SENDIAS Adviser is not:

  • An advocate
  • A legal advisor
  • A negotiator
  • Here to win
  • A family counsellor

Who are our volunteers?

Volunteer SENDIAS Advisers come from a wide range of backgrounds. Our volunteers often join the SENDIAS team because they have an interest in special educational needs, have worked in education or are themselves a parent of a child with special educational needs.

We offer a comprehensive training programme and then ongoing termly training sessions and regular updates. We encourage our volunteers to come into the SENDIAS office to assist with answering the helpline and dealing with enquiries.

If you are interested in finding out more about becoming a Volunteer SENDIAS Adviser please contact us on 01296 383754 or sendias@buckscc.gov.uk

5. Information sheets

6. Children and Young People's Adviser

Are you a child or young person with a special educational need or disability?

If you are 25 or under and have a special educational need or disability, the Children and Young People’s Adviser at Bucks SEND Information, Advice and Support Service can offer you:

  • Information, advice and support on Education, Health and Social Care
  • Help with getting your views heard
  • Help to find out what support is available for you and opportunities in the local area.

Bucks SEND Youth Forum

If you are aged between 12 and 25, are disabled or have a specific need, then we want to hear your voice! The Bucks SEND Youth Forum is a place where young people aged 12-25 have the opportunity to get their voice heard. The group discuss topics important to them. All responses are fed back to help improve the lives of those living with a disability or a specific need. 

The Forum usually meets on the 1st Monday of every month at Bucks County Council, Aylesbury 4.30pm- 6pm. Please contact Emily Dover (Youth Worker,  Disability Participation) to check on arrangements and find out more: youthspacebucks@buckscc.gov.uk 01296 382583. A representative from Bucks SEND IAS Service often attends.

Useful links

Useful Information

Contact

Jennifer Ogley, Children and Young People's Adviser

sendias@buckscc.gov.uk

01296 383754 (24 hour answerphone)

7. Join our mailing list

SEND IAS mailing list

Application to join the mailing list for information relating to Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
 

Join mailing list