Agenda item

Hillingdon Draft SEND Strategy 2022-2025


The Executive Director, Education and Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) and Head of SEND introduced the report on the Hillingdon Draft SEND Strategy 2022 – 2025. The report provided the Committee with an update on the recently consulted draft SEND Strategy (the Strategy).


The Committee heard that the Strategy outlined the Council’s plan to further develop the SEND offer in Hillingdon over the next four years. The aim of the Strategy was to improve outcomes and help raise the educational achievements, health and care of children and young people in the Borough. The Strategy set out the priorities and shared vision. The consultation period had taken place over the summer term and the report included both the quantitative and qualitative findings from the survey. There was a slight disappointment in the response rate however the Committee was assured that a number of pre- consultation engagement events had also taken place and  stakeholders were involved in shaping and co-producing the document prior to formal consultation. There had also been a great deal of post engagement activity.

In response to Member questions regarding how the views and feedback of SEND students was collated, it was recognised through the consultation that the views of young people had not been fully ascertained and further engagement and contact had been made with the Youth Council, Young Peoples’ Health Watch and school councils to gain insight. The Committee considered that the views of both education providers and parents ought to have been grouped and assessed separately to identify more accurate results. This feedback was taken on board for future consultations.


It was noted that the Strategy was a dynamic document and work had already been undertaken to meet priorities including the establishment of strong governance arrangements through the SEND Strategic Partnership Board and SEND Operation groups.


The Committee acknowledged the amount of work that had gone into the consultation. Although the feedback was limited, Member considered that it would have been useful to have information on the methods on how priorities would be met.  It was explained that the Council had a good relationship with parent carer forums, and they had been involved in shaping the document through the formal consultation and other engagement events. This was an overarching Strategy, and the work was supported through the SEND workstreams and action plans in place. There was another document being worked on including the SEND Sufficiency Strategy that would also be consulted on in due course.


It was reported that the survey had been launched on the Local Offer website and the Corporate website. A number of communications had been sent to alert respondents.


Some concerns were raised regarding the timing of the consultation being over the summer term, that there had only been two headteacher responses and the general feedback received. It was noted that some mainstreams schools already had a huge number of SEND children and questions were raised on how the Strategy would be delivered without overwhelming mainstream schools. It was explained that nationally there was work being undertaken to increase inclusivity and it was recognised that some schools were going well beyond to meet needs of children. The Council was working closely with schools to ensure that they could self-assess their practice around SEND and get the best outcomes. Although there was no possibility to cap the percentage of SEND children at all schools, there could be further work to develop closer and stronger partnership working and communication.


If any further information was available on the number of surveys as part of the consultation, this would be provided to the Committee. Although there was disappointment about the low number of responses, the Committee was assured that there had been a lot of different engagement work undertaken. Lessons about consultation timings would be fedback and taken into account for future consultations.


The Committee was keen to hear about how the Strategy was progressing and requested that an update be placed on the work programme.




That the Committee:


1.    noted the contents of the draft Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Strategy 2022-2025 which outlined the strategic vision and priorities for the delivery of SEND Services across the borough.

  1. Delegated to the Chairman, in conjunction with the DSO (and in consultation with the Opposition Lead) to agree comments to submit to Cabinet.


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