Publication of SEN Area Inspection Report

Message from Alison Jeffery, Director of Children, Families and Education – 24 September 2019

I am delighted to let you know that Portsmouth SEND local area inspection report has been published today following the Ofsted and Care Quality Commission inspection visit which took place from 1st to 5th July 2019.

This report can be found here

This was a very wide-ranging inspection of the support for children and young people aged 0-25 with special educational needs and disabilities and I am pleased that the hard work of a large number of services across education, health, social care and the voluntary sector, has been recognised in the report as contributing to improving outcomes for children, young people in the city and their families.

The report commends work across all services to implement the significant SEND reforms of recent years and celebrates the impact of partnership working in the city, something which we all value highly, of course the inspectors have specifically highlighted the following as strengths:

  • ‘Shaping Better Futures Together’ (parents coproduction group)
  • Dynamite (young people’s group)
  • School nursing, the specialist health visiting service and ECHO
  • Integrated therapy service
  • CAMHs and CAMHs-LD
  • Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSAs) in schools
  • Short break offer
  • Integrated adult learning disabilities service

Some innovative good practice has also been recognised, including:

  • Coproduction and person-centred annual reviews
  • Joint commissioning
  • Inclusive practice in schools
  • Use of Ordinarily Available Provision guidance and the Schools Therapy Pack
  • Quality and timeliness of EHCPs
  • Promotion of a ‘needs-led’ approach to accessing support
  • Collaboration via the Portsmouth Education Partnership
  • The work that has taken place to reduce school absence and fixed term exclusions, including use of restorative practice
  • Training and professional development e.g. via the SEN Support project and SENCo network

The report also helpfully confirms the areas that we want to improve, including:

  • Educational outcomes for those on SEN Support
  • Independence and employment for young people with SEND
  • Transition from children’s to adult services including paediatric to adult health servicesWe will of course continue to work to further improve services and outcomes for those in our city with SEND. Thank you so much to everyone for your important contribution to this.

The inspection report is both an important validation of the dedication and commitment from all those involved in supporting children and young people with SEND and their families and the difference this is making, as well confirmation of the steps we still need to take. Julia Katherine and colleagues across the partnership have already drawn up a post inspection action plan which will be going to the SEND Board for consideration next month. If anyone has any questions about the report or the action plan please do not hesitate to get in touch with Julia at [email protected]