Making Sutton inclusive for children and young people with SEND

02 Jun 2023

On 15 June, Sutton Council’s People Committee will discuss its first annual report on the performance, quality and practice of Special Educational Needs/Disabilities (SEND) services in Sutton. The report’s publication follows a motion at Full Council on 6 March 2023. 

Contained within the report is the latest data (SEN2 Data) on how Sutton is performing in a number of areas relating to the support of young people with SEND, including:

  • Sutton supports proportionally more young people with Education Health and Care Plans: 318 per 10,000 of population aged 0 - 24 than the London average of 292, and the national average of 280
  • The number of students supported with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) in Sutton has significantly increased in recent years, and continues to grow. The Council currently has over 2,100 students with an EHCP, which represents a 94% increase against 1,100 in 2015

The report sets out the actions that have been taking place and the impact they have had on children and young people with SEND and their families, including:

  • Our Sutton Charter, which provides a framework for shared values and attitudes across the local area developed in conjunction with schools, services, parents/carers and representative parent/carer organisations
  • Closer working with education settings and other partners to widen their knowledge of the EHCP referral process, and other steps with partners to speed up the assessment process
  • New accessible playground spaces for pupils with SEND from this summer
  • Expansion of specialist school places in the borough including the relocation of Carew Academy to a purpose built new school, opening in 2024 
  • A new autistic spectrum condition (ASC) school to open in 2024 - autism is the largest category of need amongst young people with an EHCP in Sutton

It also provides information on a number of important local and national developments in relation to SEND and their impact on families in Sutton, including:

  • The government’s SEND and Alternative Provision Improvement Plan: right support, right place, right time published in March 2023
  • The new Local Area Inspection Framework which came into force on 1 January 2023
  • A summary of the key SEND datasets for Sutton that are collected by the Department for Education in relation to key SEND processes and activities (referred to as ‘SEN2 data’) 
  • Plans to launch a Strategic Partnership with Barnardo’s to consider new approaches to the delivery of SEND services in the local area
  • Proposals to review the Council’s policy on Home to School Transport (including for pupils with SEND)

Councillor Marian James, Chair of the People Committee, said: “The report details some significant improvements over the last two years and identifies our key priorities for all partners across education, health and social care, including improving our alternative provision offer. By continuing to work closely together with our partners in health, education and most importantly with families, we can ensure provision continues to develop to meet the needs of our children and young people. 

“I would like to thank the Sutton Parent Carers Forum who have been invaluable in helping us connect with local parents and carers of children and young people with SEND.”

Read the People Committee SEND report, including the SEN2 data that outlines how the council performs on its Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP) outcomes.

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