Thank you to everyone for their continued commitment to children with special educational needs and or disabilities in this difficult time. Our local situations and services are changing as the national situation changes. The SEN Team will maintain our service by working in different ways. 
The Government advice about Coronavirus (Covid 19) is that council staff must work from home if possible. We are continuing to work with schools and others to support vulnerable children and young people and children of key workers. SEN Casework Officers and SEN Casework Managers will be in contact with parent/carers, schools and other professionals.
All SEN staff are contactable by phone and email. To make sure the council’s computer system continues to work, staff have to take turns to use it for 3 hours at a time. We can access work email outside the council system and have Skype for Business for meetings. 
Please see below for some details of how we will continue with our essential work:

SEN Panel

We will continue to run a SEN Panel meeting by video meeting every week. This will decide if to agree requests for an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment. It will also decide whether to issue an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan after an assessment.

EHC Needs Assessments

We will prioritise completing EHC needs assessment and producing EHC plans. We will continue to work to legal deadlines where possible.
Professionals will continue to provide advices towards EHC needs assessments. They will do this using their knowledge of the child or young person. They will also speak with other professionals about the children and young people. Their reports will be sent by email.

Co-production of EHC Plans

We will not be able to have co-production meetings. Instead a SEN Casework Officer will write a draft plan. The SEN Panel will look at the draft plans and decide whether a child or young person should have an EHC plan. Casework Officers will send a draft plan by email to families, schools and advice givers. We will contact the family by phone or Skype to explain the contents of the plan. They will also ask families for their views and for any amendments they would like to see. Families can also email their comments to us. School staff and professionals will provide their views by phone or email. We will consider all amendments requested. We will then issue a final EHC plan in the usual way.

Annual Review meetings

Schools may need to postpone annual review meetings due to take place in the summer term. We support schools holding a review by virtual meetings by telephone or video. Examples of video applications are Skype, Zoom or Facetime. 

Helpful information for families

Please see this AMAZE link to resources for families including:
  • FAQ’s for all parents (UK)
  • FAQ’s parents in Brighton and Hove
  • Community Help Postcard to help vulnerable SEND families during Covid-19
  • Social stories for children and young people with Autism about coronavirus
  • Calendar of support structure at home
  • Daily planner of support structure at home
 Thank you for your help, support and understanding at this difficult time.
Please contact us you have any questions:
Telephone: 01273 293 482 or 01273 293 169