Reading Borough Council
Special provision / school development for children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs)
Capital Fund Plan - March 2018
The Government has committed some funding to support local authorities to invest in provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) aged 0 – 25 to improve the quality and range of provision available to the local authority. It is intended for the children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs) for whom the local authority is responsible. Some can be used on provision that happens to lie outside the local authority’s boundaries, if the local authority places children and young people there and believes that the capital investment will improve the quality and range of provision there.
Reading has been allocated £821,129 over 3 years (£273,710 per year in 2018/2019, 2019/2020 and 2020/2021)
How can it be used?
Local Authorities can invest their share of this fund in:
- Creating new (additional ) places at good or outstanding provision
- Improving facilities or developing new facilities
This can be through:
- Expansion to existing provision including at the same site or a different site.
- Reconfiguring provision to make available the space for the additional places or facilities.
- Repurposing areas so that they meet the needs of pupils with SEND.
- Other capital transactions that result in new (additional) places or facilities’ improvements.
- Investing in provision that is located in another local authority where this supports providing good outcomes for children in their area
Government requirements to meet in order to access the funding
Before receiving the funding local authorities need to
- Consult with parents and carers of children with SEND and young people with SEND.
- Work with education providers to agree how the capital can best be targeted.
- Fill in a short plan template. Publish a plan on our Local Offer page.
In consultation with the SEND Strategy Board and Strand 1 Working Group we have completed the template provided and published this on the Local Offer
The Strategy was approved through the ACE Committee in July 2017, and has been endorsed by members of the health and Wellbeing Board. The SEND Strategy can be found by clicking on this link (INSERT LINK). The Board has 4 working groups, all of which have Parents Carer Forum and school representatives on.
- This fund will support delivery of Reading’s SEND Strategy.
- A data set has been developed to help inform priorities for action in delivering this strategy. This has included analysis of children currently accessing education out of the area due to gaps in local provision, and the development of a SEND place planning tool.
- Information on the grant was taken to the Strategy Board in November.
- A working group has looked at the data and information on gaps in provision and identified recommendations for priority areas for its use.
- These recommendations were approved by the SEND Strategy Board to take forward for more detailed options appraisals to be worked up, and further consultation.
Priorities for development and consultation processes
- We have identified pressure on places at the Avenue Special School and agreed an additional 25 places for 2018/2019 while we establish longer term demand.
- We are aware that Brookfields School, in West Berkshire where a number of Reading pupils attend also has pressure on places, and have agreed across the region that we will use the same place planning tool and coordinate our place planning in future years.
- We are in the process of developing provision to provide additional places at Blessed Hugh Faringdon school for secondary specialist provision places for pupils with Autistic Spectrum Condition.
- We have undertaken a review of specialist provision and SEND projects in Reading and are looking at remodelling this to ensure it meets local needs now and in the future. In order to determine next steps we have gone out to all of the schools and met with staff and some pupils. We are undertaking further consultation to get feedback from parents /carers and young people. We have tracked pupils attending the provisions to see when their needs were first identified and have tracked where pupils have moved on to from provisions. This will inform recommendations for next steps which will be subject to further consultation.
- We have identified that a number of pupils with social, emotional and mental health needs are going to school out of area partly due to the site of Phoenix School and partly due the fact that their accommodation is not currently suitable for girls. The improvement of facilities and site for this group of pupils is seen as the main priority for this grant, and a variety of options are being developed which will be subject to further consultation.
- The SEND Strategy Board considers the options and information and determines the next steps for development and consultation. Formal consultations will be approved through the ACE Committee.