Helping young people with special educational needs and disabilities prepare for adulthood
Date Added: 09/04/2015
The journey towards adulthood is challenging for all – especially for young people with special educational needs and disabilities.
That’s why Central Bedfordshire Council has led on putting together a specific strategy to help young people aged 14-25 with SEND to prepare for adulthood.
Yesterday (31 March) the draft strategy was approved by Executive, meaning that formal guidance is now in place to allow the council and other organisations to best help young people with SEND and their families.
The Central Bedfordshire Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Preparing for Adulthood Strategy (14-25) has been informed by the views and experiences of young people with SEND and parent carers
The new guidelines aim to bring consistency to the planning process so that young people and their families are all aware of the care and support options and choices available to them.
Among the pledges are:
• Talking to young people and their families earlier so they have more time to think about what happens next
• Making sure they have all of the relevant information to decide things for themselves
• Working with businesses and charities to provide better work, training and volunteering opportunities
• Working with housing providers and making sure they get involved by the time young people are 17
• Educating others about how important it is to include young people with SEND in all aspects of community life
Sue Harrison, the council’s Director of Children’s Services, said: “I would like to thank all of the young people with special educational needs and disabilities and parent carers who helped the council to put together this strategy.
“We received some very open and honest feedback, and while it was great to hear many describe their positive experiences, that wasn’t always the case.
“That is why we have put together this strategy – to ensure that all young people with SEND and their families receive the same level of support and care at what can be a very daunting time in life.”
Julie Ogley, Director of Social Care, Health and Housing, added: “Ensuring a smooth transition from childhood to adulthood has presented challenges to councils for many years.
“The strategy is a key milestone and opportunity for Central Bedfordshire to make a real difference to the process moving forward to ensure better outcomes for young people and their families.
“The voices of young people and parent carers will continue to be listened to in order to ensure that the implementation plans realise this.”
For more information about help and support services for young people with SEND, as well as details about Preparing for Adulthood, visit www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/localoffer