News

  • Jacqui Watt appointed new NNPCF Participation Lead
    The NNPCF steering group are pleased to announce that Jacqui Watt from Swindon SEND Families Voice has been appointed our new participation lead. Jacqui has been chair of the Swindon Forum since January 2018 and has been an NNPCF national representative for the last year. Over the last 18 months the work of the NNPCF […]
  • Shaping Future Support: The Health and Disability Green Paper
    In the summer, the government published Shaping Future Support: The Health and Disability Green Paper which sets out proposals on how the Government can help people to live more independently, including support to start, stay and succeed in work and ways to improve the experience people have of the benefits system. On 4th October the […]
  • A message from the NNPCF steering group.
    An extraordinary 18 months No-one could have anticipated what was to come in February 2020. We knew that the coming year would hold challenges and opportunities for parent carer forums – the shortfalls in services experienced by our children, the SEND review and the NHS Long Term Plan were quite enough to contend with. On […]
  • Covid 19 vaccinations for children – an update
    Following yesterday’s announcement, NNPCF were invited to attend a meeting today with representatives from the Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations (JCVI) , NHSE, DfE & other stakeholders regarding the Covid -19 vaccination offer to some cohorts of Children and Young People (CYP). We sought clarification of which cohorts of CYP would be eligible for […]
  • Powers of the SEND tribunal to make non-binding recommendations extended
    The government has confirmed that the single route redress national trial will end in August (it had been extended because of Covid 19). In line with the recommendations of the trial, the government has confirmed that the powers of the tribunal to make non-binding recommendations on health and social care will continue. Children and Families […]
  • The Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities launches PELICAN – Promoting Emotional Literacy in Children with Additional Needs.
    The Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities is delighted to be launching PELICAN – Promoting Emotional Literacy in Children with Additional Needs. Pelican is a set of free web-based materials for children and young people with complex learning needs and or learning disabilities and people who support them. Pelican helps staff, parents and carers to develop […]
  • NNPCF and Contact announced as strategic parent carer coproduction partners for CYP learning disability and autism team
    In a joint bid, NNPCF and Contact have been awarded a three year contract to be the strategic partners for NHS England’s Children and Young People’s Learning Disability and Autism Team, focussing on parent carer coproduction. This means that the NNPCF will be involved in key elements of the development, implementation and review of the […]
  • NNPCF representations on the Covid 19 vaccination of children
    The last few weeks have seen a lot of press and media comment on the subject of vaccination of children versus covid 19. Advice to government on whether children should be vaccinated is being prepared by the Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations (JCVI). JCVI is an independent group that is not a part of […]
  • The Draft Core Capabilities Framework for the Transition of Young People into Adult Services in England-national consultation
    Overview The Framework articulates the core capabilities describing the knowledge, skills and behaviours required by all healthcare staff working with young people who are transitioning to adult services. Currently there is no national framework that addresses this need. This Framework is part of a wider programme of work and will build upon and be complementary […]
  • Autism Schools Project
    The Autism schools Project is being rolled out across the country over 2021/22 period. This project was one of the Children and Young People Accelerator Projects run in North Cumbria and the North East and is now going out to the rest of the country. The Infographic accompanying the project, which highlights how parent carer […]
  • Ofsted-CQC publish final report on interim visits
    Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission have published their final report from their programme of interim visits to local areas. In this report, they look at the history of SEND reforms and the impact that the pandemic has had on children and young people with SEND, and their families. Amanda Spielman, HMCI, has also written […]
  • Josh MacAlister makes “The Case for Change” at joint NNPCF / Contact webinar
    The independent review of children’s social care has published its case for change. You can find it here: Home – The Independent Review of Children’s Social Care (independent-review.uk) On Thursday 24th June at noon, Josh MacAlister, the independent chair of the review, will be joining an NNPCF and Contact webinar to talk about the case […]
  • Joint letter to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
    Key Sector leaders have written a letter to the Secretary of State on the Health & Care Bill which outlines key concerns, asks for greater engagement with the sector and calls for the shortcomings in the bill to be addressed to ensure the needs of children and young people are met.
  • NNPCF work to improve accountability in the SEND system
    One of the four priority areas for the NNPCF this year is to improve the accountability across the SEND system – to ensure that those bodies with responsibilities to support children and young people with SEND actually deliver what they are required to (please see the presentation at our AGM in March for the other […]
  • NNPCF input into children’s social care review
    In January, the government announced a review into children’s social care. Independent review of children’s social care – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) The NNPCF have been working with the review team to ensure the voice of parent carer forums is heard and that the review understands and considers the unique challenges faced by our families. NNPCF co-chairs […]
  • Covid 19 – the medium and long term impact, risks and opportunities for children and young people with SEND
    Introduction The immediate impact of Covid 19 and the response to the virus have been well documented – missing school, difficulty in accessing medical services, and the impact of lockdowns have all had a detrimental impact upon many children and young people ranging from academic, social, emotional, and physical implications. It is well understood howmany […]
  • Transitions and annual reviews
    We wanted to take this opportunity to update on two Covid related issues have been raised to the NNPCF over recent few weeks that we have escalated to the Department for Education Transitions We have been contacted by many parents who have been very worried about children and young people who are coming up to […]
  • Minister Ford’s open letter on return to school
    Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford has put out an open letter to all families on the return to school.
  • March schools re-opening NNPCF representations
    On Monday, the government announced the full reopening of schools on the 8th March for all children and young people. A large amount of guidance was issued to support the re-opening which we shared earlier this week. All the latest Govt. guidance in one place – National Network of Parent Carer Forums C.I.C (nnpcf.org.uk) Parent […]
  • All the latest Govt. guidance in one place
    We felt that, as so much has happened of late with changes to guidance, that it would be good to share the links to all pertinent documents here in one place. Roadmap: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-response-spring-2021 DfE press notice: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/mass-testing-for-secondary-pupils-as-all-schools-and-colleges-fully-reopenfrom8-march Schools: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak Early Years: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-early-years-and-childcare-closures Further Education:https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-further-education-provision Contingency framework: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-contingency-framework-for-education-and-childcare-settings Higher Education: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-education-reopening-buildings-and-campuses Special schools: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-full-opening-special-schools-and-other-specialist-settings Evidence summary: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/evidence-summary-covid-19-children-young-people-and-education-settings New education recovery package for children […]
  • NNPCF representations on catch-up learning
    In the last few weeks there has been a lot of comment in the press about how children and young people who have missed out on school and learning over the last year will be supported to catch up. Some of the ideas that have been discussed include summer schools, extending the school day and […]
  • Statement on Department for Education about increased funding for parent carer forums
    Dear parent carer forums We hope that you and your families are keeping safe and that you’re navigating the latest challenges as best as you can. We’re really pleased to be able to confirm that the DfE has this afternoon announced that they are continuing to fund SEND contracts next year. You will be delighted […]
  • Covid 19 Vaccinations and SEND
    Whilst great progress is being made to vaccinate people, NHS staff and some care workers, parent carer forums are raising issues about the position of SEND families and services with regard to vaccinations. Forums have described a “post code lottery” across three clear areas related to SEND which is causing confusion and anxiety. These are […]
  • Ofsted, COVID-19 series of reports
    Ofsted has produced a series of reports on the impact of COVID. Ofsted: Children hardest hit by COVID-19 pandemic are regressing in basic skills and learning Ofsted’s headlines from second report on the effects of the COVID-19 across the sectors it inspects and regulates: • children hardest hit by restrictions have regressed in some basic […]
  • Guidance for Parent Carer Forums on January national lockdown
    At the start of January, the NNPCF published a list of risks and potential issues for children and young people with SEND at the start of a new national lockdown, in particular, one in which schools were closed. Over the last 3 weeks we have been gathering intelligence from parent carer forums and many of […]
  • National Strategy for Disabled People Consultation
    The Disability Unit at Cabinet Office is developing a National Stratgey for Disabled People, which publication planned for Spring 2021. The Disability Unit has launched the UK Disability Survey (link below) and we want to hear from as many people as possible. We are particularly keen to hear from disabled people, their carers, friends and […]
  • NNPCF input into assessments consultation
    The background Earlier this month, the government announced that the 2021 summer exam series would not be taking place. They have launched a consultation about how children and young people should be assessed if exams cannot be used. The key points of the proposal are: Grades will be based on teacher assessment Guidance will be […]
  • Minister Vicky Ford’s open letter to the SEND community
    Yesterday Minister Vicky Ford released an open letter to Children and Young people with SEND, their families and those who support them.
  • New Government Guidance for Special Schools during the National Lockdown
    Today the government released new guidance for special schools, specialist post-16 providers and alternative provision during the current national lockdown. A copy of this is below.
  • Guidance for Parent Carer Forums on January national lockdown
    Guidance for Parent Carer Forums following school reopening measures.
  • January Schools opening guidance – some points to note for special needs pupils
    Yesterday the government released updated guidance on the opening of schools in January. You can find the latest guidance here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-contingency-framework-for-education-and-childcare-settings Headlines for children and young people with SEND are. You will see in green italics, those areas in which we are seeking further clarification: Return dates for primary and secondary schools & colleges in […]
  • Season’s greetings from the NNPCF steering group
    As a year like no other draws to the close, we would like to take the opportunity to reflect over the work of forums and the NNPCF over the last few months. Covid 19 remains a huge concern The pace of 2020 has been relentless. We know that the demands on forums have been greater […]
  • January Schools opening guidance – some points to note for special needs pupils
    17 December 2020 See government guidance Schools and childcare settings: return in January 2021 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) Today the government announced that the physical return to school in January for secondary school pupils will be staggered from the 4th of January to the 11th of January. Education will be provided remotely during this period. All […]
  • Education Committee Inquiry into Home Education
    In October 2020 the NNPCF started collecting evidence to submit to the Education Committee for their inquiry into Elective Home Education. The inquiry will seek to understand the extent to which current arrangements provide sufficient support for home educated children to access efficient, full-time and suitable education, and establish what further measures may be necessary in […]
  • Sector leaders feedback to Minister Vicky Ford on what the latest lockdown means for children and young people with SEND
    On 12 November, NNPCF co-chairs Tina Emery and Mrunal Sisodia joined a small group of leaders from the SEND sector to brief the Children and Families Minister on the experience of families in the latest Covid 19 lockdown. In preparation for the meeting, the NNPCF steering group prepared a briefing paper which was shared with […]
  • Aerosol Generating Procedures Guidance Update
    New guidance on Aerosol Generating Procedures has been released by the government. It is incorporated into the Safe Working in Education, Childcare and Children’s Social Care document The NNPCF has been raising the need for this guidance as a matter of urgency since the start of term (see http://www.nnpcf.org.uk/your-back-to-school-experiences-nnpcf-steering-group-brief-minister-vicky-ford/).”
  • Open Letter from Minister Ford
    Following the introduction of the new national restrictions on 5th November, this letter provides advice and guidance on several issues, including school attendance, children who are clinically extremely vulnerable, remote education, face coverings in education settings, respite, health services for children and young people with SEND, and the new winter package to provide support for children […]
  • COVID-19 series: briefing on local areas’ SEND provision, October 2020
    Ofsted has been carrying out interim visits to local areas to hear about the experiences of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), their families and the practitioners and leaders who are supporting them. We are pleased to be working with Ofsted and CQC and welcome the findings in the report. We have […]
  • NNPCF cochairs meet with new Department for Education Permanent Secretary
    Last week, NNPCF cochairs Tina Emery and Mrunal Sisodia met with Susan Acland-Hood, the newly appointed acting permanent secretary at the Department for Education. https://www.gov.uk/government/people/susan-acland-hood Susan approached Tina and Mrunal for a meeting and wanted to hear first-hand from parent carers about the what it was like to raise a child with SEND. In a […]
  • Your back to school experiences – NNPCF Steering Group brief Minister Vicky Ford
    September 23, 2020 The NNPCF steering group met with Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford to share the feedback from parent carer forums about the return to school for children with SEND. Ahead of the meeting, parent carer forums continued their outstanding work in listening to the experiences of local families. We heard of concerns […]
  • Letter from Minister Ford to the SEND Sector
    2 September 2020 Vicky Ford, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families, has published an open letter to children and young people with special educational needs (SEND), their families and carers and those who work to support them. The letter provides advice and guidance on several issues, including behaviour, risk assessments, face […]
  • Thank you from the NNPCF steering group
    July 24, 2020 A difficult time for parent carers and PCFs The past four months have been a strange and difficult time. For families of children and young people with SEND, it has been even more difficult with many of our children more effected by lockdown and most of the services we rely on simply […]
  • NNPCF welcomes successful candidates to steering group
    July 20, 2020 We are delighted to welcome both Kath Bromfield and Fazilla Amide, the successful applicants, to continue their roles as North West and London borough regional representatives respectively. We look forward to continuing the great work they have already been doing in their areas, and for the individual qualities that they each bring […]
  • Ofsted announces plans for local area SEND inspections
    July 10, 2020 We are pleased to see the announcement today about future plans for the Local Area inspection regime by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission. You can find the announcement here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/supporting-local-areas-to-prioritise-and-meet-the-needs-of-children-and-young-people-with-send and a commentary from Amanda Speilman, the head of Ofsted here: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/hmci-commentary-the-future-of-area-special-educational-needs-and-disabilities-inspections Parent Carer Forums have made clear that they regard […]
  • NNPCF cochairs discuss parental issues with Minister Vicky Ford
    On Monday 6th July, NNPCF cochairs Tina Emery and Mrunal Sisodia met with Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford to discuss the feedback from parent carer forums during the Covid 19 pandemic. The Minister thanked the NNPCF for compiling what she described as the “bubble document” which you can find a copy of here: She commented […]
  • Minister Vicky Ford thanks parent carer forums for their work in the Covid 19 pandemic
    Ahead of the release of new guidance on school re-opening, the Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford met with representatives of the SEND sector to thank them for their work. She singled out the work of parent carer forums for praise in highlighting the way in which risk assessments had been used by some schools […]
  • Guidance to support schools and colleges
    Guidance to support schools and colleges to fully reopen in September and early years and childcare providers from 20 July July 2, 2020 The Education Secretary will lead a press conference at Downing Street this afternoon (Thursday 2 July) Schools and colleges to reopen in full in September Limits on attendance will be lifted to […]
  • Department for Education publishes schools re-opening guidance
    July 2, 2020 Today the Department for Education has published its guidance for schools re-opening. An additional document gives guidance for children and young people with special educational needs. You can find both documents here: Guidance for full opening of schools Guidance for full opening of special schools and other specialist institutions The NNPCF has […]
  • Working list of NNPCF representations on Covid 19
    Risk assessment and return to school We are hearing very concerning examples where risk assessments have been used to prevent a child returning to school because of the additional support that a child with SEND needs in relative to others in the same year group. This is a perversion of the reasonable adjustments requirement that […]
  • NNPCF Steering Group meeting with Vicky Ford, Minister for Children and Families
    NNPCF Steering Group meeting with Vicky Ford, Minister for Children and Families: COVID 19 and what needs to change with the SEND system On Wednesday 18th March, the NNPCF steering group met with Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford. Because of COVID 19 restrictions, the meeting was a video-conference. COVID 19 The Minister was keen […]
  • Public Accounts Committee Report endorses NNPCF recommendations and urges Department to use “intelligence” from parent carer forums
    The influential Public Accounts Committee has published its review into SEND. https://committees.parliament.uk/work/35/support-for-children-with-special-educational-needs-and-disabilities/publications/ The report looks into how effectively policy for children and young people with SEND has been implemented by the government. This follows the National Audit Office report into SEND published in 2019. (http://www.nnpcf.org.uk/national-audit-office-report-on-send/) The NNPCF welcomes the report which echoes the recommendations that […]
  • NNPCF Co-chairs meet with new Children and Families Minister
    On Wednesday 26th February, NNPCF Co-chairs Tina Emery and Mrunal Sisodia attended a meeting with the newly appointed Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Children and Families, Vicky Ford. In our meeting, we covered a lot of ground and shared the views of parent carers on the current state of the SEND across the country and […]
  • NNPCF working to improve accountability in the SEND system
    When the Children and Families Act was launched with great fanfare in 2014, the NNPCF was quick to point out that the existing accountabilities did not match the principles of the new system. Whilst services were required to work together in a joined-up way and schools were required to listen to parents and respond early […]
  • NNPCF conference gives SEND Review seven clear messages
    Parent carer forum delegates from across the country gave the SEND review team a great demonstration of the knowledge, passion and determination of parent carer forums at the annual NNPCF / Contact Conference on the 7th November in Chester. 196 delegates from 88 local areas engaged in an exercise to explore solutions to the issues […]
  • NNPCF engagement with the SEND Review
    At the NNPCF conference on the 7th November, delegates will have the opportunity to create solutions to the issues facing families for input into the SEND review. In September, the government announced a “Five years on” review of the SEND system. The NNPCF were delighted with this announcement as the we had asked Nadhim Zahawi, […]
  • Education Select Committee publishes its report into SEND
    The Education Select Committee has published its long-awaited report into SEND. The NNPCF steering group met this morning and reviewed the key messages. You can find the report here https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/education-committee/news-parliament-2017/send-report-published-19-20/ We are pleased to see that the report reflects many of the key themes that we have heard from our membership and we raised to […]
  • Let’s talk about coproduction
    The top priority of the NNPCF is to spread the word on coproduction. We believe that the best way of improving the outcomes for children and young people with SEND is to listen to them and their families and to include them in all the decisions about their lives. Whether it is designing an individual […]
  • NNPCF gives evidence to the Public Accounts Committee
    Following the publication of the National Audit Office report into SEND (you can find a link to the NNPCF news story here http://www.nnpcf.org.uk/national-audit-office-report-on-send/?LMCL=UpfhZI ), the influential Public Accounts Committee has launched an inquiry into SEND. NNPCF co-chair, Mrunal Sisodia was invited by the committee to give evidence on the 30th September. Mrunal was joined on […]
  • NNPCF cochairs meet with Children and Families Minister Kemi Badenoch
    Yesterday, NNPCF cochairs met with Children and Families Minister Kemi Badenoch along with Christine Lenehan, Director of the Council for Disabled Children and the chief executives of Contact and KIDS, Amanda Batten and Caroline Stevens. This was one of the few stakeholder meetings the Minister was holding before starting her maternity leave next week. MP […]
  • NNPCF cochairs meet with Nadhim Zahawi
    On Thursday 18th July NNPCF cochairs Tina Emery and Mrunal Sisodia met with Nadhim Zahawi, the Undersecretary of State for Children and Families. In the meeting, Tina and Mrunal, discussed our recent State of the Nation report with the Minister. He indicated he was familiar with the issues raised in our report (the NNPCF and […]
  • An update on the NHS Long Term Plan
    The NHS Long Term plan was published in January this year. The plan contains many goals that are both welcome and necessary to the lives of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). For example: Funding for children and young people’s mental health services to grow faster than both overall NHS […]