SEND Improvement Journey e-newsletter

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Introduction to Bev Milway, our Strategic Lead for SEND


Dear All,

Further to the recent robust recruitment process for the role of Strategic Lead SEND, we are pleased to inform you that Bev Milway has been appointed to the role and will start in post on Tuesday 26th May. Many of you already know Bev and the skills and expertise that she brings. Bev has worked at the Council for a year as Head of Commissioning, before this Bev has worked at a senior level in both operational, and strategic roles across several neighbouring Authorities. Recently within Derbyshire, where she was Head of service for Disabled Children services.

This is an important role for our SEND Improvement journey and Bev has a wealth experience to drive the changes we are striving for. I know that Bev is keen to work with you all to make a difference to Stockport children, young people and their families. I am sure you will join me in congratulating Bev on her successful appointment and will wish her well in the role. 

Best Wishes



Coronavirus announcements

‚ÄĘ Everyone in the UK with symptoms now eligible for coronavirus tests
‚ÄĘ Our plan to rebuild: The UK Government‚Äôs COVID-19 recovery strategy
Published 11 May 2020

You can see all Government announcements here

You can also find out more by visiting the Council's dedicated Coronavirus page here

We have also published a range of communication on our Local Offer webpage . You can see this here: 

Education Health and Care Plans statement: May 2020 ‚Äď Steve Nyakatawa

Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP), timescales and COVID-19: Stockport’s Statement

Stockport’s response to schools announcement by Boris Johnson: 10th May 2020

Letter to Parents/Carers from Chris McLoughlin, Director of Children’s Services Stockport: 15th May 2020

Education, Health and Care Plans and Annual Review Statement: 21st May 2020



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Responding to the needs of SEND children - Our Covid-19 response

Our SEND e-newsletter on the 13th May detailed how we responded to the needs of SEND children during this uncertain period.

We are continuing to work closely with health, social care and education colleagues and parents/carers to plan for changes to settings/schools/colleges after half term. We are constantly reviewing guidance from Central Government and will publish information about our local plans as it becomes available.

Please click on here to find out more.

Get involved with our online SEND community!


We currently have 539 active Facebook group members. That means a total of 468 posts written, generating 460 comments and 1,703 reactions 

if you want us to post anything on Facebook, please get in touch with us or join our group and feel free to contribute to the conversation Stockport Council SEND

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Did you know in the last month, 16 tweets have generated 21.5k impressions with 79 mentions and 154 profile new profile visits. Follow us at @SMBC_SEND



Local Offer

Over the last month, we have had 24,345 visits to our Stockport SEND Local Offer website 

The most viewed pages in the last month were :

This website has brought together a range of support services and information for children and young people aged 0-25, with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).  

SEND Champions


We have created a Network of SEND Champions, made up of willing parents, carers and professionals to provide support and signposting for children, young people and their families. Currently the champions are meeting fortnightly, with the next meeting taking place on 9th June at 5pm.

We are arranging regular meetings to allow parents/carers to network with each other and with professionals who can help signpost and provide support. We are also looking into resources and training that Champions will be able to access as well as a logo that everyone will be able to recognise.

If you're interested in becoming a SEND Champion and want to find out more, please email

SEND E-learning training is now live!

SEND e-learning is online for anyone (parent, professional or other) who wants to know more about what SEND is, what the law requires and how staff in and around Stockport apply the law.  You can do it all in one go or bit by bit and there are even quizzes at the end of sections for you to find out how much you know.  It's fun, it's factual and it's free!  Here's how to get going:

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Step 1: Log in

The course is accessed via Learning Pool, which is the home of the council’s e-learning courses and is available free of charge. If you do not already have access to Learning Pool, then please click here for further guidance and support.

Step 2: Search 'SEND'

Type in ‚ÄėSEND e-learning‚Äô in the search bar, click on the link.

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Step 3: Choose a course 

Give us feedback on how to improve the training or suggest content and we can improve it . Email


SEND Hub launched to support residents with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)

With education settings being affected by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) may be facing additional challenges.

As a result, the council has launched its new SEND Hub to offer support and advice to families.

The team of officers making up the hub, which will offer support from birth to 25 years old, will provide a central point of contact so families can discuss any concerns they may have about their child.

Once residents have shared their concerns, the SEND Hub team will work with them to provide support or signpost them to the best support options, guidance and available information.

The SEND Hub is open to anyone, including carers and professionals. It is part of the council's 'early help' support structure.

The SEND Hub can be reached on 0161 217 6028 and by pressing option 2.
This new support hub is in addition to other new services the council and its partners have launched to support residents during this difficult time. If you are or know anyone who might benefit from any of the services, then please spread the word.

Consultation opportunity safer footpath/roads

As part of Transport for Greater Manchester’s #SafeStreetsSaveLives campaign, we want to hear from residents about areas of the borough that we could make safer to cycle and walk during the coronavirus pandemic. This is an opportunity for our SEND community to get involved and represent those who vitally need a safe road or footpath to travel.

If you know of a footpath or road where social distancing, email the details to

Stockport’s community led Walk Ride groups, are running their own consultation. For more information, and to leave comments, visit Walk Ride Consultation.

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PACTS (Parents and Carers Together   Stockport )

On 3rd¬†March at the annual Information Day, Parents in Partnership Stockport (PIPS) was re-launched with a new name ‚ÄstParents and Carers Together Stockport¬†(PACTS).


PACTS is Stockport’s official local parent carer forum run by parents for parents, carers, grandparents and family members who have a child/young person between the ages of 0 & 25 years with special educational needs &  disabilities including any additional need. PIPS was founded in June 2008 and name changed to PACTS March 2020.

We work in co-production with the Stockport’s Education, Health & Social Care, Providers and local support groups to ensure the collective voice of parents and carers are heard during the design, development, delivery and review of services to ensure best outcomes for children and young people and their families.

PACTS offers an opportunity for families to come together,  receive the latest training, share information, experiences and to provide support to each other.


During this period of uncertainty, PACTs have been putting together regular webinars for families to find out about different topics such as transition, home schooling etc. 

If you have missed out on these, you can always listen to them on the PACTs websitehere

We are Parents and Carers Together Stockport ‚Äď get in touch if you need support by emailing¬†¬†or call 07786 101072

SINDASS Coffee morning

Stockport SENDIASS

Stockport SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support Service) offers free support to parents and carers of Stockport children and young people with any special educational needs and disabilities, from 0-25 years of age.

How does the service work?

The type and range of support offered includes:

  • Information regarding the local offer, local policy and SEN/ disability law from independently trained staff
  • Advice for parent/carers, children and young people on gathering, understanding and interpreting information and applying it to their own situation
  • Personalisation of personal budgets
  • Information on the local authority‚Äôs processes for resolving disagreements, its complaints procedures and means of redress
  • Signposting children, young people and parents to alternative and additional sources of local and national information, advice and support
  • Individual casework and representation where needed including support in attending meetings, contributing to assessments and reviews and participating in decisions about outcomes for the child or young person.
  • Support for parents and young people in managing mediation and appeals to the SEND Tribunal
  • Support with Education Health and Care Plans, including applications and Annual Reviews

Who is the service for?

The service is for parents who have a child/children up to the age of 25 that may/has/have Special Educational Needs, and young people aged 16-25 who have Special Educational Needs. 

Young people 16 and over can access the service in their own right, or with the support of their parents.

How much does it cost?

This service is free.

Coronavirus update:

Due to government guidance we are working from home and continuing to offer our service via e-mail and phone:  and 0161 240 6168.

Visit the link here for latest COVID-19 updates and resources.


North West SEND Regional newsletter- May 2020

 If you would like to be added to the newsletter circulation list just send an email to the address below.

Dr Cathy Hamer NW SEND Regional Network co-ordinator Email: 0778 357 7284


Stockport Action Youth Speakers (SAYS)

Stockport Action Youth Speakers (SAYS) is a group of like-minded children and young people between 13-25 years who have special educational needs and disabilities. We live or receive services in Stockport and want to ensure that services and provision meet the needs of children and young people. We offer a safe place for young people to share their views and experiences of services to strategic leaders. Our role is to ensure their views/experiences are listened to and fed into the design, development, delivery and review of Stockport Services. We work in partnership with Stockport’s Education, Health, Social care and local SEND organisations. We give children and young people a chance to come together, share information, give their views/experiences and support each other.
‚ÄúTogether we can make change‚ÄĚ.

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Stockport C.i.C.C. & Youth Council

It was 'International Day for Biological Diversity' last Friday (22nd May) and this newsletter has information about how young people can get involved in exploring the natural world.


The Stockport Youth Council have their weekly meetings on Wednesdays, starting at 5.30pm.

If you are interested in joining the meeting, and want to know more, you can contact Steve (Youth Worker) on 07800 618 706

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Fifteen Things They Forgot to Tell You About Autism

What if the things people need to know about autism is not the information they're getting? Combining myth-busting advice with personal experience, this book from the mother of autistic twins shares simple strategies to build children's confidence, communication, and independence.

From sharing the joy of yodelling around shops at the weekend, to finding creative ways to communicate with both her verbal and her non-verbal sons, Debby Elley gives practical and fun tips for everyday living and shows that being autistic is just another way of being.

Both witty and candid, the book discusses labels, meltdowns, acceptance, happiness and much more.

You can order this book by clicking here

Autism travel

This useful ‚Äėtravel chart‚Äô will assist increasing access to your outside community. It will help to show where you are going and how long you plan to be.¬† This visual chart be laminated and you can also use a whiteboard marker to write them in or use velcro and the pictures.¬† Depending on each individual you may want to bring ¬†a red marker or just a different colour in case something changes, this can always be added in and hopefully assist¬† coping with the change.

See more here

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Job opportunity: SEND Teaching Assistants

Are you a Teaching Assistant with a passion for inspiring a love of learning? Are you committed to raising attainment? Do you want to join a rapidly improving school with excellent opportunities for development and professional growth?

Two of Stockport's Schools are currently recruiting for SEND Teaching Asssistants

School Name: St Elisabeth’s CE Primary part of St James & Emmanuel Academy Trust 

School Name: Valley School

Find out more here

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Parents SEN Conference

We understand that these are particularly uncertain times for he parents of children with SEND, which is why the Parents SEN Conference on the 4th June might be something for you.

A full day of legal information for free.

Register here

family fund

£10 million to help disabled or seriously ill children in England during Coronavirus

Family Fund has received extra funding worth £10 million from the Department for Education to provide grants for families on low incomes raising disabled or seriously ill children in England this year.

This emergency funding has been provided in response to the crisis presented by the Coronavirus pandemic and will help more parents and carers to look after their children. Families can apply for grants to make their lives easier while implementing social distancing measures, including computers and tablets, outdoor play equipment and sensory toys.

Apply now by clicking here

Stockport Local Fund

More localy, we're helping community organisations tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

If you're currently supporting older and vulnerable people during the crisis, funding is available.

You can apply for anything you need to support people during the crisis including:


  • volunteer expenses
  • equipment
  • resources
  • food parcels for vulnerable people

You can apply for up to £1000.

We'll focus funding on organisations that are working with vulnerable people including people:

  • over 65, especially those that are isolated
  • with existing medical conditions
  • who are carers

We'll also focus funding on organisations that are working with communities directly including:

  • children and families affected by school closures
  • adults on universal credit
  • people affected by food insecurity

If you've any questions email