SEND newsletter- October 2020

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SEND Improvements Journey Newsletter

Welcome to the latest SEND Newsletter 

Stockport publishes a monthly SEND newsletter for all children, young people, families and professionals working with special educational needs and disabilities. Click the link below to receive the latest information and updates on SEND in Stockport.

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We welcome all feedback on the SEND newsletter. If you would like to make any comments or suggestions, please email us at or complete our online survey . You can also email us with suggestions for articles in future editions.   

Table of contents

Key updates

This month we have 2 key updates which we would like to share with you. These include updates around our education, health and care plans and Annual Review process and also a chance to be involved with the consultation on the Dedicated Schools Grant review.

Education services- update

Banks Hall Junior School in Offerton are passionate about supporting SEND children and have shared some of the things that they do for their young people.

Engagement with Young People

Find out about some of our projects/pilots which involve young people with SEND. There is also a competition which you

Get involved

There are so many ways to get involved with shaping our services and communities and raising awareness of SEND. Find out more in this section

Meet the team

Every month we will share information about a service with you. This month our Behaviour Support Services would like to share how they support children and young people with behavioural challenges

Employee Spotlight

We know some fab people that really go over and above in their role. This section celebrates good practice.

Upcoming events

There are plenty of learning opportunities throughout the months. In this section we collect all the webinars and talks that you can take part in.


key update

Education, health and care plans and annual review statement: October 2020 Update

Dear parents/carers, children and young people, and colleagues

Hello, my name is Bev Milway and I am the Strategic Lead for SEND and Inclusion in Stockport.

In early August 2020 I wrote to update you on our SEND improvement journey. I pledged to send out further updates every two months. This is my October update. I want to let you all know of the progress to date. Since the last letter I can update with the following:

1. EHCP team

Update: We have now re-named the SEND team as the EHCP team with the new job titles of “EHCP caseworkers”. All young people and families have now been allocated to our EHCP caseworkers. We are working as a team to re-focus our work with families, including making contact when a referral has been accepted and throughout the process to ensure we have better communication with you.

2. Refresh of the administrative processes to ensure new education, health and care plans (EHCPs) are issued within 20 weeks

Update: The council have appointed additional staff to the EHCP casework team. We have now completed work looking at the 20-week process and how this can be simplified to make sure we are completing EHCPs within 20 weeks. In September 2020 we had a 67% completion rate within timescale compared to 13% in June 2020. We have plans in place to improve this month on month. Staff are working hard to clear the backlog. At the end of June 2020, we had 83 plans past 20 weeks, we now today have 8 plans. We realise that we still have some way to go but there is real progress being made.

3. Review all existing EHCPs to confirm that an annual review has taken place. Where amendments have been made to the plan in the annual review, you will receive the statutory letter informing you of this. Where annual reviews have taken place between September 2019 to May 2020, we will update plans over the next 3 months and send the updated plans to parents

Update: We have now reviewed whether all young people with EHCPs have had a review within the last year. If you have not had a review, your school/setting will now have been contacted and asked to complete urgently. We have also made schools/settings aware of the reviews coming up within the next term.

The reviews that have taken place but plans not updated are still being completed. Your EHCP Caseworker will be able to update you on where this is up to. I apologise not all amendments have been made. For reviews that have taken place since September 2020 you should now receive a letter confirming whether amendments are being made within a month of the review.

4. Work with settings to set up annual reviews for any plans that are out of timescale and any that are due before September 2020

Update: At the end of June 2020 there were 1065 reviews out of date. At the start of October, this was 642. We have written to every school/setting with out of date reviews asking for completion within 6 weeks. We will now be monitoring completion and chasing as necessary.

5. Re-design the referral paperwork with partners including parent/carers to ensure it is user friendly

Update: We have now re-designed the referral form with SENCOs who are now trying this out.

6. Re-design the letters and information with parent/carer reps to ensure it is user friendly

Update: The letters have been re-designed with parent/carer input and are in draft. These will now be implemented.

7. Re-design information sent out with our young people and ensure systems are in place to gain their views on their plans

Update: Our strategic participation lead, Michelle Bellis, is working with young people to re-design the information and this should be complete for November 2020

8. Work with schools and settings to link the EHCP process into SEN planning

Update: A SENCO working party has been looking at the link and trying to make sure that SEN support plan planning is linked into the EHCP process. Further work on this will be done in the next few months. We expect to report on progress at the end of this year.

9. Plan training for settings and schools about outcomes for children and young people

Update: We are pleased that the Council for Disabled Children have agreed to deliver training for our SENCO and school leaders on the 17 November 2020 on how to set person centred outcomes. This will be in addition to e-learning which is now available for all to access, This can be accessed here:

10. Launch the co-produced Outcomes Framework in Stockport and make sure all our paperwork is focussed on those outcomes. You can see the Outcomes Framework on our Local Offer:

Update: The outcomes framework is being launched at the Stockport SEND week of action. This is taking place on the 16 to 20 November 2020. The outcomes framework will be included in all of our paperwork, and the focus of support for families. This has been co-produced with parent/carers and young people. The SEND week of action is going to include events, training, and information sessions. Information on this can be found in the Stockport SEND Local Offer website. Please also find us on Twitter and Facebook to find the latest information and updates on SEND in Stockport.

In the next few months we will be concentrating on:

  • Clearing the annual review backlog of amendments
  • Work on SEN support planning with our school and setting colleagues
  • Re-designing the annual review process
  • Working on a one worker pilot. This will mean one nominated, named person working alongside the family through the journey, to build up a relationship.

I will be providing further updates in December 2020. If you have a specific query or question in the meantime, please contact me on

Yours faithfully

Bev Milway

Strategic Lead for SEND and Inclusion


Have your say on the aspects of SEND services in Stockport  - Dedicated Schools Grant consultation

Remember to respond to the online questionnaire

Stockport Council are asking residents, parents, carers and young people to share their views on the future provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) as part of a public consultation that that opened on Friday 9th October and will run for eight weeks closing on Friday 4th December 2020.

The consultation comes after a six-month review was undertaken of the £32m that Stockport spends each year on our SEND provision in the High Needs Funding block of the Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG).  The DSG is the budget that the government allocates to the council every year to fund local schools and education services.  

The High Needs Funding is spent on top-up funding for children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs), all places at our specialist schools, resourced units, Pupil Referral Units and external placements (including independent school places) and also funds some of our support services.

Take part in parent/carer focus groups

Stockport Council is also running a number of focus groups to understand individuals' perspectives on the recommendations which will be taking place online via Zoom the details of the different groups are below. If you would like to take part in a focus group, please email your name, email and phone number and indicate which workshop you would like to take part in to

  • Parents and carers of a child who is accessing SEND Support or with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) - 18th November 2020 at 19:15- 20:30. This focus group will be facilitated by PACTS  and Stockport Council. 
  • Parents and carers of a child who has an EHCP - 18th November 2020 at 10:30. This focus group will be facilitated by Qa Research, an independent market and social research organisation, on behalf of Stockport Council.
  • Parents and carers of children and young people who attend a Pupil Referral Unit (PRU)- 19th November 2020 at 10:30.  This focus group will be facilitated by  Qa Research, an independent market and social research organisation on behalf of Stockport Council. 

did you know

bank lane

Banks Lane Junior School

About our SEND provision

Inclusion is fundamentally at the heart of everything we do. Our learning powers drive our amazing curriculum which further support our SEND learners in that they encourage communicating in different ways, being open to new ways of learning, to positively influence others, to recognise strengths and to be able to learn from our mistakes.

We have 2 passionate qualified SENCOs and a very experienced learning mentor who make up our SEN team. Our senior leadership team are very supportive and involved in making sure we offer the best SEND provision for our pupils.

We are immensely proud of our wealth of learning opportunities outside of the classroom and our robust reasonable adjustments mean that we are able to immerse all of our children in our progressive residentials and fabulous forest school sessions.

banks lane

Co-production at Banks Lane Junior School

We hold very successful and well attended parent forums in which we discuss how to drive coproduction in our school. Our detailed one page profiles include a pupil and parent voice which help us to link our support methods with home. We work closely with many other services such as LSS, BSS and SALT to ensure that our ambitious curriculum is tailored to meet individual children’s needs. So our coproduction stretches not only to our parents and carers, but to our specialist service providers too!

One of our SENCOs is also a SEND Champion who regularly meets with the other Champions to embed coproduction in Stockport.

What’s new?

Ofsted think we’re great too! We have recently been rated as “GOOD” by Ofsted who praised SEND in our school. They state that “Pupils with SEND achieve well as a result of the specialist support that they receive to access the broad and ambitious curriculum on offer to all."

banks lane

engagement with youn

Aquinas College

Our colleges have been helping us engage young people in our SEND Improvement Journey. Students at Aquinas College have helped with the re-design of our SEND Local Offer website. They tested ‘their journey’ through the site and presented us with their feedback. They also helped with the recruitment of our very own Local Offer Co-ordinator, Tim! We are really grateful for their input and will be working with them regularly to keep the site changing to meet the needs of students with SEND. Thank you J!

young inspectors

Young Inspectors Programme

To make sure young people’s views are at the heart of our SEND Improvement Journey, we are now piloting a ‘Young Inspectors’ programme. The first sessions are being led by our Participation Officer, Steve, during October half-term. Young people will learn the skills needed to work well with each other and with services. The sessions will be interactive with fun activities as well as skills development. Following the training, young people will as services how they meet the needs of young people and will make recommendations for improvement. If you or a young person you know are interested in being involved please contact us. There will be opportunities throughout the year.


Logo Competition for Young People

Our Champions for SEND have launched a logo competition for children and young people to design a logo for the SEND Champions. All children and young people aged 0-18, or 0-25 with SEND, can enter by Friday 13/11/2020. Details and a template are available on our Champions’ Local Offer page. If your child or a young person you work with likes drawing or design work, get them involved… Prizes for the top three entries! Share awareness on Twitter or Facebook if you are on social media.

get ivolve

SEND Week of Action

16th- 20th November

During the 16th-20th November, we will be raising awareness of SEND through our Week of Action! Throughout the week you will see:

  • a range of webinars for you to join and learn
  • social media posts throughout the week to share inspiring stories and facts!
  • Videos of children and young people who will be sharing their experience of living with SEND
  • A range of activities will be taking place throughout the Borough. One of our SEND champions who works at Stepping Hill hospital will be safely going around wards to promote SEND to staff and families

Please see our SEND week of action page on our Local Offer to be updated about what will be going on during the week.

If you do want to take part in the week, please email us at

send week of action


Stockport 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.To find out more email


send cha

Network of SEND champions

Our network of send champions is made up of friendly, passionate parents/carers and professionals all wanting to provide support and signposting for children and young people with SEND and their families.

Read more in the Champions' Local Offer page. Please also share their poster with other parents/carers and professionals to encourage them to get involved.

Our last meet up was on the 13th October. After sharing what has made up smile recently, we had a great discussion about:

  • Access to community physical activities including,
    • insights about barriers to accessing swimming, youth clubs and voluntary clubs
    • toilets and changing facilities being an issue
    • need for more activity groups that are not 'team sport' focussed
  • Working well with schools
    • the champions are creating small videos about themselves to be placed on their child's school website. This will encourage other parents to know who the champion is at that school
  • SEND week of action
    •  Meet the champions session to be run during the week. Book your place thorugh our Eventbrite page

If you have missed a send champions meeting or you want to know more, you can see an overview of all their meetings on the Local Offer.


Send inclusion community group

The SEND inclusion community group is made up largely of operational professionals, parents/carers and representation from the voluntary and community sector to ensure:

  • Communication- the group will provde an opportunity for all stakeholders to meet and have an open, transparent communication on the current issues in relation to SEND within Stockport
  • Sharing information- The group will provide a forum to share best practice available both local and nationally for young people with SEND
  •  Outcomes and Inclusion- the group will provide one forum to monitor the proposed outcomes framework and the role of the community in achieving the outcomes needs.

Ultimately, the SEND Inclusion community group presents an opportunity for us to bring knowledge, experience and expertise to influence the SEND agenda in Stockport. The SEND community group complements the work that is being undertaken by the services that strive to put the best in place for the SEND community and encourages members of the group to champion best practice in their work/life areas.

Our session last week had a fab turnout of over 27 people. You can read more about what this group has been upto here

Stockport Local Fund

Applications for the Stockport Local Fund open on the 16th November

If you're passionate about your neighbourhood you'll know what you most love about your local community and you’ll have great ideas on how to make it even better. We want you to suggest new ideas that we could invest in and you could grow.

In the June issue of the SEND newsletter, we contacted some of the SEND groups who were successful in securing funding and asked them about what inspired them to apply. You can read more about that here

To find out more about the Stockport Local Fund, please click here

Help us keep the Local Offer website up to date

The Stockport SEND Local Offer brings together a range of support services and information for children and young people aged 0-25, with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).  

As parents or professionals, if you notice that information on there seems outdated, please let us know by responding to the feedback link in the website. You can also email us directly to make any suggestions or amendments at

local offer


Sign up to Electricity North West free priority services register and their welfare team will help keep you safe and comfortable until the power is back on. Contact them on 105 or 0800 195 4141, or email them at

meet the team

Do you know about the Behaviour Support Service (BSS)

BSS is based within Oakgrove Primary school. The service supports schools to include learners whose unmet needs present as behaviour that challenges.

In all maintained primary schools Behaviour Support Co-ordinators (BSC) are allocated a group of schools to visit either weekly or fortnightly.

The BSC plans priorities with the school and the intention is to work within these priorities for the next academic year.

We offer a combination of training, strategic support, support for individual or groups of staff or support for individual or groups of children.

When children are making little or no progress in terms of behaviour as a barrier to learning, they are likely to become Active to BSS after a period of supporting the school to input their own strategies. We will then work with the school to support them more intensively and we may then allocate some time from a Behaviour Mentor who will work alongside a member of school staff to support the child in order to first identify and then support unmet needs to remove barriers to learning. The Behaviour Support Coordinators are teachers who oversee and monitor impact of any work carried out by the rest of the staff from BSS in their schools

Primary Jigsaw

Primary Jigsaw is a multi- disciplinary team that works to support and improve the mental health and emotional wellbeing of children attending a mainstream Stockport primary school. Requests for support are made via a school based referral. We offer short term targeted interventions following a thorough assessment.

About the team

The team consists of 7 members of staff, Primary Jigsaw Coordinator, Mental Health Practitioner, Teacher and Play Therapist, 4 x Child and Family workers.

Parent/Carer support

  • Bespoke 1-1 parent/carer support
  • “Parenting Anxious Children” 10 week course – based on the Timid to Tiger programme.
  • Supporting parents to understand the drivers of their children’s emotional health difficulties and to make systemic changes to improve this.
  • Direct work with parent/carer and child to strengthen relationships
  • Attending relevant meetings including TAC/TAF, Core groups, CP conferences where required

School Staff support

  • Strategic support for school staff
  • Training for school staff
  • Attending meetings
  • Staff supervision
  • Supporting peer supervision
  • Supporting staff to understand the formulation for a child
  • Creating targeted support within school

You can contact the service by emailing

employee spotlight

How the Grinch Stole Halloween

As we all know, Halloween is not going to be the same this year. However this is not stopping some in the community from keeping the season alive, one in particular is our Local Offer Coordinator, Tim Brandwood.

For the last couple of months Tim and his partner have been creating a display, not only for Halloween but for Christmas too, turning the front of their house into the Grinch’s lair!

“I took part in the Stockport Spiderman campaign raising money for the NHS and seeing people’s faces light up, not just the children but the adults too was so much fun, after that I was left thinking what to do next to bring some more smiles to our community. Grinch is a character who won’t be too scary for the younger children in our area, and it means we can bring him back around Christmas time."

When people visit the display they’ll be able to see and feel the Grinch’s home as it’s seen in the movie, and those who dare can ring the doorbell to meet the Grinch in person and get some Halloween treats.

We’ve tried our hardest to keep ourselves and those visiting the display as COVID-19 safe as possible. We’ve put social distancing signs on lampposts down the street as you walk up to the display, we’ve set out a hand sanitising station, and painted lines on the floor indicating where not to cross so we keep the visitors at a safe distance from the Grinch. In the run up to Halloween we’ve posted content on the Facebook group, including how we’ve packed small bags of sweets safely, sanitising and wearing gloves and masks, the Grinch will be giving out the bags of sweets using a pole with a hook on the end.

We’re running the display for our estate over 3 days during Halloween. We want to do what we can to make the display SEND friendly, to help with that we’ve set a specific time slot each day when the Grinch’s performance will be toned down to suit the needs of those who may not deal too well with loud noises, no bright or flashing lights have been used, and our ‘interactive’ parts of the display are wheelchair accessible.

upcoming events



Parents and Carers Together Stockport (PACTS) AGM

Thur 5th November 2020


About this Event

Find out about what Pacts have been doing for parents and carers of children and young people with additional needs in Stockport over the past year and plans for the future

  • Hear how PACTS has spent its funds over 2019/20
  • Find out the results of the annual election of Steering Group members and the vote to become a charity
  • Ask any questions about the work of PACTS, past, present or future

Book your FREE place here


Waiting for an ADOS assessment via Healthy Young Minds

25th November 2020


About this Event

The webinar will involve professionals from a range of services to offer support with your current concerns.


If you have missed any of the webinars, you can find them on the  YouTube 


The next SEND newsletter will be published on Friday 27th November 2020.

Subscribe here