Children and families bill where are we now
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Children and Families Bill where are we now?. Julie Jennings Manager, Children, Young People and Families Team RNIB. Definitions and scope. We welcomed the extension of LA responsibilities to a wider group of CYP with SEND

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Children and Families Bill where are we now?

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Children and families bill where are we now

Children and Families Billwhere are we now?

Julie Jennings

Manager, Children, Young People and Families Team


Definitions and scope

Definitions and scope

We welcomed

  • the extension of LA responsibilities to a wider group of CYP with SEND

  • application of the new legal framework directly to academies and free schools

  • closely involving CYP and parent carers in decisions that affect them

Definitions and scope1

Definitions and scope


  • the Bill should explicitly include disabled CYP including those with long term health conditions who may have health and social care needs but not SEN

  • early years provision should cover the PVI sector and home-based support

So what now

So what now

  • The government, following lobbying by SEC and EDCM laid down an amendment to include disabled CYP without SEN

  • Home based support gets a stronger reference in COP, especially SI, but still concerns about the PVI sector and naming them in a plan

Local integration and information

Local integration and information

We welcomed

  • the emphasis on joint working and co-operation across services

  • stronger duties on health, social care and education to review and commission services jointly

Local integration and information1

Local integration and information


  • there need to be clear links between children's trust arrangements and Health and Wellbeing Board duties

  • accountability needs to be clear - not left to parents

So what now1

So what now

  • Joint planning and commissioning has been strengthened with a joint ministerial letter (DfE/DH) and COP recommendation on regional planning especially for low incidence groups

  • Accountability is still an issue for parents and YP - Government announced 2 year funding for Independent Supporters to support CYPF during implementation

Local offer

Local offer

We welcomed

  • the principle of a local offer

  • the local offer includes a wider range of services such as employment

Local offer1

Local offer


  • there needs to be an underpinning duty to provide what is set out in the offer

  • some form of national framework should inform the development of each local offer

So what now2

So what now

  • The Government agreed to a change that strengthens the requirement to publish actions on parents' comments on what is set out in the local offer

  • There is a national framework for what a local offer should contain, but not the format

Ehc assessment and plan

EHC assessment and plan

We welcomed

  • the concept of a single assessment process and multiagency plan from birth to 25 years

  • extension of statutory entitlements into FE, including training, apprenticeships and, in certain circumstances, YP who are NEET

  • recent statement on new health duties

Ehc assessment and plan1

EHC assessment and plan


  • CYP with health and care needs should be able to access an assessment and plan, where necessary

  • extension of statutory entitlements to include HE

  • there should be duties on social care services to deliver what is set out in EHC plans with a single point of appeal for parents and young people

So what now3

So what now

  • CYP with long term conditions and no SEN are unlikely to get an EHC plan - their requirements will be set out in a care plan

  • There are stronger statements about HE in COP

  • The duty on health to deliver what is in the plan is good, and there is a stronger duty on social care through the CSDP Act

  • There will be a pilot to test a single point of complaints and appeals processes

Outstanding issues

Outstanding issues

  • General principle of presumption for inclusion not just rights of individual child

  • Special academies to admit children without EHC Plans

  • VI Registers

  • Mandatory qualification

Mandatory qualification

Mandatory qualification

  • 2009 letter on MQ now included in a note in the COP

  • Other statements strengthen access to specialist support, including QTVI

  • Review of MQ by DfE, NCTL and NatSIP

    - Phase 1 updating spec for existing providers, including reviewing the outcomes

    - Phase 2 other providers

Context of the reforms

Context of the reforms

  • Capacity of LAs to deliver with deepening cuts to frontline services

  • Funding changes from 1 April 2013 in early years, schools and FE

  • NC review and its assessment and changes to primary and secondary accountability

  • Ofsted consultation on inspection of specialist services

Ofsted self evaluation

Ofsted self evaluation

It is likely to include

  • Joint commissioning

  • Local offer

  • Social care needs

  • Personal budgets

  • Transition to EHC plans

  • The area’s focus on early intervention

Ofsted self evaluation1

Ofsted self evaluation


End of January

  • Finalize SET and contact local areas and providers to be involved


  • Request to local areas to complete SET

  • Visits to colleges and schools

Ofsted self evaluation2

Ofsted self evaluation



  • Initial analysis, including identification of areas for good practice visits


  • Good practice visits to LAs


  • Good practice dissemination event for LAs

What could it mean for vi services

What could it mean for VI services?

  • Using a single assessment framework and education, health and care plan

  • Involvement in personal budgets and direct payments

  • Framing a local offer for VI support

  • Understanding funding models

  • Different relationship for LAs

  • More open market for specialist advice

  • Focus on outcomes

And what s next

And what's next?

  • Royal Assent by 21 March

  • Consideration of secondary legislation (regulations) and SEND COP

  • Phased implementation?

Early years

Early years

Preparing for adulthood

  • High aspirations need to be set at an early age…even when a child is very young…families need to know that they can go on to find work, live independently, with whatever support they need, and participate in their community.

From september 2014

From September 2014……

' the biggest reforms for 30 years' for CYP with SEND

Thank you

Thank you!

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