SEND Conference 2017

A little bit about the day……..


We would like to thank all parents and carers who recently attended the 2017 SEND Conference at the Learning Development Centre. This was produced in coproduction with the local authority  who supported with the funding of the event.

The day included workshops, exhibits and market place stalls allowing Parents and carers to network, ask questions, comment and share ideas.

Lunch and refreshments were provided throughout the day for all to enjoy.

The aim of the conference is to provide Parents and carers with an update as to what has been happening over the past year.

This was very well described by Cllr Rose in his opening remarks. He highlighted the excellent improvements in North Lincs with regards to the schools conference, SEND roadshows and consultation on the Local Offer. In particular the importance of SEND Provision in schools and the need for additional funding, which is now available.

Another main emphasis was on support at the right time at the right place as

Darren Chaplin spoke in great detail of this in the new Send Inclusion plan 2017-2020. There has been an excellent report from the inspectors as well as genuine working together in partnership.

The new ‘All our Children’ is on the local offer website for all to see and will help ensure vulnerable children achieve outstanding outcomes.

100% of schools in North Lincolnshire have signed up for Mental Health Champions and are having training for this now. Health outcomes need to be and will be looked at much more thoroughly in the future.
There are 2,500 SEND support in north Lincs and it is very clear in the new plan that the sharing of good practice will give confidence in the system.

The morning programme of speakers was introduced by our cochair Kay Mitchell-Gough and the afternoon session by our other co-chair Fiona Beard who is also the Regional and National representative for Parent Involvement and Participation Forums known as PIP for short.

PIP’s treasurer Zaria was collecting new member forms and the first 15 new members were issued with a voucher to welcome them to the forum.

Also during the day were keynote speakers, the first of whom was Amjad Ali who returned again to speak to us in North lincolnshire, this time speaking about parents, students and teachers perspectives in the classroom. He gave lots of advice, brilliantly executed with examples and scenarios which we could all empathise with. He is a teacher who really understands the needs of our children and understands how children learn and what needs to be in place for learning to happen.

Before lunch we were updated on the Rix Wiki which is a new person centred planning tool which allows young people to engage with their families, teachers and health professionals and give information about themselves to who they choose. There is a Rix Wiki video to explain this on the local offer, Sam shares her son Shane’s wiki to explain the concept. Every wiki is different and you can google  to see samples of case studies.

After lunch we were very moved by Joanna Grace who spoke about The Sensory project and the importance of understanding why children especially with autism struggle in certain situations.

Joanna now travels around the country as a speaker on this subject, friends from school would never have believed this possible as she was never on stage and would never have spoken in public. Lots of examples of sensory items were on a table and one key thing is to find the right sensory item that soothes a child’s anxiety and repeat,repeat, repeat.

Joanna has also written many books and I’d advise anyone to look them up for helpful references.Joanna is happy to be emailed at  or visit www.The Sensory

As Parents we know our children better than anyone so just before the final Q&A panel we heard a Parents story from Lisa Watchorn of navigating her way through the SEND system with all the ups and downs of her two sons Jamie and Tom who have come out the other side with support and grown into independent young men

Julia and Katy member of the PIP Steering group made sure everyone attending had the new Coffee morning dates fro 2018 to continue with the great success they have been this year,  we look forward to welcoming new faces at the various locations in Barton, Brigg, Epworth and Scunthorpe.

Please check our website for regular updates. At our coffee mornings  we share information , as well as occasional visits from other organisations such as

Short breaks, SENDIASS , Learning Disability Team, Family Information Service to name but a few.

The day closed with the completion of evaluation forms and in return parents and carers received a PIP notebook and pen. Your comments are valuable to us and we will seek to improve our conference for next year and hope very much to see you again.

Please come and join us at our first independent AGM which will be on the 6th FEB, watch out for details soon to be advertised.

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