Over the past academic year, we have provided CCET and CPT3A training pathways for around 550 national and international education professionals. Taking one of three unique routes (online, bespoke or intensive), these candidates are currently navigating the programme and will be eligible to join the British Psychological Society’s (BPS’s) Register of Qualifications in Test Use (RQTU) upon completion. This official record of all test users who have been awarded qualifications in educational test use is globally recognised and is applied for by the majority of our graduates. Last year, for example, almost 400 of our CCET/CPT3A alumni joined the BPS Register.
With education facing one of its toughest years of change this September, we look forward to preparing a record number of educationalists to meet that challenge in the coming academic year.
‘There was a real need for change. However, some of the processes supporting the trials and development of the legislation could have been more effective. We can’t go back now but, as SENCOs, we can have a real impact on the future through our practice.’ Gareth D Morewood
The fifth issue of The SEND Practitioner published within days of the new Code’s approval by both Houses on 29 July. With the Act and the new Code coming into force on 1 September, the pressure is on for all SEND practitioners. As before, we asked you to tell us what you wanted to know and Gareth gave us some really practical answers to your questions. This issue has been received well and is a really good port of call for any SEND practitioners who have any questions or doubts about what do and how to prepare as the new academic year draws ever closer.
With this in mind, the fifth issue of The SEND Practitioner free-zine will publish 31 July. Gareth D Morewood – practising SENCO and respected author – will give detailed step-by-step guidance and comprehensive answers to 15 key questions that our practising SEND professionals want to know.
With only five weeks to go until the new term, it’s an issue that SEND practitioners really can’t afford to miss.
This month, The SEND Practitioner will be five months old. And if you said in response: ‘that’s not old’, well, you’d be absolutely right. It is, however, a milestone that we’re rather pleased to have reached. Why? Because in the deepest darkest depths of winter, when the germ of The SEND Practitioner was being discussed in our London office, we knew one thing – that we wanted to produce a monthly free-zine for SEND practitioners containing informative guidance from some of the best SEND practitioners and experts around.
To date, we think that we’ve done that. Just a few short weeks past the summer solstice – and many months from the winter one – we’ve produced four free-zines packed full of insights from some of the leading SEND experts in their fields. We’ve asked our experts the questions that our SENCOs want to ask and have looked at the prospective SEND reforms from a broad range of perspectives. Not only that, hundreds of SENCOs and SEND professionals have joined our list since we first published The SEND Practitioner – which we like to think is a pretty good ‘thumbs up’.
To mark The SEND Practitioner’s fifth month – equal to the lifespan of the dragonflies that flit around Greenwich Park just a stone’s throw from our London office – we are pleased to include a few choice quotes from the marvellous experts who have graced our pages. Thank you to our SENCOs, to Brian Lamb OBE, Lorraine Petersen OBE, Stephen Kingdom, Steve Huggett, and our loyal band of readers – we couldn’t have produced it without you.
From the author of the influential Lamb Inquiry 2009, to the former director of nasen; from the DfE’s most senior SEN civil servant, to the director of the Autism Education Trust, The SEND Practitioner has featured the voices of a host of SEND luminaries.
I’ve jotted down a few author grab quotes from each of our issues to give you a taste of their thoughts. If you want to find out more, simply click on the link that follows each quote to read the actual issue.
Brian Lamb OBE on preparing for the new Code of Practice (Issue one)
‘The Code of Practice is about a change in culture. It sees children with SEN as the school’s responsibility, delivering a personalised approach that recognises that they might need additional specialist support.’
Lorraine Petersen OBE on the Children and Families Act 2014 (Issue two)
‘It’s a time of great opportunity and yet it’s a long journey that we’ve been on since 2011. It will probably be 2016-2017 before we start to see the fruits of this. However, in the long term, I really do feel that it will be better for our children.’
Stephen Kingdom on SEN reform (Issue three)
‘This isn’t a big bang, a lot has been going on over time to help the teaching profession increase its capacity and capability to support children with SEN.’
Steve Huggett on SEN reform (Issue four)
‘The proof of the pudding will be in the eating. It’s what we do about it – rather than what we say about it – that will be critical.’
We’ve got a couple of interesting summer issues lined up – and we’re also arranging discounts to a key SEND reform conference this autumn for all of our readers.
‘The proof of the pudding will be in the eating. It’s what we do about it – rather than what we say about it – that will be critical.’ Steve Huggett
We published the fourth issue of The SEND Practitioner shortly after the SEND Code of Practice was laid before Parliament on 11 June. We were particularly pleased to feature a Q&A on the prospective SEND reforms with Steve Huggett – director of the Autism Education Trust. Steve answered a broad range of your reform questions. Ultimately, reflecting, that the new legislation has a lot of potential to maintain and develop the principles of good practice.
We are pleased to announce that the final SEND Code of Practice and Regulations were placed before Parliament last week. The Code is rather a large document, but we’ve had a quick look through and we’re really pleased to know that we fully comply with the changes that are due to take place this September.
If you are interested in the particular detail of the Code and Regulations – and how they apply to us – please take a look at the excerpts that we have taken from the Code and the Regulations respectively.
Excerpt from the Code of Practice
6.85 The SENCO must be a qualified teacher working at the school. A newly appointed SENCO must be a qualified teacher and, where they have not previously been the SENCO at that or any other relevant school for a total period of more than twelve months, they must achieve a National Award in Special Educational Needs Co-ordination within three years of appointment.
6.86 A National Award must be a postgraduate course accredited by a recognised higher education provider. The National College for Teaching and Leadership has worked with providers to develop a set of learning outcomes (see the References section under Chapter 6 for a link). When appointing staff or arranging for them to study for a National Award schools should satisfy themselves that the chosen course will meet these outcomes and equip the SENCO to fulfil the duties outlined in this Code. Any selected course should be at least equivalent to 60 credits at postgraduate study.
Prescribed qualifications and experience of SENCOs
49. (1) The appropriate authority of a relevant school must ensure that the SENCO appointed under section 67(2) of the Act meets all of the requirements in either paragraph (2) or (3).
(2) The requirements in this paragraph are that the SENCO–
(a)is a qualified teacher;
(b)if required to complete an induction period under regulations made under section 135A of the Education Act 2002(1), has satisfactorily completed such an induction period; and
(c)is working as a teacher at the school.
(3) The requirement in this paragraph is that the SENCO is the head teacher or acting head teacher (or equivalent in the case of an Academy school) of the school.
(4) Where a person becomes the SENCO at a relevant school after 1st September 2009, and has not previously been the SENCO at that or any other relevant school for a total period of more than twelve months, the appropriate authority of the school must ensure that, if the person is the SENCO at the school at any time after the third anniversary of the date on which that person becomes a SENCO, that person holds the qualification, mentioned in paragraph (5).
(5) The qualification referred to in paragraph (4) is a postgraduate qualification in special educational needs co-ordination, for the time being known as “The National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordination”, awarded by a recognised body.
(6) For the purposes of paragraph (5), a recognised body is a body designated by the Secretary of State by order made under section 216(1) of the Education Reform Act 1988(2);
‘This isn’t a big bang, a lot has been going on over time to help the teaching profession increase its capacity and capability to support children with SEN.’ Stephen Kingdom
For issue three of The SEND Practitioner, we thought that we would speak to one of the Act’s and Code’s key civil servants. We know that SENCOs have a lot of questions and wanted to be the voice of our SENCOs. With that in mind, we asked all of the SENCOs who have ever trained with us to send us their questions. We received a host of fascinating questions, compiled them and took them to the hallowed halls of the Department for Education’s Stephen Kingdom.
Stephen answered them eloquently and persuasively and we are delighted to feature them in the third issue of The SEND Practitioner.