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Supporting children with special educational needs (SEN) - a guide for foster carers

Supporting children with special educational needs (SEN) - a guide for foster carers

Our brand new guide for foster carers introduces the key issues around looking after a child with SEN in England - from seeking a diagnosis to post-16 support.

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Last year, the government introduced major reforms to the special educational needs (SEN) system and how children with SEN will be supported in nurseries, schools and colleges.  To make sure that children in care benefit as much as possible from the changes, foster carers need to know how children’s needs will be identified, assessed and met, as well as feel equipped to help them get the support they are entitled to.  

Our brand new guide Supporting children with special educational needs sets out this process in a down to earth and easy to read way, while also addressing the key issues around supporting a child in care with SEN.

Children in care are nine times more likely to have special educational needs than other children. Types of SEN vary – they include difficulties in communicating, physical or sensory disabilities, difficulties in concentrating and trouble managing emotions and behaviour.

Children with SEN can find  it harder to learn than other children their age. Foster carers have a huge role to play in ensuring the children they look after get the support they need both at home and at school. Understanding their needs and negotiating the system can be a daunting task – and that’s where this guide comes in. Supporting children with special educational needs will help carers to understand the system of SEN support, how to access the help children need, and who to turn to if things go wrong.

Over half of children in care with SEN will not have an education, health and care plan (formerly called a ‘statement’ of special educational needs). Their needs will be met through additional support such as occupational therapy, which will be co-ordinated between home and school. It’s vital that foster carers are up to date with the system that will meet children’s needs and feel confident in enabling them to access the support that will help them achieve at school.

From identifying a SEN and seeking diagnosis to what happens at 16 and beyond, Supporting children with special educational needs is essential reading for foster carers looking after a child with SEN and will be beneficial for anyone involved in supporting the education of looked-after children.

 “A comprehensive and clear guide, it gives a really good overview of the systems and processes. I’m sure that I will be directing people to it.” Alex Lindley, headteacher and SENCO

Discounts available for orders of 20+ copies - please contact Claire Clifford on 020 7251 3117 for more information.

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An excerpt from Supporting children in care with special educational  needs:


"Children and young people in care who have special educational needs often tell us they want to be challenged at school to achieve their very best.

We hear numerous stories of children in care being rightly proud of what they've achieved in their education, proving to themselves in the process that they're in control of their own destiny and do not have to conform to the lower expectations society sometimes has of them.

As their carer, whether for a month, a year or their childhood and beyond, you have one of the most - perhaps the most - important roles to play in your foster child's life. If you have the skills, knowledge and determination to get and give them what they need to fulfil their potential, you will have given a gift for life."

Author: The Who Cares? Trust

ISBN: 978-1-903-23940-7

Release date: 2015

Pages: 33



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organisation details:

The Who Cares? Trust,
15-18 White Lion Street,
London, N1 9PG
Telephone: 020 7251 3117

The Who Cares? Trust is a registered charity (No. 1010518). A Company limited by guarantee. Registered in London (No. 2700693). VAT Reg. No. 577853091
Charity web design by Fat Beehive - Main photo by epidemya