I am worried about my child, who can I ask for help?

Have you tried your speaking to your GP? (they could refer your child to be seen by a specialist). If your child is at nursery or school, discuss your concerns with their class teacher.


What if my child doesn’t have a diagnosis, where would I start from, where do you go first?

If your child is pre-school age, first speak to your health visitor and if already started nursery or school, discuss your concerns with the class teacher. If they are at mainstream school, you will then be put in contact with the SENCO.


What is SEN?

SEN stands for Special Educational Needs. Sometimes, some people also use the term Additional Needs. They both mean any extra help your child may need to do well at school which may link to medical issues.


Sometimes professionals say additional needs, what does this mean?

Additional Needs is sometimes used instead of SEN and means the same.


What is a Parent Carer Forum?

A group of parents and carers of disabled children who work with local authorities, education, health and other providers to make sure the services they plan and deliver meet the needs of disabled children and families.


What is a SENCO?

The teacher with responsibility for the planning and monitoring of the special educational provision within your child’s school.


What is a Local Offer

Local authorities in England are required to set out in their Local Offer information about provision they expect to be available across education, health and social care for children and young people in their area who have SEN or are disabled.


What is Respite/Short Breaks?

Respite Care (also known as Short Breaks): an Identified package of support to give parent/carers a break from caring. Short breaks can be overnight care for the child/young person with disabilities, activities or a carer. Families may also be receiving support from the Children with Disabilities Service.


What is Short Breaks?

It is the standard package of support from Social Service for activities for a child or young person with SEN.


Where can I find a list of Short Breaks providers?

Visit your council Local Offer website. Visit our directory and find your borough https://www.sendlocaloffer.org/


How do I get a diagnosis for my child?

Your doctor or paediatrician can provide the diagnosis.


What happens after my child gets a diagnosis?

The professionals will decide how best to provide your child with more appropriate support. It will also be shared with other professionals with your permission, who look after your child to make sure they take it into account when providing more support.

How do I find the most suitable school with SEN provision for my child?

Talk to your child’s school SENCo, other parents for recommendations and visit other educational institutions. If you are interested in special schools, visit the government list of approved schools: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/independent-special-schools-and-colleges