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2021 Local Offer Annual Report

Introduction

Welcome to the annual report on the Kirklees SEND Local Offer for 2020 – 2021, this report explains what developments have happened with the Local Offer over the last year.

You can access the report information on this page or alternatively you can download the report in PDF format below:

2021 Local Offer annual report (opens PDF in new window)

Local authorities must publish a Local Offer, setting out in one place information about provision they expect to be available across education, health and social care for children and young people in their area who have Special Educational Needs (SEN) or are disabled, including those who do not have Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans.  In setting out what they ‘expect to be available’, local authorities should include provision which they believe will actually be available.'

 The Local Offer has two key purposes: 

  • to provide clear, comprehensive, accessible and up-to-date information about the available provision and how to access it; and
  • to make provision more responsive to local needs and aspirations by directly involving disabled children and those with SEN and their parents and carers, and disabled young people and those with SEN, and service providers in its development and review.

 

SEND Code of Practice  

The new Kirklees Local Offer was launched in December 2020, which was a result of a year’s hard work with PCAN, families in Kirklees, council services, schools and community support providers.

Since launch, the Local Offer has undergone a number of significant developments:

  • Increased the size of the Local Offer team from 3 to 6, to include 2 leads and 2 project officers to ensure the Local Offer remains up to date and is delivered in a way which is meaningful to families in Kirklees.
  • Launch of a new school support service (Inclusion Support Offer)
  • Launch of the Kirklees SEND Local Offer facebook page
  • Delivery of the Local Offer via face to face methods and moving from just a website to a service.

In 2020 the Kirklees SEND Local Offer has moved from being just a statutorily compliant website to becoming a service which responds to the needs of young people and families with SEND in Kirklees and delivers information, advice and guidance in a way which is meaningful and accessible to them.

Due to the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions we have also been able to work closely with a wider range of young people with SEND to help understand their needs in terms of accessing information.

We have established ourselves as a valuable service within the LA and continue to work closely with families, schools, council services, community and activity providers to continue to deliver a coproduced Local Offer which provides better outcomes for young people with SEND.

 

Other developments of the Kirklees SEND Local Offer:

  • Improved search results page following feedback from users which presents results in a more familiar search engine format which allows users to see information straight away as well as being able to filter searches to activities, services, settings and events.

  • News feed to share updates from within the SEND world, both locally and nationally.

Kirklees SEND Local Offer Facebook

 Following engagement with families, we have launched our Facebook page, which provides important updates and information to families in another way.  We use this to signpost users to the website wherever possible.  Sometimes we use this to highlight local events and how to access them.

We also use this as a way of advertising face to face engagement events where families can talk with us face to face.

This also provides a rich source of feedback from users and influences the continued development of the Local Offer service.

Further social media development

 We are currently working with young people with SEND from across Kirklees to develop a Local Offer Instagram and Youtube channel as they have told us this is how they would like to access information.

Due to the lifting of the covid-19 restrictions we have been able to a more direct engagement work including the following:

  • Young people from Ravenshall complex needs school.
  • SEND students at Upper Batley High School
  • Young people with SEND aged 18-25 who are interns on Project Search, which provides supported employment routes for young people with EHCP’s
  • Numerous Parent Listening Events where we met with groups or individual parents to speak with them about their experience of SEND
  • Attending school parents evenings and coffee mornings to talk with parents and carers about their concerns about SEND.
  • Attending support group coffee mornings to explain what the Local Offer is and discuss any concerns they have.
  • Online conversations with parents and carers via facebook to discuss specific concerns.

Through all of this engagement a number of key themes have emerged, one of the most significant ones for the Local Offer was that young people and families want to have relationships and speak face to face with people from the council.  They do use websites and social media to find information, but this can feel very disconnected.  They have told us that they need to know about the Local Offer first, they would not know to go to this for information.

This has helped us shape the way we work and we are looking to offer more:

  • Face to face information sessions across Kirklees
  • Parent listening event
  • Attendance at SEND sessions in schools and support group coffee mornings
  • Promotion and explanation of the Local Offer in public places (such as libraries and customer service centres)
  • Drop in SEND Q&A sessions in public places
  • Development of a place based information, advice and guidance offer for schools so that they are better equipped to support young people with SEND and therefore improve their outcomes.

We use all of the engagement that we have with families and young people to inform how the Kirklees SEND Local Offer operates and we constantly evolve our offer to better meet the information, advice and guidance the needs of the young people in Kirklees with SEND.

Since the launch of the Kirklees SEND Local Offer we have developed a dedicated area of the site for SENCO’s and professionals to use to get information, advice and guidance about SEND.  We have also introduced a new service called the Inclusion Support Offer, this is staffed by two dedicated and very experienced officers who offer support to schools around SEND queries, this can range from signposting, providing a listening ear to working directly with the school to improve their SEND offer.

This services is currently a pilot project, but has been incredibly well received from across schools within Kirklees.

Some of the feedback is shown below:

  • Thank you! Such a helpful team and prompt service.
  • The service didn't know the answer straight away but tried hard to find one and were prompt with their feedback
  • The call was very reassuring, in a time where we are not seeing face to face many professionals that we can bounce things off. It has hugely put our minds at ease regarding the children we called about and that what we are doing and the processes we are following are right.
  • Absolutely amazing service!
  • Great service, quick response, clear and supportive information and guidance
  • Very helpful and prompt with getting back to me with information. Also completed a follow up session via email due to my own demands of school and not being able to complete a phone call follow up session - Thank you
  • Very helpful and knowledgeable
  • I was very impressed with their swift response and how seriously they took my issue and what they would look at to help resolve it.
  • No recommendations of improvements, I couldn't have asked for better service.
  • The team offer an excellent service - one of the best elements of SEN support in Kirklees,  they are helpful and professional and I have every confidence in getting support from them, thank you 
  • They are amazing! For me, as a new SENCo, they are beacon of light offering support in what feels like a sea of information and ever shifting contacts within a range of services. Thank you!

 

Summary of the Local Offer performance

 The information below shows the performance from launch (15th December 2020) to the date this report was written (19th November 2021)

Facebook performance summary

The information in the website analytic report has the following highlights:

 

  • Usage of the new local offer over the old site has increased by a significant amount. The previous average views per month was around 1,000, the new site averages over 10,000 per month. 
  • The search page is the most popular page on the Local Offer and is the way most users interact with the site, this lead us to developing the way the search page worked.
  • The majority of users are accessing the site on a computer, but we still have a good number using mobile devices to access the site.
  • The most users we have had on one day was on the 16th June when we had 344 users.

 The information in the facebook analytics has the following highlights: •Social media is a very effective way to reach an additional audience.

  • Some posts have reached nearly 1000 users, which helps us to understand what is important to families (such as transitions information).
  • The majority of users are 25 – 45 females.
  • Under 18’s generally do not use facebook, so this is not an effective way of engaging with them – this is why we are developing an Instagram and YouTube channel.
  • In Kirklees there is a traditional North/South boundary, where Huddersfield is the boundary. Dewsbury, Liversedge, Batley, Cleckheaton, Mirfield and Heckmondwike are all areas in the north.  Holmfirth and Huddersfield represent the south.  The split is 34.8% north and 42.2% south.  This would indicate the Kirklees SEND Local Offer is less well known in the north, so we have focused some of our engagement events in this area.  

The governing bodies of maintained schools and maintained nursery schools and the proprietors of academy schools must publish information on their websites about the implementation of the governing body’s or the proprietor’s policy for pupils with SEN.

 The SEN Information Report should give details of the school’s contribution to the Local Offer and must include information on where the local authority’s Local Offer is published.

SEND Code of Practice

In Kirklees all schools and further education colleges are expected to have a link to the Local Offer as part of their SEND Information Report.  Furthermore, we are promoting the new Kirklees Local Offer in schools through SEND newsletters, SENCO (Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators) Net, Heads Up (school newsletter) and through conversations with school staff.  All existing links to the current Local Offer go to the new Kirklees Local Offer. 

The Local Offer invites visitors to feedback on their experience of using the site.  When appropriate feedback is passed on to the relevant service managers to respond to.  

Following the report conclusion below, all of the comments and our response as published on the Kirklees SEND Local Offer can be found.  These can also be viewed online on the following page:

https://www.kirkleeslocaloffer.org.uk/you-said-we-did/you-said-we-did-2021/

We continue to work closely with families, young people and colleagues across education, health and social care as well as in the community sector to co-produce the new Local Offer.  

We are confident that we have a Local Offer which is working to meet the needs of the local people of Kirklees.  We feel that this view is justified due to the positive feedback we have received, both for the Local Offer and the Inclusion Support Offer as well as being demonstrated to the traffic to the site.

We are passionate about continuing this journey and making the Local Offer into a well-used and essential service within Kirklees for families, and young people with SEND and to move beyond it being just a website.

Last updated: 13/11/2020