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Welcome to the fifth edition of our SEND professional newsletter

27/01/2021

Welcome to the fifth edition of our SEND professional newsletter, which I hope you find informative and useful. Please can I ask you to ensure you cascade and share this newsletter with your colleagues?

As part of our improvement journey, I am really keen to hear from you about outcomes for children and young people. If you have a good news story please do let me know by emailing Stephanie.Cash@luton.gov.uk . I have included in this newsletter, a case study to demonstrate positive outcomes for our SEND young people with a particular focus on Preparing for Adulthood. Please do take they time to read, I think this case study is inspirational.

 This young man which we will call Joe has a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder, which has led to social communication difficulties.  He has limited speech skills and sickle cell disease. Joe and his carers have been supported by the Transition Team since 2015. Joe currently works for Luton Town Football Club and he is able to get the public bus to his work placement.

Joe has been supported by the SEND post 16 Transitions team since year 10 and 11 where he shared his love of football, music and drama. He told his Personal Adviser he wants to be a football coach. He said at home he plays football in his spare time. He wanted to get a qualification, get a job and be more independent in his adult life. He said he wants to be the best that he can be. “I want to be part of the community”.

Joe started in college in 2016 (yr12) on a Pathways Programme – Sport. In 2017-18 (yr13) he continued with his second year in Pathways to Sport plus 1 day in Sport at level 1.  He joined a sports team in college and undertook some work experience with college support.  In his review of EHCP 2018, it was emphasised that he has followed a sport programme for the last 2 years where he has gained skills in working with others and communicating effectively and is now ready to explore employment options.

He has also had additional learning support for his Maths and English.

Joe expressed that he would like to have the opportunity to join the Supported Internship Programme to enable him to find paid employment. Joe has also achieved some of his short and medium term targets and was now working towards his long term outcome of supported employment/employment. We all believed that the supported internship would support him towards his aspiration of getting paid work. Joe’s mum emphasised in his EHCP review that “I can see Joseph fulfilling his ambitions and has determined to do what he wants with support from people around him”.

In 2018-19 Joe undertook a Supported Internship Programme in the Grounds and maintenance department at Luton Town Football Club. He was supported by a job coach from his college in work placement with funding provided by the local authority. Luton Town Football Club worked very closely with college to make sure his placement was a success.  The transition team monitored the placement and supported the local college in providing training for the job coaches.

Joe  said “working in Luton football Club has a big positive impact in my life” . he feels  he has grown in confidence and enjoys the environment and got used to coming to work. Joe also says “this has changed my life and it is like my family”. I love football and I got a football job.

The football club work experience coordinator has emphasised “Joe is a hard working young man and has a positive attitude to work and his colleague. He takes great deal of pride in his work”. 

Joe stated in his own words:

“My achievement is working in Luton football Club I was volunteers and now I am getting paid”

Sensory Processing support for parents on the Luton Local Offer

The Luton Local Offer has a wealth of information to support parents, young people and professionals. The information about how to support a child or young person with sensory processing difficulties has recently been updated with a new video resource which includes:

  • information on what are sensory processing difficulties?
  • a useful video which demonstrates what it feels like to a child with autism in a busy shopping centre
  • helpful parenting strategies to support their child’s needs

In addition parents may find the resource “Supporting your child with sensory processing difficulties” coproduced by local parents helpful, as it has a range of very practical strategies.

Supporting children with sensory processing difficulties

You can also finds useful resources on the Cambridge Community Services website 

We are encouraging professionals to signpost parents to the Local Offer in the first instance as part of the new pathway of Sensory Processing support available to parents in Luton.

We are also piloting some targeted workshops for parents during February to April 2021 for those parents who have tried the strategies on the Local Offer and feel there need more support. Referrals will be made via the School SENCO’s.