Every year at about this time we publish a report which explains our work, tells people about the support we’ve given parents and young people and highlights how our service and the world of SEND is changing. Here are some of the highlights.
Our enquiries and service users
- In the last year, there has been a 13% increase in the number of parents and carers we’ve supported. We gave in-depth support to 1331 people. in 2014 to 2015 we supported 884 people – so, that’s an increase of almost 50% in four years!
- The biggest area where we gave information and advice was around support in schools, followed by help with the EHC needs assessments and plans. These two areas made-up more than half of our work. Requests for support related to the Education Health and Care assessment processes rose by 38% from 259 to 356.
- We’re supporting more families where a child or young person is missing education, which may be partly due to an increase in anxiety and mental health issues.
- Support for exclusions, mediations and tribunals have increased by 91% from 81 to 155. Of these we had 70 requests for tribunal advice, 41 of these we supported during tribunal
- The demand for the service dipped at school holiday points in the year. The service was at its busiest in September, January and June.
- We’re supporting more families with a child in secondary school. There has been a notable rise in support requests related to anxiety and missing education which is more likely to happen when a child is in secondary school.
What we’ve been doing
- We worked with Devon SEND Local Offer to put on 13 Parent Information Events across Devon. These gave parents information about how SEND support works in Devon, the assess, plan, do and review cycle and SEN funding.
- We recruited two new DIAS Officers.
- We created five new factsheets for young people, three of them easy read. These tell young people about our service, about confidentiality and about EHC needs assessment and plans.
- We published a guide to elective home education and a guide to checking a draft EHC plan and worked with DIAS volunteers on some top tips for getting the views of a child or a young person.
- DIAS Information Principles for clear communication with parents were adopted by the Local Authority’s SEND Board.
You can download our Annual report 2017 to 2018 (PDF 1382KB).