Special Educational Needs: West Midlands

Department for Education written question – answered at on 26 April 2022.

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Photo of Stuart Anderson Stuart Anderson Conservative, Wolverhampton South West

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the provision of services for children with special educational needs and disabilities in (a) Wolverhampton and (b) the West Midlands.

Photo of Will Quince Will Quince The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

In Wolverhampton, Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission conducted a special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) inspection in September 2021. Inspectors identified six areas of significant weakness. As a result, Wolverhampton was required to produce and publish a Written Statement of Action (WSoA) which sets out how they intend to address these areas of concern. The WSoA is published on the local authority website.

We are committed to supporting and monitoring progress of the identified areas for improvement and have put in place regular monitoring and challenge meetings with SEND advisers from the department and NHS England.

In the West Midlands the SEND inspection framework assesses at a local authority level so there is no single assessment for West Midlands. However, as highlighted in the SEND and Alternative Provision Green Paper, there is inconsistency in the standard of services for children and young people with SEND and their parents in the West Midlands as there is across the country. The Green Paper, published on 29 March 2022, sets out a suite of proposed reforms that seek to create a coherent education, health and care system that works in the interests of all children in England and levels up opportunities.

The department is providing opportunities for children, parents, carers and those working across the SEND system to provide feedback during the 13-week consultation period which runs to 1 July 2022.

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