Statement of intent
To enable young people who have Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) to live, learn and work within their local community, achieve sustained progression, resulting in better life outcomes
Enabling young people to live, learn and work within their own community promotes more sustainable progress, leading to better life outcomes. Placements within out of borough residential colleges can result in social segregation, dependence and inequity. There can be significant challenges for young people (and their families) to reintegrate into their home community, on returning home.
Some of the factors that support this rationale are:
- Promoting independence and life long outcomes – learning within the local area enables young people to access local opportunities to maximise independence and provide links with local employers and voluntary sector organisations to support long term goals.
- Support and security – maintenance and development of local friendships, community links and support networks. Continuity of emotional relationships is highly correlated with building resilience in young people and reducing social isolation and mental health difficulties in later life.
- Monitoring and safeguarding – young people can continue to access Bromley services to ensure quality of provision, appropriate support and closer monitoring to ensure safeguarding of this very vulnerable cohort. Any emerging issues can be addressed early to stop escalation.
- Parental involvement – parents can be actively involved with their young person’s education and learning, providing support and guidance. Close relationships with education and care staff can help tailor support to their young person’s needs and interests.
- Sustainable support – being able to live, learn and work within your own community, leads to the development of more sustainable systems of support, both formal and informal.
The duty remains on local authorities to secure sufficient and suitable education and training provision for young people who have SEND up to the age of 25 years. This is not an automatic entitlement to education but recognises that for some individuals, it takes longer to learn and consolidate that learning.
Good education and learning opportunities are vital for young people to maximise their potential in preparing for adult life. Through good person centred planning, provision and support will be identified to meet assessed needs across education, health and care.
Commissioning of further education placements will be individualised, realistic and achievable and sufficiently challenging, providing a firm foundation to enable young people to continue learning in context, through living and working across four key pathways:
- Community inclusion – developing friends, relationships and sustainable networks of support
- Employment – opportunities to experience the world of work and get paid employment
- Independent living – maximising skills to live as independently as possible
- Good health – maintaining good health and a healthy lifestyle
Assessment of need and placement identification
Placement identification is based on each individual’s need across education, health and care, which takes account of:
- Young person’s aspirations and long term goals
- Views, including young person, family and professionals
- Circle of support, including friends, family and community networks
In identifying an appropriate placement, a variety of options will be considered based on the young person’s assessed needs, to support them to achieve their long term goals in preparing for adult life, which could be further education, work based training, employment or a social care placement.
Where work based training, employment or a social care placement is identified as the most appropriate option, the council will work with the relevant services, partners and providers in the borough to ensure that appropriate support is put in place to enable the young person to progress towards and successfully transition to the identified destination.
Where a further education (FE) placement is identified as appropriate, the following process will be followed:
- Local mainstream FE provision – should an education placement be deemed appropriate to meet a young person’s needs, learning within the local FE college is the preferred option.
- Mixed provision in borough – a programme across the local FE college and specialist college may be considered, should the young person’s assessed needs deem this appropriate.
- Specialist provision in borough - where a young person’s assessed needs cannot be met in mainstream education or through mixed provision to allow their goals to be achieved, specialist provision in borough may then be considered.
- Specialist provision out of borough as a day student – where a young person’s assessed needs cannot be met in specialist in borough provision to allow their goals to be achieved, specialist out of borough provision as a day student may then be considered.
- Specialist provision out of borough as a residential student - where a young person’s assessed needs cannot be met in specialist out of borough day placement to allow their goals to be achieved, a residential placement may then be considered. A Monday to Friday placement is the preferred option, which will enable young people to maintain regular links with their local community and integrate their learning into the home environment.