Support for children aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

How we are improving SEND services

A new SEND Improvement Plan is currently being produced and will be displayed on this page shortly.

BCP Council and NHS Dorset (CCG) are committed to working in partnership with children, young people, parents, carers and other agencies to radically improve support for children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole.

We have produced an improvement plan – called a ‘written statement of action’ – which we are now putting into action. The plan sets out how we are going to make improvements in eight key areas highlighted in an inspection of SEND services earlier this year (read the original inspection letter here).

The eight key areas addressed by the plan are:


We need to tackle cultural issues that have led to weak partnership working across the system, and with families and children.


We must improve leaders’ self-evaluations and ensure more focus on the lived experiences of children and young people.


We need to work much more closely with families, children and young people to co-produce services.

Sustainable services

Our services must be more sustainable and recruitment challenges need to be overcome.

Graduated response

There has been inconsistency in our graduated response, leading to slow identification and inconsistent access.

Education and health care plans (EHCPs)

We need to improve variations in EHCPs caused by weaknesses in joint working, access, timeliness and quality assurance.

Joint commissioning

Poor joint commissioning arrangements have limited our ability to meet local area needs so this must be tackled.

Exclusion and inclusion – too high a proportion of pupils have not accessed education because of exclusions and a lack of inclusion

We will make the changes set out in the improvement plan as quickly as possible. In some cases, actions may take time to implement, as we need to put robust arrangements in place to ensure they deliver sustainable, permanent improvements and result in a change in culture. However, we will communicate clearly and openly about timescales throughout the process with all of our key stakeholders. 

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