The RCSLT has published a new report regarding the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) reforms in England. The report outlines the findings of a SEND survey, commissioned by the RCSLT, regarding members’ experiences of the SEND reforms, associated successes, challenges and areas for improvement.

Our report highlights mixed progress in implementation and worrying trends. RCSLT members have told us that:

  • Children without EHC plans are not getting the support that they need, and there has been a refocus of resources to support children with EHC plans, which has often been to the detriment of children without EHC plans.
  • Joint commissioning arrangements are patchy, and in some cases speech and language therapy services are not being commissioned for children and young people aged 0-2 and 18-25.
  • Engagement with the EHC planning process, including attending planning meetings, continues to be a challenge.

Encouragingly, the survey has also highlighted areas of positive practice that can be built upon including the involvement of parent and carers in decision-making and partnership working. Over the coming months the RCSLT will be taking forward policy recommendations from the report to help improve support for children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN).