John Oates, The Open University; Silvana Mengoni, University of Hertfordshire; and Janet Bardsley, The Open University
This blog post was jointly authored by John Oates, Silvana Mengoni and Janet Bardsley. The authors applied to the OU’s Engaging Research Seed Funding Scheme to explore the impact of their research into ‘key working’.
Key working is a way of supporting families of children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), which enables the implementation of the Children and Families Act and Code of Practice (September 2014).
Our seed funded project was based on the Council for Disabled Children widely disseminating the Guide, with an emphasis on exploring its uptake among potential users who might not have been sufficiently aware previously of approaches to key working in relation to the new legislative frameworks.
As I have written in earlier posts, we have been seeking new ways to disseminate the results of our ‘key working’ project on ways of co-ordinating support for families with children or young people with special educational needs and disabilities.
While presenting at an international conference on mental health, I was introduced to the head of the child guidance service of the Caribbean island of St Lucia, who was also presenting.
In conversation, it turned out that she had already come across the Early Support developmental journals that we produced before our keyworking research, and is successfully using them across the island to help support families with children with special educational needs and disabilities.
As I discussed in my previous post, the aim of our ‘key working’ project was to identify the different ways of co-ordinating support for families with children or young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and to produce a guidance booklet, primarily for practitioners and managers, to enable them to better meet the requirements of the Children and Families Act 2014.
Although we had been briefed to produce a short guide to developing key working as a printed booklet for wide distribution among local authorities and practitioners, after we had delivered our final product in April 2014, there were several weeks during which we heard nothing about progress.
The ‘key-working’ project was a research study funded by the Department for Education and commissioned by the National Children’s Bureau. Silvana Mengoni, Research Fellow in FELS, Janet Bardsley, Lecturer in Health & Social Care and myself, as project lead, worked with families and practitioners in both statutory and voluntary services and with commissioners and managers in local authorities. Continue reading →