Call for Fair and Equitable 1:1 Medical Support in Mainstream Schools

14 July 2022

Call for Fair and Equitable 1:1 Medical Support in Mainstream Schools

On 23rd April, working with MDUK and TreatSMA, we wrote to the departments of Education and Health highlighting the problems with 1:1 support for children with complex needs in mainstream schools. We asked for an open dialogue so we can make them aware of the issues and the inequalities as well as the stories of best practice. You can read our letter here.

After much toing and froing between government departments, on 7th July, we were happy to receive a reply from Ofsted. You can read the letter in full here. They acknowledge in their letter that access to children’s services and therapies in schools is a problem post-Covid and reassure us that their inspection framework focus’ not only on education but also on care provision.

We were particularly pleased to hear that Ofsted have been working closely with the Quality Care Commission (CQC), the Department for Education (DfE) and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to support the work that NHS England is leading in two areas. One is focusing on support for children who have very complex needs, and the other is considering the organisation of clinical support in schools for children with long term conditions and disabilities. We were invited to talk to an Ofsted representative who attends these meetings, which we now have. She was very receptive to our concerns so this is a promising step in the right direction.

They also informed us that they are working with these same partners to develop a new SEND area inspection framework. We have been invited to consult on this framework which you can find here.

SMA UK will be responding on behalf of the SMA Community. If you want to share your experiences or your views you can respond individually as a parent or carer,  alternatively you can email portia.thorman@smauk.org.uk and we can include your perspective within our response. The deadline is 11th September 2022.