Latest DfE funding for SEND services presents real opportunity for change, says Open Objects
- Published: 13 February 2018
Idox’s Open Objects has responded to the allocation of a further £29 million to help councils meet the statutory requirements of the Children and Families Act (2014) and the SEN Code of Practice (2014), calling it a ‘milestone moment’.
The additional funding from the Department for Education (DfE) – announced at the end of last year – has now been distributed to all councils in England. It will provide local authority SEND services with additional financial support at a time when teams are already working hard to transition thousands of existing Statements to Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans in line with new legislation.
For the EHC process specifically, this cash injection is likely to present local authorities with greater opportunities to invest in service change, as they continue to rollout digital technologies to help them manage EHC pathways in a more sustainable, efficient manner.
Open Objects has collaborated with several local authorities to understand how digital can transform the EHC process and directly address time, resource and financial challenges. Working with professionals across education, health and social care – as well as parents, carers and young people – the team has developed the EHC Hub. As a secure, online platform that enables professionals, families and young people to collaborate simultaneously, the Hub offers a more personal approach to EHC planning while ensuring engagement at every stage.
Gavin Cameron, Managing Director of Open Objects said: “The allocation of additional funding is another milestone moment for those working across SEND services, and presents a real opportunity for service change across local authorities in England.”
“Using digital provides the tools needed to transform services and help teams work more efficiently, which is particularly important during the complex EHC process. Our EHC Hub can be a real catalyst for development – local authorities coming on board over the next couple of months will also be on track to pilot cases and rollout wider in time for the September 2018 school term.”
- Additional information on the SEND implementation grant: allocations for 2018 to 2019 can be found here.
- More about the growth of EHC plan numbers can be found here.