A message from Cllr Brabazon

February 2022

I am delighted to be contributing to our SEND blog and sincerely hope 2022 will bring everyone a lot more good fortune and happier times ahead over the coming months. Cllr Brabazon

As Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Families, I have the fantastic job of working with senior officers and their teams as we develop our range of services to children and families. Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) is a vital service, and one which must be developed with your involvement and participation.

Since taking on this role in May 2021, I have seen huge change. We now have a lively and expanding Parent Carer Forum (PCF). This runs independently, has its own staff support, funding and a chair and officers. With some 60 members signed up, the forum is already making its mark.

Representatives have been invited to sit on partnership policy-making groups such as the SEND Executive, contributing parent voices and perspectives. These are making a very significant contribution to the shaping of services. This is one more step in the process of embedding co-production as our normal way of working in drafting plans, policies, and procedures.

SEND, in particular, is a service where parents’ views and insights are vital, and the forum has a crucial role in promoting this. Of course, forum members will also – quite rightly – be holding us to account. That is what should happen.

Our commitment to working with families is a central thread underpinning the service. Consultation events are becoming the norm – most recently about transitions to adult services where several workshops were held to shape ideas, policies and to start from family experience.

In the weeks and months to come, I hope to meet as many people as possible, and with the SEND team, draw on your experiences to improve and develop services.

The Leader of the Council, Cllr Peray Ahmet, and I met parents in December for an open discussion. We are looking forward to a second meeting early in March.

We have placed SEND high on our agenda, have increased the SEND budget for more staffing and are focused on our joint working with you and all the partners contributing to SEND. 

Cllr Zena Brabazon
Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Families

Page last updated:

July 25, 2022