SEND local offer feedback 2014-2016

September 2015 to August 2016

In this period we added new information about:

Other improvements

We have re-organised and improved the activities and transport section and improved the information for young people with SEND which is now part of the youth zone where young people can find other information important to them like online safety and emotional wellbeing.

We also have a local offer Facebook page which is now displayed on the homepage to keep you informed about news and events.

Feedback and comments

You can see below a summary of the feedback and comments we have received in the last 12 months and what we have done in response.

Finding services and information

You said

Unable to find information on home educated children.

We said

There is a section called educating your child at home under education.

You said

Can't find advice form for conversion of a statement to an EHC

We said

All advice forms can be found in the professional's area.

You said

I am trying to update my local offer but the email address on the website is no longer valid.

We did

We have checked all the contact details and they are up to date, we will endeavour to complete this exercise on a regular basis.

You said

You would like to find a list of mainstream units or mainstream specially resourced provision for pupils with moderate/severe/profound and multiple learning disabilities

We said

We will look into providing a list of these schools. You can find the information we have published about schools so far in the education section.

You said

You would like to know details for the complaints procedure

We said

Lancashire County Council is committed to providing the best possible services and we welcome all your feedback, whether it is a complaint, comment or compliment.

You can find information on the council website about how to submit a complaint and how we handle your compliments, comments and complaints.

If your complaint is about a health service Healthwatch Lancashire (external link) provide advice on how to take forward a complaint, or resolve an issue.

Links to this information are available on the local offer site. You can also type 'complaints' into the search bar to find this information.

You said

Unable to find information on housing, disability facilities grants or disabled students allowance.

We said

This information is on the youth zone which you will find in the moving into adulthood section. You can also type these terms into the search bar to find the information.

You said

Would like more information about health services available to children with SEN as well as wellbeing services on the local offer. This is to be made available to children with SEN not our parents.

We said

We will be working with children, young people and health services across Lancashire to make the health information more comprehensive.

Language and design

You said

We would like more pictures, it is difficult to get around and understand.

We said  

We are working on adding more pictures and talking to parents and young people to get their ideas on how else to improve the site to make it easier to get around.

You said

The local offer is good.

We said

Thank you for your comments. We are always trying to make the site better. We welcome your feedback either through the feedback form or at your local group.

You said

On the local offer page on the youth zone, even though there are links to different areas, there should be more detail to expand on what is going to be spoken about so the young people know what is going to be explained to save their time.

We did

We have added some explanations for these links which you can see on the SEND - local offer page on the youth zone.

You said

On the local offer page on the youth zone more colour is needed to make it more appealing and there should be more use of pictures to help that could also include the link to the detailed information. Pictures help as some young people struggle with their reading.

Example:

Under Information for you:

  • Find a job – picture of someone with a piggy bank or in a particular job uniform
  • Housing – picture of a house

We said

We use pictures with links to the detailed information on the SEND category page on the youth zone.  However, we decided not to use these pictures on the local offer page.  This is because we want to make the site colourful and appealing but also helpful for people who are visually impaired and using screen readers and other tools.

You said

An audio button with a young person reading out the information can help those who are visually impaired.

We said

We have chosen not to use an audio button but we have tried to create a site which is suitable for people using screen readers and other tools that can help people who are visually impaired.

If you have any problems using the local offer please let us know by filling in the feedback form or telling your local group.

You said

There should be language translation opportunities as there are many different languages spoken in Lancashire.

We said

We don't offer language translation on the website but the council does provide information about how to get documents in a different format or language.

You said

The POWAR participation group page is good, but we should try and put some photos on the page of activities, and thoughts from the young people what they like about the group.  It also needs more colour.

We did

We are working with POWAR to change this page.

You said

Keep the POWAR newsletter up to date.

We said

We have decided not to include the POWAR newsletter on the website because it is not accessible in its current format.

We will be working with POWAR to make the information available in an accessible format.

You said

On the POWAR page, rather than clicking the Barnardo’s page for contact details have the office number: 01772 629470 and staff email address because it could be annoying for people to find if they want it straight away.

We did

We have added the phone number to the page.

You said

The education, health and care plans section has good paragraphs but the text could be bigger or be given the option to do, easy to navigate, but pictures could help with visual aids as it is not appealing for young people to read.

We said

Thank you for your comments.

All modern browsers allow you to change font sizes. We’ve tried to create a site which doesn’t get in the way when you change these settings.

We will continue to explore ways to add more visual aids to the site.

You said

Videos on the main page from the Council for Disabled children explaining what the local offer is could help get people to understand what it is.

We did

We have added a video from the Council for Disabled Children to the page about the local offer for young people.

You said

You can use different videos of the site to explain different sections or have films of young people explaining different sections. It is interesting to hear about it rather than read about it which can be hard and too long.

We did

We've added a video from the Department for Education on the page what is an education health and care plan? It features young people and explains what an education, health and care plan is and who can have one.

We are adding videos to the site when we find suitable videos, if you have any please let us know so we can look at them. We will be using video format for the Collaborative Workshop feedback.

You said

Good:

  • Facebook feed is good
  • Easy to navigate
  • Health, education and social information
  • Good for 16+
  • Good contacts
  • Pictures on the Zone
  • Good layout
  • Lots of info
  • Bright colours- pink
  • Related links
  • Got a rating tab
  • Well thought out
  • Calendar and events
  • Colourful tabs

Bad:

  • No Pictures
  • Boring
  • Not for young people
  • Not relatable
  • Not colourful
  • Writing too small
  • Lots of writing

We said

Thank you for your comments.

We will use your feedback and keep reviewing the local offer to see how we can add more pictures and make it better, more interesting and relatable for young people.

We are always trying to make the site better. We welcome your feedback either through the local offer feedback form or at your local group.

You said

The Hampshire local offer has good homepage idea with changing sliding pictures, basic colours with symbols next to it, it can make it nice and clear for some people.

We said

Thank you for your suggestion. We are looking into using more symbols on the local offer.

You said

On Trafford's local offer it is nice to see how the feedback has been taken by the local authority and what changes have been made and how they listen and act.

We said

We look at feedback on a regular basis and make changes to the local offer site from these suggestions. The local offer site changes on a regular basis due to your comments, suggestions and information. We annually publish the feedback in a 'you said, we did' format on this page.

Being part of the SEND local offer

You said

Royal Cross is Lancashire's only school for deaf children and so any help you can provide in signposting it more clearly would be much appreciated.

We did

We added details under specialist services, under the heading Hearing, Vision, multi-sensory impairment. All special schools are also now listed with their specialisms in the education section.

You said

Schools, colleges, nurseries, pre-schools and Children's Centre details and local offers not showing on map.

We did

We had many comments about the map facility. Due to this we have removed the map.

All information regarding schools and colleges is available under the education section and Children's Centres, nurseries and pre-schools information is available under the early years section.

You said

We are a provider and we want to be a part of the local offer

We did

We have contacted all providers we know to be part of the local offer. Any organisation who provides a service to SEND families can submit their service information on the FIND Directory. Providers are in control of their service information displayed on the local offer web site.

 

If the feedback provided didn't relate to the local offer, we found the department that could help make improvements and passed the comments to them. This feedback is not included in our summary.

2014-2015

We publish a summary of the feedback and comments we receive each year and what we have done in response.

You can see the latest comments on the you said, we did page or see below a summary of the feedback and comments we received up to August 2015.

Finding services and information

You said

A new parent wouldn't know where to start.

We did

We added a link on the homepage with the heading: "I think my child might need extra help". We've also added web links in other areas of the council's website like the schools section. We hope this will help more parents find out about the SEND local offer.

You said

We have concerns about the SEN support in the local offer.

We did

Updated the Support at school page to include more relevant information.

You said

School and post 16 transport had a link to the home to school travel policy however this was generic and not SEN transport.

We did

Changed the link to the transport policy so it shows both mainstream and SEN transport policies.

You said

We want more information about services.

We did

We have added more information and are improving the SEND local offer daily. We want to include everything we can about special educational needs and disabilities and are working together with families and providers to achieve this.

We have invited services and providers to give us their details to be included and are looking into more ways of reaching providers.

We are encouraging providers from public services, voluntary sector organisations and support groups to add their details to the FIND directory of services to be included in the SEND local offer.

You said

Where is the information about Lancashire's short break provision?

We did

The current information is now available on the SEND local offer, in the activities and transport section and will be updated when more information is available.

You said

I can't find any contact details

We did

We have included contact details in various sections of the SEND local offer.

You said

Some schools, nurseries, pre-school, college and support groups are missing from the map.

We did

We have looked into these comments, updated the map where possible and are working on improvements to the map and the information it shows.

You said

It is hard to find information using the map.

We did

Added information in other formats, for example the activities and support groups are also available as lists.

You can see all of these on the list of what's in the SEND local offer (the site map) which we now link to from the map page and all the main sections of the local offer.

We are looking into better ways to search for and show information. We have asked parent carers what they think and will involve them in every stage of the solution.

You said

It would be good to have forms available that would be useful to professionals and parent carers.

We did

We have made forms available for parents and young people that are useful if you are going through an education, health and care (EHC) assessment or developing an EHC plan.

We also have an area for professionals where they can download forms to use when working with children and young people.

You said

There aren't enough services in my area.

We did

We are currently gathering information around all services provided or funded by Lancashire County Council for children and young people aged 0-25. This will help us see if there are any gaps in services across Lancashire and how we can fill them. We will be discussing this with parent carers and young people.

Language and design

You said

Moving into adult life is not consistent with other advice we have seen, moving into adulthood would be better.

We did

Changed the heading of the section from moving into adult life to moving into adulthood.

You said

It is difficult to understand what is meant by some of the wording for example Our processes under the EHC section and SEND Facilities in the map section.

We did

Reviewed the page that was previously called 'Our processes' and renamed it 'Steps to getting an EHC plan'.

Renamed the category on the map that was called 'SEND Facilities' as 'support groups and activities'.

You said

A new parent might not know what "I think my child has SEN" means.

We did

Renamed the link on the homepage "I think my child needs extra help".

You said

The local offer needs visuals to break up the text and more use of diagrams.

We did

We made more use of the education, health and care (EHC) plan pathway diagram by putting it into the steps to getting an EHC plan information and improved the diagram so that the different stages link to more details on the website.

We will try to use more pictures to explain processes when we make changes to the website.

You said

The website is hard to navigate, it's not always clear if you're on the local offer site or the main council site. The homepage is too wordy, corporate and not visual enough.

We did

We've been discussing these comments at meetings with parent carers to see how we can address them. As a result we are making plans to redesign the SEND local offer to give it more of its own identity and make it easier to find information. We will consult with parent carers and young people on these plans before changing the look of the website.

Being part of the SEND local offer

You said

We want to give feedback anonymously.

We did

Changed the online feedback form so that leaving contact details is optional.

You said

Our service is not included, how do we become part of Lancashire's SEND local offer?

We did

We invited each service to submit their information. If you are a statutory, voluntary sector organisation or support group you can add your organisation's details to the FIND directory of services which is part of the local offer.

If the feedback provided didn't relate to the local offer, we found the department that could help make improvements and passed the comments to them. This feedback is not included in our summary.

You said, we did

  • SEND local offer feedback 2014-2016