Our progress with tackling the areas for improvement in the Ofsted/Care Quality Commission inspection.

The Ofsted/Care Quality Commission inspection findings of SEND services across Bristol's local area were published at the end of last year.

The inspection highlighted areas for improvement, as well as calling for a joint action plan with partners to deliver rapid progress and long-term change for families and young people with SEND.

You can follow our progress and find updates about our next steps here. 

20 September 2022: Notification of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) local area re-visit

Bristol City Council and Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire (BNSSG) Integrated Care Board (ICB) have received notice from His Majesty's Inspectorate (HMI) that the local area SEND re-visit is to take place over three days, beginning Tuesday 4 October.

The purpose of the re-visit is to determine whether the local area has made sufficient progress in addressing the five areas of significant weakness detailed in the Written Statement of Action (WSoA):

  • lack of accountability of leaders at all levels, including school leaders
  • inconsistencies in timeliness and effectiveness of the arrangements for the identification and assessment of CYP with SEND
  • dysfunctional EHC plan process, and inadequate quality of EHC plans
  • the underachievement and lack of inclusion of CYP with SEND, including the high rates of persistent absenteeism and fixed-term exclusions
  • the fractured relationships with parents and carers, lack of co-production and variable engagement and collaboration

Find a copy of the pdf letter notifying Parents and Carers of children and young people with SEND about the re-visit (209 KB) .

During the re-visit

The inspection team will:

  • review performance information and documentary evidence such as plans and policies
  • visit providers, such as nurseries, schools, colleges and specialist services
  • talk to children, young people and their parents and carers

The inspectors will decide who they want to see and where they want to go during their time on site. Most of these meetings will be timetabled in advance.

However, inspectors may decide to visit a setting or meet certain people to follow up any key lines of enquiry that emerge throughout the inspection. For example, tracking the ‘journey' of a particular child from their case records.

The local area nominated officer (LANO) will respond to any such requests and co-ordinate communications and activity as required.

The inspection concludes with a final feedback meeting attended by representatives of the local area.

The attendees at this feedback meeting will be agreed between the lead inspector and the LANO.

After the re-visit

The lead HMI is responsible for writing the re-visit letter and submitting the evidence to Ofsted shortly after the re-visit ends. The CQC inspector will contribute to the process of finalising the re-visit letter. It is the inspection team that reaches the judgements.

If a local area is making insufficient progress in addressing any of the areas of significant weakness, it is for the Department for Education and NHS England to determine the next steps. This may include the Secretary of State (SoS) using their powers of intervention. Ofsted and the CQC will not carry out any further re-visits unless directed to do so by the SoS.

You can find out more about UK Government guidance on re-visits to local areas on GOV.UK.

5 November 2021: Written Statement of Action update

The Written Statement of Action (WSoA) sets out the aims to improve key areas in 4 month periods, which are described as ‘milestones'.

The final milestone was in July 2021.

The pdf WSoA progress report (306 KB)  sets out the progress made against the July 2021 milestone

25 May 2021: Education, health and care (EHC) plan and annual review audit update

We do monthly audits on EHC plans and annual reviews. Audits identify what we're doing well and what we need to improve in the EHC plan and annual review process.

The EHC plan and annual review audit update includes the progress so far, and has more information about:

  • the EHC plan and annual review audit process
  • what we're doing well
  • what we need to improve

20 January 2021: Written Statement of Action update

The Written Statement of Action (WSoA) sets out the aims to improve key areas in 4 month periods, which are described as ‘milestones'. The second milestone was November 2020.

The pdf second WSoA update (183 KB)  sets out the progress made against the November 2020 milestone.

18 January 2021: Take part in our SEND surveys

Two surveys are being held to ask for feedback from our SEND service users.

This is so we can understand what they'd like to improve and what is working for them.

Both surveys are open from 18 January to 5 March.

22 September 2020: Written Statement of Action update 

The Written Statement of Action (WSoA) sets out the aims to improve key areas in 4 month periods, which are described as ‘milestones'. The first milestone was July 2020. 

The pdf accessible WSoA update (285 KB)  sets out the progress made against the July 2020 milestone. 

The pdf full WSoA update (455 KB)  includes the progress made and has more information covering: 

  • data reliability 
  • EHC plan statutory process
  • numbers and timeliness of EHC plans issued in 2020 
  • Autumn priorities 

21 May 2020: You Said We Did report

From December 2019 to the end of February 2020, parents and carers were asked for their views and ideas to shape Bristol's Written Statement of Action.

This pdf You Said, We Did report (596 KB)  sets out the feedback we received and explains how we have responded within the Written Statement of Action.

20 April 2020: Written Statement of Action

The Written Statement of Action (WSoA) is the detailed plan to improve key areas identified in the Ofsted/CQC inspection report, which was published at the end of last year.  

Ofsted's letter confirms that the WSoA demonstrates the local area's commitment to address all areas of concern by working with parents and carers, the area's clinical commissioning group and a range of partners and stakeholders which includes schools, health services and social care. 

5 February 2020: Take part in our SEND surveys

Two surveys are being held to get feedback from our SEND service users.

This is so we can understand what they'd like to improve and what is working for them.

Parents and carers SEND survey Go to https://bristol.citizenspace.com/education-skills/send-parent-carer-survey-2020-spring/ (opens new window)

Children and young people survey  Go to https://bristol.citizenspace.com/education-skills/send-cyp-survey-2020-spring/ (opens new window)

Both surveys are open from 4 February 2020 to 20 March 2020.

27 January 2020: Have your say on the SEND improvement plan 

A scrutiny meeting will be held on Monday 3 February to listen views on SEND provision in Bristol.
 
The public are invited to ask questions and submit statements which will be used to inform the Written Statement of Action (WSoA) required by the recent Ofsted/Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection of SEND in the local area.

14 January 2020: Bristol City Council announces proposed SEND budget boost for 2020/21

Bristol City Council is proposing to increase its Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND) budget by over £1.3m.

Key points in papers published last week, ahead of the Schools Forum in Bristol, include an increase in national government funding for SEND in Bristol and the council's proposal to move additional funding into SEND.

20 December 2019: Inspection findings of Bristol City Council's Special Education Needs and/or Disability (SEND) services published

The report highlights areas for improvement and calls for local area partners to jointly create an action plan to deliver rapid progress and long-term change across SEND services for Bristol's children and young people.

Councillor Helen Godwin, Cabinet Lead for Children said for too long children and young people in the city with SEND have been let down.

20 December 2019: Ofsted and CQC inspection SEND report 

Earlier this year (2019), Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) carried out an inspection of local area special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) provision. 

pdf Read the report detailing the inspection's findings. (173 KB)

We fully accept the overall findings of the report, which highlights areas we can build on and where we must improve.

We know that the findings of the report will not come as a surprise to the parents and carers of children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities, who demand and deserve better support.