Ofsted Publishes Annual Report for 2018/19 Ofsted has published its Annual Report for 2018/19 that reiterates the failings by schools and local authorities of many children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). The report acknowledges that its “inspections of provision for children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) has exposed a lack of coherence and coordination. Local leaders across education, health and care do not always see themselves as collectively accountable for this provision. Too often, parents encounter fractures in assessment and planning. In these cases, the system is not working well as a whole to make the best decisions and achieve the best outcomes for children and young people”. Ofsted’s findings echo those of the Education Select Committee, the LGSCO and the local area SEND inspections that illustrate a system in crisis and demonstrate just how badly children with SEND are being let down all over the country. In its 2019 election manifesto IPSEA called on the Government make four commitments to improve the education of children and young people with SEND and ensure they receive the support they are legally entitled to. This comprised: - Greater accountability – children and young people with SEND needs a robust system of accountability so that local authorities know there are serious consequences if they flout the law. Ofsted recognises its own blind spots caused by weak legislation, weak powers and weak enforcement. Better joined up working – children and young people need better joined-up working across education, health and social care, particularly during the EHC needs assessment process. Ofsted recognises that joint commissioning by local authorities in SEND provision is a weakness in around a third of the local authorities inspected; local leaders have an insufficient understanding of what children in their area need by way of educational, health and social care needs. Improved SEN support – there needs to be stronger guidance on SEN Support to ensure there is clarity over how children should be supported at this level and what good quality SEN Support looks like. Increased funding – there needs to be adequate funding to ensure that all children and young people with SEND receive the support they need to meet their individual needs whether that’s under SEN Support or through an Education, Health and Care plan – Ofsted called for local agencies to think carefully about way resources are not being employed differently to ensure coherence and coordination of SEND services. Ali Fiddy, IPSEA’s Chief Executive, said: “IPSEA calls on the Government to act now in addressing the SEND crisis. It’s now time for the Government to tackle the problems that are being repeatedly identified to improve the education of children and young people with SEND and ensure they receive the support they are legally entitled to”.