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West Northamptonshire SEND Improvement Board, Summary (16 November 2023)

West Northamptonshire SEND Improvement Board, Summary (16 November 2023) logo


SEND Improvement Board Summary (16 November 2023)

Workstream highlight reports

BP introduced the workstreams in the continued context of the SEND and AP strategy, noting that all highlight reports had been sent out ahead of today’s meeting. BP therefore asked workstream leads to comment on any priority actions or updates that the board should be aware of. Highlights captured below.

Workstream 1 (Accessibility)

The West Northants Local Offer social media is going live this week. The new West Northants newsletter ‘Local Offer News’ has been published.

All members of the board to utilise local offer website by publishing all relevant information in this platform. The more information provided in here, the more people will acknowledge and use it.

Workstream 2 (Resources)

The biggest priority for the workstream remains the development of a joint commissioning strategy and this will be a barrier to being able to move forwards.

BP noted that the lack of a joint commissioning strategy is on the risk register and that a proposal of top-level values and principles for a joint commissioning strategy is present to next board.

Workstream 3 (Identification and assessment)

Clarification is needed about the SEND Ranges use, in terms of how it is being used across the partnership and what the next steps are.

It was agreed that a revision of the Ranges is necessary – this is already being developed through SENCO colleagues seconded to lead this work. BP asked that a deep dive focus on the Ranges impact to date be presented to the January Board.

Workstream 4 (Training)

Work has begun to create consistent course information pages.

It was noted that the lead officer for this workstream is now back in school as a full time Headteacher so a new lead may need to be identified. It was noted that all workstreams are led by Council officers at present.

Workstream 5 (Alternative Provision)

Considerable work has taken place on mapping mental health services, mapping of all providers and the needs of CYP who are excluded and the referral pathways.

The new AP Commissioning Strategy is being developed between the Council and local education leaders. Focus on increasing secondary school engagement and University of Northampton.

Workstream 6 (Preparing for Adulthood)

The development of the PfA information leaflet continues and will be separated from NNC Sign-off should be in January 2024; this will be published on the Local Offer.

Agreement that local education and care providers will work together to develop advice/guidance for parents and young people.

Risk log

The register has been updated following previous meetings, however BP noted that there are some key new risks that have been added to highlight to the board today. All partners shared current risks that were identified through individual organisations.

New risks include the lack of a Joint Commissioning Strategy; Short breaks (risk if there is no provider when current contract ends), potential disaggregation of NPFG. 

Self-evaluation form (SEF) update and next steps

Proposal is for all members of the board to complete a feedback form against the 11 Ofsted criteria for sector that they represent.

The proposed dates for collaborative sessions were shared and it was noted that every session will have SEND Improvement representation present and can in person or online discuss collection of evidence and support the flow of information for 11 areas of Ofsted criteria.

Outcomes Framework

BP confirmed that a multi-agency meeting on 1st November had addressed the lack of overarching outcomes framework. The meeting generated robust discussion, in which the partnership (based on CDC and other LA focuses) collated their preferred top 10 outcomes.

The current outcomes would be shared via an online survey tool to reach children and young people with SEND to ask which outcomes matter most and to highlight if any are missing. Survey results would be reviewed to determine key outcomes and feedback incorporated.

Data dashboard

Focussed discussion about advice timelines, including key challenges around backlogs in therapy services and challenges with recruitment. Board members were challenged to provide recovery plans for key services and ensure the Board was updated.

The Board agreed to further detailed reports link to requests for assessment and link to the use of the SEND Ranges to help improve the consistency of practice and improve outcomes for children.

It was noted that there was significant change to demand following COVID and there were large upward trends for all services. Historical comparisons of demand would need to consider this.

The Balance System report relating to SLCN needs will be presented to the Board in Spring 2024.

Quality Assurance from EHCP audits

The QA (Quality Assurance) working group reported on the use of the Invision360 (cloud-based system) as approved by the board to improve the quality of advices and EHCPs.

The Board noted monthly audit programme in place with all partners, including NPFG. Some immediate changes have been implemented but the main areas of focus were the quality of health and social care advices. A training programme has been developed to roll out with all partners to continue to improve the quality of EHCPs. This is aligned with regional and national practice.


The board agreed to invite Young Voices Young Researchers to the January meeting to present  their feedback from their engagement with young people in West Northants to hear their experiences in the local SEND system.

Next meeting

The meeting will be extended to include a specific focused session on the new SEF.

  • Brackley Area
  • Daventry Area
  • Northampton Area
  • Towcester Area
  • West Northamptonshire
  • Northamptonshire
Additional languages
Translation and/or Interpreting Available on Request
Age range
Suitable for ages from 0 to 25 years
Referral route
No Referral Needed
For people with
Special Educational Needs or a Disability (SEND)
Eligibility criteria
Open to Everyone
Provider category
Specialist Services - For those who require longer-term support


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United Kingdom


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Last updated 28 March 2024