Impartial information, advice and support on matters relating to a child or young person’s special educational needs or disability from birth to 25 years


Weekly E-Bulletin 221 week ending 06.01.2017

A round up of the week’s news and information from the Information, Advice and Support Service and our local parent/carer forum Voice4Parents Wolverhampton.   Don't forget to visit our website

Welcome to the first e-bulletin of 2017. Wishing you all a very happy New Year.

Staffing 'BABY' News

We are delighted to announce that Michelle Reid welcomed a little girl into the world on 14th December 2016.  Both mum and Betsy are doing well.   Our heartfelt congratulations go to the proud parents at this very special time.

 Parent/Carer Workshop


Due to the popularity of our previous workshops, the Information, Advice and Support Service is offering parents and carers another opportunity to take part in our “Supporting children and young people in education” workshop on Friday 3rd February 9.30-11.30am.

  • Are you concerned about your child's progress in school?
  • Would you like to know how schools and settings can support children with Special Educational Needs and Disability?
  • Find out how schools support children with special educational needs and/or a disability and how you and your child will be involved in the process.

Please click the image on the right to view our leaflet which explains how children and young people are supported in education.

Places are limited so please book early to avoid disappointment.  Booking is essential

Your views are important to us!    

  • Have we given you information, advice and support?
  • Have you joined us at one of our parent information events?
  • Have you visited our website or read our leaflets?
However you have used our service we would love to hear your views.   Please could we ask that you spare a few moments to complete our short anonymous survey, it should take you no longer than 5 minutes, thank you.
 Wolverhampton Information, Advice and support Service fact sheets

Preparing for a School Meeting

This fact sheet has been written to help you to prepare for the meeting, to give you some ideas and suggestions to ensure it is a positive experience and to enable you and the school/college or setting to work together to help your child achieve their aspirations.   Click on the image to the left to read this fact sheet.

Visiting a Prospective School

Looking at schools for your child can be quite a daunting experience, especially if your child has additional needs.  It can be difficult to know what you should look for and what questions to ask.  

This fact sheet has been written to help you, take a look by clicking on the image to the right, we're sure you'll find it helpful.
Calling all young people – would you like to be on the big screen?
Not quite Hollywood but Wolverhampton needs you!  Some training is being developed for schools and for people working across education, health and social care about changes made to the law around special educational needs and disability.  Some short videos will be included in the training and we would love them to feature young people from Wolverhampton.  Would you be willing to read some lines for these films? Do you know somebody who would like to be involved?
If so, please get in touch with us at the Information, Advice and Support Service by 31st January 2017.

Contact a Family - New Guide

Do you need help with your child’s behaviour? - You are not alone. There are many reasons disabled children exhibit behaviour that challenges, and there are often complex reasons behind a child's behaviour - it is rarely anyone's 'fault'.  Parents can feel under a lot of pressure to solve behaviour problems, and are naturally very worried about the best approach to take.
What is helpful to know is that all behaviours are a form of communication, and if you can work out what your child is trying to tell you through their behaviour, then you can look for ways to prevent them becoming distressed, as well as help them find other, more acceptable ways to communicate their needs.
Contact A Family have updated its guide for parents, Understanding your child's behaviour, looks at:

· Why children behave in different ways.
· How to set the scene for good behaviour, recognising triggers and finding strategies
· Managing specific issues like tantrums or biting
· Looking after yourself - people and organisations who can support you and your family.
· Puberty and the teenage years, plus much more.
Parents can contact the Freephone helpline on 0808 808 3555, email  and ask for a free copy of the latest edition.  Or you can download Understanding your child's behaviour free on their website.
Other guides for parents in the series on behaviour issues, available from their helpline or to download, include: Helping your child's sleep  Potty/toilet trainingFeeding and eating, Dealing with bullying.


Personal Independence Payment and Other Benefits at 16

Contact a family has produced a new guide which looks at the benefits it may be possible for a young disabled person to claim once they turn 16 years of age. To read this guide, please click here.
Reminder - Inspection looms!
Calling all parents and young people – have your say!

The Information, Advice and Support Service would welcome your support with the following. 

We recently told you about the forthcoming area inspections that will examine how well local areas are embedding the Children and Families Act 2014 in order to improve services and outcomes for disabled children and young people and those with special educational needs.  Wolverhampton will receive notification of the inspection by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC).  The inspectors will focus much of their time on speaking to parents, carers, children and young people about how well Wolverhampton is responding to the needs of local families in relation to SEN and disability. 
It really is essential that you have your say We would like to have a ‘bank’ of parents and young people on stand-by so that when notice is given, we can contact you and invite you to speak with the inspection team.  If you are reading this thinking that you would like to be involved in  this visit but do not feel confident, or that you do not feel knowledgeable about the system, please do consider coming forward.  We are keen for the inspectors to speak to those ‘in the know’ and those who are not.  We want them to hear from local families about what it is really like.    

This is your chance to have your say at a really important time.  Perhaps you have had a fantastic experience – then please come forward to share that too.  You will be given a very warm welcome along with a cuppa and a slice of cake!   We do not have date for the inspection yet but we would like to be prepared. 

To find out more about either opportunity or to register your interest, please contact Lucy Harris (Manager of the Information, Advice and Support Service) 01902 556945 or email

Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission has prepared an inspection handbook and framework, which will can be found here.  

I look forward to hearing from you, Lucy.

Please remember to use the Local Offer to share concerns about provision, click here to access the Local Offer Feedback form. 

Disability Grants News

Click here to read the New Year issue of Disability Grants News - a monthly round up of what's new on the Disability Grants website and resources for anyone with a disability, caring for or working with disabled adults or children.  This month's issue includes:

  • Caravans for the Disabled
  • Awards for Young Musicians is open for applications. Young musicians aged 5 to 17 years can apply for grants towards lessons, buying or hiring an instrument, travel and specialist music courses.
  • The Joshua Wilson Charity supports families living with childhood brain tumours and post-operative complications in England and Wales with hospital travel, equipment and holidays.
  • Independence at Home provides financial support for a wide range of disability equipment, home adaptations or other essential items to improve independence and quality of life.
  • Little Wings offers free of charge medical air charters in aircraft for children and adults with life threatening injuries or illnesses.
and much more!
Autism Friendly Screenings

For the January Autism Friendly Screenings, please visit the Dimensions website by clicking here.

SEN Newsletter 2017

To read the latest Newsletter from SEN Magazine, please click here.

This edition includes:

Autism assessments
What are they and what do they look for? More
Staying on track
Supporting young people with SEN into adult life. More
Teach and protect
The role of school staff in safeguarding children with SEN. More

Looking forwards with spina bifida
Healthcare transitions for young people with spina bifida and hydrocephalus. More
Flights of fancy
How art gives kids with SEN a route to self-expression. More

For the latest stories, visit:

Carer Support News Bulletin

Click here for the January news bulletin from Carer support with articles on:
  • Moving and Handling Training on offer for Wolverhampton carers
  • Care Quality Commission (CQC) Consultation
  • Blue Badge Information Surgeries
  • Integrated Urgent Care West Midlands Service regional team
In the news!

Just a week to go to apply for reception class places for 2017 - Parents and guardians of children who will start school for the first time this September have just over a week left to apply for their place. To read more, visit the City of Wolverhampton Council website.

Have your say on new Early Years Strategy for city - People are being encouraged to have their say about a new Early Years Strategy for Wolverhampton. To read more, visit the City of Wolverhampton Council website.

Help on hand to improve your health and wellbeing in 2017 - With nearly two thirds of people making it their New Year's resolution to get fit, residents in Wolverhampton are being offered a helping hand to improve their health and wellbeing in 2017.  To read more, visit the City of Wolverhampton Council website.

Take a new direction this New Year - People looking to take a new direction in the New Year are being encouraged to learn something new with Adult Education Wolverhampton.  More than 120 courses are on offer starting in January and February.  To read more, visit the City of Wolverhampton Council website. 

Free fitness open day at WV Active - WV Active will be opening all 3 leisure centres for hours of free fitness fun this weekend.

Visitors are invited to drop into any of the leisure centres. WV Active Aldersley, WV Active Bilston-Bert Williams and WV Active Central, on Saturday 7 January to take part in free sport sessions, swimming sessions and fitness classes. To read more, visit the City of Wolverhampton Council website. 
Voice4Parents wants to know that the services and information provided through Wolverhampton’s Local Offer for Special Educational Needs and Disability reflects the needs of parents, carers and young people.   Let us know so we can make it better for you.  Please share your views by leaving your feedback.
You have received this e-mail bulletin because your e-mail address is held by the Information, Advice and Support Service.  If you are a parent/carer, we hope you will find the information helpful.  Please be assured that parental contact details will not be shared elsewhere.
Please note that the Information, Advice and Support Service or Wolverhampton City Council do not guarantee that this message or attachments are virus free or reach you in their original form and accept no liability arising from this. Any views or opinions expressed within this email are those of the writer and may not necessarily reflect those of Information, Advice and Support or Wolverhampton City Council.
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