The Early Years Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Advisory Team

The Early Years (SEND) Advisory Team provide support and help for children with additional needs.

The team consists of

  • Early Years Advisory Teachers and
  • Early Years Specialist Practitioners

We are part of Central Bedfordshire’s 0-12s Family Service.  

How can I get help for my child?

We accept referrals from schools and early years settings and from health and care professionals.

Early Years settings and school referrals

Following discussions with parents and carers about their child’s individual needs, schools and early years settings Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Coordinators known as SENCos may decide to make a referral to the team.

Referrals from Health and Social Care

A health professional could be your Health Visitor or a Speech and Language Therapist or a Paediatrician or any other health professional involved with your child.

Referrals can be made by your Family Worker or Social Care Worker.

Before a referral is made, it must be discussed and agreed with the child’s parents or carers.  We will only accept referrals that are signed by the parents or carers.

Referrals to the team can be made via the single online referral system

Who decides if my child’s referral should be accepted?

The Early Years SEND Advisory Team’s Senior Management meet fortnightly to read and process the referrals and they make the final decisions about referrals. A tailored offer of support will be discussed, which might include an Initial Assessment by an Early Years SEND Advisory Teacher and, in some cases, a block of support from an Early Years SEND Specialist Advisory Practitioner.

What happens when my child’s referral is accepted?

To ensure that your child receives the best support we can offer, we will complete an Initial Assessment with you and your child. This can either, be done; at their early years setting or at home if your child is not yet attending an early years setting. We can offer home visits and when your child is ready to access an early years setting we will work with you and the setting to ensure a smooth transition, helping your child to settle successfully.

We will continue to work with you, your child and their early years setting to build on your child’s skills and encourage their progress in play, learning and communication. We will support you and their early years setting by offering advice and guidance on all aspects of your child’s development, progress and future planning. We will help the setting to identify any additional support your child may need and we will help them to provide this. We work closely with other professionals some of whom your child may already be receiving support from such as Physiotherapists or Speech and Language Therapists. We will continue to work with your child until they turn 5 years old. We continue to be available during their Reception year in school to give further advice if it is needed.