On Wednesday 21st January Dyslexia Action and eight of the UK’s leading disability charities have teamed- up to launch the new SENDirect website.
SENDirect is the collaboration of the SEND Consortium, who have been working together for two and a half years to create a ‘Trip Advisor’ type website for families trying to access local services for their child with special educational needs.
SENDirect has been developed to revolutionise the way families with disabled children access health, education and social care services in their local authorities. An easier way for families to find vital support for their child is more important than ever. The Children and Families Act changed the way services for children with SEND are commissioned and sold and introduced personal budgets – money allocated by local authorities to carers so they can arrange and pay for essential support services.
Jolanta Lasota, Chair of the SEND Consortium said “ We developed SENDirect in direct response to families telling us that finding vital local services for any child with additional needs is over-complicated, confusing and choice is severely limited. It was clear to us that trying to work individually to solve this problem was counter-productive.
SENDirect addresses these issues by putting families firmly in control for the first time, enabling them to search for, buy and review existing services and to find the information they need to make the right decision for their child. At the same time SENDirect will help providers promote the services they offer while the invaluable information that SENDirect gathers about what families in individual areas want and need, will help local authorities shape and improve services.
The SEND Consortium is made up of the following leading charities: Ambitious about Autism; Contact a Family; Dyslexia Action; Family Fund; I CAN; KIDS; Mencap; National Autistic Society and Scope.
To find out more about SENDirect please visit www.sendirect.org.uk