If you think your child has special educational needs you can speak to the professionals already working with your child, such as their teacher or GP.
There are local SEND support groups listed on Pinpoint Devon, online groups, training and events to help parents of children and young people with SEND.
Devon Information, Advice & Support for SEND (DIAS)
DIAS is an impartial, confidential and free service providing information, advice and support about all aspects of SEND for parents, children and young people.
The DIAS team can support you with areas such as:
- preparing for meetings
- expressing your views
- understanding paperwork
- resolving issues
- where to find more information
You can contact them by phoning 01392 383080. Calls will be answered between 10am and 3pm Monday to Friday, or you can leave a message outside of these times. Alternatively you can email firstname.lastname@example.org
Devon Parent Carers’ Voice (DPCV)
DPCV is Devon’s parent carer forum – a representative local group of parents and carers of children and young people with disabilities. They work alongside the local authority, education, health and other service providers to ensure the services they plan, commission, deliver and monitor meet the needs of children and families.
If you want to have a say in improving services for children with additional needs and their families, you can contact them on 07975 506069 or by emailing email@example.com. You can also visit their Facebook page or follow them on Twitter.
If you are interested in support for specific conditions, have a look at our ‘support for different types of need‘ pages.
- Signpost Plus has information about local and national services for children with special needs
- The Family Information Service includes registered childcare and other services and support for all children, young people and parents
- Contact is a national charity providing a wide range of information, advice and support to families of children with disabilities.
- Care Direct offers information, advice and support about the adult social care system in Devon, for young people aged 18+ and their families.
- Devon Carers helps carers to maintain their own health, wellbeing and independence and to care safely, confidently and effectively. It provides carers with the information and advice they need in their caring role. They help carers find support in their community and from local community organisations.
- Devon Young Carers works with young people aged 4-18 years old who help look after someone in their family or a friend who is ill, disabled or misuses drugs and alcohol. Find out more about services for young carers.
Training and courses
- CEDA Bisnet (Behaviour Intervention support Network) offers various parent carer training sessions to support parents of children with autism, aggressive behaviour and attention difficulties
- British Sign Language Courses are available throughout Devon.
- Better Outcomes from Meetings can help parents to work positively and constructively with school staff and get more out of each meeting.
National guidance and support
- Navigate is an emotional support service for parents of disabled children.
- Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS) offers support for children whose families are in the military services
- GOV.UK government overview of provision for children and young people with SEND
- GOV.UK guide to the SEND Code of Practice for parents
- GOV.UK SEND support easy-read guide for children and young people
- Disability Rights UK – Guide to the Care Act
- Council for Disabled Children – Information for Parents
- Council for Disabled Children – SEND reforms: What children and young people need to know
- GLOSSARY of terms – ‘Jargon Buster’ from IPSEA