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News and Events

Keep up to-date with the latest news and events.

Highlights from published Ofsted reports

Northampton College achieved an overall grade of Good in their recent Ofsted report (December), with Outstanding for their High Needs provision. The report highlights many things including:

Leaders, managers and governors have very high aspirations for students. They use high needs funding very effectively to provide challenging and highly effective individualised learning.

Take a look at our new toolkit Co-creating the curriculum with learners with SEND which has been created to support you to involve learners in deciding what to learn and how they might be taught. It can help you personalise study programmes, you'll find it on the Teaching and Learning and Leadership and Management pages.

Foxes Academy achieved an overall grade of Outstanding in their Ofsted report (July). The report highlights many things including, staff training, the support available to learners and the preparation for employment and careers. 

Partnerships with employers are excellent and productive, assisting learners to enjoy highly effective work experience or work placements. The real working environment of the Foxes Hotel enhances the experiences of learners very successfully.

Visit our Employers and employability page for resources to help you support learners, including our free online course The Right Place created in partnership with Mencap.


In this space we'll highlight continual professional development opportunities that may be of interest.

ETF's Essential managers' programme

  • 26th and 27th February - SEND Knowledge module (Cheltenham)
  • 6th March - Leadership skills module (Birmingham)

For more dates and venues, see our complete course offer.

Are you providing the best support for learners with dyslexia, autism and hearing impairments?

We offer a range of courses to help practitioners and managers within the Further Education (FE) sector, and those responsible for post-16 learner programmes, increase their awareness and improve support for learners with dyslexia, autism and hearing impairments. Our full day training courses, have been designed to equip you with the knowledge and confidence to adapt your communication, teaching strategies and environments to enable your learners to achieve their full potential. Take a look at our Specific needs and wellbeing page to access our recent webinars and associated guidance documents.

Read Kath Wood's Neurodiversity: Unleashing potential in learners blog post. Kath, a Disability Training and Consultancy Specialist at Remploy Ltd, explains why thinking about conditions such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD and autism just as special educational needs or learning difficulties may prevent teachers and trainers recognising some learners’ potential and why, instead, looking at these as examples of neurodiversity can help teachers to recognise and unleash the potential in learners, with and without a diagnosed condition.

And don't forget the professional development opportunities available on Foundation Online Learning. Do take a look at the Foundation's wide range of courses, many of them relevant to those supporting learners with SEND, together with our bespoke SEND offer

Are you looking for specific training? As part of a mapping exercise of SEND CPD training and qualifications available from the Education and Training Foundation and a wide range of other organisations we have produced a SEND CPD Framework. The information is provided to raise awareness to the SEND workforce of the variety CPD opportunities available. The inclusion of information from other organisations does not indicate a recommendation by the Education and Training Foundation of this offer.

We cannot guarantee the quality of any events not organised by or on behalf of the Foundation.

News from the sector

The Department for Education has announced that from February 2019 it is ending the requirement for post-16 assessments for a specific learning difficulty (which includes dyslexia), if the student has previously been assessed. This means that learners with dyslexia can apply for support right through to higher education without the need to be undertake a furthe assessment. See the British Dyslexia Association website for more infomation..

The Government is to review the services and support given to autistic people; children and for the first time adults. The review will inform the new joint adults and children autism strategy to be published in autumn 2019. More information is available here.

FE News publish an article Time for FE to look at SEN conditions through Neurodiversity lens linking to Kath Wood's Neurodiversity: Unleashing potential in learners blog post on the Foundation's website.

New Reports

The Foundation has published a Training Needs Analysis report for people working in the FE and Skills sector in England. In addition to the main report they have published a number of subsiduary reports for Mental Health training and Special Educational Needs training. All the reports are available on the Foundation website.

The Department for Education have published a new report, Work experience and vocational/technical provision for young people on SEN support: A rapid evidence assessment. The aim of the rapid evidence assessment was to identify evidence on the benefits (or otherwise) of work experience for these young people as they prepare to enter paid employment. The report highlights a number of principles of good practice for post-16 providers in finding work experience/placements for young people with less complex SEND.

Revisits to local areas with a Written Statement of Action (WSoA) for SEND

The Department for Education has announced a programme of revisits to those local areas which were asked to produce a WSoA following their SEND inspections. The revisits programme is due to start in December 2018 and will run alongside the current programme of local area SEND inspections, which is in place until 2021. The revisits do not represent a re-inspection of SEN provision. Inspectors from Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) will only revisit those areas which were asked to produce a WSoA and the focus of the visit will be on the progress made since the original inspection. Revisits will allow Ofsted and the CQC to assess the progress which local areas have made against each of the actions in their WSoA.  They will also provide additional reassurance to families on the progress local services are making, identify where further work is needed, and enable local areas to demonstrate the improvements they have made to SEND services and in delivering better outcomes for children and young people. 

Local areas will usually be revisited within 18 months of their WSoA having been accepted as fit for purpose by Ofsted and CQC. The local area will receive 10 days’ notification of the revisit, which will last between 2-4 days, depending on the number of actions in the WSoA. A report will be published on the Ofsted and CQC websites, usually 33 days after the inspectors have finished the revisit. It will set out whether the local area has made sufficient progress against each area of the WSoA.

Where a local area is considered to have made sufficient progress against its WSoA, monitoring visits from the DfE and NHS England will cease. DfE and NHS England will determine on a case by case basis the next steps for any local areas that have made insufficient progress. This may include the Secretary of State using his powers of intervention.   

The methodology for the revisits can be found on the Ofsted website and will be included in the local area SEND inspection handbook in Spring 2019.


Natspec are running a series of Microsoft Accessibility webinars:

Society for Education and Training (SET)

New publications

ETF has published three reference guides: Autism, Dyslexia and Hearing impairment to help you increase your knowledge and confidence to embed skills effectively into the support you provide.