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Working in the sector

The Children and Families Act 2014 placed new duties on post-16 providers in relation to learners with SEND. At the same time it recognised their key role in improving outcomes for this group of young people who make up almost one in five (17%) of the FE student population.

You can find out more about the SEND Code of practice and the duties and responsibilities further education providers have to their learners with SEND by selecting the two documents below.

An image of the FE guide to the SEND code of practice An image of the SEND Code of practice

Incentives for new teachers

The Department for Education has just announced a new series of incentives for 20/21 for Further Education initial teacher education: Bursaries and Grants. Bursaries are available for pre-service trainees in SEND of £15,000 (conditions apply), and Grants to employers of £18,200 to cover the cost of the training and release from teaching. For more details see our FE Advice page.

So what is the FE sector?

Are you considering a career working with students with SEND but you've not worked in Further Education before? The Further Education (FE) sector is a wide-ranging and remarkably diverse section of the education system. It is made up of many different types of provider as explained in this guide. An accessible Word version of the guide is available for download on the About us page of our website.

An image of the front cover of the So what is the FE sector? guide

Accessibility and the law: Getting it right

Legislation for accessibility changed in a very positive way with The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations (2018). This short EdTech Accessibility and the law: Getting it right module looks at how to stay on the right side of these regulations it shows you the issues and implications of current legislation around accessibility.

Changing roles

Photograph of Thoria KingDo you feel it's time to try challenge yourself and try something different? That's exactly what Thoria King did. After 19.5 years of working in prison education, Thoria became the SEND Manager at London Borough of Hillingdon. You can read her guest blog, Reflections of a 'newish' SEND manager to learn how Thoria found her first eight weeks in the new role and her advice to others who are considering a move into SEND management.

If you're considering a career in the Further Education (FE) sector and want to find out more about the different types of providers in post-16 education, take a look out our guide, So what is the FE sector

If you like Thoria, fancy a new challenge in your career then the ETF run a programme of continual professional development courses specifically for those new to SEND management. You can find out more on our Leadership and management page.

SEND reforms in practice

The SEND reforms impact every practitioner, learn more about the code of practice and how to adapt your delivery to ensure you better meet the needs of learners with SEND with Nasen’s Focus On SEND training materials.

Providing effective SEND support

Effective SEN support An image of the effective SEN Support research documentis a research report on effective approaches and examples of current practice in good and outstanding schools and colleges. This resource is to help leaders, teachers and support staff in mainstream primary schools, secondary schools and colleges reflect on practice to support pupils and students with special educational needs. Amongst the schools and colleges they studied there was a wide range of strategies and approaches being used to support students on SEN support. The research identified seven key features to providing effective SEN support. The 7 key features are: Culture, leadership and management, High quality teaching, Use of expertise, Personalisation, Flexible use of evidence-based strategies, Progress tracking, and Communication and collaboration.

Discover Career opportunities

Are you interested in startarting a career in the further education and training (FE) sector working with learners with  special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) or are you already working with people with SEND and want to progress your career? Our new guide, Make a big difference: working with learners with special educational needs and disabilities provides information about the qualifications you need and the different career pathways.

Visit the FE Advice website for information about becoming a teacher and incentives for training.

Be inspired

Watch the video, to hear from Young people with SEND speak out about the impact on their lives of high quality post-16 provision.

An image of Brendan's letter  Read Brendan's story to find out what learning means to him.


Professional development

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.

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, take a look at our new SEND brochure for more information.

Visit the News and Events page for the latest course and event updates. Are you a SET member? If so you'll have access to professional development webinars that cover a whole range of topics to help you support learners with SEND.

Learn about SET membership

Visit the Society for Education and Training (SET) website to find out how our professional membership body can support you in your role within training and education.

Explore our resources

We have a wide variety of resources that can help you to develop your practice. You'll find resources relevant to the web page you're exploring at the bottom of that page.

An image of  one of the task cards from the Mindful toolkit

Join the SEND conversation

Join our online community of practice on Twitter using the hashtag #SENDinFE. It's a great way to learn from and support each other.

Related Resources

Make a big difference working with learners with SEND

An image of the Effective SEN support research document

Effective SEN Support

Image of the SEND CPD Framework resource

SEND CPD Framework

Further education: guide to the 0 to 25 SEND code of practice

An image of the EdTech Accessibility and getting the law right CPD module

Accessibility and getting the law right

An image of the cover of So what is the FE sector?

So what is the FE sector? - A guide to the FE system in England

An image of the SEND Code of practice

SEND Code of practice

Image of the Focus on SEND training online course materials

Focus on SEND training

An image of the Ofsted handbook

Ofsted Further Education and Skills Inspection handbook