Hello and welcome to the December issue of the SEND Newsletter!
This month felt like a perfect opportunity for me to introduce myself. I am Nathan Jones, and I joined Somerset on the 1st of November as Strategic Manager Inclusion Transformation and Partnerships. I join Somerset having spent the last 18 months in Bracknell Forest supporting their SEND improvement journey.
I have spent the last 25 years working with and for children and adults with SEND and disabilities, starting my career supporting adults who moved into the community as long stay hospitals were closed. Since then, I have worked in many areas within the social care and education world including supported employment, providing careers guidance, and transition planning for children and young people.
So, what about Somerset?! One thing that I am struck by is the volume of activity to transform the experience and outcomes for children and families with SEND. Much of my work over the last 6 weeks has been focused on sufficiency, but critically around the development of additional provision. We have continued to work with schools to increase the number of Enhanced Learning Provisions (ELPs), to ensure that this offer is available over as broad a geographical area as possible. I have been involved in ongoing engagement with the DfE to support the opening of two new special schools, one for September 2024 and one for September 2027.
Finally, I wanted to wish you Season’s Greetings; I do hope you enjoy the December newsletter, and I am looking forward to continuing the vital work that my team and I have underway in 2024!