This year’s themes and focus are all about meeting the challenges of increasing numbers of pupils with SEN within the depressing context of ‘funding crisis’. However, money isn’t the only challenge. Recruitment and training remain critically important. What use is additional funding if we don’t target it effectively for the benefit of children? One way to make the most of resources is by improving the knowledge and skills of the workforce.
Last year’s conference highlighted the lack of confidence, training and experience amongst the NQT workforce in the area of SEN. Turning things around was never going to be a quick fix. Without a comprehensive plan to meet the needs of NQTs – starting with specific course modules to at least raise awareness of the range of special needs and disabilities, including the large numbers of pupils with language and communication difficulties, NQTs are in danger of being overwhelmed when they arrive in the mainstream workplace and begin to realise the challenging reality of delivering the national curriculum.
Recruiting to vacancies in special schools presents an equal challenge – for the most part, NQTs are faced with the same issues and teachers with mainstream experience looking to move into special school work have to get to grips with a wealth of new interventions and techniques to enable children with communication difficulties (i.e. every child in school) to access the curriculum.
This Soundswell seminar is just the appetiser on a comprehensive menu of available training courses. Informal or more formal, in whole-school, class/year groups, or as empirical learning (i.e. therapist working with student/s with TAs as observers), Soundswell speech and language therapists support practitioners working across the whole range of special needs and in any kind of setting. Click here to find out how Soundswell Training Travels
It was interesting to meet a publisher from OUP, scouting the conference halls for ‘gaps in the market’. Wouldn’t it be great if she could push the need for more SEN training for the NQT workforce?
To access the slides from our 'Top Tips' presentation click here
to find out more about OneCPD's SEND conferences click here