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Special Educational Needs - Who can help?

G.P. - General Practitioner

A general practitioner is typically the first medical professional a patient will see when they have a medical condition or there are concerns regarding child development.  They are able to diagnose and treat minor conditions and refer for specialist help including Occupational health, Physiotherapy, School nursing service, Speech and Language therapy, Child and Adolescent mental health and Paediatrics. 

Paediatrician

Paediatricians are doctors who look at specific health issues, diseases and disorders related to stages of growth and development in children. 

CAMHS

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) is the NHS service that treat children and young people who have emotional, behaviour and mental health difficulties. There are CAMHS teams across each NHS area. Each team has its own support pages for parent, professionals and young people to refer themselves or their young people for support. They offer family therapy, individual therapy and group therapy and their teams consist of a range of professionals including mental health specialist nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists and dieticians.  

https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/your-guide-to-support/guide-to-camhs/

Clinical Psychologist

Clinical psychologists aim to reduce psychological distress and enhance and promote psychological well-being. They work with people with mental or physical health problems which might include:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Serious and enduring mental illness
  • Adjustments to physical illness
  • Neurological disorders
  • Addictive behaviours
  • Childhood behaviour disorders
  • Personal and family relationships

Eduational Psychologist

Educational Psychologists uncover children’s underlying problems and difficulties in relation to learning and development with a range of tests and assessments. Their role is to support the child, family and school in improving outcomes for students. 

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists work on identifying physical difficulties, motor control, core stability, posture, strength, self-regulation and sensory sensitivities. A range of support material for professionals and parents is available from individual NHS bodies. 

Fizzy Programme

https://www.ekhuft.nhs.uk/patients-and-visitors/information-for-patients/patient-information-leaflets/fizzy-leaflets/

Fine Motor Skills

https://www.swft.nhs.uk/our-services/children-and-young-peoples-services/occupational-therapy/fine-motor-skills-information-schools

 Support Ideas

https://www.theottoolbox.com/occupational-therapy-home-programs/

Physiotherapist

Physiotherapists work with children who have physical difficulties including core stability, posture, strength and sensory integration.

SALT – Speech and Language Therapist

Speech and Language Therapists deal with a range of speech, language communication difficulties and communication and social interaction issues.  They also support difficulties with eating, drinking and swallowing. Speech and Language therapists are allied health professionals and work across a range of settings. Difficulties with Speech and Language require a referral from the home doctor or the school. 

https://www.rcslt.org/

Many SALT teams across the country have advice for parents on their individual health body pages. These can include help for parents with fluency and stammering.

https://wiltshirechildrensservices.co.uk/speech-language-therapy/

ELSA

Emotional Literacy Support Assistant is a teaching assistant who has been specially trained to work with children who need extra help managing their emotions. ELSAs typically run individual 1:1 or group sessions for children within their setting. They work with children in recognising and managing their strong feelings, ASD on social interaction, bereavement, friendship and transition. 

https://www.elsa-support.co.uk/

Thrive

A Thrive practitioner is an individual, teacher or teaching assistant who has been trained in this approach. Developed over the past 25 years, Thrive is a leading provider of tools and training to help adults support the social and emotional development of the children and young people they are working with. They work with schools, multi-academy trusts (MATs), local authorities, health and social care professionals and parents and carers.

https://www.thriveapproach.com/

Music Therapist

Music Therapists is the use of music to support and develop the physical, emotional, cognitive and social needs of children, young people and adults. More information can be found on the British Association of Music Therapists website. 

https://www.bamt.org/

Play Therapist

Play Therapists use play to support and develop the emotional, social and communication needs of children.  Play can allow children to explore difficult and traumatic event or emotions. More information can be found on the British Association of Play Therapists website

 https://www.bapt.info/play-therapy/info-parents/

Forest School

Forest school is generally available for all children but can be used as a specific intervention to support children in their emotional regulation and their social and communication needs. 

https://forestschoolassociation.org/

Equine Therapy

The use of the outdoors and animals to support emotional, physical and communication needs in children and young people. Many areas have specialist Equine Therapy available and the Riding for Disabled Association support children and young people who have both physical, communication and emotional needs. 

https://www.rda.org.uk/

https://www.god-unlimited.org/

SURF Therapy

The use of the outdoors and surfing to support emotional, physical and communication needs in children and young people. 

https://www.waveproject.co.uk/

SENDCO – Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Coordinator

SENCO's coordinate Special Educational Needs provision within individual schools.  Their role is to support children, parents and staff to ensure that all children and young people have access to the best educational outcomes. If you are concerned about your child contact the class teacher and the SENDCO for support. 

SENPO – Special Educational Needs Placement Officer

SENPO's deal with the assessment and placement process. They support parents and schools through the statutory assessment process, prepare statements of special educational needs and implement arrangements for finding placements. Their role title does vary across counties.  

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