Extra time has been given for an independent review into the delivery of South East Wales’ regional sensory and communication service to gather more evidence from relevant stakeholders.
Known as SENCOM, the service is currently delivered regionally across Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Newport, Monmouthshire and Torfaen. It supports additional learning needs in specialised areas including speech, language and communication, and visual, hearing and multi-sensory impairments.
In May 2019. the partner local authorities involved in SENCOM requested the WLGA to commission an independent expert to review and report on the service to explore a more sustainable way to deliver the regional model. An independent consultant, Mr Mark Geraghty, has since commenced and undertaken a number of consultation and engagement exercises as part of the review.
In recognition of the interest in the review by children, young people, parents and carers and partner organisation, Mr Geraghty has now taken the decision to extend the consultation period.
Mr Geraghty said:
“The SENCOM service operates in South East Wales to offer specialist support services to children and young people, and their families and schools. These cover children with visual and hearing impairments, speech, language and communication difficulties, and many have complex and multiple needs.
“In all the meetings I’ve attended, across all levels, the passion and desire to ensure children and young people with a speech, language and communication, hearing and visual impairments receive high quality support and appropriate resources, has been manifestly apparent.
“To ensure that the review’s findings are robust and to allow enough time for meaningful consultation and engagement, the review has now been extended with the final report expected to be published at a later date. All stakeholders involved recognise the importance of the review to ensure evidence-based decision making.”