• SEND speak

And the subject this week is... COVID-19

Dear All

Is there an upside to all this? Probably the most obvious is the reduced carbon emissions as people travel less!

Here’s a round up of current updates and information sources for SEND…

1. Single Source of local SEND Info

2. COVID-19 – from AfC

3. Richmond Parent Carer Forum (PCF)

4. Home Learning Resources List for Schools and Families

5. ‘Coronavirus, EHCPs and the law: ask education lawyer Hayley Mason’

6. We Are Twickenham

7. Washing your hands – signing

1 Single Source of local SEND Info

Karen Lowry and the folks at Achieving for Children (AfC) are in the process of creating a dedicated section on the Local Offer to have all information in one place.

This is the link to keep checking (and there is a carousel of news on this page):

There are some articles on AfC’s Latest News pages, but these look like updates for now. Still worth keeping an eye on:

2 COVID-19 – from AfC

Support for parents and carers of children with special educational needs, disabilities and complex health conditions

Published 18thMarch 2020

“I know that many families are worried about the COVID-19 coronavirus and the impact it will have on their children with special educational needs, disabilities and complex health conditions. I want to reassure you that we are working closely with our partners in local schools, residential schools and other education providers to understand their current situations and to plan for potential school and residential unit closures as they arise. This includes planning for the needs of individual children who will not be in school and/or able to stay in their residential placement.”

Read the full release here:

3 Richmond Parent Carer Forum (PCF)

This announcement was made last week – of course, its entirely possible that the event will be cancelled. If so, it will be posted on the Local Offer (see item 1 above).

So, for now, this is just an fyi to let you know that the Richmond PCF is formed!

“The Richmond Parent Carer Forum is a newly formed independent group working to achieve better outcomes for children and young people with any special educational need, additional need or disability in the London Borough of Richmond.

We are launching on Wednesday 25th March and would like to invite you to join us!

Parents, carers, young adults, and children, please come along for:

Afternoon tea: 13.00 – 15.00 (under 16s welcome)

Drinks and nibbles: 17.00 – 19.00

To register to attend or if you have any questions about the launch event, please email:

More information here:

4 Home Learning Resources List for Schools and Families

ChatterPack, 14thMarch 2020

“We wanted to do something positive to ease the burden on schools and families during this undoubtedly worrying time. So, we asked the education community to send in links and ideas for free home learning and the response has been phenomenal!

Whether you're a teacher of any age group who is making plans for home learning, or a parent/carer needing some ideas so you can plan ahead, hopefully, some of the links below will help.

All links to google drive documents were shared publicly for re-use by others.”

5 ‘Coronavirus, EHCPs and the law: ask education lawyer Hayley Mason’

Special Needs Jungle, 18thMarch 2020

“In these unprecedented days, there is a lot of uncertainty, not least about education. What happens to legally-backed provision when schools are closed? If schools arrange online working, what are your child's legal rights? What if schools are closed for a protracted period? What if you have a tribunal coming up? Or an EHCP assessment pending?

Our columnist, SEND lawyer, Hayley Mason, Director and senior solicitor at SEN Legal, is offering to answer your questions about the legal implications as they relate to education law and issues around coronavirus and potential forced school closures.

You don't have long - you need to get your question in by Friday at 5pm.”

6 We Are Twickenham

Twickerati, 18thMarch 2020

Twickerati is a slightly tongue in cheek blog, and one that is cheery and often contains useful information…

“What strange and fragile times we are now living in. Arguing about Brexit and complaining about the rain has fast turned into a distant, but happy memory here in God’s Own Outer London Suburb. ‘Unprecedented’ is as word that frequently gets overused but, for most of us, the situation with coronavirus is genuinely nothing like anything we have experienced before.”

Read the full article here:

7 Washing your hands – signing

A timely tweet, with a 40 second video…

“Mencap @mencap_charity

Guess what... Lucinda and Nikki @makatonlucinda are back.

They are having fun with #Makaton. This time it is sign to wash your hands. Why not give it ago too?”

If you have any questions at all, please ask and I'll do my best to find an answer.

With best wishes, Romany



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