Talking to practitioners about your child and SEND

A conversation with a practitioner can be reassuring.  You can decide together whether your child needs some additional support, and what the next steps are for putting this in place.

To make sure there is enough time to talk, you might want to arrange a meeting and outline what you would like to talk about beforehand. This will give the practitioner  the time to think about the questions you may have.

You might like to ask the practitioner if they think your child is having any difficulties or whether your child is making good progress.  You might also like to ask whether your child is already having extra help and if so, can they tell you more about that help?

It is important that you share information, such as:

  • the difficulties you have noticed your child is having
  • if you have already spoken to someone else (for example, your GP or a speech therapist)
  • how your child is at home and things you do at home to help them
  • anything that you feel might be connected (this may be changes to your home life, changes in the family or anything that you feel is important to mention)

Advice and support when talking to professionals

Some parents have told us that they find talking to practitioners intimidating.  It is important to remember that you as a parent know your child better than anyone else. If you don’t feel that your opinion or concerns are being addressed, you can always ask for a second opinion.

SENDIASS can also offer practical advice.  They may also be able to attend meetings with a SENCO or other educational professional, with you. Find more information and contact details on the SENDIASS page.

Read more

Sky Badger have a ‘People You’ll Meet’ page which explains the types of professionals such as educational psychologists, disability social workers, paediatrician, occupational therapist or physiotherapist.

Next step

For a useful next step, read the ‘The rights of children with SEND and their families’ or ‘Right support at the right time.’