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Joint Ofsted and CQC Inspection of Surrey's SEND services: 17-21 October 2016

From 17-21 October 2016 Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) will carry out jointly an inspection of Surrey. The inspection will evaluate how effectively Surrey:

  • identifies and assesses the needs of children and young people who have special educational needs and/or disabilities

  • meets the needs of these children and young people so that their outcomes and chances of participating fully in society improve.

The views of children and young people who have special educational needs and/or disabilities, and the views of their parents and carers will be gathered during visits to a number of early years settings, schools, colleges and specialist services. These views are critical to the inspection process. The inspection will also include an online webinar to allow other parents and carers in the Surrey area to contribute. The session will be led by Sian Thornton, Her Majesty’s Inspector, who will ask parents and carers about their views and experiences on how effectively the Surrey County Council area is fulfilling the above responsibilities. To register for this webinar, click here.

Before the Inspection

Before the inspection, the Ofsted and CQC inspection team will have considered a range of published information, for example the Local Offer, the Joint Strategic Needs Analysis (JSNA), schools’ websites, and SEND related data.

The Council has received five days’ notice of the inspection. Surrey’s Lead Inspector has spoken to the council’s Director of Children’s Services and Surrey's Clinical Commissioning Groups' lead. The inspection team has informed them about where they want to go and who they want to meet while in Surrey.

The lead inspector has also asked for a list of all children and young people who are being considered for, assessed for, or who have an Education, Health and Care plan (EHCP). The team will consider this list and select a number of children whose files they will want to access. The local authority, health and other partners’ who hold records for a child are required to provide access to files. The lead officer will make arrangements with relevant agencies and services for this to happen.

The lead inspector contacted Family Voice Surrey to ask us to inform parents and carers of the inspection. Surrey’s lead officer Susie Campbell is now making arrangements for the team to meet parents, carers and children and young people.

During the Inspection

The inspectors have decided who they want to see and where they want to go during their five days in Surrey.

While some meetings and visits are timetabled, inspectors may decide to visit a setting or meet certain people to follow up any key lines of enquiry that emerge throughout the inspection, for instance tracking the ‘journey’ of a particular child from their case records. The lead officer will respond to any such requests and co-ordinate communications and activity as required.

The lead inspector will meet regularly throughout the week with the Director of Children’s Services and the CCGs' lead to:

  • provide an update on emerging issues, including to ask for further evidence

  • allow the local area to raise concerns, including those related to the conduct of the inspection or of individual inspectors

  • alert the local area to any serious concerns

The inspection concludes with a final feedback meeting attended by the local area nominated officer and representatives of the local area. The attendees at this feedback meeting will be agreed between the lead inspector and the local area nominated officer.

After the Inspection

Ofsted and CQC will publish an inspection report in the form of an inspection letter. This will be addressed to the local authority and the CCG. This will outline the evidence that inspectors reviewed and provide a summary of key findings including strengths and areas requiring further development. In addition, reports may also include areas of significant concern that may, subject to determination by Ofsted, require a written statement to be submitted to identify how concerns will be remedied.

For detailed information about the inspection

See the inspection framework and inspectors’ handbook at:

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