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Open letter to Surrey families from Dave Hill, the new Executive Director of Children's Services

Dave Hill, the new Executive Director of Children's Services, shares his plans to improve support for children with additional needs in Surrey in his open letter to Surrey families here: “Hello, I am delighted to be able to say something about the vision for SEND services in Surrey, my name is Dave Hill and I am the recently arrived Executive Director of Children’s Services.

There is much to do and we must do better for our children, young people and their families. I plan to begin a process of deep review and develop a new approach, core to the principles that I bring will be getting support and help to children earlier and preventatively, I call this Family Resilience.

If we are to set about changing the SEND system for the better, we can only do so by putting the wishes, needs and views of children and their families in the absolute centre of the new approach. Of course others will need to be strongly engaged too, schools (mainstream and special), NHS, the voluntary sector, districts and borough Councils and colleagues in the County Council.

Trust, collaboration and partnership will be key to improving things. Currently the SEND system is characterised by the provision of crisis provision and ‘firefighting’ I believe in a compelling vision that responds early, puts the child and their family at the centre and works on the critical issue of relationships between professional staff and children and their families.

I will be setting the new vision discussion off through a process of deep engagement in September, more details of how this process will work will be communicated over the summer.

Working together we can establish a new and exciting vision and services in the SEND area - our children deserve nothing less.

I look forward to meeting and working with you all.

Kind Regards


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