We received a petition asking:
“We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to help save our Early Years Teaching.”
Details of Petition:
“Under the new restructuring of SERCO and education Walsall the early years SEN teaching service is under threat. They plan to drastically reduce numbers of staff which would have a devastating effect on the “Team around the Child” Service. This means there would be no home teachers (Portage), no groups for parents to attend with their children with SEN to get valuable advice & meet other parents & no key workers, who help provide valuable support to familiesto help guide the child with SEN through the Early Years journey. This will have an impact upon all the families & children with disabilities in Walsall. As a parent of a child with a disability the support we received from the “Team Around the Child” service, helped us receive, speech&language, physio, early intervention & also helped guide us through the statutory assementing process leading to our child’s statement. They also provided the support in the transition into nursery and school. This service is essential & the undersigned people who have joined our petition as we do not want SERCO to cut this vital service.”
Read the Government’s response
Thank you for the email petition about the restructuring of services in Walsall.
This Office understands that there has been local consultation about a range of proposals relating to the delivery of children’s services in Walsall and that the revised structure was published in light of this consultation. We have been informed that in reshaping these services the key consideration has been the benefit of all children, including those in the early years. In particular, the improvement of service delivery in relation to the following key areas for early years is being prioritised: Birth to 3 years (including the Early Support Programme), Team around the child, Transition from Early Years to school, capacity building in children’s centres, and support for parental groups.
We also understand that Walsall’s Assistant Director for Learning, Frank Barnes, has met the Parents’ Forum to discuss the proposals, and that he had a further meeting with a representative group.
We hope that the recent publication of the revised structure and the meetings with Frank Barnes have provided reassurance on the matters raised.