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End of term message to parent carers from Brighton & Hove SEND leaders

Georgina Clarke-GreenGeorgina Clarke-Green, Assistant Director of Health, SEN & Disability at Brighton & Hove City Council has written the following message directly to all our Amaze families at the end of this extraordinary term.

“Dear Parents and Carers,

As the academic year draws to a close, I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every family of a SEND child for the remarkable way you have coped in the face of extraordinary difficulties.

Lockdown has presented acute challenges for us all, but for those families living with and supporting children with special educational needs and disabilities, the situation has been unparalleled and very stressful. Indeed, many have not had access to an outside space which has intensified the difficulties faced by those families. I would like to formally recognise and pay tribute to the inspiring way you have coped during this period; the fortitude shown has been absolutely astonishing.

Although we will not be able to make available a full range of summer activities over the holiday, we are working closely with partners in the city to see what we can provide. We will communicate this in due course through the PaCC and Amaze’s media platform and Brighton and Hove City Council Local Offer website pages.  Please be assured that we are all working tirelessly to ensure that any support we can offer will be in place as soon as possible.

With my very best wishes for the summer.

Georgina Clarke-Green

Assistant Director, Health, SEN & Disability
Families, Children and Learning, Brighton & Hove City Council”

One of the services Georgina is responsible for is Brighton & Hove Inclusion Support Service (BHISS). Mo Bham and Linsey McGill from BHISS have added a special message for Brighton parents about what they can offer over the summer.

“Everyone across our Brighton & Hove communities will have experienced a huge amount of change and disruption to their lives as a result of the current Covid-19 health crisis. Alongside a universal offer of support to staff, parents/carers and children and young people (CYP) we recognise the need to offer enhanced support for vulnerable groups and those who have been finding the recent changes particularly difficult to manage. This includes many of our CYP with special educational needs & disability (SEND) and those who are moving to a new school.

We know that CYP can find the transition between schools unsettling and stressful. We anticipate that many will experience similar feelings when they return to school, especially where there are additional vulnerabilities identified.

Educational Psychologists, SEND Specialist teachers, Primary Mental Health Workers, SEMH and Early Years Practitioners and Family Support Workers all skilfully apply learning and psychological theories in real life contexts to support organisations, schools, families and CYP. As such, BHISS are very well placed to offer effective support to schools and families at a time of crisis. The majority of our staff will be on leave during the school holidays, however as this is a very unusual time we have agreed to provide the following support for families:

Brighton & Hove Inclusion Support Service (BHISS) are running an open email for parent/carers; if you are concerned about your child’s development and emotional wellbeing, please email your enquiry to: BHISS@Brighton-hove.gov.uk.

We also have a central phone number linked to a duty Educational Psychologist – 01273 293481

The Schools Wellbeing Service has a consultation line for parent/carers who may be concerned about emotional wellbeing and mental health issues. If you would like to speak to BHISS mental health worker, then please email your enquiry to: SWSConsultationLine@brighton-hove.gov.uk

Stay safe and well –  keep well

Mo and Linsey”

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