COVID-19 Financial Recovery Strategy: Investment Priorities for Children's Services in the Borough

As part of the Financial Recovery Strategy in response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic, investment priorities for Children's Services in the borough will be presented for Cabinet’s consideration at their next meeting on Wednesday 9 September.

The report sets out to seek approval for funding a temporary increase in staffing resources to address the backlog of annual reviews for children with special educational; needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

Due to the council’s stop of non-essential expenditure and the review of planned investments, the report will be presented to Cabinet Members for permission to spend in planned investment priorities.

The temporary increase in will seek two Senior Education, Health and Care Co-ordinators, two Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP) Coordinators and one Project Manager to address the backlog of annual reviews.

The new resources will also help to increase the capacity within the Education, Health and Care Team to improve the timely issuing of new EHCPs for children and young people with SEND, improving the quality of case management to improve the overall efficiency of the local system.

The pandemic has caused some disruption to the planned roll-out of the Education, Health and Care Hub which was originally scheduled for launch in September 2020. This has now been planned for November 2020, following the full re-opening of schools next month. The service is considering a six-month extension to the project which would be supported by this investment proposal.

To find more information about the report, view the cabinet paper on Barnsley Council’s website.

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