This month we’re focussing on speech, language and communication needs.
The Bercow review
In 2018, it will be a decade since the UK government’s publication of The Bercow Report: a review of services for children and young people (0-19) with speech, language and communication needs. Now, I CAN (the children’s communication charity) is working with the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists on an independent review of the state of provision for children’s speech, language and communication needs. Bercow: Ten Years On is due for publication in early 2018. It is anticipated that this review will be of great interest internationally to those working with children with speech, language and communication needs.
The review and report aim to:
- explore the sector’s journey since the original review and recommendations
- provide information about the current landscape for children and young people with speech, language and communication needs
- make recommendations for future action to ensure that the needs of these children and young people are a high priority for the new government.
The evidence gathering phase of the review has just begun, and there are two ways in which you can play an important part.
You can complete a short online survey about the support received by children with speech, language and communication needs, and the scale of the issue. There is also the opportunity to share more detailed information about your experiences of the reality of speech, language and communication support and information for children, young people and their families through the review inquiry. Everyone is welcome to contribute, with researchers particularly keen to hear from people who work with children with speech, language and communication needs, or who have responsibility for providing services for them. The deadline is 16th March. For further details on both the survey and inquiry, visit http://www.ican.org.uk/What-we-do/Bercow/Submit%20Evidence.aspx
In phase two of the review, researchers will be gathering the views of parents, carers and young people with speech, language and communication needs. To hear more nearer the time and to follow the progress of the review and report, you can sign up for the Bercow: Ten Years On Newsletter at http://icancharity.org.uk/node/add/bercow-newsletter
I CAN are experts in helping children develop the speech, language and communication skills they need to thrive. Their website, Talking Point, http://www.talkingpoint.org.uk/ aims to be “the first stop for information on children’s communication.” With a wealth of information on the ages and stages of communication development from 0-17 years of age, a section on learning English as an additional language, and advice on how speech, language and communication needs are met, it is certainly worth a visit by all early years practitioners. The website can also be recommended to parents and carers. Free resources available from the site include posters and factsheets, and children can participate in online communication games.
Next month, we’ll be looking at ways to promote early years literacy through World Book Day celebrations.