As part of the SEND reforms under the Children and Families Act (2014), all Local Authorities now have to publish a Local Offer. The purpose of the Local Offer is to "offer" information in a single place, which can help you find and understand what services you and your family can expect from a range of local agencies.
The aim of the Local Offer is to support children and young people with SEN and disabilities to feel included within their communities and to be independent. It can help them to make choices and decisions that may have a positive impact on their lives now and into the future.
The Local Offer contains information from providers who want to actively promote that they welcome disabled children and young people into their setting. You may be aware of other providers in your area that are not part of the Local Offer and you still may be able to acess their services as every provider is legally required to make 'reasonable adjustments' to welcome your children. You should contact each provider in order to ensure that they can offer the level of service you and your family need.
The Local Offer is not a guarantee that a particular service will be available, but should be a useful guide to what you can expect to find in your area and how you can access that service.
We are constantly developing the information that is contained with our Local Offer here in Sunderland, but if you know of any services we have omitted, please let us know using the Contact Us link at the top of the page.
The National Deaf Children's Society have produced a video (below) about Local Offer for deaf children and young people.
If you are having difficulty finding or accessing the Local Offer or need any other help, please call the Family Information Service on 0191 520 5553.