Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
There is a complex relationship between poor mental health and Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND). Children and young people with SEND can be at higher risk of mental health difficulties than those without SEND. Meanwhile, mental health difficulties may also be a cause of SEND.
The services we identify under Getting Advice, Getting Help, Getting More Help, Getting Risk Support are all available for children and young people with additional needs.
For those children, young people and their families who have a diagnosis or are awaiting a diagnosis there are other groups or services which can provide information, help and support:
School or Setting and Additional Support
Speak to your child’s class teacher, headteacher, Pastoral Lead or SENCo, Head of year or safeguarding lead if you need help. They will be able to talk through any concerns and work with you to find ways that will support your child. They can also support with getting help if other things haven’t worked.
It may also be that your child and family might benefit from services which are not specifically about emotional wellbeing and mental health including:
County Psychological Service and Specialist Teachers - Provide advice and support to assist a child's special educational need and disability (SEND) and emotional wellbeing when impacting on their education.
- Occupational Therapy - Help children and young people who have difficulty doing every day activities. This can be things like getting dressed, school work or playing.
- Speech Language and Communication Service - Provides support and care for children who have difficulties with communication. Work with children and young people up to the age of 19 who have speech and language or communication needs.
- Childrens Learning Disability Team - Offer a wide range of support including sessions for parents and carers, such as, Early Bird, Sleep and Behaviour.
- Young Carers - Offer support for family members including siblings
- 0-19 Child and Family Support Service - Offer one to one support for children/young people, group activities with a particular focus (for children, young people or parents/carers), help to find a solution to a particular problem or difficulty, or refer to others who can help with a specific problem or need. You can also access SEND Support Groups, portage and sensory rooms. You can also self-refer to this service.
Children Looked After / Edge of Care
The Emotional Health and Wellbeing Team provide consultations and Therapeutic Needs Assessments and interventions for the children we look after and the children and families on the edge of care. Working with children who are vulnerable to stress and have experienced developmental trauma the Emotional Health and Wellbeing team work relationally to help create a therapeutic environment so to enable recovery.
Westmorland and Furness SEND Local Offer
Westmorland and Furness SEND Local Offer is the place to go for all information and signposting for children with Special Education Needs or Disabilities (SEND) or who are awaiting diagnosis. It has information about lots of things related to SEND including support groups which help offer advice and information to help support your child.
For further support there are also a number of local Facebook groups. Some are these are closed groups for parents and carers (so you would have to apply to join them):
National Support Groups
There are also other Information Resources that may help:
Mencap – Mental Health for People with a Learning Disability - information on identification and treatment of mental ill health in people with learning disabilities
National Autistic Society – Mental Health for People with Autism - information on the common mental health illnesses experienced by people living with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).
The Shaw Mind Foundation – Information on Mental Health for Children and Young People with Disabilities - information resource on mental health needs in children and young people with learning and/or physical disabilities