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Find useful information about the role of different professionals working with children with additional support needs, new policy and guidance, good practice and much more. Use the right hand list to search for previous posts.

Jordan Smith, Young people’s information and advocacy worker, Kindred

Working life is never quiet when you are an advocacy worker. This is certainly true for Jordan, who is a young people’s information and advocacy worker at Kindred.  His role involves working with people between the ages of 14-24 who have a disability or additional support need. Working alongside Bev, the other young people’s worker [read more...]

ASL Myth: Having a Co-ordinated Support Plan means a child will automatically have more support put in place.

Often parents push for a Co-ordinated Support Plan (CSP) to be prepared in the mistaken belief that this will lead to their child receiving more guaranteed support. This is not the case. A CSP is a legal document opened for children who have long-term, complex or multiple needs and who receive a high level of [read more...]

ASL MYTH – Children under the age of five are not eligible for additional support for learning

Under the ASL Act education authorities have a duty to provide adequate and efficient support to meet the needs of children for whose education they are responsible. Also, a child under the age of three may be brought to the attention of the education authority as having additional support needs due to a disability. If the [read more...]

Karen MacMaster, Development Officer Interrupted Learning, Highland Council

“My role is busy and diverse, but always interesting, working with Gypsy and Traveller families and others who experience interrupted learning to provide them with advice and support about accessing school, nursery and other educational opportunities. I also provide practical teaching support to targeted individuals and groups of Gypsy and Traveller pupils who require additional [read more...]

Marlies Rodriguez, School Project Manager, The Place2Be

No two days are the same for Marlies Rodriguez, School Project Manager (SPM) for award winning charity, The Place2Be, a school-based counselling service that works with children, staff and parents and carers to improve the emotional well-being of children, their families and the whole school community. Based at Sanderson’s Wynd Primary School in Tranent, Marlies [read more...]

ASL Myth: All looked after children should have a Co-ordinated Support Plan

The amendments to the additional support for learning legislation in 2009 strengthened the existing framework for supporting looked after children in school. Now children who are looked after by a local authority are automatically assumed to have additional support needs. This is the case unless assessments carried out by the local authority show that they [read more...]

ASL Myth: Local authorities must respond to a parent’s request for a specific assessment within a certain time period.

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FACTS: Under the ASL Act, parents can ask education authorities to consider whether their child has additional support needs. At the same time they can ask for a specific type of assessment (such as an educational, medical or psychological assessment or examination). They can also ask for a specific assessment at any time for a child who has additional support needs. Education authorities must agree to both types of [read more...]

David Woodier, A Looked After Children’s Liaison Teacher, North Ayrshire

1. What does the role of a Looked After Children’s Liaison Teacher involve? I think the liaison part of my job is key to helping looked after children and young people. Although I often work directly with a looked after child to help them to engage more fully in education, much of my time and effort is also spent [read more...]

ASL Myth: If a pupil with additional support needs stays on at school after the age of 16, the school does not have to provide additional support for learning.

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FACTS Enquire receives a number of queries each year about this topic and it can be a difficult time for young people and their parents. There should be learning planning in place for all pupils and any extra support needed by a pupil should be planned and discussed with the pupil and their parents at [read more...]

Allan Cowieson, Quality Improvement Officer – Additional Support Needs, North Ayrshire Council


What does the role of Quality Improvement Officer involve? The Quality Improvement role emerged as a result of the 2000 Act requiring schools and local authorities to publish improvement plans to show how they would improve services. Every school in Scotland, mainstream and special, is expected to publish annual improvement plans. On top of this [read more...]

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