Here are the results of our September 2023 temperature check poll.
The temperature check polls are to give an overview of how families are feeling about services, support and provision in East Sussex.
We always stress that these polls are not intended as deep analysis and that the overall ‘scores’ are an important opportunity to demonstrate any changes over time in families’ overall experiences of SEND services.
The polls also provide opportunities for us to identify patterns or themes from the comments submitted, alongside the feedback from our wider engagement with families.
For example, those who replied in the poll that they were satisfied or very satisfied with services and/or support overwhelmingly talked about the battle to get to that good place, often over a number of years. And it is generally individual people who are highlighted as having made a positive difference: a great SENCO, a particularly brilliant teacher or member of support staff who finally ‘gets it’, a doctor or nurse who at last makes you feel listened to. This is important feedback for us to present to services or departments and we can try to encourage good practice to be shared.
At the same time, there is a message coming through loud and clear from parent carers about the massive challenges they continue to face. The comments made by those who are dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with support and/or services focus less on individuals and more on system-wide issues: lack of communication, gaps in support or difficulty accessing support, long waiting lists, a broad lack of training and understanding of SEND.
So, while we want and need to spread the good practice, we have to remember that the wider picture being presented to us in this feedback is, sadly, of significant systemic issues.
We’re planning to hold our next temperature check poll in either December or January. And also look out for our first annual parent carer survey, which we hope to share very soon.