Introducing person-centred practices to schools and Education Health and Care (EHC) plans

19 February 2015

Blog by Gill Goodwin

Lately, we at HSA have been receiving lots of requests for training in person-centred practices to support people in developing Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans. I find it heartening to hear that many different areas want to embrace the principles and practices that can help make such a big difference, sometimes by doing very small things. For me, the key to personalising educational experience is finding out what is important to and for pupils who have special educational or additional learning needs by talking to them and their families, and thinking about how best we, as providers, can support them. All the information collected should then be turned into actions that are truly individual and effective for the person creating a unique and personalised approach to education. I have also been thinking lately about how this could work for all children and young people as the positive effects of personalisation are applicable to all.

I have recently been delivering introductory training in person-centred practices for schools around EHC Plans. Participants on the training included SENCOs, specialist teachers, heads, deputies, class teachers and T.A.’s, in mainstream and special schools, primary schools and secondary schools. We spent our time together thinking about what the new Code says about person-centred practices and by trying out some of the tools in relation to our own lives, including everyone developing their own one-page profile. We walked through Section A of their EHC Plan and mapped it to person-centred practices. I thought it was a great fit!

I also showed a film that we at HSA produced recently and heard parents, children and young people, school staff and Educational Psychologists talking about the difference that one-page profiles have been making. We heard about one-page profiles not only making a difference to individual children, but also about to whole schools, particularly how one school has been using one-page profiles as part of performance management with teachers. You can watch it too by clicking here.

At the end of our day together, I asked each school what their next steps would be. It was fabulous to hear that as well as developing detailed profiles with pupils who need some additional support, schools were talking about doing it with whole classes and, in some schools, starting with the teachers. What a great way for teachers to begin their journey with person-centred practices by seeing the value of them in their own lives.

It was great to see that many schools want to start creating a culture of personalised education within their schools. This way, education can become personal for all and those with big challenges and those with smaller challenges will receive equal opportunity to have their voice heard.

One-page profiles are an excellent way of getting started with this but there is also a whole range of person-centred practices that can help. If you’d like to read more about them, please click here.

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