The thing about outcomes…

03 August 2015 | By Amanda George

We are working with lots of areas at the moment to support teams, schools and colleges in thinking about EHC plans and the hot topic is outcomes! This is not just about exploring what we mean by outcomes, though, but also about what needs to be in place before you can develop good outcomes, and then, importantly, what you can do when you have them.

Jon developed a great graphic to describe this.

Outcomes Graphic


It will be no surprise that we believe that person-centred reviews and person-centred practices in schools are a core part of delivering the Reforms. Developing good person-centred outcomes starts with knowing what is important to and for children and young people – what is important to them now, their assessed needs and their aspirations. A one-page profile is a great way to capture some of this and we have some really useful templates to help us think about the best ways to have conversations about aspirations too. In addition to helping to develop EHC Plans, these are great resources to help in day to day support too!

So what about commissioning? We need to know what are the aspirations of children, young people and families, what are the outcomes that they are moving towards and what is and isn’t working now in local areas -person-centred reviews are the best ways to find this out! Once we know this, using the Working Together for Change process enables areas to collate this in order to inform local commissioning strategies.

In developing the workforce, we need to know what skills and knowledge SEND teams and schools need to contribute to the delivery of the Code of Practice. Using “Progress in” benchmarking tools can help to identify the priorities for development in areas. If you’d like to think about this more, particularly for older children and young people, Progress in Preparing for Adulthood can help.

In schools, person-centred practices can support pupils at each stage of the graduated approach. We are writing about this now and will share it soon! By developing a one-page strategy, schools are able to express their intentions to the whole school community and beyond. Again, using Working Together for Change enables children, young people, families, staff and Governors are able to contribute to the School Development Plan.

A key question is often how to do this at scale. Before we can do that, we need to ensure the people who are supporting children, young people and families to plan are skilled in using a range of person-centred practices, Following on from this, there are tried and tested processes that can be used to support families to come together, like Planning Live This means that the young people and families can support each other to share ideas, think creatively together and be more aspirational as they have the opportunity to share their knowledge about resources and learn together. Additionally, professionals experience the process alongside the young people and develop their skills in using person centred thinking tools to plan with young people in the future.

Our thinking will continue to develop as we work with more schools, colleges and local authority areas – we look forward to sharing what we learn as we go!

Gill Goodwin




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