A number of recent Ofsted reports note that a common feature of the most successful schools surveyed was the attention they gave to developing speaking and listening

Policy work - Children and Families Act

The Trust was involved at every stage as the Children and Families Bill made its way through Parliament, working to ensure that the needs of children and young people with SLCN and their families were recognised and reflected in the Bill, Code of Practice and accompanying Regulations. The Bill received Royal Assent in March 2014 and is now the Children and Families Act 2014.

From early 2012 when the draft clauses of The Children and Families Bill were published, we worked hard to:

  • Set up the SLCN Children and Families Bill Task Group with members of the Communication Consortium, the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists and the Special Education Consortium to ensure all aspects of SLCN are reflected in our work around the legislation
  • Prepare a detailed review of the positions adopted by The Trust on the legislation when the Bill was first introduced into Parliament in February 2012, against the progress made on those issues over the course of its passage
  • Submit written evidence and gave oral evidence to the Education Committee's pre-legislative scrutiny into Special Educational Needs (SEN) 
  • Meet with members of the House of Commons and Lords to discuss key issues for SLCN and provided written briefings  for all debates and report stages.
  • Set up the SLCN Parliamentary Working Group and held four meetings chaired by Paul Maynard MP, to bring together MPs and Peers with key sector representatives to discuss concerns and solutions
  • Submit detailed responses on the draft Code of Practice and regulations for both Departmental consultations on them in  December 2013 and May 2014
  • Continue to work to influence the regulations and statutory guidance on the Acts application to detained children and young people, submitting a detailed response to the November 2014 consultation and supporting the work of the Implementation Working group set up by the Department for Education in partnership with CDC on this.


Since implementation of the Act began in September 2014 and April 2015 (for new requirements around detained children and young people with SEND) we have continued to work hard to ensure the reforms have a positive impact on children and young people with SLCN.


The Council for Disabled Children (CDC) are the SEN and disability strategic reform partner to the Department for Education. Find out more here.