University of Edinburgh

Early Intervention - What do I do now?

Presented in June 2005

Group Feedback

In your groups discuss any issues or examples of 'good practice' you are aware of in your own working environment

Discussions around parental involvement

Parental involvement at PRE-SCAT meeting is vital but this can be difficult for parents as suddenly there is an influx of people they have to cope with.

  • Could have pre PRE-SCAT meetings
  • Joint home visits - one area preschool teacher make a home visit with the teacher of visually impaired. VI and pre-5 teachers support each other in their work with the family.

Working parents: Child who has childminder - lack of consistency and expectations of what child should be expected to do between mother and childminder. Parents need support too.

Working together

  • The McCrone agreement has not recognised the need for multi-disciplinary team meetings which might encourage collaborative working.
  • Joing working can be dependent upon the individuals involved. Working as a team is essential but time for this and communication between professionals is needed.
  • One authority has in-house assessment (1 month) to enable the coordination of suggestions made by OT, physio, teacher, etc.
  • Staff training and awareness raising is needed for all staff who are involved with the child. This could be delivered through CPD.
  • Mobility and idependent living skills need to be addressed.
  • If inclusion is to work class sizes have to reflect difficulties that need to be catered for.
  • Joint working with therapists is of paramount importance when working with children who are MDVI, eg: positioning, vision, etc.
  • One authority liaises with the community health department and advocates 'shared assessment'.

Issues raised

  • Diverse pockets of work.
  • More centralisation of resources - including expertise.
  • Revised pay structure that recognises training for learning support assistants.
  • National Centre for adapting materials. Local Authorities do not encourage sharing of resources, materials and expertise.
  • How far do you go? People have large caseloads.
  • Is it easier in a small authority?

Recommended strategies and resources

Parents to be given a mini-passport to take with them for clinical appointments.

Dfes have published a series of booklets on different conditions.

One authority piloting a step-by-step protocl for deaf - could be adapted.

Checklist of information that has been given to the family.

Listening and watching initially. Summarise the visit in simple language. Parents given a copy to be kept in a folder. Parents' input recorded too. The layout is family-friendly and simple.

Sheridan, Mary D (1997) From birth to five years: Children's developmental progress. London: Routledge. ISBN 0415164583

Southwell, Catherine (2003) Assessing functional vision: children with complex needs. London: RNIB. ISBN 1858785987

Haughton, Liz & Mackevicius, Sandie (2001) I'm posting the pebbles: active learning through play for children who are blind or vision impaired. Melbourne: RVIB. ISBN 0949390585

Haughton, Liz & Mackevicius, Sandie (2004) Little steps to learning: play in the home for children who are blind or vision impaired. Melbourne: RVIB. ISBN 0949390615