The Department for Education and the Council for Disabled Children commissioned the National Development Team for inclusion (NDTi) to carry out an independent evaluation of the Independent Support programme.
The report highlighted a number of key findings including:
- the IS role has become the cornerstone of the reforms for many people in many areas, reflecting a focus on personalised and people led support at critical transition points in young people’s lives.
- Independent Supporters can be and often are a catalyst for change, helping to embed the culture of the Reforms in organisations and with families so that they have a wider impact on systems as well as with individuals.
- the added value of Independent Support is most often demonstrated through the experiences of parents who have experienced IS as a distinctly new resource, a focused capacity and access to enhanced support.
- it is too soon to be thinking about ending the IS Programme (ie in March 2016), as it is only just gathering momentum at a local level and is taking time to take effect both for individual families/young people and those delivering the service.