DFE have recently announced the procurement for SEN Futures - a flagship programme of research and analysis focussing on children and young people with SEN in England.
SEN Futures will aim to build the evidence base on a wide range of issues, including:
- A variety of outcomes for children and young people with SEN – including outcomes in a wide sense such as wellbeing, happiness and preparation for adulthood.
- The experiences of children and young people with SEN on their journeys through education.
- The value for money of different types of SEN provision in England.
- The first stages of this work will be the Longitudinal Study Discovery Phase and the Value for Money Feasibility Study.
The Longitudinal Study Discovery Phase will seek to inform the design and feasibility of a potential future Longitudinal Study of Children and Young People with SEN currently being considered by the Department. Such a longitudinal study would be a ground-breaking piece of work, with little precedent on a national or international scale: the Discovery Phase will therefore provide evidence to inform possible methodologies and ensure that any future study can robustly capture the experiences of its target population.
The Value for Money Feasibility Study, meanwhile, will assess the viability of a potential future large-scale Value for Money Study of SEN provision in England.
The evidence collected by SEN Futures will be crucial in helping the Department to listen to children and young people with SEN and their families, and to take an evidence-based approach to fulfilling our priority of supporting those with SEN to live happy and fulfilled lives.