Nurseries SEND provision will be rated for the first time.
Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission will be joining up with one another to look at how childcare settings are identifying children with SEND; they will also assess how they are meeting the needs of these children.
During an inspection, an inspector will want to look at all documentation showing how the children are progressing. These new inspections will begin in May 2016.
Sean Harford, Ofsted’s national director for education, said: “Inspection is a catalyst for improvement. We have seen that in schools and in other providers, where quality has risen over time. This has benefited hundreds of thousands of young people, giving them the prospect of a brighter future.
The decisions to inspect childcare settings SEND provision is to look at how local areas are delivering services for children with SEND. Both Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission will want to see evidence that the children are make significant progress and that effective support is in place to help children move onto their next stage of education.
Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) say they want these inspections to act as a catalyst for improvement, so that some of the most vulnerable young people in the country benefit consistently from high-quality services to which they are entitled.
The inspection reports issued will highlight nurseries good practice, this will be used to help encourage other nurseries to follow suit.
Professor Steve Field, Care Quality Commission chief inspector of general practice, said: “Young people and children with special educational needs or disabilities can face a complex system comprising many different health and educational agencies. It can be a bewildering experience for families having to coordinate different types of support.
Within in all childcare settings it is highly important that all professionals and agencies work together to meet the needs of children with SEND. There can be some challenges for nursery practitioners especially in the early stages of identify children’s needs, and more issues later on regarding getting the right support and funding for these children
The National Day Nurseries Association supports the plan with its chief executive Purnima Tanuku saying: “We welcome and support any measures which will improve the lives of children with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.
Ofsted and the CQC are holding a consultation on how the inspections will work, which closes on 4 January 2016
The consultation can be viewed at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/local-area-send-consultation