What should a provider offer?
There are several laws that apply to equal rights, accessibility, and equal opportunities for children, young people, and their families with SEN and disabilities.
Providers of any activity should take your child or young person's personal circumstances into account when deciding if they can fairly access the service provided. This should include discussions with parent carers or guardians about their symptoms and conditions, and how these are supported in other environments. This should form the basis of an open conversation about the viability of meaningfully engaging within the environment. If this can't be achieved the service should be able to identify the reasons why so that you're able to take this on board to learn where support is needed, and to demonstrate this to other services in the future.
All providers should have the following information available:
- Accessibility statement
- Equality policy
- Safeguarding policy
- Criteria or eligibility document, if applicable
- Referral document / process, if applicable
This information will help families and professionals decide if the activity provider is likely to be able to support a child or young person's needs, or if they need to discus the possibilities with them in more detail.
It's always recommended that you talk to any service provider if you're unsure about their ability to meet a child or young person's needs, as this presents the opportunity for a better understanding of the impact or severity of need in the wider community. It's often hard to get a true sense of a person's real abilities, and the impact of their SEN or disability, from a piece of paper; a conversation is sometimes crucial in gaining vital information and understanding.