Team Manager – Education and Services for Children and Young Adults

Purpose of the job

To directly line manage a team of 6-7 SEND Case Officers and to ensure the effective delivery of high quality, legally compliant practice ensuring efficient delivery of all statutory functions, which delivers positive outcomes for vulnerable children & young people with EHCP’s.

To provide advice and support to partners from health and social care as well as schools and education settings to ensure all young people with EHC

Plans supported by us can achieve their potential and reach their outcomes.

To lead, motivate and manage staff groups to achieve the agreed objectives of the team and promote integrated working, both within the team and externally with all relevant partners and key stakeholders.

To contribute to the development of policies and plans for/related to the statutory SEN Service and practice and ensure these are implemented so as to deliver continuous improvement and to take into account the needs of all sections of the community and to promote equality and social inclusion in all our education settings in the borough, supporting learners with SEN and EHC Plans.

To ensure children’s needs are met locally and children are placed locally wherever possible and appropriate.

To ensure that the service contributes effectively to the wider implementation of SEN legislation an applies any changes in law and legislation with immediate effect.

To oversee particular and time sensitive processes such as the annual statutory phase transfers for four age groups and to manage allocations within the team.

Be the main point of contact for any operational enquiries that require escalation and a response/resolution from management. This includes case queries requiring a senior member of staff to make decisions, complaints from schools/families/partners, members enquiries and LGO investigations.

To develop and implement systems for the monitoring, reviewing and evaluating the teams’ work to ensure that services are appropriate and effective and desired outcomes are achieved.

To promote the participation of children, young people, their parents and carers in the development, delivery, monitoring and evaluation of services to deliver improved outcomes for children and young people and increased responsiveness to need, ensuring co-production is taking place at every level.

The job/position will further ensure value for money, high customer satisfaction, and that strong and collaborative relationships with partners and agencies are at the core of what we do, and robust performance management and monitoring systems are in place.

The Team Managers will provide management support at operational level and will further provide cover for the SEND Service Manager at strategic level as and when required to ensure statutory and legal compliance
at all times. This includes presentation to Board meetings, chairing SEN panel and delivering training to the wider workforce.

Principal accountabilities

To ensure that the SEN Team and the individual SEN Case Officers fulfil their statutory responsibilities within the relevant legislation and meet the required statutory and local key performance indicators.

Ensure the timely co-ordination and compilation of high quality EHC Plans, including sign off of the draft EHC Plan.

Monitor, supervise and support 6-8 SEN Case Officers and 1 Senior SEN Case Officer who each hold responsibility for approximately 180 children/young people & their families and who are assigned as main point of contact to a number of education settings in and out of borough.

The nature of management includes high quality supervision to team members which strengthens practice and ensures the team are supported to deliver consistency in accordance with legislation and good practice models, ensuring high quality of service provision and customer/service user satisfaction.

To ensure that staff are recruited, managed, appraised and developed, and that effective arrangements are made for the training and development of all staff within the teams so as to meet service needs and to provide equality of opportunity for all employees.

Lead on a particular area of work, such as Tribunal appeals, children looked after, exclusions etc.

The post holder will have decision making responsibility for all statutory decisions and funding decisions when chairing SEN panel on behalf of the LA.

Provide training and advice to partners, parents/carers school governors and colleagues from Health.

To lead on statutory phase transfers, work with managers and professionals in other services across the local area to ensure effective collaborative planning and the organisation of structured sets of arrangements, especially at times of transition between stages of education, for example for pre-school children, children moving on to secondary school and those moving from school to Post 16 and/or Post 19 provision.

To ensure that the statutory Annual Review process is effectively co-ordinated and monitored, within statutory timelines and in partnership with provider schools, settings and organisations.

To support the SEND service manager and senior leadership team by providing expert advice and guidance on all statutory SEN and related disability issues, including updates on changes to SEN matters related legislation.

To be the Safeguarding lead and CME Lead for children with SEN known to the statutory SEN service and be responsible for timely and appropriate responses to ‘cases of concern’, ensuring no child is without educational provision.

To ensure that all SEN/EHC staff are completing mandatory training and understand their roles and responsibilities related to safeguarding, modern day slavery, diversity etc accordingly.

Ensure effective risk management practice, through the development of excellent inter-agency collaboration and communication and monitoring of practice, paying particular attention to risk factors related to exclusions, risk of CSE and CCE.

To ensure a robust and holistic induction package and plan is in place for new starters joining the SEN Team and undertake the relevant performance management. .

To take a lead role in implementing aspects of Children and Families Act requirements, particularly with regards to co-production with, and participation of Parents/Carers, children and young people at operational level.

To Chair the SEND Panel as required (shared and alternated with SEND Service Manager); to attend and contribute to relevant resource allocation meetings, tripartite panel and operational CREST, equipment panel and resource allocation panel.

To lead on tribunal appeal preparations and mediation processes.

To work in partnership with Health, Children and Adults Social Care Managers to ensure plans and strategies are informed by an understanding of the SEN Code of Practice (2014) and the wider legislation.

To provide clear advice and guidance to professionals, families and schools related to the LA’s statutory decision making under the C&F Act 2014, particularly related to section 42 & 43.

To provide high quality professional supervision to a number of colleagues from the SEN Team which strengthens practice and positive lived experiences of families.

To provide advice, guidance and support, ensuring that the SEN Team is responsive and customer orientated in meeting the needs of children with special needs and their families in Bexley.

To oversee casework and to advise staff on complex cases.

To represent the Authority at formal Mediation meetings with parents and families and to take decisions on behalf of the Authority, contributing where possible to a resolution.

To ensure that Parents/Carers, Children and Young People with SEN are fully engaged with the EHC Needs Assessment Process, Planning and decision making.

To liaise with the IAS Service and Bexley Voice Parent/Carer Forum in support of children and young people’s outcomes, applying a solution focused approach.

To ensure the service and individual team members communicate proactively, courteously and effectively with parents & carers in relation to statutory decisions made about their children’s and young people with SEND.

To support and facilitate the involvement of children, young people and their families to ensure that the child or young person’s voice is sought in all cases, listened to and responded to appropriately.

To contribute to various panels within the department, either in person or by report, and feedback when required.

Undertake or contribute to other projects/tasks that will enable the delivery of the authority’s services related to learners with SEN to be made as effectively and efficiently as possible.

To maintain an up-to-date knowledge and understanding of changing caselaw, and legal change in SEND; supporting the production and updating of written guidance and procedures relating to statutory assessment and decision making available to the team and partners across the local area.

To represent the service, division, department and council at a range of local
and regional partnership meetings, and where appropriate deputise for the

Service Manager.

To respond to MP and members enquiries, prepare complaint responses for the Service Manager and HoS.

To follow departmental and statutory processes and oversee the SEN team’s compliance with all statutory processes.

To improve the ‘lived experience of our service users and their families.

To work with a high level of autonomy and self-management yet demonstrate an understanding and awareness of the service within the overall organisation.

Organisational Control and Development

To lead and support the SEN team, supported by the SEND Service Manager.

To provide day to day supervision of SEN Case Officers, ensure team meetings are held and subject specific training is offered as and when required.

To deal with key stakeholders and partners related to individual cases and casework that requires a senior member of staff to create and agree a solution.

To represent the service and the Council locally and in a regional context.

Staff Management and Development

a) To ensure that staff are recruited, managed, appraised and developed, and that effective arrangements are made for the training and development of all staff within the department so as to meet service needs and to provide equality of opportunity for all employees.

Personal Effectiveness

a) To present timely and relevant advice and information to Members and to ensure that Group Leaders are briefed on major and sensitive issues.

Person Specification

Education to a degree level or equivalent.

Evidence of recognised accreditation and qualification E in the field of education/childcare/health/social care/legal training

To have strong written and communication skills

Evidence of management/leadership training.

(b) Relevant technical experience, knowledge & skills/abilities

Comprehensive knowledge of a wide range of special E educational needs and the types of services that children with SEN and their families may require

Extensive knowledge and thorough understanding of E the relevant SEN legislation and guidance, particularly
the SEN CoP, Children’s & Families Act 2014, Equality

Act 2010 and Education Act 1996

Extensive experience of providing advice and support E to staff related to statutory SEN processes

Extensive Experience of working in partnership with E parents/carers, children and YP with SEND

Experience and knowledge of the work of other E agencies and partners including Health, Social Care, education settings

Experience of leading and managing a team successfully

Experience of motivating staff, setting priorities and targets, directing and planning work to provide an integrated and highly valued service

Experience of developing and implementing policy and procedural changes

Ability to handle confidential personal information of service users

Ability to manage situations of high stress and anxiety amongst service users as well as partners and stake holders.

Ability to sustain a resilience that enables strong and robust leadership of solution focused casework management.

Ability to build and nurture good working relationships with colleagues across a wide range of internal and external agencies.

Ability to demonstrate a high level of interpersonal skills including the ability to influence, persuade others or mediate effectively as and when required.

Ability to manage time effectively and to work on own initiative and under pressure.

Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, good negotiation, persuasion and organisational skills.

Ability to use data from multiple sources to identify needs/gaps in service development and develop and initiate new ways of working.

Ability to speak with confidence and accuracy, using accurate sentence structures and vocabulary.

Ability to choose the right kind of vocabulary for the situation in hand without a great deal of hesitation.

Ability to listen to service users and understand their needs.

English Language Requirements for Public Sector Workers. Include these criteria where it is an intrinsic and regular part of the role to speak to members of the general public either face-to-face or over the telephone:

  • Ability to speak with confidence and accuracy, using accurate sentence structures and vocabulary.
  •  Ability to choose the right kind of vocabulary for the situation in hand without a great deal of hesitation.
  • Ability to listen to customers and understand their needs.
  • Ability to tailor your approach to each conversation appropriate to the customer, responding clearly even in complex situations.

(c) Other Additional Requirements
DBS Enhanced

Commitment to equal opportunities in all work practices

Commitment to providing a highly professional service Ability and willingness to work flexible hours including some evenings

A sound understanding of safeguarding requirements