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What is the Local Offer? - Information for Parents/Carers

The Local Offer is a wide range of information about all the support and facilities which families can expect to find in their local area, for children and young people from 0 to 25 years who have special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

What information is in the Local Offer?

The information should cover education, health and social care support and services for children and young people aged between 0 and 25.

The Local Offer is not a guarantee that a particular service will be available, but should be a useful guide to what you can expect to find in your area, and how you can access that service.

What are the key principles of the Local Offer?

  • The Local Offer should not just be a list of services. It should give a broad range of information about the support that the local authority expects to be available
    across education, health and social care. The information should be clear and easy to find.

  • Children, young people and parent carers must be involved in developing the Local Offer and it should reflect what they need.

  • Local schools, colleges, health services and other services which support children and young people should also help to develop the Local Offer.

  • It should say who a particular service is for, how to apply, and how decisions are made about who gets that service.

  • The Local Offer should say clearly where families can get information, advice and support. It should give information on making complaints or challenging

  • The Local Offer is not just about what is available within that local authority. It must also include services outside the local authority area which children and young people might use. For example, a specialist hospital in another area or a school or college in another local authority.

  • The Local Offer must be reviewed regularly to make sure it is up to date and still meets the needs of families in the area. The local authority should involve families in this process.

  • The local authority must make public what children, young people and parents tell them about their Local Offer and say clearly what they will do about the comments they receive.

What can I find in the Local Offer?

All local authorities have a Local Offer published on their website. This must continue to be developed and improved over time.

Detailed guidance can be found in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0-25 years, Chapter 4. (external link)

The kind of information you should be able to find in your area's Local Offer include:

  • Information about all the types of education available for children and young people. It must include early years settings, mainstream and special schools, approved independent schools, pupil referral units, post-16 settings and alternative education.

  • How children with special educational needs (SEN) are identified and assessed.

  • How parents and young people can ask for an assessment for an Education, Health and Care plan, and how the assessment is carried out.

  • Education and training options for young people leaving school. Should include further education, apprenticeships, supported employment, and information about support to help young people prepare for adulthood and higher education.

  • School and college transport arrangements.

  • Support to help children and young people move between phases of education (for example, from primary to secondary, secondary to college, preparing for independent living).

  • How children and young people with medical conditions are supported in education, and through specialist services like occupational therapy and mental health.

  • Information, advice and support relating to special educational needs and disabilities, including parent carer forums and support groups in the area.

  • Social care support, including short breaks, leisure activities, and childcare. Should include information about how families can ask for social care assessments.

  • Information about making complaints about services, resolving disagreements, mediation, and appealing to tribunal.

Where can I find my Local Offer?

All local authorities must have their Local Offer available on their websites, although they are likely to continue improving it as time goes on.

You can find the Local Offer for the Rochdale Borough by going to:

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