Rosemary is an experienced and creative trainer, writing all her courses and materials herself and introducing many original and innovative approaches to enable attendees to be inspired and really feel and experience the learning points. She is also an associate of the Council for Disabled Children (CDC) and has delivered extensively the 2 day training programme developed by CDC for Independent Supporters so they can provide support to parents and young people whose statements are being converted to Education, Care and Health Plans. It covered the changes in the law arising from the Children and Families Act 2014 and the new SEN Code of Practice in England.

Rosemary was employed as a Parent Partnership Service (PPS) Co-ordinator from 1999 to 2011 and was involved with many national and regional initiatives in that time including the development of the very successful Achievement for All programme. She has successfully delivered training on a local and national level to parents, students (at UEL) and a range of professionals including SENCos, Governors, support staff etc. The service she successfully developed was needs/service user led and firmly built on the combined principles and philosophy of Person Centred and Solution Focussed approaches. She promoted and championed these approaches throughout her career in her own enthusiastic way.

As well as providing training on how to use the Voice-clouds templates (2hrs approx) and if necessary an introduction to understanding and applying the Person Centred Philosophy (4-5hrs), Rosemary is also able to provide service reviews, consultancy or training on many aspects of SEN, Inclusion, Disability rights or discrimination, Parental/Service User engagement or any elements of the Parent Partnership role.

All training is tailored to match the particular situation or client group (parents, service users or full range of professionals), according to their existing knowledge or experience. Rosemary will attempt to adapt and combine any elements of the training outlined below to suit your own requirements and timescale e.g. half-day or full day. She is happy to work with individual services, clusters or regions in order to provide cost-effective packages. Typical training costs are between £300 (half-day) and up to £600 (full-day) excluding venue and refreshments, which are typically arranged by the service requesting the training.

The training menu includes:

1. How to Creatively Capture Service Users or Parents/Carers Views and Voices and Effectively Utilise the Information Gained
There are many reasons why you may need to do this, including statutory duties on Local Authorities and its partner agencies requiring them to engage with children, young people and their families, ensuring their views and contributions are central to their decision making and development of services. This can be used with individuals or small groups. This can also be appropriate for user groups, service providers or commissioners in identifying gaps in services and providing more targeted interventions.
There is a specific Voice-clouds template available for this purpose.

2. Enabling Parents to Become Fully Engaged with Their Child's Education and with Professionals (a full day course: See sample outline below)
Can be delivered directly to parents/carers of children with additional needs or disabilities or to those who are supporting them or a combination.

3. Developing Resilience and Independence by Promoting Self-Advocacy and Solution Focused Outcomes
Informing parents and young people of their rights is only the first step to empowering them. This training builds on these rights by equipping parents and young people with useful tools and approaches, so they can apply them effectively for themselves to their own personal situation. This will mean they can contribute positively to all discussions and assessments with confidence. This should also mean that parents and young people are not only in possession of the key components they need to be fully involved and able to support the achievement of meaningful outcomes but to do so independently of support services wherever possible.
It can be delivered directly to parents/carers of children with special educational needs or disabilities, or to those who are supporting them e.g. IASS or IS or a combination audience.
This is a 1 day or 2 day course depending on the knowledge and experience of delegates.

4. Applying Person Centred Approaches (PCA) and the Benefits They Provide
Includes an introduction to the philosophy of PCA and to a range of Person Centred values and tools. It also looks at how PCA can be woven into every aspect of your life, at both a professional and personal level, and the powerful and enlightening benefits it can bring.

5. Applying Solution Focussed Approaches (SFA) and the Benefits
Includes an introduction to the background of this approach, how to deal with a problem without talking about it, why focussing on exceptions and staying curious can be so advantageous and the benefits all this can bring.
6. The Power of Combining PCA and SFA
If you like the sound of these 2 approaches you will enjoy finding out how impressive combining them can be.

7. Parental Confidence
Will address the following questions and many more. How do you really know what parents think of your service or school? Are the things you consider to be the most important to parents, really so? Why is this important? Whose responsibility is it? and so on. It will demonstrate ways of verifying whether what you believe to be the case, really is; it will help you identify things that can be changed relatively easily that can make a big difference in improving relationships with parents and better outcomes for children with SEN.

8. Parental Engagement
Will demonstrate different ways of getting parents involved either individually or collectively. Individually could be if a parent doesn't attend any meetings relating to their child including parents' evening. Collectively could be if you recognise that there could be benefits for parents with a common aim or need, to meet up, or when you want to change something e.g. the way meetings are held, or the forms that are used etc. and would like to involve the parents in doing so.

9. Service Development - in an Ever-Changing World
Seeks to answer the following questions: What do you need to do next to take the service forward? How do you decide? What informed the decision? What are the likely barriers? How can you overcome these? What are you expecting to achieve? etc.

10. Service Evaluation (from professionals and parents' perspective),
Includes: identifying how you can be sure that the service you're providing is relevant, valued and respected and how it measures up to and balances the expectations of all stakeholders.

11. Becoming/Maintaining a Needs Led Service
From the first step to inception. Why this is important, identifying the barriers and overcoming them; keeping things going.

12. Recognising the Significance of "Impact" with Regard to Individuals and/or Service
Attempts to address the following questions: Why is "impact" important? How can you measure impact? How can you use/share the information to help your service or service users?

13. Developing Empathy
Not something that can necessarily be taught but if there is a willingness to want to try and gain some insight into what something actually feels like for someone else, you will find some techniques here to help you do so.

14. Mentoring or Assessing the SEN Casework Award for Parent Partnership Services (PPS)
Rosemary wrote the guidance adapting this award for all 3 levels, to make it suitable for PPS and, therefore, is ideally placed to mentor/assess candidates.

If you don't see what you're looking for but you think Rosemary could help, please give her a call and discuss your ideas or requirements. If it fits in with the ethos of Voice-clouds, Rosemary will always try her best to develop something to meet your needs. This will not usually be any more expensive than the standard training charges.

Sample outline of a full day's training:


Enabling Parents to Become Fully Engaged with Their Child's Education and with Professionals.

Target audience: Parents of children with special educational/additional needs and/or disabilities and to those who are in a supporting role (maximum 16)

How long: This training is intended for a full day (minimum 6 hours)

Purpose: To empower parents:
• enabling them to be more actively involved in supporting their son or daughter with their education
• to be more effective at identifying and sharing key information with others
• to be involved in the setting of targets and goals ensuring they are relevant
• to manage better, and participate fully, in situations involving professionals

Content includes:
• reviewing the typical language used and discover the benefits of rephrasing
• introduction to solution focussed and person centred approaches and how to start using them immediately
• how to focus on and achieve desired outcomes (instead of getting "a service")

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