What is an Information Advice and Support Service?
The Children and Families Act 2014...
...includes a duty for each local authority to provide an Information Advice and Support Service...
to support children, young people and parents on matters relatng to a child or young person’s
special educational needs or disability from birth to 25 years.
Operating at ‘arm’s length’ from the local authority,
the service offer is free, confidential and impartial
and provided through a direct telephone helpline, website, email or face to face by appointment.
The service is an all year-round flexible service, opened during normal office hours.
If you cannot get through to the service..
...there should be a 24-hour answer machine with a call back and signposting service.
Whatever the concern or level of need,
your local friendly and flexible service will often offer a listening ear,
access to resources,
and provide the opportunity to meet others in a similar situation.
They will also help and support you to navigate the Local Offer.
All services across England are underpinned by a set of Minimum Standards..
which are endorsed by the Department for Education and the Department of Health and Social Care.
The Standards are based on the requirements as set out in..
The Children & Families Act 2014
The SEND COde of Practice
Legal advice commissioned by the IASS Network
A copy of the standards is available on request from your local service.
How can the Information Advice and Support Service Help you?
Your local skilled and supportive service team
would have completed high quality training on a range of topics including:
SEND advisers legal training
and practical skills training.
The team are equiped to offer information advice and support about:
- Education health and social care matters, annual reviews and relevant law
- Support available in schools, early years, and post 16 settings
- Funding arrangements
- Identifying needs
- Representation at SEND tribunals
- Exclusion from school
Based on your circumstances your local service can also offer individual support which may include:
- Support at and preparing for meetings
- Help to understand and complete paperwork
- Help to participate in discussions and decision making
- Liaising with other services and organisations
- Looking at positive outcomes
Your local service will also be able to provide advocacy support
for individual children, young people and parents
- as well as empowering all to express their views and wishes
as well as to help with understanding and exercising their rights.
How can you find your local Information Advice and Support Service?
Visiting your Local Offer Page
Each local authority is required to have a “Local Offer” page..
containing relevant information and support on offer.
To find your Local Offer page simply write the name of your local authority
followed by the term “Local Offer” into your search engine and press return.
The results of the search should include a link to your local authority “Local Offer” page.
Directly Contacting your Local Information Advice and Support Service
To find your local Information Advice and Support Service
simply write the name of the local authority, followed by the term
“IASS” into your internet search engine and press return.
The results should include a link to your local Service with information on...
...how to contact the service team.
Parents with a disabled child aged from birth to 25 looking for support can also contact the national helpline for parents and carers.
You can phone the helpline on 0808 808 3555
between 09:30 and 17:00 Monday to Friday
Calls are free from UK landlines and UK mobiles.
To find out more information and advice
please visit www.contact.org.uk
Parents looking for legal advice can also contact the “Independent Provider of Special Education Advice”
who provide free and independent legally-based information, advice and casework support.
To find out more information and advice please visit www.ipsea.org.uk
For further information and details of all local information, advice and support services please visit www.councilfordisabledchildren.org.uk