Skip to Content

This website uses Cookies you can control them from this page: Cookies Page

Functionality Cookies Performance Cookies Targeting Cookies
RIASS Redbridge
RIASS logo

Steering Group

Redbridge Information, Advice and Support Service (RIASS) Steering Group

Legal Framework

The Children and Families Act 2014 requires local authorities to provide information advice and support (IAS) about special educational needs (SEN), disability, health and social care for children, young people and parents.

The SEND Code of Practice says:
Local authorities must arrange for children with SEN or disabilities for whom they are responsible, and their parents, and young people with SEN or disabilities for whom they are responsible, to be provided with information and advice about matters relating to their SEN or disabilities, including matters relating to health and social care. This must include information, advice and support on the take-up and management of Personal Budgets. In addition, in carrying out their duties under Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014, local authorities must have regard to the importance of providing children and their parents and young people with the information and support necessary to participate in decisions. (2.1)

This means that every local authority should provide a free and confidential service that is easy to access in order to help children, parents and young people take part in decisions that affect their lives.  In Redbridge this service is provided by Redbridge Information, Advice and Support Service (RIASS)

Nationally “Information, Advice and Support Services” (IASS) are overseen by a local steering group (SG) to ensure that the service is impartial and at arm’s length to the local authority (LA).  This is fundamental for the service to be able to operate in accordance with current legislation and ensure it reflects local needs and is ambitious regarding future developments. 

In Redbridge the steering group is made up of at least 3 parents, a young person (YP) and a number of professionals from a range of settings including schools and education services, voluntary sector organisations, young people’s services, social care and health.  All SG members have an equal voice and role in decision-making.

The steering group meets a minimum of 3 times a year, during term time. 

Each meeting lasts approximately two hours and sometimes documents will be emailed in advance for familiarisation and occasionally feedback.

Terms of Reference

Purpose

The purpose of the Redbridge IAS Service (RIASS) Steering Group is to ensure that the service operates impartially and at “arm’s length” from the Local Authority & CCG in the provision of information, advice and support to children and young people with SEND and their parents and carers in Redbridge, in accordance with:

  • Children & Families Act 2014 (Part 3)
  • SEND Code of Practice (2015) 
  • National Minimum Standards

Aims and Objectives

  • To act as a “critical friend” to RIASS.
  • Regulate and ensure “arm’s length” requirements and impartiality from the LA and CCG.
  • To guide and support the development of RIASS to ensure adherence to and achievement of points 1 to 3 above.
  • To fulfil the requirements of any external funding applications.
  • To monitor compliance with the National Minimum Standards.
  • To act as a consultative body in interpreting national policies and ensuring uniform application in accordance with national and legal exemplars, irrespective of local practice.
  • To review, scrutinise and agree all practice, proposals, policies and promotional materials, including but not limited to:
  • Termly monitoring reports including analysis of data
  • Service development plan or other plans required by commissioners
  • Impartiality and confidentiality policies
  • All literature and publications
  • RIASS website
  • To offer practical advice and support in regard to any publicity/promotional and training requirements.
  • To ensure that the views of children, young people, parents/carers are shared with the Local Authority when appropriate, to inform changes in local policy and practice.
  • Monitor RIASS’ engagement with all relevant partners locally, regionally and nationally.

Accountability

The RIASS steering group is ultimately accountable to children and young people with SEND and their parents and carers across Redbridge to ensure that confidential and accurate information, advice and support is delivered in a timely manner.  RIASS will champion the rights, views and experiences of children and young people with SEND and their parents and carers, and ensure these shape commissioning intentions and service delivery.

The outcomes of the RIASS steering group meetings will be shared with the Redbridge SEND Partnership Board, whose role includes but is not limited to:

  • Reviewing Service Delivery
  • Addressing any issues of concern in relation to the delivery of RIASS
  • Considering financial arrangements when necessary

Terms and Conditions

  • All members are equal and are treated with respect; individual skills and knowledge are recognised, understood and valued. 
  • No member will act in the specific interest of their own organisation or family member.
  • Any conflict of interests will be identified and resolved swiftly.
  • All members will agree to these terms and conditions and maintain the confidentiality policy in operation.
  • The steering group will meet termly.
  • Membership of the steering group will be reviewed annually.

Membership

  • Parents/Carers of Children with SEND – 1 representative will act in the capacity of Chair
  • Young Person with SEND
  • RIASS Co-ordinator
  • RIASS staff
  • RIASS volunteer representative
  • Voluntary agency representative
  • Educational setting representative (Early Years, Mainstream, Special school, FE)
  • RIASS Co-ordinator’s line manager
  • Children’s Social Care representative
  • Health/CCG representative
  • Other as required

Throughout the year Steering Group vacancies may arise. If you would like to register your interest in becoming a member please email us at riass@redbridge.gov.uk