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representing parent carers

One of the PaCC's main functions is to represent the views of parent carers across the city at key decision making meetings

 

They gather views from parents and carers by collating:

  • Parent carers’ experience to understand the issues that matter to them via surveys and consultations
  • What already works well (their view of examples of good practice)
  • What needs further improvement and why
  • Specific recommendations (SMART goals ) for improvements

PaCC have a steering group that meets every two months. Parents who are members of the steering group represent the wider views of parent carers across the city and are trained to sit on key strategic boards alongside local representatives from the health, social care and education professions. They have equal decision making powers on these boards and are there to ensure that the parent voice is heard, read here the list of groups attended by PaCC parent representatives.

Find out more about the PaCC steering group.

We need your views to help us ensure we are representing parent carers in the best way possible. Give us your views now or if you would like to get more involved, you can join the PaCC.

The PaCC have produced various reports which have collated the views of parents on therapy provision, health care services and special education needs. Read PaCC Reports here.

During 2015 we also run a consultation with our members, PaCC 2015 Survey,which main findings and recommendations are listed below here.

PaCC exists to represent and provide a collective voice for its members: parents and carers of children with SEND. In order to gather information, and inform our strategy for the coming 24 months, we created an online survey. We also wanted to use this survey to gain a clearer idea of who our members are, and their level of engagement with PaCC. The survey was emailed out to members, and posted on PaCC Facebook page. We received 51 responses, including one paper response.

Who do we represent?

88% of those surveyed were female, with most in the 45-59 age brackets. Only 2% were aged 25-34. 80% classed themselves as white British, and 82% heterosexual. Over half had no religion with 28% of Christian religion. 18% cared for two or more children with SEND. PaCC needs to engage more with minority groups.

Engagement over last 24 months

The PaCC connect on the SEND review was the most highly attended forum (50%), while of five online surveys listed, most members had completed the survey on Mental health and Wellbeing (37%). More specialised PaCC connects and surveys inevitably attract fewer members, so attendance is only one measure of the success of an event/survey. Mental Health and Wellbeing continues to be an area of concern. Nearly two thirds of members read reports and most felt these accurately reflected their views. PaCC needs to ensure that more members are aware of reports following PaCC connects and surveys.

Website

Three quarters of respondees were aware of the PaCC website, and over half of these had used and found it useful, though it needs to be more up-to-date. One respondee felt “a more up to date/current report on on-going issues” would be useful. Website needs more up-to-date information

Facebook

Importantly, only a quarter of respondees were members of the PaCC Facebook page, although most who were found it useful. PaCC needs to be aware that most members do not visit the Facebook page.

Members’ views

Top Priorities

We asked members to prioritise, from a list of 20, their top 5 areas of focus over the coming year. The most popular were:

  • Mental Health
  • Support provided at schools
  • Therapies (e.g. Speech and language Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy)
  • Transition
  • EHC plans and the assessment and planning process/transfers from Statements of SEN
  • Autism

Also popular were Individual Budgets, BESD, Housing, Home-School Transport and Inclusion in the Local Community. One member suggested “Play and Leisure” as an additional area for focus. We have recently organised surveys and PaCC connects and surveys on some of the above (e.g. survey on Mental health and, very recently, Home-School Transport), so we will use this information to ensure we cover as many of the above areas over the coming year.

Representing parent carers’ views

Members were asked how well PaCC represented the views of parent carers in the city on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being best). The average was 7.6. PaCC aims to increase this figure over the coming 2 years by increased engagement with parent carers, ensuring we represent their views and give good feedback on the work PaCC does.

When asked what else PaCC could do, we received some interesting responses, particularly around communication:

“Communicate better and more for older children”

“Reach out to all parents”

“Meetings that parent can attend”

PaCC need to consider how to engage with more and a broader range of parents.

Membership Card

Most respondees would like a membership card. “Membership card one can show another parent if they mention something in a fleeting connection”. Only one respondee preferred to be contacted by post rather than email. PaCC to produce a membership cards

Future engagement

A number of parents were keen to be more involved with PaCC, particularly around helping out at meetings and promoting membership. PaCC to talk to parents who are keen to be more involved

100% of respondees wanted to remain members of PaCC which is very encouraging. Along with useful suggestions for how we can improve, there was a lot of positive feedback:

“Just keep up the good work!”

“Well done all, thank you”

“With a continually positive slant and collaborative working, we will get even better at what we do!”

You can look at the more extensive PaCC 2015 Survey here.

 

 

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