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Stalker Walk
Sheffield, England, S11 8JF
United Kingdom

07809387778

Helping parents, schools, and professionals to navigate the complex legal system of special educational needs and Education, Health & Care Plans.

Talking about Education, Health and Care Plans

Talking about Education, Health and Care Plans, and how to support parents and professionals through the complex process.

Why webinars?

Bright Futures

Photo by kieferpix/iStock / Getty Images
Photo by kieferpix/iStock / Getty Images

As a few of you may know, I have been talking a lot about webinars and online, virtual help, lately. 

SO why am I doing this?

It is firstly because, I am at full capacity, and can not take on any more cases. It makes me frustrated that I have to turn families down because I hate seeing you struggle alone.

But that got me thinking ... perhaps if I educate, train and empower, I could continue to help. My missions is to help you to do it yourself, year on year. This is obviously not for everyone, and can sometimes be unrealistic, but if I can help that little bit more in some little way, I am willing to give it a good old shot. 

The webinars aim to be:

Accessible - it is dead easy to log in, and chat away with me if you want to

Useful and practical - the information I give will be useful for your case and I will give away practical advice which you can use and act upon straight away

Experience-based - you will learn about situations I have found myself in, how I have dealt with them and the outcomes. I will give you key advice on what you can do to help give yourself the best chance at securing the right outcome for your child

Empathetic and empowering - we do not ignore the mental health side of this process. In fact, our whole core is about the human - about the child and the parent at the centre of the process. We do not shy away from the affects a dysfunctional system can have on your emotions and mental health, and we build a community of support to tackle it together.

Let me know if the webinars interest you or do help. It is so important to me that I know what you want and need, so that I can deliver the best for you with my every waking hour!

I hope this interests you and we are looking forward to reaching out to more of you and educating and empowering in the best possible way.

Representing yourself through the SEN system

Bright Futures

Photo by SIphotography/iStock / Getty Images
Photo by SIphotography/iStock / Getty Images

Representing yourself through the SEN system....

This is no mean feat. 

The tribunal courts say you can do it yourself - but it ain't that easy. 

Firstly, it's about your son or daughter - no one seems to consider how MASSIVE this is. You are not simply fighting for the sake of fighting. Unfortunately, I have witnessed some professionals doing it for the 'win' rather than for the sake of the child, and this is terrifying to see. 

This adds humongous amounts of pressure. It feels like all or nothing. You keep thinking about the 'what ifs'. What if the tribunal do not see your side of things? What if they do not recognise the absolute torture you have been through? What if they turn a blind eye to all those missed deadlines, lack of support  (legal duties being breached), lack of assessments since the time your child was diagnosed.... the list goes on and on and on....

And what about those emails you received via the SAR, which speculate that you're just a fussy parent? A 'problem' parent in some cases? 

It is torment after torment, and no one seems to get it. Now the whole of your child's world is on your shoulders and all you want to do is curl up in to a ball and cry. 

It is ok to cry. But you should not have to. The system should not make you feel so small that you have no where to turn. Unfortunately many cases I work with have made families feel like this. 

But apparently, the system says you can do it by yourself, without legal representation (or any representation)......

Even if you are faced against barristers that the LA has employed..... 

.......Even though the tribunal system is manually handled, and results in hours upon hours which amounts to days and weeks of your time, and you have a full-time job - you can do it apparently!

For some you simply do not have a choice other than to do it yourself. You don't have the budget, or you know that you'll need to save it for another 'battle' next year. Perhaps you have more than one child with SEN. It would be unfair to blow it all on one child but what are you meant to do?.... The decisions you have to make are like no other and no one else can possibly understand.

The situation is dire, there's no other way to put it. I would like to present things in a more positive light, but that would be misleading. 

So how do we deal with such a dire system? What Bright Futures do, is educate and empower. So, although we can not change how things currently operate, we can try to support and give you that bit of top-up fuelling you need to continue and carry on. We are a friend at the end of the phone; we are the tenacity and the strength you need to remember why you are doing it; we are the stability you need in a significantly unstable time.

BUT, we are not gods. We can not change the system, and sometimes we can not even predict what is going to happen. We do not sell ourselves on 'winning'. And that is not because we are not 'successful'! Its because Bright Futures does not get its 'kick' out of simply 'winning', we get our 'kick out of doing good and having a positive impact in a number of ways (from lifting the stress of the process, to changing a child's life). Ultimately, we are about being a human in an alien and dehumanising system; we are about supporting you to achieve the best possible outcomes for your child; we are about determination, drive and strength when you feel like you are going to sink. We are about knowledge, experience and expertise. We are about personality, positivity and kindness.

We are devoted. We carry your little'uns' worlds on our shoulders with such care, pride and responsibility. We take it all so seriously it consumes us. Our values are so so important to us, and our business would not exist without them. We have set up Bright Futures in order to use the majority of our waking time, to have an impact. We hope you feel it. And we hope that together with empowering, educating and emotionally supporting one another, we can make a little difference. 

So, in our plea to expand our services to reach more people that are representing themselves through a complex and emotionally-draining process, we have some webinars on offer. 

We hope they help, All the best, Ruth and the Bright Futures Team 

'Attending Tribunal' Webinar: Professionals

Bright Futures

It’s now less than three weeks until the Bright Futures Attending Tribunal Webinar, taking place on Tuesday May 8th at 10am - 11.30am!

We have very limited space left, so if you have been waiting to book, please use our online order form today to ensure your place.

The webinar will cover the entire tribunal process and your role as a professional within this. We will be discussing how best to offer support, what may be expected of you, and how this all fits with your own professional obligations.

We will also be highlighting potential red flags in terms of malpractice of others, how others should conduct themselves, and how to respond if you have any concerns.

If you would like to know more about the content of the webinar, please see our original post about the event or get in touch via the contact page.