Health Outcomes for young People throughout Education
What is the HOPE Study?
Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) provision aims to improve the education, health and wellbeing of children and young people, but its impact on health outcomes and healthcare utilisation in the UK has never been evaluated.
Currently 1 in 3 children in England will receive some form of SEND support during school years, with a recent government report concluding that there is ‘too much of a tension’ between the needs of children with SEND and the provision available, which is hampered by substantial underfunding and implementation failures at school, local authority (LA) and government levels (House of Commons Education Committee, 2019).
It is critical that research establishes the current picture of SEND provision in the UK including variation at Local Authority level and how it links to health outcomes in children and young people.
What does the project aim to do?
The Health Outcomes for young People throughout Education’ (HOPE) aims to provide enduring public health benefits by translating methods and tools for reusable, linked, administrative data, into ongoing evaluation, monitoring and improvement of SEND services for better health and wellbeing in children and young people.
The findings will enable policy makers, service providers and users to make evidence-informed decisions about who might benefit from SEND provision.
What methods are being used?
The HOPE Study will take place across four work packages with collaborators at University College London (UCL) and Cambridge University, collectively seeking to answer the question: What is the impact of SEND provision in schools on health outcomes for children and young people?
Work Package 1 will use a linked database containing individual-level health and education data for school-aged children in England to establish which health indicators represent children with likely SEND provision needs, and which health outcomes could be impacted by SEND provision.
Work Package 2 will provide comprehensive data at Local Authority level across England, detailing who receives SEND provision, when, what type, and for how long.
Work Package 3 will quantify the impact of SEND provision on health outcomes.
Work Package 4 will further assess the impact of the timing and duration of SEND provision on health outcomes.
At Cambridge we have been selected to complete Work Package 2 of the HOPE Study.
Work Package 2 will be using mixed methods to evaluate and map variation in criteria, policies, and user experiences of the timing, setting and duration of SEND provision across England.
A short survey consisting of closed questions to define stakeholder roles and measure experience of SEND provision according to different stakeholders will be combined with our other Local Authority level data sources to map the variation in SEND provision across Local Authorities.
Eligible participants for the mapping survey will be stakeholders from three different groups:
- Children and young people (CYP), and parents/carers of CYP eligible for/receiving SEND provision, and CYP eligible for SEND provision who have recently completed their education (within 2 years).
- People providing SEND in schools (e.g. head teachers, SENCO, teachers) and associated health services (e.g. GPs).
- People funding SEND provision in schools (e.g. Local Authorities, charities) and associated health services (e.g. CCGs).
To be eligible for the survey, stakeholders must belong to at least one of the three categories set out above and be able to read and write in English to a sufficient standard to be able to understand and complete the survey.
We will be taking advice from our key stakeholders on how to recruit people who cannot access the online survey, or read and write in English, but who would like to participate in the research.
If you would like some more information about the research being completed within Work Package 2, or you would like to express an interest in becoming a participant, please contact the team via the email address provided below.
Meet the team:
The distribution of formal invitation letters will commence from the beginning of December.