The Northern Ireland Assembly has been dissolved. The election will take place on Thursday 5 May 2016.

Terms of Reference for the Inquiry into post Special Educational Need Provision in education, employment and training for those with Learning Disabilities

1. To examine the current range of choice and opportunities available for those with Learning Disabilities[1] on leaving full time schooling. 

2. To seek the views of young people, family carers and groups representing children and young people with learning disabilities what services they would like to see in place and how the current situation meets their needs.

3. To research best practice in post school provision for those with learning disabilities.

4. To examine if the quantum and quality of post school provision for those with Learning Disabilities is meeting the demand and develop recommendations to address barriers to participation and delivery of high quality provision.

5. Given the complex and interrelated needs of individuals in this group to identify the barriers to co-ordination across departments – regionally and locally – and make recommendations for improvement.

6. To report the Committee’s findings and recommendations to the Assembly.

In reaching its recommendations the Committee will:

a. Request that the Department details the range of provision it provides across all FE provision, vocational provision and employment support. What is the duration of courses and the number of hours per week (and what happens when it ends)?

b. Assess the quality of current provision by looking at evaluations carried out.

c. Assess whether DEL is living up to its commitments under the Bamford Report.

d. Examine what approaches are working and what the barriers are.

e. Examine the provision by FE colleges for those that are below level 2 and who have safety, supervision and holistic care needs and the options available to such individuals from Health and Social Care Trusts or new District Councils.

f. Assess whether the definition of further education for this student population needs to be broadened: for example: to include physical activity, social and communication skills.

[1] Internationally this term refers to people with dyslexia etc but this review is primarily focused on those with moderate and severe learning difficulties as per the SEN categorisation here.

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