.

Preparing for adulthood - school year 9 and upwards 

Preparing for Adulthood (also referred to as PfA) means preparing children and young people for: 

•Education and / or training & employment after school year 11

•Independent living 

•Participating in society / being part of their local community 

•Being as healthy as possible in adult life 


Preparing for adulthood is very important for all children and young people, however extra care and attention should be given to children and young people with special educational needs and / or disabilities (SEND) to ensure that they are supported in the most suitable ways possible to communicate their aspirations and ultimately achieve their ambitions. 

Preparing children and young people for adulthood should start as early as possible. The SEND Code of Practice (2014) explains that this should start as early as possible and not after school year 9 (aged 13-14 years).For young people with Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans the annual review at Year 9, and every annual review thereafter, must include a focus on Preparing for Adulthood. This means that consideration should be given to the following four outcomes: 

•Education and / or training & employment after school year 11

•Independent living 

•Participating in society / being part of their local community 

•Being as healthy as possible in adult life 

The principals of Preparing for Adulthood apply to all children and young people with SEND, though some pay particular attention to children and young people with Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans. 


As described above, the Special educational needs and disability (SEND) Code of Practice (2015) describes preparing for adulthood as having four pathways:

Education and Employment – this pathway explores different education, training and employment options

Independent Living – this pathway looks at accommodation and living arrangements along with available support

Friends, Relationships and Community Involvement – this pathway identifies opportunities for participating in and contributing to the local community as well as how to stay safe

Good Health – this pathway supports being as healthy as possible in adult life. 


Discussions about preparing for adulthood should focus on young people’s strengths, capabilities and aspirations and these discussions should be conducted in a ‘person centred’ way. ‘Person centred’ refers to a way of working which places the young person at the very centre of all processes and discussions.  For example, according to Westminster Information, Advice and Support Service (2019), all person-centred activities or events should include the following five core principles:

•The person should understand that their views are as important as everyone else’s, in whatever way they are expressed;

•The person should understand the process of the activity in which they are involved;

•The activity should be as accessible and user friendly as is practical to achieve;

•The person should have a realistic understanding of the process of the activity and what decisions their views can impact on;

•The person should be given information about the outcome of any activity, in a manner that is meaningful to them.


There are professionals who can support young people and their families with preparing for adulthood in relation to all four areas (outlined above). As an example, all young people are entitled to careers information, advice and guidance from the age of 12, years this is something which should be available directly from the school. School’s careers advisers should support young people in the following ways: 

•Provide an opportunity for all young people to access a one-to-one careers interview

•Ensure young people have had at least one meaningful encounter with employer

•Provide an opportunity to speak to education providers including technical education, apprenticeships, traineeships and supported internships

•To have directed the parent/carer and young person to the Local Offer website for further information on transition which supports the PFA areas of education, community inclusion, independent living and health


East Riding of Yorkshire Council also have Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) Officers who work within the 0 – 25 SEND Team. These officers link with school and college Special Educational Needs Coordinators (SENCOs) and careers advisers to offer specialist support and guidance for young people who are struggling to find appropriate provision or need help overcoming obstacles. 


Careers Guidance Officers in school or IAG Officers based in the 0-25 SEND Team will explore options and advise young people on areas such as:

•Education and training providers (mainstream and specialist)

•Post 16 and 18 course options

•Apprenticeships

•Traineeships

•Supported Internships

•University

•Finishing college and employment applications

•Financial support and transport

•Signposting to agencies to access additional support


IAG Officers from the 0-25 SEND Team will consider becoming involved with a young person if: 

•There is not a clear pathway for the young person and they may need a more bespoke package or specialist support to continue in education

•The case is more complex as there are other professionals involved which may make it more complicated (e.g. Social Care, Education Welfare, CAMHS, etc.)

•The young person’s disability is a significant barrier into accessing future education and is at high risk of becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training). 

The young person or parents/carers are considering an out of county provision 


How will Preparing for Adulthood start?

All schools and settings providing education for young people with EHC Plans will hold annual reviews of EHC plans in accordance with the SEND code of Practice (2015). As stated above, preparing for adulthood should start as early as possible, but all annual reviews of EHC Plans from Year 9 onwards must include a focus on preparing for adulthood. 

The school or setting (usually the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO)) will co-ordinate the annual review meeting, working alongside the young person and parent carer to arrange the meeting date, time and venue of the annual review meeting, who will be invited and who will be asked to provide professional reports. 

Professional input will vary between young people, depending on individual need. If a parent carer or young person wishes to seek clarity on which professionals they should expect to be involved at any given point or specifically in relation to an annual review, there are a number of people / services they could seek advice from, including: 

The school / setting’s SENCO – contact directly through the school 

sen-team/">The Education, Health and Care Plan Coordinator (EHCCO) – Telephone: (01482) 394000

The 0-25 SEND Team – Telephone: (01482) 394000

SENDIASS – Telephone: (01482) 396469

KIDS Children and young people (0-25) SENDIASS – Telephone: (01482) 467540 


The young person and their parent carers must be as fully involved as possible in the annual review process. As stated above, ways in which school SENCOs can ensure this happens are by: working alongside the young person and parent carer to arrange the meeting date, time and venue of the annual review; discussing with the young person and their parent carers who will be invited and who will be asked to provide professional reports.  Furthermore, the young persons’ and parent carers’ views wishes and feelings should be obtained and recorded prior to the annual review meeting. 

For young people with EHC Plans who are home educated, the local authority continue to have responsibility for reviewing the EHC Plan. To find out about when a home educated young person’s annual review is due please telephone: (01482) 394000 and speak to the young person’s Education, Health and Care Plan Coordinator (EHCCO). 

Local authorities should ensure that young people have the support they need to participate fully in this planning and to make decisions. If it is deemed that support is needed to make sure that the young person can participate fully then the local authority should offer support, which could be given by an advocate or other supporter. For further information about support available please contact the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS): 

Telephone: (01482) 396469 

Email: sendiass@eastriding.gov.uk 


Who’s leading the Preparing for Adulthood Agenda in the East Riding? 

A designated, strategic preparing for adulthood subgroup oversee the strategic development, implementation and governance of the Preparing for Adulthood agenda as set out in the Children and Families Act 2014, the Care Act 2014 and Mental Capacity Act 2005. The overarching aim of the PfA subgroup is to develop and implement a shared approach across Children’s and Adult’s Services, Health and Education Services to ensure compliance with the Children and Families Act 2014, the Care Act 2014 and Mental Capacity Act 2005 in relation to Preparing for Adulthood.

The preparing for adulthood subgroup is co-chaired by professionals from children’s and adult’s services and also consists of individuals from a range of areas, including: 

•Children’s and adult’s health services 

•Schools and colleges (mainstream and specialist) 

•The East Yorkshire Parent Carer Forum (EYPCF) 

 

Preparing for Adulthood Programme

The Preparing for Adulthood programme (PfA) is funded by the Department for Education as part of the delivery support for the SEN and disability reforms.

The Preparing for Adulthood programme is delivered by a partnership between the National Development Team for inclusion and the Council for Disabled Children.

The partnership brings together a wide range of expertise and experience of working with young people and families, at a local and national level and across government, to support young people into adulthood with paid employment, good health, independent living and friends, relationships and community inclusion.

The Preparing for Adulthood team previously worked on key transition programmes including the Transition Support Programme, Valuing People Now, Valuing Employment Now (Getting a Life project, Jobs First, Aspirations for Life and Project Search) and Learning for Living and Work.


Find information on the Preparing for Adulthood website by clicking below.

Preparing for Adulthood Website (external website)

You can also contact Preparing for Adulthood using the contact details below:

Tel: 0207 843 6348

Email: info@preparingforadulthood.org.uk

Address:

Preparing for Adulthood Programme,
National Development Team for Inclusion,
First Floor,
30-32 Westgate Buildings,
Bath,
BA1 1EF


Other useful websites: 

Log On Move On


Useful resources: 

Preparing for Adulthood leaflet (pdf 1.3kb, opens in a new window)

SEND Preparing for Adulthood Guide (14-25 year olds) (pdf 4.2mb, opens in a new window) 

PfA Annual Review Timeline (pdf 635kb, opens in a new window)

Who’s Who of Services (pdf 224kb, opens in a new window)

Glossary of Terms (pdf 83kb, opens in a new window)

Preparing for Adulthood outcomes across the age ranges for children and young people with SEND (pdf 1,2kb, opens in a new window)