Sense and NatSIP established a partnership in Spring 2017 with an aim of maximising the support available for children who are Multi-Sensory Impaired (MSI), their families and associated practitioners. In these challenging times, there are additional and specialist services which would support families and assist professionals to achieve the best possible outcomes for children whilst assisting statutory agencies to meet their legal responsibilities. These include; individual assessments/reports for EHC plans, intervenor and bespoke MSI training, coaching and mentoring.
This partnership brought about a pilot project to establish a directory of MSI qualified and trained advisors who can offer a range of services. Since it was launched on 1 June 2017, we have been keeping track of feedback and how regularly it has been used.
We have recently made some minor changes and, at the request of service users, have taken the decision to build on the MSI advisor directory to include other Sensory Impairment practitioners. From November 2017 a Vision Impairment (VI) advisor directory will be available and it is anticipated that in the future a Hearing Impairment (HI) advisor directory will be developed.
If you are a Local Authority, school, family member or practitioner you can use the directory to find further information and details on the skilled advisors who may be able to assist. Advisors will be responsible for undertaking all required safeguarding checks, including an enhanced DBS and must adhere to the relevant safeguarding practice and policies shared by the commissioner.
Local Authorities (LA) offer Sensory Impairment support service to schools and families and this list does not in any way replace these local services. Information about LA SI services will be found in the LA Local Offer.
We will continue to monitor the use and feedback about the Find an Advisor Directories. Your feedback about how helpful the directory is will therefore be very important to us. We will not be able to receive or act upon comments about individual advisors.
In order to strengthen the importance and partnership of the MSI work Sense has established a small fund that families may be able to access to support the funding of specialist MSI advice for EHC plans.