Circles of support
A circle of support, sometimes called a circle of friends, is a group of people who know the young person well and can meet together on a regular basis to help them to plan their future and achieve their personal goals.
Community care assessment
Under the Community Care Act 1990 in England, the local authority is required to assess the care needs of any person who appears to them to need community care services. Based on this assessment they will decide whether services should be provided to that person.
The Connexions service in England provides personal advisers who support young people with information, advice and guidance on education, training and work and all other aspects of the transition to adult life. The service is now run by local authorities. They work with all young people aged 13-19 and for people with disabilities up to age 25.
Local authorities can give payments instead of services to allow people with a learning disability and their carers to buy services they have been assessed as needing.
Disabled Persons Act Assessment
Under the Disabled Persons (Services, Consultation and Representation) Act 1986 in England, the local authority is required to undertake an assessment of need of disabled young people in their final year before they leave school.
Health Action Plan
A Health Action Plan is an individual plan that explains a person's health needs and what has to happen for those needs to be met.
Independent Living Fund
The Independent Living Fund (ILF) is a trust set up and financed by central government to support people to live independently rather than in residential care. Families receive funding to pay for a carer to support their relative with a learning disability to live in the community.
This is the full budget that is required to meet all a person's support needs. Personal budgets are being promoted by the government as a way of offering families more choice and control. The personal budget can be paid directly to the individual or the family so that they can use it to buy in the support they need. They are also known by other terms such as individual budgets.
These are transition review meetings that are run in a way that puts the focus of the meeting firmly on the young person. The government wants all schools in England to run person-centred transition reviews by 2012.
Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO)
All schools in England and Wales have a specialist teacher called a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator or SENCO. Their role is to support the special educational needs support within the school and to make sure that the children and young people's needs are met.
This is the term used to describe the support that enables people to live in their own homes. The level of support will vary according to the needs of the young person - they may require 24 hour care or they may need just a few hours of support a week.
The term ‘transition' is often used to describe the process of moving from childhood into adult life. It is mostly used by professionals to describe the changes in services when your child becomes an adult.
These are yearly review meetings for young people with a statement of special educational needs. They start in Year 9, when your child is 13-14. The meeting looks at drawing up an action plan for the future for young people and is reviewed each year until the young person leaves school.