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Portage

The home visiting educational service for preschool children with SEND and their families

What is portage?

Portage provides home-based, early intervention and support. It has three main elements:

  1. Child-led play, enabling children to initiate play.
  2. Family focus, giving families the opportunity to talk about their caring experiences.
  3. Structured teaching, planning activity and play around everyday situations that families and children can practice together.

Who can get portage?

Portage is available to you if you have a young child with additional needs, including with a learning disability.

It is traditionally available to certain disabled children until the age of five.

What happens when you get portage

If you are eligible for portage, here's what will happen:

  • A portage worker will visit you and together you'll identify and agree new skills that you want your child to develop. This usually happens on a weekly basis.
  • The portage worker will then create a plan of techniques and what needs to happen to teach your child these skills.
  • You'll then follow the plan, practice the techniques at home and the portage worker will your progress each visit.

How to get portage

Most portage services have criteria to determine who is eligible to receive them. These criteria will vary from area to area.

Not every local area has a portage service. To see if you have portage services in your area, visit the National Portage Association website which has details of all registered portage services and who to contact.

You can also visit your council's Local Offer which should have details of a portage service if there is one in your local area.

Meet Harry

Watch Harry play whilst his portage worker observes and supports his development.

How to get the support you need

Contact the Learning Disability Helpline, our advice and support line, for guidance and information about what support we can offer you.

Or why not take a look at FamilyHub? This is our online community for parents and family carers of people with a learning disability, and is a place for sharing experiences, advice and support.

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