Tel: 01254 583957


Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council is having an SEND Inspection by OFSTED from Monday 17 June for 5 days. 

This is an open invite to parents and carers to attend an informal meeting forum with Inspectors on Tuesday 18 June from 11.45 – 1pm if your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan OR receives SEND support.  This is an opportunity to share your experiences with inspectors about the support you receive.

Spaces are limited so please book on by contacting Lynsey Sumner at or ringing  01254 666847 and your place will be confirmed a.s.a.p.     Please provide your name, contact telephone number and the age/s of your children when expressing an interest in attending.

The venue is Conference Room 1 at the Old Town Hall, King William Street, Blackburn.   Buffet lunch / refreshments will be provided.  If you have any dietary requirements please let us know when booking.

If you can’t make the meeting, don’t worry, there are other ways for you to share your views and experiences.  These are:

  1. an online recorded webinar to allow Blackburn with Darwen parents and carers of children with SEND to contribute. The webinar will take place from 12 noon on Monday 10 June 2019 until 11:59pm on Tuesday 18 June 2019.
  2. Parents and carers who would like to take part in this webinar can follow this internet link to register:
  3. Parents and carers can also email their contributions to

Whilst those involved in the inspection realise parents and carers may have views on their experience before the introduction of the reforms in September 2014, it is important that this inspection gathers evidence about the impact since the reforms. The inspection team would also like parents and carers to understand that they will not be able to follow up or comment upon individual cases.

Blackburn with Darwen
Special Educational Needs & Disability (SEND)
Information, Advice & Support Service (IASS)


SEND Information Advice & Support Service (SENDIASS) offers free impartial advice and information for parents, children and young people about special educational needs (SEN) procedures as set out in SEN legislation and the SEN Code of Practice 2015.

Under the revised SEND Code of Practice (January 2015), children and young people have a right to confidential and impartial information, advice and support, regardless of their age or mental capacity. Whilst the Code suggests that many children and young people will access services via their parents or carers; services must make it possible for them to access services separately if they wish. Information, Advice and Support Service staff must be clear about these rights, as well as the limits to confidentiality, as safeguarding children and young people will always be paramount.

The Service can offer you:

  • Confidential and impartial information, advice and support to parents/carers/children and young people (16+)
  • Information about Blackburn with Darwen’s Local Offer
  • Information, advice and support on subjects including local policy and practice, personalisation, personal budgets, preparation for adulthood, the law on SEN and Disability, Health and Social Care
  • Information, advice and support throughout the Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) assessment process
  • Information, advice and support on parental requests
  • Information, advice and support about additional SEN support in school
  • Individual casework
  • Support in preparing for and attending meetings
  • Help in filling in forms and writing letters/reports
  • Support in resolving disagreements, including disagreement resolution, mediation and tribunals
  • Information, advice & support relating to school transitions and exclusions
  • Signposting to other local or national sources of advice, information and support
  • Links to local parent support groups and forums.
  • The Service also maintains a Facebook page

How to make a Referral

Primarily the service operates a ‘self-referral’ process. However, on occasions it may be considered appropriate for a professional to make contact with the service on behalf of the parent/carer or young person. The service will act upon such requests only on the full understanding that consent has been given.

Alternative Formats

If you require information in another format, please contact the service.

Your views matter:

SENDIASS will listen to parents/carers, (via Parent/Carer Forum & Parents in Partnership Steering Group), children/young people, professionals and schools, to gather ideas opinions and views. The information will be passed on to Blackburn with Darwen Children’s Services and other agencies to ensure their voice is heard.

The Service operates to the standards of confidentiality and impartiality set out in its policies, which are in the process of being updated/checked and will uploaded at a later date.

Contact details

Blackburn with Darwen Information, Special Education needs & Disability Information, Advice & Support Service, SENDIASS, Community CVS, Boulevard Centre, Cathedral Quarter, 45 Railway Road, Blackburn BB1 1EZ Tel 01254 503049 Email:

It may not always be possible to speak with a member of the team due to outside office appointments etc. However, there is an answer machine so that messages may be left at any time. BwD SENDIASS also has a Facebook page.

For further information about IAS Services contact the Information, Advice and Support Services Network (IASSN)

Information & impartiality policies

Information leaflets

You can also download information on SEND from the Council for Disabled Children (CDC) on the SEND reforms. The information has been produced by CDC in partnership with the Department for Education. The series of fact sheets, films and posters are designed to help parents/carers, children and young people understand some of the key themes of the new reforms including EHC plans, Post-16 support, the Local Offer and making decisions.

Useful websites:

  • – Blackburn with Darwen Council – Local Offer
  • – Special Educational Needs & Disability Guidance
  • – Advice and links on medical disorders and syndromes
  • –Independent Parental Special Educational Advice
  • – Recent Ofsted reports
  • – where you can access guidance
  • – Preparing for Adulthood. The Department for Education has commissioned a two year programme called Preparing for Adulthood that will provide knowledge and support to local authorities and their partners, including families and young people, so they can ensure that disabled young people achieve paid work, independent living, good health and community inclusion as they move into adulthood