Statement from the Directors in response to the Report from OFSTED and CQC – 1st February 2023

Between 28th November and 1st December 2022, Ofsted and CQC revisited Somerset to review the work that has been undertaken since the original inspection in March 2020. The revisit was focused on the 9 areas of weakness identified during the original inspection.

The inspectors met with the parent carer forum, and we arranged a focus group with the leads of support groups across Somerset. Over 680 parents completed the OFSTED survey, and families also sent individual emails. Inspectors met with the Unstoppables and spoke to children and their parents during school visits. We are pleased that during the revisit the inspection team heard from lots of parents, and we want to thank you for getting involved.

The report acknowledges the work that has taken place and the commitment to improving how services work with families, which we welcome and look forward to working with teams across the area to develop further, ensuring this becomes common practice.

While the report shows progress across 7 areas, it clearly identifies there is still much to do to ensure families feel the impact of the work that has been done. Ofsted and CQC have identified 2 areas which were deemed not to have made sufficient progress.

  1.  Poor assessment and meeting of need caused by inconsistent practice, leading to poor outcomes for children and young people with SEND.
  2. Too many children and young people not accessing education because of the disproportionate use of exclusion and poor inclusive practices across the area.

These areas impact on a lot of our families and are areas that need to be addressed as a matter of urgency. Families need to see real changes and improvement for their children and young people.

The letter identifies that the next steps will be to meet with NHS England and the Department of Education advisors. Representatives from Somerset Parent Carer Forum will be at the meeting, and we will work to ensure your views and experiences help to shape any action plans that are created following this.

We know there is much work to do moving forward and we are committed to making your voice heard and provide opportunities for you to work directly with those delivering services. If you would like to know more about how you can get involved, please contact us at or ring us on 01458 259384.