Specialist Teaching consultation 2021

Closed 9 Jan 2022

Opened 8 Nov 2021

Feedback updated 9 Feb 2022

We asked

We consulted on our proposal to modernise the way we provide specialist teaching across Buckinghamshire. The proposal was designed to ensure we apply the skills and knowledge of our specialist teachers in the most effective way. 

The ‘Specialist Teaching Consultation 2021’ ran from 8 November 2021 to 9 January 2022.

You said

All the responses have now been collated and are captured in the consultation outcome report (PDF, 0.32MB)

  • 125 people responded to the consultation
  • 72% agreed that there was a need to change the approach to specialist teaching
  • 44% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed with the proposals, while 40% disagreed or strongly disagreed

We did

Given the mixed response to the proposal itself, a decision has been taken to delay any changes until September 2023. This delay will enable us to further consider the proposal in the light of the feedback received. 

During this time, we will carry out some additional activities, alongside key stakeholders, to further review and refine the proposal. This will ensure we can be confident that any changes meet the needs of children and families.  

The new approach will be communicated to families and schools / settings once this work is completed and decisions have been taken. It is anticipated this will be in the Autumn 2022.


Buckinghamshire Council logo

We are consulting on our proposal to modernise the way we provide specialist teaching across Buckinghamshire.

Our proposal is designed to ensure we apply the skills and knowledge of our specialist teachers in the most effective way.

We want all pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) to receive high-quality education and ensure they can achieve the best possible outcomes.

What specialist teaching is

The specialist teachers within Buckinghamshire Council are part of our Integrated SEND Service.

They offer support and specialist knowledge so that children and young people with SEND are able to learn and achieve their personal best in education.

Specialist teachers work with schools, parents, and other agencies to support children with a range of needs.

The forms of specialist teaching covered by the proposal

The proposal covers specialist teaching for children and young people with:

  • autism and language needs
  • difficulties with understanding, including Down Syndrome and specific learning difficulties
  • physical difficulties

The proposal does not cover specialist teaching for children and young people with sensory impairments – hearing, visual or multi-sensory.

Reasons for proposing change

  • to reach more children and young people with SEND. Currently, only those with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) receive specialist teaching support. This means that many children and young people are not able to access the council’s specialist teaching resource, and opportunities for early intervention are lost.
  • to introduce a new and improved approach. This approach is based on research findings, best practice and what we have seen work well in other areas of the country.
  • to make best use of our specialist teaching resource. Our proposal is not about cutting the service and there are no plans to reduce the overall level of resource. It is about a different way of providing specialist teaching to more pupils, using the resources we have.

The proposal

To understand the full detail of our proposal, you will need to read the Specialist Teaching Proposal document below:

How to provide feedback

You can get involved in the consultation by:

  • completing the online survey below (a printed version of the survey is available at the bottom of this page for download or you can contact us to request a printed copy)
  • registering to attend one of our online consultation events by emailing us on engageeducation@buckinghamshire.gov.uk or phoning us on 0300 131 6000. We are holding these on the following dates:
    • Tuesday 16 November, 7pm to 8pm
    • Tuesday 23 November, 11.30am to12.30pm
    • Friday 26 November, 11am to 12pm

What happens next

We will review all the feedback we receive to guide us in making any relevant changes to the draft proposal.

The final proposal will then go to senior leadership within the council for approval before we publish it on our Specialist teachers webpage and start to promote it. We will update this page with the outcome of the consultation process.

Dependent on feedback and approval, a new specialist teaching approach would be implemented step-by-step over a period of time, starting from September 2022.


We will use the information you provide here only for the purpose of this consultation. We will keep the information confidential and store it securely, in line with data protection laws and will not share or publish any personal details. For more information about data and privacy, please see our Privacy Policy.

If you have questions, please email us on dataprotection@buckinghamshire.gov.uk. or write to our Data Protection Officer at Buckinghamshire Council, The Gateway, Gatehouse Road, Aylesbury, HP19 8FF.


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