Specialist SEN Solicitor
27th September 2021
You’ve always got to be as patient and flexible as possible…
One of the hardest things that we have to do as human beings is to just be patient enough to wait for things to happen naturally. Also, we sometimes have the inability to be flexible enough to just accept that things do not always go the way that we had planned them to (or in the way that we may have seen them happening in our heads), nor happen at the time that we wanted them to.
But, ironically, being patient and being flexible are also the greatest gifts we have as humans as well! For example, although we may really long for something to happen, which then doesn’t, we usually ultimately accept that it has not happened and just get on with things. In fact, it sometimes even goes further than this, as sometimes we say in hindsight afterwards, that we are actually relieved that some things did not turn out in the way that we had initially wanted them to and say things like: “It was a blessing in disguise”, or that: “You need to be careful about what you wish for”.
A bit strange and contradictory, isn’t it?
We just have to remind ourselves that we always need to be patient enough to wait for things to happen in their own way and at their own time, yet still be flexible enough to get on with other things in the meantime. We also usually will wait for something we want and will also adapt to not having it, even though we want it. In fact, as I have said, sometimes something happens in the meantime that is better than what we had at first planned!
And just a last thought, other people, especially children, will always learn from our behaviours. Therefore, this means logically that if we do not show them that we are patient and flexible as often as we can, other people or children will then not be patient and flexible with us!
In this week's SEN Update, you will find sections entitled:
I know how busy everyone always is, so please feel free just to read the sections that are of interest to you or read everything; the choice is always yours.
It's been a bit of a quiet week for SEN News this past week.
What I did find is the new Guidance issued by the DfE (Department for Education) entitled: 'Promoting children and young people's mental health and wellbeing' whose webpage states:
"This document describes 8 principles of a whole school or college approach to promoting mental health and wellbeing which, if applied consistently and comprehensively, will help contribute towards protecting and promoting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing.
Each principle is considered together with some examples from practice and a question to help the reader to reflect on the implications for practice in their own setting. The document also signposts to resources to support implementation.
This document will be useful to anyone responsible for promoting and supporting the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people in schools and colleges, including:
In terms of other SEN news, here are the articles that I found of interest this week:
Covid ‘high alert’ warning as more than 100,000 pupils in England miss school
Primary Sats tests in England ‘do not appear to harm children’s wellbeing’
Schools in England struggling to stay open amid soaring Covid cases
Again, aside from clicking on the relevant links for more information, I would also remind you of the very useful resources and information provided on the following websites:
- Council for Disabled Children
- Special Needs Jungle
I would also highlight again the magazines: SEN Magazine and Autism Eye which are both very helpful to any parents or professionals involved with children/young people with SEN.
And this week I also want to highlight the TES SEN Show on 8/9 October 2021 at the Business Design Centre in London.
Keep safe until next week.
With best wishes
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Specialist SEN Solicitor
13th September 2021
As we have just started the new academic year, with many people going back to school/college and work (whether that be in the home, or back to a physical building) I have decided to keep this week's SEN Update very short and not bring you any news, to give you a chance to focus on what you need to do. I will return to normal service next week!
Just to say first that over the summer I updated my 7-day email course entitled: 'How To Win A SEN Tribunal Appeal', so it now also advises on the best way to handle video hearings. So please subscribe again to it if you need it (don't worry if you did subscribe previously, it is a fresh course).
But as normal, here's my thought this week:
Every new year allows us to hit a reset button in our lives…
Whether it be the start of a new year, chronologically or academically, we all have the chance to start again and do something differently from the way that we were doing it before. It’s like restarting your computer or phone again afresh. Some people like to call these: ‘New Year Resolutions’, whilst others say that they may be: ‘Turning over a new leaf’). Either way, you are basically changing yourself in some way at a given time.
Personally, I try not to wait for particular times to start doing something differently if I think of something that can change my life, if I can, because I believe that if you think of something that can improve your life in some way, you should start to try and do from there and then, if you can. However, I realise that this is not always realistic for some people and that, sometimes, we need to build up to doing something differently over time, or wait for a particular time when the odds are on our side, or when the ‘planets seem to be in alignment’, as people also like to say.
Wise people have always said that you should try to develop an insight into yourself and regularly reflect on what you do every day, every week, every month, or every year if you can, so that you can then make changes frequently if you need to. However, again this may seem unrealistic for some people, for the reasons I have given above. In any event, you need to factor in that other people also then need to accept that you are changing your outlook, or the way that you do things. Too often I am afraid that I see people trying to change themselves for the better, but then being dragged back to the way they were before, purely by the fact that other people do not want to or allow them to change, probably because they are afraid of how this may affect them unconciously.
Funnily enough, the fact that we are not prepared to let people change sometimes says more about us than it does about the people who are trying to change. We have to question why we just cannot accept that somebody wants to do things differently sometimes.
Finally, as a last thought here, please try and find time within the next week to reflect on things in your life and perhaps use the opportunity of a new academic year (and following a year and a half of many difficulties for everybody) to see if you can change things in your life for the better by hitting the ‘reset button’ in your life!
With good wishes
P.S. I understand that there are many educational items, news articles, or other useful resources on the web, so I would be very grateful if you could let me know of any that you find that you think that others may find useful, so that I can direct people to them.