Specialist SEN Solicitor
24th May 2021
Give yourself time to panic…
That probably seems a bit of a strange thing for me to say, but please bear with me and hopefully things will make sense to you when I have finished!
We are all human and things do not always go the way we have planned them to. This may be because of a genuine mistake that we or someone else has made, that could or should have been foreseen, or it may be because of a genuine accident, that nobody could have foreseen.
But it is no good at these times for someone (even yourself) to tell you not to panic - that is a completely unnatural reaction or instinct for most people. So, unless you are very experienced and have been through the same or a similar situation before; or are that character in a movie or TV show you saw once, that is always very cool in a crisis, you will panic. (N.B. please note that this is not usually real life and just comes from somebody's imagination as a scriptwriter).
But, although we usually panic when something goes wrong, it is about how we then deal with that panic that is important. As I say, there is no good saying don't panic, as we respond with 'fight', 'flight' or 'freeze'. Human nature usually dictates that when we panic, we try to do something quickly to try and stop things before they get any worse. But that often actually makes things harder to come back from than they were before (remember the phrase: 'Be careful what you wish for').
In my view, the best way of handing a crisis is just to accept that you are going to panic and therefore be realistic and give yourself the time to panic. As a result, this additional time (it doesn't have to be for very long) will then give you the space to calm yourself, to look at things as objectively as possible and then to work out the best thing for you to do to resolve the situation as best you can. In fact, that extra time may even be enough time for the crisis to resolve itself naturally.
Also, remember to narrow your vision, so that you only focus and concentrate on the thing or things that you need to do and, if you determine that things are going to take more time to sort out, explain what is happening to other people so that they know what you are going through and how long it may take. You may be surprised at how understanding people may be. It's always better also if you can share your crisis with somebody else since, as many people often say, a problem shared is a problem halved.
To sum it up, when something bad or unforeseen happens to you, give yourself time to panic and to focus on the problem, then work out what you need to do, then do it!
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.
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FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Things were a bit quieter again on the SEN front in the news this week, although there was a bit of discussion/criticism of a few things, which gives food for thought.
Although I will direct you as usual below to some other stories in the news online that I found of interest, I thought that I would first also highlight a few of these things here, which I think are also worth taking the time to read:
Ofqual: bias against disadvantaged and SEN pupils ‘common’ in assessments
Give struggling pupils four years to retake GCSEs, says catch-up tsar
Focus on preschools during Covid recovery, UK ministers urged
Teachers' grades biased to more 'agreeable' pupils
Gavin Williamson to face legal challenges over claims children denied Right to Education during lockdown
THE AUTISM SHOW
One of the things I used to do when writing these SEN Updates termly/half-termly, was to try and look ahead to forthcoming SEN events. Although, during the past year or so, most 'in-person' events have gone 'online' (usually successfully), with all the Covid-19 related news, I think that I may have overlooked a few things. If so, please accept my genuine apologies.
But, in this week's update, I thought that I would draw your attention again to the forthcoming 'The Autism Show' webinar week that is taking place on 14th – 19th June 2021, which says on their website:
'Welcome to The Autism Show: Webinar Week
An online learning series: In partnership with the National Autistic Society.
The Autism Show has gone digital again to offer you over 30 hours of new online learning, designed to make a positive difference to the autistic children and adults you care for, support or teach.
Over six days in June, you will have the opportunity to watch a huge range of webinars live streamed from across the UK and beyond. Our webinars will provide you with the latest autism news and views, practical strategies and approaches, and direct insights from adults on the spectrum. You’ll be able to learn from the experiences of other attendees and have the opportunity to quiz the speakers for personalised advice via the in-webinar chat box.
Your ticket also includes 30 day access to stream recordings of all the week’s webinars, so you don’t need to worry about missing any and can watch when it’s most convenient to you. Plus, you can watch a whole host of additional pre-recorded webinars from a selection of autism specialist suppliers.
In this, our 11th year, we are particularly excited by our world renowned speaker line-up which includes Dr Temple Grandin, Dr Peter Vermeulen, Carol Gray and Dr Wenn Lawson.'
You can find out more and book tickets here: The Autism Show.
LATEST NEWS ONLINE
And here are the other news articles that I found of interest:
Why Ofsted is wrong about TA support for SEND pupils
SEND education in crisis as Ofsted and Observer highlight provision and budget shortfalls of over £0.5 billion
Ofsted: 9 in 10 parents say their child’s school handled Covid well
ASCL comments on Ofsted Parents Survey for 2021
No 10 ‘tried to block’ data on spread of new Covid variant in English schools
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 fact that you can now get a digital copy of the magazine: Autism Eye which is very helpful to any parents or professionals involved with children/young people with Autism.
Keep safe until next week.
With best 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.