As a result of recent cuts to the Central Government grant to Bucks County Council, the Connexions Buckinghamshire Contract has been significantly reduced. Bucks CC has prioritised the delivery of statutory services, but services delivering preventative and non-statutory support will no longer be funded.
Whilst the Connexions centres were a really valuable place for people to drop in and get the support they needed, they were expensive to maintain. By closing them down we have been able to keep as many of our advisers as possible to help vulnerable people in the community.
Adviza, the company commissioned to provide the Connexions service for BCC, will continue to:
- support learners for whom BCC has a statutory duty including those with Statements of Special Educational Needs and those with Education, Health & Care Plans (EHCPs) at specific points in their education (see below*)
- support vulnerable young people in Pupil Referral Units
- work with young people who are known to the Youth Offending Service
- support young people’ in care’ and those being supported by the ‘After Care Team’
We still have a team taking calls and able to set up face to face meetings with unemployed and vulnerable young people and have maintained a team of dedicated special needs Personal Advisers. We will go to places that best suit the young people we work with, including at partner’s premises, coffee shops, community centres and libraries.
*Students in Year 9 and Year 11, and Post 16 leavers with statements of SEN or EHCPs will have an individual interview (where appropriate) and a Preparation for the Future document written.
Prior to this (in the summer terms of Year 8 and Year 10 respectively) these young people and their parents will be invited to a Group session about Transition planning and Preparation for the future. These will be organised in collaboration with Adviza Independent Support staff.
Adviza will not routinely attend Year 9 or Year 11 (non-leavers) Annual Reviews unless there are serious issues with the placement or unless parents have special needs or other significant barriers which prevent them from engaging with the Group sessions
Annual Reviews for Year 11 leavers and Post 16 leavers will be prioritised for attendance by Adviza where the young person is leaving school to move into further education, training or employment, rather than those who will be fully supported by social care in the future.