Skip to main content
Wolverhampton Information Network

Voice 4 Parents - Wolverhampton

A Parent Carer Forum supported by the Wolverhampton Information, Advice and Support Service

Our core steering group membership is made up of parents and carers whose children have a wide range of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

 

We aim to ensure the views of parents and carers are considered and valued to improve and shape future service provision for children, young people and their families across education, health and social care services within the local area. 

We do this by;

  • gathering parents and carers views in a variety of ways
  • highlighting common issues
  • working in co-production (as equal partners) with key SEND leads
  • finding out about service developments and national policy and how they affect families
  • responding to consultations

Voice4Parents is part of the regional and National Network of Parent Carer Forums

All parents and carers commitment to Voice4Parents is on a voluntary basis.

What does your service do?

Voice4Parents is a Parent Carer Forum and is supported by the Wolverhampton, Information, Advice and Support Service (IASS). Our core steering group membership is made up of parents and carers whose children have a wide range of additional needs. All parents and carers commit to Voice4Parents on a voluntary basis. Our aim is to improve and shape future services for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) by working in coproduction with service providers across education, health and social care. 

We do this by representing the views of the wider group of parents and carers. We are part of the regional and National Network of Parent Carer

What is the key purpose of your service?

We aim to ensure the views of parents and carers are considered and valued to improve and shape future service provision across education, health and social care services within the local area.

We do this by;

  • gathering parents and carers views in a variety of ways
  • highlighting common issues
  • working in co-production (as equal partners) with key SEND leads
  • finding out about service developments and national policy and how they affect families
  • responding to consultations

What are your key outcomes for families?

  • That parents and carers have their voices heard
  • That parents and carers views are represented at a regional and national level
  • That parents and carers are well informed about the services available in the local area and how local and national issues may impact upon them
  • That parents and carers have the opportunity to participate in the strategic planning of services
  • That decision are made in co-production with parents and carers
  • Improved quality of service provision that meets the needs of children, young people and their families
  • That parent participation remains high on the agenda in Wolverhampton

What are the typical activities that you do?

• Attend bi-monthly steering group meetings
• Attend strategic meetings in relation to special educational needs and disability
• Attend regional Parent and Carer Forum network meetings
• Consult with the wider group of parents in a variety of ways
• Co-produce parent information events with the IASS
• Contribute to a weekly e-bulletin and termly magazine for parents and carers
• Respond to consultations on service development and local and national policies
• Co-produce new working policies and practices
• Sign post parents and carers to service that are available

Does your service relate to any particular legislation?

The Children and Families Act 2014 and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice, outline the requirement for parent participation.  The strategic involvement of parents and carers in developing services is no longer a good practice way of working, it is a legal requirement.

Are there any differences in your offer in different parts of Wolverhampton?

No

Is your service city wide?

Yes, Voice4Parents is a parent carer forum that aims to seek the views of parents and carers of children and young people with additional needs across Wolverhampton. Our steering group members all live in Wolverhampton and use services in Wolverhampton.

Who are your users?

Parents and carers of children and young people with additional needs.

What age range do you cover?

Parents and carers of children and young people aged 0-25 years.

What are the eligibility criteria to use your service?

If your child has additional needs, parents and carers can contact Voice4Parents and find out how they can be involved.

How are decisions made about who can use your service?

Any parent or carer can access Voice4Parents. There are a number of different ways parents and carers can get involved from sharing views and experiences and attending our events or focus group meetings or going a step further and expressing an interest to become a steering group member. 

Voice4Parents has an agreed process on how to become a steering group member should a vacancy arise within the forum.

How can I start using the service?

What is the referral process?

You can become a wider group member by registering with the IASS.  You can visit the web site www.wolvesiass.org.   Our leaflet ‘Voice4Parents Wolverhampton, giving a voice to parents and carers of children with additional needs’ is also available. The web site provides information about the forum along with consultations, events and an archive of e-bulletins and magazines. There is also a Co-production Officer who is based within the IASS and supports the work of Voice4Parents.

Is there a charge for the service and if so, what?

There is no charge to become a steering group member or by registering with the IASS to become a wider group member of Voice4Parents.

Can I use my personal budget to pay?

Not applicable

Is there a waiting list and if so, how long is it?

Anyone can register with the IASS to start receiving or accessing information and hearing about the ways to participate.   Anyone wishing to join the Steering Group may need to wait until a vacancy arises.

How do you communicate with service users and how are they involved in decision making/planning?

By registering with the IASS, you will automatically start to receive our weekly e-bulletin and termly magazine which provides lots of information about Voice4Parents and advice on how you can get involved. If you do not have access to the internet or would like a paper version of our weekly e bulletin, please contact the IASS. You can also ask for a copy of our Leaflet ‘Voice4Parents Wolverhampton, giving a voice to parents and carers of children with additional needs’. All of our work is about how parents and carers can shape and influence policy and practice.

 

What are your usual methods of seeking the views of service users?

  • Monthly Steering Group meetings
  • Weekly e bulletins
  • Termly magazine
  • Via the IASS web site
  • Face book page
  • On line survey
  • Feedback submitted on Wolverhampton’s Local Offer for SEND
  • Parent information events and workshops
  • Attending community events
  • Other consultation events or focus group meetings

How do you communicate with users whose first language is not English?

Information and service leaflets can be made available in other languages upon request. We also have the option to use interpreters if required to do so. Voice4Parents aims for its steering group membership to represent a wide range of our diverse communities within Wolverhampton. Our web information is available in other languages.

How accessible is your service?

The Co-production Officer is based within the Gem Centre which is fully accessible. We also ensure where possible, that any additional needs or requirements of parents and carers are met to enable them to attend meetings and events.

What skills and training do staff have in relation to SEN and disability?

Parents and carers are often referred to as the ‘experts’ around their own child’s additional needs and therefore bring a wealth of expertise and experience that influence and steer the work of the forum and their strategic role in engaging with professionals. Steering group members have been fully engaged in all aspects of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Reforms and with the implementation of new working practices in Wolverhampton.

Who is my first point of contact if I have questions or need further information?

The Co-production Officer or any member of the IASS.  You can also speak to a member of the Voice4Parents Steering group directly.

How do I give a compliment or make a complaint about your service?

By telephone or email to the IASS.

How is your service monitored and reviewed?

Voice4Parents receive a parent participation grant each year from the government. As part of the monitoring process, Voice4Parents is required to produce a financial activity report that details how it intends to spend the grant to achieve outputs and outcomes.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Alison Baggs
Telephone
01902 550396
E-mail
v4p@wolverhampton.gov.uk
Website
Voice 4 Parents

Where to go

Name
Voice4Parents Wolverhampton
Address
c/o Wolverhampton Parent Partnership Service
The Gem Centre
Neachells Lane
Wednesfield
Wolverhampton
Postcode
WV11 3PG

Other Details

Availability

Referral required
No

Record Last Updated on: 16/02/2018

Back to top