7.8.3 Consultation and Support Service


  1. Description of Services
  2. Purpose of Service
  3. What the Service Does
  4. How the Service is Organised
  5. Who the Service Works With
  6. Access to the Service
  7. Comments, Compliments and Complaints
  8. How the Service is Funded
  9. How the Service is Monitored

1. Description of Services

The formation of the Consultation and Inclusion Support Services (CISS) brings Education Walsall’s SEN and inclusion support services closer together with the aim of providing a greater continuity of Service provision within the School Focus Team arrangements. It provides a unified structure within which the Educational Psychology Service and Inclusion Support Services (Advisory Teacher Team, Specialist Support Team and Early Years SEN Team) will work together whilst retaining their distinctive team identity.

The School Focus Team Inclusion Planning Meetings will provide the primary vehicle for access to consultation and support from the Educational Psychology Service and Advisory Teacher Team. These Services operate a time allocation model through which schools will receive an agreed number of sessions over the academic year. 

The Early Years SEN Team allocate time to maintained nurseries and access to remaining services is by request through pre-school providers. The Specialist Support Team offer direct teaching support through Statements and through the Service Level Agreement. 

The Educational Psychology Service and Advisory Teacher Team are based in shared accommodation at the Education Development Centre (EDC). All Educational Psychologists and Advisory Teachers can be contacted as follows:

Email: CISS@we.serco.com
Tel: 01922 686375

Education Development Centre, Pelsall Lane, Rushall, Walsall WS4 1NG

The Specialist Support Team and the Early Years SEN team are based at the Field Road Centre. Contact information for both teams is as follows:

Tel: 01922 711931
Fax: 01922 711932

Education Walsall Support Centre
Field Road

For any further information or clarification please contact:

Frank Barnes: Principal Educational Psychologist
Margaret Wiredu: Advisory Teacher Support Manager

2. Purpose of Service

The EPS works with teachers in schools to help develop ways of supporting children with a range of special educational needs and to enhance practice that develops the educational, psychological and emotional well being of all children and young people. The EPS helps children and young people both individually and in groups, offers support to parents and carers, works collaboratively with other agencies and contributes to the development of policy and practice within Education Walsall.

3. What the Service Does

  • Helps in identifying and meeting the needs of children and young people with a range of special educational needs within an inclusive framework through the provision of assessment, consultation and advice on interventions to accelerate pupil progress or improve social behaviour.
  • Helps to promote school effectiveness and to raise standards by providing training and project work.
  • Supporting parents and carers by involving them as partners in assessments concerning their special educational needs, advising them on ways to meet these needs through work based in school and by offering individual consultations to discuss issues relating to their child’s progress.
  • Helping to develop and implement the policies of Education Walsall and supporting responsibilities to meet statutory requirements through making contributions to; the development of the SEN and Inclusion plan, Behaviour Support Plan, Education Development Plan, training and support for NQTs and for serving teaching staff through centre based courses, action research projects, providing psychological advice as part of the Statutory Assessment of SEN process and attending annual reviews of children subject to a Statement of SEN as requested.
  • Helping to offer coherent support to pupils parents and schools by developing and maintaining effective partnerships with other professionals from health, education and Children's Services and from voluntary agencies and by making contributions to multi-agency meetings both locally and regionally.
  • Providing a qualified and appropriately trained workforce within professional standards agreed by national regulatory bodies and ensuring planned continuing professional development consistent with the Service Plan in order to maintain and update necessary knowledge and skills. 

4. How the Service is Organised

The Educational Psychology Service is part of Education Walsall’s Consultation and Inclusion Support Services. It is led by the Principal Educational Psychologist. Three Senior Educational Psychologists (SEP) posts, together with the Principal Educational Psychologist, make up the Leadership Team of the Service. In addition to personnel and professional management responsibilities, each SEP has responsibility for developing Service capacity within a broad theme or specialist area. Educational Psychologists carry generic responsibility for Service delivery and posts can carry additional responsibility for agreed specialist areas.

The Service currently includes an Assistant Educational Psychologists. Assistant Educational Psychologist is a training grade and the post is included to enhance Service capacity for support at “school action” and “school action plus” of the SEN Code of Practice.

The Service Structure Plan provides additional clarity on current Service structure.

Service time is organised so that 70% is allocated to core work with schools and children, 20% is allocated to delivery of training, school based project work and development projects and 10% is held for Service maintenance and continuing professional development.

5. Who the Service Works With

EPS staff are deployed to all maintained schools and nursery provision within the Borough consistent with the cluster arrangements established through School Focus Groups. 

Educational Psychologists work directly with children and young people, school staff, parents, partner services in CISS and other professionals in Education Walsall as well as with professionals across statutory agencies and a range of voluntary organisations (e.g. Health, Social Care & Supported Housing, non-maintained pre-school settings).

6. Access to the Service

Educational Psychology Service time is deployed to maintained schools and nurseries through an agreed time allocation model. Each setting will be informed of the time available over the academic year and consultation will be agreed within the specified number of sessions. The termly School Focus Team Inclusion Planning Meeting provides the framework within which negotiation and prioritisation of work will take place.

Each school is allocated a “contact psychologist” who is the first point of contact with the Service for schools. It is useful for schools to identify a member of staff, often the Senco, who takes responsibility for liaison with the contact psychologist.

Parents are able to make direct contact with the Service and their concerns will be discussed with school staff to determine an appropriate response.

Training programmes are accessed through Education Walsall training services or in consultation with the contact psychologist.

7. Comments, Compliments and Complaints

We welcome comments on the service we provide to our client groups. 

Comments from schools and other professional groups should be raised initially with the individual member of the Service concerned. In the case of a complaint, if the problem is not resolved at this level then it should be referred to the Principal Educational Psychologist. Should dissatisfaction with the issue remain unresolved, then the complaints procedures set out by Education Walsall would be used.

8. How the Service is Funded

The Educational Psychology Service is funded centrally with supplements from other specific funding streams (e.g. Children’s Fund, DCSF Primary Behaviour and Attendance Pilot Project).

9. How the Service is Monitored

Data about school visits, project work, training and other areas of involvement is collected at a Service level. EPS staff record their work using an agreed “Service Activity Data” management system so that we are able to account for agreed levels of Service delivery.

The impact of work is monitored through:

  • Statutory assessment management plan
  • Training and project evaluations
  • School Focus Team Inclusion Planning Meetings
  • Feedback on Service quality and relevance through statutory inspection, report and through periodic client surveys