How We Work

Impartial, Confidential and ‘arms-length’

– what do we mean by this? Explanations and policies

What do we mean when we say that SENDIAS is a service who is ‘arms-length’ from the Local Authority?

This means that the information, advice and support that we offer is firmly based in the law and the SEND Code of Practice. We provide unbiased information and advice about the Local Authority’s policies and procedures and about the policy and practice in local schools and other settings.

The information, advice and support should be impartial and provided at arm’s length from the local authority and Clinical Commissioning Groups

The SEND Code of Practice 2015 (Chapter 2 / 2.8)

To ensure that we are operating at arms-length from the Local Authority and Clinical Commissioning Groups, we have a Service Level Agreement (called a Partnership Agreement in West Sussex) to ensure that we are meeting the Minimum Standards for a SENDIAS.


The SENDIAS Service is ‘IMPARTIAL’:

This means that the information, advice and support that we offer is firmly based in the law and the SEND Code of Practice. We provide unbiased information and advice about the Local Authority’s policies and procedures and about the policy and practice in local schools and other settings.


The SENDIAS Service is ‘CONFIDENTIAL’:

This means that we will not share your information with anyone outside of the Information, Advice and Support Service unless it is fair and lawful to do so (e.g we have a specific concern about a child’s safety.)

If we feel it would be helpful to talk to another professional on your behalf, we will always seek your permission and check what you are happy for us to share.


How we Maintain Impartiality/Confidentiality:

How do we ensure we are acting in an impartial and confidential way?

  • We have a SENDIAS Steering Group that ensures we are meeting minimum standards for a SENDIAS Service, and monitors that we are operating in an impartial and confidential way (see Steering Group page for more information).
  • We have an impartiality and confidentiality policy (attached below) that we follow.
  • We send out an evaluation form to those that have used in service, to find out how we are being received and find out whether we can improve the way we work.

Privacy Notice:

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