Sixty new members of staff are set to be hired as part of a £4.4million recruitment drive to reform special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) services in Suffolk. 

Suffolk County Council has outlined its plan its investment plans in the service following a damning Ofsted report which was released in January. 

Improvement plans include a near 15% increase in permanent SEND staff. 

East Anglian Daily Times: SEND protests outside of Endeavour HouseSEND protests outside of Endeavour House (Image: Charlotte Bond)

At a full council meeting on February 15, £4.4million was allocated to the improvement programme, which will form part of a priority action plan created by the Local Area Partnership, outlining how they will make the service better.

Of the £4.4m, £3.4m will provide 46 full-time positions. 

An additional £1m is set to be spent in 2024/25 to fund 14 temporary posts.

The new jobs will support improving the quality and timeliness of assessments, plans, reviews and communications with families. 

Andrew Reid, who was appointed cabinet member for education and SEND following a flurry of resignations, said: “We must continue to invest in this service to bring about wide scale improvement.

“This includes investing in staff resources, so we have the capacity to deliver change. We continue to focus on this priority – we owe it to Suffolk’s children and young people.”

East Anglian Daily Times: Andrew Reid, of Suffolk County CouncilAndrew Reid, of Suffolk County Council (Image: Suffolk County Council)

The report in January, released by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission, said children were still being failed by SEND services in Suffolk

Inspectors said: "Children and young people (in Suffolk) face a system that has not worked well for a long time.

"They and their families have not seen the improvements they should from the area’s leadership. Their needs are not identified quickly or accurately enough. Assessments for support take too long."

The priority action plan will be submitted by Suffolk County Council on Thursday, March 7.