Delamere played the major part in establishing a cross-community forum group which led to the creation of JSENSE through:-
- involving professional experts
- researching the needs for extra help in overcoming learning disabilities among young people in the Greater Manchester Jewish community.
- identifying the most significant gaps in provision
- making recommendations and planning their implementation
This resulted in establishing JSENSE, using those experts to provide vital services to improve radically the handling of SEND in Jewish schools. Delamere has helped to secure its development and been a major funder.
JSENSE is now a Greater Manchester based Jewish charity supporting Jewish children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). It does this through help and support for their families and by delivering training and consultancy to their schools.
The JSENSE Trustee board is made up of professional experts in SEND, user involvement, policy development, charities and business, and is also supported by an expert advisory team of Special Education Needs experts including qualified teachers with specialism in SEND, a consultant speech and language therapist with extensive experience in the community and an educational psychologist.
The JSENSE trustees believe that every child and young person with SEND deserves the best possible specialised help to maximise their individual educational achievements.
Since its establishment, JSENSE has successfully worked with over 150 Teachers, Teaching Assistants and Parents across 13 schools in North Manchester. Over 95% of the feedback from the work undertaken has been positive. Educators attending the course have reported increased skills and awareness which has supported them in their classroom delivery to children and young people with SEND.
Following its 2018 merger with JADDS, a SEND parent support group, JSENSE has started working with parents of SEND children and young people from the Jewish community. They have run focus groups with Teachers and Parent Consultation sessions which informed their plans for working together with Parents and Schools. They have set up a phone helpline to provide advice for parents, prepared a local directory of culturally appropriate local provision for helping SEND children, and are planning to introduce other new services. The directory is now to be developed further and improved to make it even more accessible.
With continued core funding from Delamere, supplemented by future help from other sources, JSENSE plans to expand its services further, hopefully diversifying further into advocacy for Parents (if sufficient funding can be found externally). Close working with Parents is essential to ensure JSENSE delivers what is needed for SEND children and young people. and they are establishing partnerships with other community organisations, Rabbinic leaders and statutory services.
JSENSE is also looking to build on the success of its Consultancy and Training programmes with the development of specially tailored resources for SENCOs, Early Years settings and Headteachers.