Wandsworth Borough Council has announced plans to implement a new digital solution to estimate personal budgets and allocate top-up funding for children and young people across social care and education.
The Council has chosen the Formulate product developed by Imosphere to make evidence-based, fair and transparent funding decisions. Utilising two modules, the new solution will be used to determine personal budgets for children and young people within social care as well as accurately allocating top-up funding for students with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) through the Education Banding Tool.
The solution will provide the authority with a consistent, fair and transparent process to allocating funding and enables the Council to monitor changes in need and spend over time. For children with SEND, the Education Banding Tool will support decision-making for top-up funding and ensure each student can reach their full potential and the outcomes detailed in their Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans.
Deborah Johnson, Head of SEND and Inclusion at Wandsworth Borough Council explains: “Following on from direct work with parents, we decided to introduce Formulate to provide us with a system that was transparent, equitable and fair. Allowing us to allocate funding equitably based on the individual child or young person’s identified needs. By calculating specific funding bands, we are able to make the funding allocation process simpler and also provide parents and schools with a better understanding of this element of the assessment process.”
After implementation, the local authority will undertake a three-year programme by using the system to transfer all EHC plans for education, and care plans for social care, during that period. In relation to EHC plans, the Education Banding Tool will be applied to new assessments and to the next point of change for existing plans.
Natalie Kenneison, Chief Operating Officer at Imosphere says: “It is great to have the opportunity to work with a Local Authority like Wandsworth who are so committed to improving outcomes of the young people and families they support. By using our Formulate platform for social care and education it enables them to provide a transparent, fair and consistent approach to allocating funding and have the tools to support their teams to make good decisions for individuals and the borough as a whole.
Wandsworth Borough Council begun working directly with parents and decided to introduce the Formulate solution in June 2021. The data collection exercise and creation of each funding band will conclude at the end of July 2021 with the project planned for go-live early next year.