Bercow: Ten Years On – the first Decision Making Panel meeting

Bercow 10 years on

When I CAN and the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) launched Bercow: Ten Years On at the end of July we had an overwhelmingly positive response – and we know people have been waiting for ‘what happens next’. Monday 17th October saw the first meeting of the Bercow: Ten Years On Decision Making Panel. Chaired by Jean Gross CBE, the former Government Communication Champion for Children, the panel includes leading figures from across the fields of education, health, the voluntary sector, special education needs, children’s services, academics and business, as well as a representative for children and young people and their families.  The decision making panel will help to steer the report, influencing the process of consultation and the scoping, as well as the dissemination of the report’s content and recommendations.

The meeting on Monday gave us the chance to gather together the group of individuals for the first time –  and enthusiasm for the project was tangible. It was absolutely fantastic to get so many people in one room who clearly have a passion about children’s speech, language and communication. The shared collective knowledge has already yielded so many opportunities to learn from each other and understand what Bercow: Ten Years On will mean for each different sector. The meeting focused on what we want to achieve – our mission. The group’s valuable contributions will now help us to set out a very clear direction for the project. Of course, we also raised many questions and challenges: what does success look like? How can we ensure recommendations are sustainable over a number of years? How can ‘organisational memory’ be maintained in the face of so many changes? But addressing these challenges will also help us to deliver an impactful report – putting the issue of children’s speech, language and communication needs in the spotlight for policy-makers, commissioners, managers and practitioners.

Read more about the members of the Decision Making Panel here.