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CAD 0-5 Support Team (Children and Adults with Disabilities)

The CAD Support team works in collaboration with agencies across education, health, social care, voluntary sector and parent/carers to provide quality, timely, coordinated access to specialist support, teaching, assessment and family support for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their families. The team include Area Special Educational Needs and Disabilities coordinators, keyworkers, specialist teachers, educational psychologists and social workers.

The team provide early intervention for children with a wide range of additional needs and their families, with a particular focus on children with more complex special educational needs and disabilities. The team also works with children who require specialist early intervention and an integrated offer to support their learning within mainstream. 

Home-based Support

Early Support

The early support team provides support to families whose children have complex multi-agency needs from a range of services, birth to five. Early support keyworkers are from a range of agencies. Families are offered coordination of services, keyworker support and multi-agency meetings.

Early Support Keyworkers in CAD

  • home visit to explore the child’s support needs, outline services and agree a support plan with parents.
  • contact services that has been agreed as part of the support plan
  • support parents to communicate their child’s needs to professionals to address any concerns
  • liaise with a range of services and agencies in order to support children to access appropriate services.

Early Support Keyworkers in CAD also support the child’s learning based on the principle that, parent/carers are key people in the care and development of their child. The aim is to support and enable parent/carers in this role, by building on their child’s existing and emerging skills, through early play activities, the keyworkers

We work with children, in partnership with parents to provide support & guidance to enable parents to achieve the best outcomes for their child,  

  • devise small step teaching tasks to aid a child's learning through weekly/fortnightly home visits
  • help to record achievement so that progress is appreciated and confidence built; give support, guidance and friendship.
  • support the family when considering options and visiting prospective early years settings and schools.
  • support the transition into a new early years setting.

signpost to any groups that may meet the needs of the child 

Social Communication Support

Keyworkers work in partnership with parent/carers to support children where concerns are raised about their social communication needs.

Keyworkers offer

  • support and intervention for children showing behaviours which indicate that they may have an social communication difficulty or autistic spectrum disorder, to help them to access the Early Years Foundation Stage
  • specialist advice and training to practitioners and parent/carers.
  • help parents/carers to develop knowledge, skills and confidence to communicate effectively and manage behaviour.
  • visits to the child’s early years setting or see them at home.

What do the home based support teams do?

Work with parents to:

  • Carry out an in-depth, ongoing assessment of their child's needs where targets will be set jointly to measure the child's progress.
  • Help them understand their child's individual needs by jointly planning and modelling appropriate learning opportunities to promote their child's development.
  • Provide information, advice and guidance on the best approach to support their child. 

How to make a referral

The CAD Support Team, 0-5 operates an open referral system.

A child is considered if he/she

  • lives in the London Borough of Havering
  • Is not yet attending a Local Authority (LA) nursery or reception class

 Has difficulties with their cognitive development and at least one other area of need, to include:

  • lives in the London Borough of Havering
  • Is not yet attending a Local Authority (LA) nursery or reception class

  • Has difficulties with their cognitive development and at least one other area of need, to include:  
    • sensory and physical development
    • behaviour, social and emotional development
    • language, communication and interaction including self-help skills 


Setting-based Support

Area SEND Coordinators

Advise and support early years educational providers to become fully inclusive and plan for children with additional needs in order to improve the outcomes for all children with SEND.

Area SEND Coordinators

Every early years setting has a named Area SEND Co that works closely with the SENCo and staff to remove barriers to inclusion and help ensure that all children are fully included in the day-to-day activities in their setting. There is a particular focus on the most vulnerable children and the Area SEND Co supports settings to

  • work closely with parents to identify children’s needs,
  • plan interventions to address those needs and review children’s progress  
  • plan transitions using a person centred approach which ensures that the child and family are at the centre of planning.

Specialist Teacher

Support teaching staff within maintained nursery and school with strategies and interventions to support all children with special educational needs and/or disabilities, in particular children with social communication difficulties or a diagnosis of Autism to access all areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum.

The Specialist teacher and the Area SEND Co team deliver training to Practitioners centrally and in settings covering a range of subjects to develop their understanding of SEND and inclusion.

Early Years Educational Psychologist

  • Work directly with children with the most complex special educational needs at the request of the Early Support key workers and Area SENCD Co teams
  • carry out visit to the child’s home and their early years setting,
  • carry out observations of the child and assessment through play
  • discuss the child’s needs with parent/carer’s and other people working with the child
  • contribute to the child’s Education Health Care Plan if they need one


Early Years Funding

Early years settings can apply to the CAD support team for funding for children with a high level of need.  Settings can use funding in a variety of ways to support the child.  This could include training for the staff, equipment for the setting or additional staffing.  A fixed sum of funding is granted for a child on a pro rata basis according to the number of sessions he/she attends. This enables their access to learning within the setting.



Sleep Service

A weekly sleep advice drop-in session and sleep helpline support is available. 

For children with significant sleep issues, a full sleep assessment and an individual sleep programme is devised and support offered to implement the sleep programme.


A range of groups are offered to parent/carer’s, these are structured to support parent/carer’s to understand their child’s needs and how to support them to achieve best outcomes. The range of activities offered include; weekly swimming group, regular block sessions of baby massage, developmental group, baby signing, messy play and stay and play sessions.



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