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A fast-track approach to supporting children's communication needs.

I CAN Speech and Language Assessment Services

What is an I CAN speech and language assessment?

I CAN's speech and language assessment services provide families, professionals or local authorities with a joined up picture of a child's speech, language and communication difficulties. It describes the type of educational support that will meet the child's needs so that they can make the very best social and educational progress. The assessment is funded by parents or local authorities and can make a huge and timely difference to a child's educational experience.

The I CAN speech and language assessment is carried out in a specialist school context by a inter-disciplinary team of experts. These include a speech and language therapist, educational psychologist (where necessary), occupational therapist (if appropriate) and specialist teacher. Following the assessment the team review their findings and jointly write a report of the child's needs.

Why choose an I CAN speech and language assessment service?

"I hear time and time again how parents struggle to understand their children's communication needs, and what type of support would be best for them. The traditional process of assessment can be lengthy and costly and at the end some parents still won't have the whole picture of their child's educational needs. This is frustrating for them and unhelpful for their child." Janet Dunn OBE, Head of I CAN Meath Centre.

This passage echoes the sentiments of many parents who have struggled to understand the communication needs of their children. I CAN speech and language assessments take a holistic approach which considers the evidence of several professional disciplines in reporting on a child's needs. This report is unbiased and only describes the type of support that a child would require without naming providers. It is also useful in providing highly credible evidence to help parents access local authority services.

The average time from assessment to report completion is three weeks.

Ages and locations?

Speech and language assessment services are available from I CAN to all children between the ages of 4-19. Assessments take place either at I CAN's Meath Centre in Surrey (4-11 years) or Dawn House in Nottinghamshire (4-19 years).

Assessments are carried out over two days and accommodation is available for children at Dawn House where appropriate.

Next Steps:

  • Contact the I CAN Centre with Meath School, for enquiries about primary aged children in the south of the UK: 01932 872302 or meath@meath-ican.org.uk
  • Contact the I CAN Centre with Dawn House School, for enquiries about secondary aged pupils or primary aged children in the north/Midlands: 01623 795361 or dawnhouse@ican.org.uk
  • You can also print out this poster about the assessments at the I CAN Centre with Meath School to put up in your local GP surgery, school or children's centre. 

"Everything concerning our time with the Assessment team was exceptional. They were extremely professional, astute and I felt they very quickly became aware of my son's needs. In all the time we have been dealing with professionals on my son's behalf, I have never felt as confident that he would be in safe hands with people who have long experience of dealing with his speech/language issues, as I did with the team here. They were awesome!"

- Parent, April 2012