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Well-being and Family Life During the Covid-19 Outbreak

During these unusual times, some children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities may become anxious and confused.  They may be out of their usual routines, be missing familiar support and might also need to access medical treatment outside of the home. All of this can impact on family life.

On this page we have collated a number of resources and information on services that might be able to help you through the Covid-19 outbreak.

If you are struggling to manage any challenging behaviours within the home during these times, you can find advice and information  below.


Click here to return to the main Covid-19 information page.

Information, Guidance and Helpful Resources

Respite Support for Families

Respite support for families

During the COVID-19 lockdown, we have redesigned the Short Breaks offer for children with an EHCP to provide families with respite support, where it is not possible for children to attend school. This will run at the Charles Dickens Activity Centre in Lake Road and is being led by our trusted partners at Enableability.

The offer consists of a 2 hour playscheme session, available in both the morning and afternoon on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. To make the most of this offer, parents may be offered no more than one of these sessions per week.

We are able to offer a limited number of places. These places will be prioritised according to the needs identified within the EHCP risk assessment that the council, school and family are completing.

For the most part, we would expect children to access their school place where it is safe and practical to do so. Where this is not possible, it is important to allocate the very limited places to families who are most in need.

Families will therefore be prioritised for this support through the EHCP risk assessment Please find attached an updated risk assessment template, which includes a specific question about respite support. If you have already submitted an EHCP risk assessment information using the previous template there is no need to re-submit this, however if families feel that they would benefit from this Short Break support, they have been asked to discuss this with the school SENCo in the first instance and so you may find it helpful to submit this updated information on the new risk assessment template.

Transport assistance is available to families accessing the Short Break sessions. Click here to read the home to school travel assistance flyer.

Talking to your child about Coronavirus

Click on the image above to download a helpful factsheet on Corona virus for children.

Useful Apps for Mental Health and Well-being

Support at home

PCC Early Help Service

Parenting support information sheet for Parents Click here to download the document


Portage are still making telephone contact but have temporarily stopped all home visits. New referrals to the service will need to be discussed before a referral is made. Portage Plus  are not taking any new referrals for children starting school in September 2020.

For more information you can contact the service manager , Sharon Ensor  via email or telephone.


PCC Family Hub support

The Family Hubs are closed BUT our Family Support Workers are here to help support you. If you would like to talk about any aspects of parenting please email & book your 30 minute phone appointment. #PortsmouthFamilyHubs

Click here to see the timetable of surgeries 






Contact – For families with Disabled Children

Contact have put together some tips and ideas for coping at home. You can access all this information and more ( including some excellent Frequently asked questions) by clicking here. 





Managing Increased Anxiety and Challenging Behaviours during the Coronavirus Outbreak

Early Help Parenting Practitioners

Behaviour Management Support April 2020

If you need advice and support in relation to managing new routines within the home, the Early Help Parenting practitioners are available.

Parents can book a session at a “parenting surgery”. These 30 minutes slot offer an opportunity to discuss specific behaviour issues and understand what is on offer in the city.
Email us:
To view date and time slots visit:
There are a range of online resources which can help from the Positive Parenting Programme.

For parents who have attended NVR Parenting programs we are offering a regular virtual “drop in” session- If you would like to be included in this please email and a Parenting Practitioner will contact you to arrange a suitable time.

For all parenting enquiries please contact:
(Including your postcode and the age of your child)


Triple P  Top Tips for Parents and Carers during Covid-19 –

Coronavirus Parenting Top Tips click here to read

Portsmouth Educational Psychology Service

Follow the team on Twitter. They are sharing lots of updates, ideas and resources to help manage well-being  and anxiety during these challenging times. You can visit their Twitter feed by clicking following this link :

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation (CBF)

CBF have made available a wide variety of resources, including videos to help parent carers during these difficult times. They have resources particularly aimed at parent carers fo children and young people with Learning Disablities. There are a wide variety or information sheets, visual aids and tips for you to download.  Click here to visit their dedicated Covid-19 page.

The SEND VCB Project – Yvonne Newbold

The SEND VCB Project supports families of violent children who also have an additional need to help their child be happier & calmer.. We now have over 300 success stories and a Facebook Group. Click here to visit the Facebook group.

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Contact the Portsmouth Send Local Offer to gain help, get more information or to leave feedback about the website.

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