How are the speech, language and communication needs of our youngest children being supported in the City? Here in Nottingham, we want all 0-5 year olds to develop speech, language and communication skills to the best of their ability. What we mean by speech, language and communication is....

  • Speech - The sounds they make
  • Language - The words they use
  • Communication - How they engage with others

We can achieve this by;

  • The right support being available at the right time
  • Our youngest children being prepared for, and enjoying, school
  • People looking after themselves, making healthy choices and having good mental health and wellbeing
  • People having good employment prospects and;
  • People having improved life chances.

Our vision is to ensure that no child or family misses out on the support they might need and that anyone working with children aged 0-5 years, must work together with parents and carers. Based on information from health, education and children's services, we know that some speech, language and communication activities and interventions will have the most significant impact to help us achieve our vision.  The impact of these activities will be seen in;

  • An increase in participation in free early years entitlement places
  • Fewer children being identified with language delay at key Healthy Child Programme Reviews
  • More children achieving a good level of development in the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile
  • Access to a Speech and Language Therapist in a timely manner, if needed

This vision, which we have an aspiration to extend to 25 years of age, is to ensure that all children reach their full potential in speech, language and communication (SLC).  This is captured in the SLC Strategy, which is currently in draft format and has been written in consultation with partners and agreed by Health and Wellbeing Board (HWBB), who are the lead body for implementation. We have consulted with the early years workforce and parents and carers on this draft strategy and consultation headlines are published on the page link below.  Consultation feedback will also be shared with the HWBB and the finalised strategy will be published and shared, alongside a supporting, jointly-owned, implementation plan in due course.

You can read more about where the Speech, Language and Communication Strategy came from here.

In addition to the SLC Strategy, a need was identified to establish a centralised resource for all local support, focused on speech, language and communication and we worked with Better Communication CIC to develop the SLC Pathway.

The Speech, Language and Communication Pathway 

We are pleased to be able to share with you the Balanced System® Speech, Language and Communication Pathway, which is now available to all parents and professionals working with children and young people across the UK. 

Please note that the Pathway functions best when opened in Google Chrome.

How to use the pathway: Simply click on the picture above, the pathway tool navigates provisions available for parents, carers and professionals to help children and young people develop their SLC skills as well as providing more tailored resources for those with identified SLC needs. You can follow a series of questions leading to relevant information, targeted at the 0-5 year age range, choose which are most useful, view or add the resource to create your pathway, which can then be saved or added to at a later date. To watch a demonstration go to this link .

Read about the background to the pathway and where it came from here.