The WGPlus editorial team welcomes back its readers from the summer break and reminds them that those wishing to catch up on the news from the last 4 weeks can do so by reading both this newsletter and the 'interim newsletter' published 2 weeks ago.

Ofsted:  ‘End of Term’ report concludes LA’s could do a lot better - Too few young people with learning difficulties & disabilities progress from school to complete programmes that will help them live independently, undertake further study, or gain employment.  

An Ofsted report - ‘Progression post-16 for learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities’ - found that learning opportunities beyond school for young people with learning difficulties & disabilities varies considerably between local areas. 

Inspectors found that the local authorities’ arrangements to provide learners with a learning difficulty assessment as the basis for their transition to post-16 provision were not working effectively.  Providers had received a learning difficulties assessment in only a third of the case studies, where it was appropriate. These assessments were
‘not always timely or adequately completed, which made it difficult to plan support’.

There was insufficient provision available for learners with the highest level of need and the current placement system resulted in significant inequities in the provision available for learners with similar needs. In the examples seen:
* the criteria used for placement decisions were not always clear
* local options were not adequately explored
* the recommendations were not always based on an objective assessment of need
Press release ~ Progression post-16 for learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities ~ DfE analysis of the Youth Cohort Study and Longitudinal Study of Young People in England: The Activities and Experiences of 18-year-olds: England 2009, in Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability, DfE, 2011 ~ EHRC: Careers guidance ‘aspiration gap’ ~ Using computer games to support learning ~ Supporting children with challenging behaviour through a nurture group approach ~ Support and Aspiration: A New Approach to Special Educational Needs and Disability ~ SEN and disabilities Green Paper consultation ~ LGA response to Green paper ~ Use of resources in special schools

WWFGlobal warming may mean ‘water, water, everywhere’ but, as the song says, it may also mean ‘not a drop to drink’ - A new WWF report has shown that the likelihood of water shortages in global ‘megacities’ is set to escalate, with 70% of the world’s population projected to be living in urban areas by 2050.

Published during World Water Week, the report ‘Big Cities, Big Water, Big Challenges’ warns of severe water shortages worldwide by the middle of the century.

The report illustrates the already serious implications of poor water management in megacities around the world and focuses on 5 case studies, including:
* Mexico City, Mexico - over-exploitation of aquifers has contributed to the continued subsidence within the city (5-40 cm per year), increasing the chance of catastrophic flooding
* Buenos Aires, Argentina - the Riachuelo, one of the most polluted waters in the world, contains levels of lead, zinc and chrome 50 times higher than the legal limit in Argentina
* Karachi, Pakistan - 80% of untreated wastewater is discharged into the Arabian Sea and around 30,000 people, mostly children, die each year in the city due to consumption of contaminated water

The report also highlights the importance of calculating water footprints, which measure the total volume of water used to produce goods & services and the effects of pollution from waste water.  Water footprints can incorporate a more holistic assessment of the demand placed on water resources by humans, to calculate availability of water and help supply more water to megacities and reduce impact on freshwater environments.
Press release ~ WWF Germany: Big Cities. Big Water. Big Challenges. Water in an Urbanizing World ~ World Water Week ~ Assessing Water Risk: A Practical Approach for Financial Institutions ~ Opinion on the role of local and regional authorities in the sustainable use of water ~ Foresight: Gobal Food and Farming Futures ~ Foresight: Land Use Futures ~ Related WWF press release & links ~ Related UNICEF press release ~ UN-Water Global Annual Assessment of Sanitation & Drinking-Water (GLAAS) ~ UN-Water Global Annual Assessment of Sanitation & Health ~ LIFT case Studies ~ DFID: Water & sanitation target of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) ~ UN: Water Activities ~ Meeting the MDG drinking water & sanitation target : the urban & rural challenge of the decade ~ Water Aid ~ BBC Analysis: Why water can be a path to peace rather than wars ~ Related EA press release ~ Water Resources Strategy Action Plans and Strategies for England & Wales ~ Water Efficiency Calculator for New Dwellings ~ Ofwat - International comparisons - water efficiency ~ National Water Conservation Group ~ Consumer Council for Water ~ Water UK ~ Waterwise ~ Defra: Water ~ Behavioural Change and Water Efficiency ~ UK Water Industry Research Ltd

LDRecording land sales may be an ancient ‘service’ but it doesn’t need to be a slow one - Land Data recently announced the Local Land Charges Awards 2012 are now open for entry.  The awards, run by Land Data, ‘recognise excellence, achievement & support for electronic service delivery, nationally within the local land charges sector’

Award winners will be acknowledged at an Awards presentation & dinner which will take place in February 2012, at a location to be confirmed.  The Land Charges Awards for Excellence 2012 can be entered online via the awards section - nominations close on 31 October 2011
Press release ~ Enter on-line ~ List of categories & award criteria

TfLFacilitating the journey of education that opens up an Oyster of life opportunities - With the end of summer fast approaching, Transport for London (TfL) want to encourage all 16-17 year olds in the Capital to fill in their 16+ Zip Oyster photocard form which they should have received through the post.  Any young person who does not receive one should collect an application form from the Post Office from 1 September 2011

The 16+ Oyster photocard offers free travel on buses & trams and half adult rate on other TfL services to those young Londoners studying a Level 3 course, apprenticeship or training course funded by the Young People's Learning Agency and some courses funded by the Skills Funding Agency.  Their school, college or training provider will be able to tell them if their course qualifies.
Press release & links

DUKDid you have a good summer? -  Diabetes UK wants to know all about it and are asking you to share your favourite summery photos with them. They will publish the top photos and you will get the chance to vote for a winner. The competition winners will receive a fantastic Kodak Playsport Video Camera, kindly donated by Kodak Limited. The closing date for this competition is Sunday 2 October 2011.

White Paper
 : Beyond Tick-Box Compliance: UK Public Sector Data Security - Demonstrating compliance and adherence to government security standards like Security Policy Framework (SPF), Government Secure Extranet (GCSx) Code of Connection, and Good Practice Guide (GPG) 13 are known core requirements to public sector department. But the value of compliance as it relates to data protection is often forgotten as department focus on ticking the compliance box to gain accreditation, pass an external penetration test/audit or complete a report. Yet the Security Policy Framework states, "protective security...is an essential enabler to making government work better. Security risks must be managed effectively, collectively and proportionately, to achieve a secure and confident working environment."

Move beyond tick-box compliance auditing to implementing and enforcing security standards to make government work better and mitigate risk. In this white paper, you will learn how a holistic security programme can demonstrate compliance, reduce expenditures and protect confidential and restricted data.
Click here to receive your free copy of 'UK Public Sector Data Security: Beyond Tick-Box Compliance'.

Please note that previously published newsletters can be accessed from the Newsletter Archive

White Paper: Public Sector Data Security: Beyond Tick-Box Compliance... image.
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