Coronavirus (COVID-19)

For support and advice about council services please call 01926 410410.

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 and need support call the Hotline on 0800 408 1447

For parents of children and young people with additional needs

Understanding your child with additional needs

An online parenting guide specifically designed for parents and carers of children with additional needs and for everyone around the child who would like to build their understanding.

It consists of 14 modules, which is equivalent to a 10-session group for parents so it is a BIG course with lots of relevant content which you can take at your own pace, when it suits you and your family. Set out in two sections: Level 1 covers the foundation for understanding your child. Level 2 looks at some specific aspects of parenting such as sleeping and anger management, together with more about how we interact with each other.  

Sign Language Courses in Warwickshire

We have put together a list of the sign language courses currently available in Warwickshire.

Children and Family Centres

Your local children and family centre are offering a virtual timetable of activities and family support workers continue to offer telephone advice and support. To find out more about what is available, check out their facebook page or contact your local children and family centre.

Group courses available through Warwickshire County Council

Positive Parenting Programme (Triple P) – Stepping Stones

A positive parenting programme for parents/carers of children and young people with additional needs. This course is available free of charge through Warwickshire County Council(WCC). It runs for nine weeks, meeting once a week for two and a half hours.

The course covers a range of topics including:

  • managing behavioural problems and development issues
  • improving your personal coping skills and reducing parenting stress
  • using assertive discipline
  • developing a close relationship with your child
  • teaching your child new skills and behaviours

These sessions are run periodically across the county, you can find out when the next course may be available by selecting 'book on a parenting course' or by contacting your local Children and Family Centre.

Sensory Workshop for parents

This is a half-day course for parents and carers run by Occupational Health running termly at two centres, in the north and south of the county. The cost is £25.

New dates and venues will be listed here when available.

Contact for bookings - Bernie Hewitt, Occupational Therapy Team. Telephone - 02475 189196.

National Autistic Society – Earlybird Programme

This course is for parents and carers who have a pre-school child diagnosed with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder. The course offers advice and guidance on strategies and approaches for dealing with young autistic children. It is also a chance for parents and carers to meet and share their experience with other parents and carers in a similar situation.

You should receive a leaflet about this programme from the specialist consultants when your child receives a diagnosis, and your name will automatically be added to the booking list. If you haven’t received this leaflet, please contact the consultants directly.

For further advice, contact Sandra Bowering, Lead Consultant Teacher for the 0-5 Specialist Service 01926 413737 or [email protected].

For general information on the programme, please visit the Earlybird website.

Act for Autism – Autism Support Programme

Two interactive programmes for parents and carers of school-age children and teenagers diagnosed with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder. If your child has a new diagnosis, ask for the W.A.S.P programme; if you are a parenting teen with a diagnosis, ask for the T.A.S.P programme.

There are four 3 hour sessions, covering:

  • Your child and their autism
  • The sensory world
  • Communication
  • Involvement

Courses are online and will be running throughout 2021.

Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC) ‘First Steps for Parents’

SEND Supported is offering a series of 3-hour information sessions for parents of children who have recently received a diagnosis of an Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC) as well as those who would like to come back to find out more. The sessions will explore the characteristics of ASC and highlight some basic strategies. To express an interest please complete the online form.

The Curly Hair Project

The curly hair project (CHP) is a social enterprise founded by autistic author Alis Rowe. CHP resources include books and e-books, podcasts, short animated films and a blog, along with regular workshops, webinars and training aimed at children and young people, their parents and carers and professionals.

For further information on :

  • Training
  • Events and scroll down to find local courses. There is a charge which is usually in the region of £16 for an individual or £40 for a family ticket (up to 3 people).
  • Webinars: The charge for webinars is in the region of £12 for an individual or £20 for a professional. (For those who are members of the Rugby Autism Network Charity, there is a reduced charge.)
  • General information and advice about all CHP resources

Care for the Family - Time Out for Parents

Parents of children with special needs can often feel isolated and frustrated that 'standard parenting advice' sometimes doesn't work. Care for the Family offers a group opportunity for you to support and encourage each other through sharing ideas and experiences as you progress. There are seven sessions, written by parents and professionals with experience and focus on parenting children between 3 to 11 years of age with a disability or special needs, particularly those who have learning, developmental and behavioural differences.

Family Lives Advice

Family Lives understand how difficult it can sometimes feel to talk to others who may not fully understand. They have produced a range of tips and advice from parents to parents to help you navigate your journey.

Future Learn – Understanding Autism

This is a free course run by the University of Kent covering:

  • What is autism
  • Social communication skills
  • Sensory sensitivities and repetitive behaviours
  • Co-occurring conditions
  • Strengths and difficulties of people on the autism spectrum
  • Lived experiences of people on the autistic spectrum

It is designed for weekly study (4 weeks at 3 hours per week) to give an understanding of autism from diagnosis to the spectrum and life with autism. Note that free access to the course is just for 6 weeks, with an optional upgrade of £52 for unlimited access after this.

Understanding Autism, Asperger’s and ADHD

This is a free course run by the University of Derby. It is designed to help you learn more about autism, Asperger’s and ADHD, their differences and the importance of understanding the classification, assessment and diagnosis. There are 6 units which take approximately 3 hours of study per unit.

Current courses are open for a set period of time but the learning materials can still be accessed after this if needed.

Children's Community Autism Support Service (CCASS)

This service is for children, young people and their families who are on the neurodevelopmental waiting list for an autism diagnosis, or who have previously received a diagnosis but require support to manage their family's needs. 

The service offers low level support with a focus on:

  • understanding and communicating feelings
  • sensory integration and processing
  • behaviour boundaries and routines
  • eating and sleeping

The service can help with setting goals around the young person's neurodevelopmental needs, helping them to achieve an improved lived experience.

Please note that due to the coronavirus restrictions, this service is not currently open to referrals for one-to-one support. However, the service is currently offering online support through:

  • social group support for young people
  • social peer support for parents and carers 
  • training for parents and carers
  • autism resources and resources for emotional and mental health
  • autism newsletter
  • consultation sessions for schools or professionals working with families of autistic children and young people

Find out more about the children's community autism support service

Autism resources online

Find out about current information sessions and book a place

Watch previous parent/carer training sessions on demand

Sign up to receive the autism support service newsletters

Brighter Beginnings Family Workshops

These workshops are run by Contact, the charity for families with disabled children. They are for families with children with additional needs who are at the beginning of their journey. There are sessions for families with younger children and older children. 

Currently, these are being offered as free one-off virtual events as a way of delivering family support during these challenging times. 

Families can also access other workshops offered by Contact from this page, including workshops covering a range of topics such as money matters, managing positive behaviours, sleep support and more.