SEN Conference - August 2017

CCEA's new conference supports local teachers with SEN provision

Creativity and aspirational thinking were amongst the themes of the Council for the Curriculum, Examination and Assessment's (CCEA) first dedicated ‘Special Educational Needs Conference’, attended by teachers and co-ordinators.

The conference, which took place at Stranmillis University College, focused on raising awareness of how creativity and aspirational thinking can enhance classroom practice within special educational needs schools.

The one-day conference brought together over 200 primary and post primary teachers, from across Northern Ireland, with key academics and specialists in SEN and inclusion. CCEA's aim was to ensure that the teachers went away with a range of practical activities that they can use in their classrooms.

View this short video which captures the day.

CCEA Chief Executive, Justin Edwards commented:

"CCEA's special educational needs conference is part of a wider set of activities to support SEN teachers and professionals. Creative thinking is essential for SEN learners to develop the skills and capabilities for lifelong learning. All learners, regardless of the setting, should have the opportunity to achieve their own potential and for that to be recognised.

Yesterday's event brought together teachers and SEN co-ordinators, with a range of experts in the field of SEN and inclusion, to explore the opportunities that creative learning offers within a special educational needs setting.

The large attendance at our first SEN conference is an indication that teachers are keen to further develop this type of teaching and learning".

Ulster University's Professor Frank Lyons, emphasised the importance of using creative technologies for learners with special educational needs:

"'Inclusive Creativity', a concept I developed at Ulster University, aims to explore how creative technologies can level the playing field for people of all ages who wish to compose and perform music. We have developed an international network around Inclusive Creativity which has attracted funding to establish inclusive ensembles, to commission new work for the ensembles and to train composers on how to write for these groups. There are numerous approaches using creative technologies that can be rolled out in the classroom, to encourage genuinely inclusive creative processes".

If you would like to contact a member of CCEA's SEN and Inclusion team email

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