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Interview with Cerianne Kieft.

Hi Cerianne, could you introduce yourself to the community...

My name is Cerianne Kieft and I am the mother of two amazing children , one of which has complex medical and physical needs although we always say his diagnosis is ‘awesome!’. I also work full time as a Primary School Teacher and I teach children with moderate learning difficulties within an STF setting in a mainstream Primary School. I am also the school SENCo and am part of the management structure within the school.

What led you to becoming a SENCo?? My son’s early diagnosis paved the way for my career as a SENCo and it’s a role that’s hugely challenging but equally as rewarding. Children with additional learning needs require the best teaching, the best resources and the best support and I wanted to be the person to ensure that they got it!!

The resources you have created can you tell us a bit more about them and where our community can get hold of them?

I have created a bank of resources for parents using a really accessible app called padlet and wanted to support parents of children with additional learning needs by providing a simple go to resource bank that they access when they need to. The resource also enables parents to contribute and rate resources, supporting each other further.

What do you think has been the most helpful bit of advice to you as an advocate?

The best advice I think I’ve been given was actually by my own parents who always infilled in me how important it is to always have hope and to never lose sight of it even during the darkest of times. As a family, we have a very positive mindset and I have a saying that I always say to me son, ‘It doesn’t matter how sow you go, a long as you don’t stop!’ I even put those words on the back of his t-shirt on sports day once. My parents taught me that life has no limits and only possibilities.

What would you tell someone starting their first day as a parent within the SEN community?

I’d advise any parents starting their first day within the SEN community to always look at what your child can do and you’ll train your brain to look for positives not negatives and to search for solutions and not dwell on problems. I’d also say that their journey maybe tough so find your inner strength and roll with it always! You’ll surprise yourself!!

As a teacher working within an STF unit, what would you like parents to know?

As a teacher within an STF unit, I’d like parents to know that I’ll walk their journey with them, they will not be alone and I will not let them down - we are team from now on.

As a parent to a child who received care from Ty Hafan Children's hospice and doctors what would you like professionals to know?

As a parent of a child who currently accesses Ty Hafan’s children’s hospice, I’d like professionals to know that we as parents are experts too. Also, It’s ok for professionals not to have all of the answers but it’s not ok for you not to try and find them . Our children deserve the best we can all give them and together we are stronger.

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