Within Issue 98

We are delighted to present this bumper issue on the theme of Training and Development. When we put out our call for submissions we didn’t anticipate that we would receive articles which spoke to all of the issues we highlighted but we have done! Janet Gurney and Anne Laney, Verity Sowden, Sarah Clayton and Eleanor Gibson have written about the challenges and unexpected rewards of moving their training and development activities online. Catherine De Haas has written about her experiences of providing training and consultation in partnership with her daughter Johanna, and invites readers who may have done something similar to join a conversation about people with PMLD as trainers. Catherine’s article chimes with Sandra Archibald, Becky Downey and Esme Brown’s article about developing the team of workers who support Sandra’s son Isaac. Sandra shows how good training and development can give workers ‘the energy to care deeply’.

Two articles seek to invert – or subvert – traditional ideas of training in health and social care. Rachel Wright writes about the parent-led workshops training practitioners to work with rather than for families. Sheridan Forster writes on the Hanging Out Programme, which she calls ‘the ‘un-training approach to communication’ and raises important questions about the role of culture in supporting engagement with people with PMLD. In another challenging article, based on a study of the use of multisensory rooms, Jo Grace unpicks the fascinating question of why some people may seem to have an instinct for how to work with people with PMLD (they ‘get it’) while others need more focused training and support.

Training for teachers and teaching assistants is another theme within the issue and we have four excellent articles which look at different aspects of this, including initial teacher training and training on the use of an assessment e-book (from Nancy Beesley, Rob Ashdown and Iain Chatwin, Jackie Saha and Neil Mullen).

As well as articles on training and development, this issue also includes updates on important current research studies – the Seldom Heard project and the Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities survey – as well as further inspiring articles showing how the Core and Essential Service Standards are being implemented in diverse areas of practice (from Gerald Wainwright, Julie Calveley, Sarah Hall and Martin Goodwin).

We would like to thank all of our contributors and look forward to continuing the conversation about training and development in future!

Guest Editors: Rachel Hughes, Annie Fergusson, Michael Fullerton and Rob Ashdown