Jean Gross is the Communication Champion for children and young people aged 0-19 in England.
Jean has worked in the public sector, the third sector and in universities. She began her career as a teacher and educational psychologist, working daily with children, parents, teachers and other professionals to find solutions to problems affecting wellbeing and learning. She has been head of children’s services for children in a local authority and worked closely with health on joint commissioning for SLCN, ASD and child mental health services. Until 2005 she was Senior Director within the government’s Primary National Strategy, responsible for its work on overcoming barriers to achievement, and is a national expert on inclusion issues.
Jean is a Visiting Fellow at London University’s Institute of Education. Most recently, as Director of the Every Child a Chance Trust, she has successfully championed the cause of children with significant literacy and numeracy difficulties, and secured government pick up of the charity’s Every Child a Reader and Every Child Counts programmes, which as a result will now each reach 30,000 children a year.
Throughout her career Jean has championed the needs of children with communication difficulties, whether these arise from social deprivation or to special educational needs. In her local authority career she worked closely with the health service to commission a school-managed speech and language therapy service based in a group of schools in a deprived neighbourhood.
She is the author of numerous articles and best-selling books on SEN, including Special educational needs in the primary school: a practical guide (Open University Press, 3rd edn, 2002), Special educational needs and school improvement (David Fulton, 2004), and the recent Beating Bureaucracy in SEN (NASEN/Routledge).
More information at www.thecommunicationcouncil.org/champion