Disabled young people: National Transitions to Adulthood Strategy Strategic Working Group minutes - February 2024

Minutes from the meeting of the group on 29 February 2024.

Attendees and apologies

  • Anne Marie Sturrock, Borders College - representing College Practitioners
  • Beth Kirby,  Scottish Government
  • Claire Vekic, Colleges Scotland
  • Craig McDonald, Scottish Transitions Forum Parent Carer Network
  • Dr Edwin Jesudason, NHS Lothian – representing adult health
  • Fergus McMillan, Skills Development Scotland
  • Gavin Cobb, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
  • Gemma Richardson, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
  • Iain Wilson, Independent Living Fund Scotland
  • Jenny Miller, Promoting a More Inclusive Society (PAMIS)
  • John Urquhart, COSLA
  • Mairi Macpherson, Scottish Government
  • Marianne Tyler, the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland (The ALLIANCE)
  • Marianne Scobie, Glasgow Disability Alliance
  • Mark Smith, Social Work Scotland 
  • Michelle Wilson, Children’s Health Scotland
  • Nicola Davidson, Scottish Government
  • Rachel Bell, Scottish Government
  • Sara Hampson, Scottish Government
  • Scott Richardson-Read, Association for Real Change (ARC) Scotland
  • Tracey Francis, Association for Real Change (ARC) Scotland


  • James Fletcher, Association for Real Change (ARC) Scotland
  • Eilidh Fulton, Scottish Funding Council
  • Sam Nicolson, Education Scotland
  • Una McFadyen, National Managed Clinical Network – Children with Exceptional Healthcare Needs

Items and actions

Welcome and review of previous meeting minutes and actions

RB welcomed attendees, including ND and MM as guest Scottish Government officials. RB noted apologies and shared details of departing group members - EB for Children in Scotland, who is replaced by HF.  

The group thanks EB for their invaluable contributions to date, and offers them best wishes for the future.

RB outlined the previous meeting’s actions, and the meeting agenda and outcomes were shared:

  • to finalise sharing key feedback themes from analysis of engagement on the Statement of Intent and review the priorities for the strategy in light of this
  • to agree the priorities and improvement focus
  • to develop outcomes for each of the priorities

Group updates

RB invited updates from group members. These included:

  • The Divergent Influencers (DIs) working with the Association for Real Change (ARC) Scotland presented at Education Scotland’s National Complex Needs Network meeting. The DIs also facilitated an engagement event for young people on the See Hear Strategy
  • SR gave evidence to a House of Lords’ Committee on the transition from education to employment for disabled young people
  • JM shared concerns that families are struggling to secure a social worker and, in turn, access support for transitions
  • MS shared details of work undertaken with groups of young people to inform the development of the National Care Service, and echoed the challenges heard in respect of accessing a social worker. The Glasgow Disability Alliance are currently planning their offer of Easter holiday activities for young people
  • IW shared details of co-production sessions with young people in respect of reopening the ILF Fund and noted they’ve seen an increase in requests for support from families
  • TF highlighted the interim report on Compass, which was also shared at the last meeting

Statement of Intent – feedback themes and review of priorities (carried over)

RB shared the engagement feedback in relation to the priorities set out in the Statement of Intent, noting that 87% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that the proposed priorities are the correct ones for the strategy. Qualitative feedback received included:

  • the deliverability of the priorities is seen to be reliant on access to appropriate supports and services
  • securing the engagement of all relevant partners in transitions planning can be challenging in practice
  • the provision of clear and accessible information supports greater choice, control and empowerment for young people
  • there are existing examples of good practice to improve co-ordination and collaboration across sectors e.g. the role of transitions co-ordinators
  • agreement that data needs to be collected, analysed and used effectively to support improved outcomes for disabled young people

Based on the engagement feedback, RB suggested retention of the proposed priorities for the draft strategy, with some proposed minor amendments, including:

  • developing clear descriptors for each priority (what we mean by each)
  • adding a 6th priority (currently reflected within the overarching ambition of the Statement of Intent) to strengthen the focus on the wider landscape of policy and legislation which supports delivery of the strategy’s vision and priorities

Several group members articulated their support for these proposals, including JM who emphasised the need to ensure complex needs are reflected appropriately within the strategy. Other group members supported this, and further conversation was had around early transitions discussions and the value of peer support networks.

Developing outcomes

RB invited the group to collaborate on Jamboard to suggest outcome descriptors for each of the priorities outlined in the Statement of Intent. RB referenced wider existing Scottish Government outcomes to align with, where possible. The Jamboard will remain open until 12th March 2024 for further contribution from members of the group.

Next steps, any other business and close

RB noted the next meeting will focus on agreeing the outcomes and beginning to develop possible actions for consideration. The group will also discuss plans for wider solution-focussed engagement between May-July 2024. 

RB introduced SH who will be taking over the chairing of the meetings moving forward.

The group agreed to cancel the mid-March interim meeting, scheduled for 13 March, and RB confirmed the next meeting date is Thursday 28 March. 


  • group to share engagement opportunities by email
  • group to add any further contributions to the Jamboard which will remain open until COP Tuesday 12 March
  • officials to collate contributions to outcomes statements and bring back to the group at the next meeting


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