about - definefine

About Define Fine

Define Fine has been created by a small but committed team of parents and professionals who have lived experience of school attendance difficulties. As DEFINE FINE: Parent Peer Support for School Attendance Difficulties we support our members who are struggling with school attendance difficulties and parent carers from our wider SEND and mental health networks.

We provide peer support using our tried and tested resources and to help parents advocate for the support their children and young people need to be able to learn and achieve. We hope to build up our growing network of peer supporters, who we can train to use our guides for their own family and ultimately to then help other families experiencing attendance difficulties.

Our resources and training are also available for professionals in Education, Health and Social Care.

Empowering parents to be able to effectively work with professionals, should encourage not only earlier intervention, with much better outcomes, but also reduce the risk and impact of unhelpful, and unnecessary attendance prosecutions and social services interventions. It is vital that children, young people and their families receive appropriate support, and especially in cases where professionals insist children are “fine in school, “ all are clear as to how fine is actually defined.

For us “fine in school” would mean that children are safe, healthy, happy and their needs are acknowledged and supported to be able to access suitable education and learn.

Please follow us on our Facebook Page:

And join us in our Define Fine Parent Peer Support for School Attendance Difficulties Private Facebook Group:

Louise Parker Engels, Rebecca Jasper and team

Before we became DEFINE FINE we were co-founder and members of the Not Fine in School management team. Together we co-produced the name, logo and the resources and worked together to build a successful and still growing private facebook Group.

Define Fine has been set up as parent/carer-led organisation set up in response to the growing number of children and young people who struggle with school attendance – often inaccurately or unfairly referred to as ‘school refusal’. For so many ” school refusal ” this doesn’t describe the difficulties and barriers they face. In our experience it is a case of being unable to attend rather than refusing to attend.

For a number of years we have worked hard to support parents and families, and to raise awareness of the challenges children and young people and their families face. Our resources are for parents, carers and professionals which we hope will bring improvements to the support that is offered, and ensure national guidance and policies are understood and put into practice, to reduce the numbers of children experiencing attendance barriers. We continue that work now through Define Fine.