What experts do you have visiting your school? How do you maximise the impact they can make in the short time they visit the school? Should you be led by them or do you need to take the lead? What happens if you disagree? I once had a trainee psychiatrist tell me that it would help the student she was supporting if we made his lessons more fun and chunked the questions. It was towards the end of the school year and I'm afraid I was a little irritated by this advice and did not take it well. I'm not proud of my reaction but, as a previous SEN advisory teacher for the Local Authority, it made me cross that, having had no prior interaction with the school, she thought this was acceptable advice to give. As an outside expert it is not only imperative that you have excellent subject knowledge but it is expected to have done homework on the school. This was one bad experience however compared to many excellent external experts who I've worked with in schools. Just before the end of last term, our NHS Speech and Language Therapy Service gave a full day's training to our TAs which was excellent and well received. We buy in a SENSS advisor for a day a week who works with students with poor literacy and supports an HLTA with teaching programmes to be delivered. She also monitors students' progress every sixth months which is excellent data for school. Here are my top tips for working with external agencies: Treat with respect (I don't advise my short tempered response!) If possible, give them a decent room which will be undisturbed Allow them to make themselves tea and coffee without waiting to be asked If you are busy, ensure someone is available should they have questions Get your paperwork done - there is nothing more frustrating than having to cancel an appointment due to no signature etc Be clear on what is expected - you may be happy for them to advise and schedule their time accordingly or you may prefer to be more in control - each school is different so it is important they understand how you like to work Use their advice - this may seem obvious but I have seen many reports filed away without disseminating first Say if you don't understand what they are telling you - if you don't then it is unlikely parents or mainstream teachers will I would like to hear from others on the best way to work with outside agencies.