Bureaucracy for kids

information about the Special Educational Needs Tribunal of Wales (SENTW)

Very few jobs start off with good intentions and end in disappointment. But this was one of them. SENTW resolves disagreements that arise between young people with special needs and their local authority. It’s important, sensitive work involving a lot of bureaucratic jargon.

Steve Merrell was asked to rewrite the information sent to people attending a tribunal. He asked me to design how that information could be presented to the kids who needed to read it. We came up with ideas for animal characters and funky layouts. In the end the SENTW people preferred to stick with photos. Fair enough… we could still make the booklet bright and appealing.

When I was searching my archive for this material I looked at the SENTW website to see what was available. Disappointingly they are offering the same drab slabs of impenetrable jargon-rich text that were there before we started. It’s not that the work was in vain that’s so dispiriting. It’s that it was a change that needed to be made, and somehow it got stymied.


  • Special Educational Needs Tribunal of Wales


  • Graphic design
  • Illustration