There’s a joke in Westminster that ‘MP’ stands for ‘Most Persistent’. It’s because, whilst some campaigns can take just a matter of weeks, others can take years.

This week, my long-running campaign to improve SEND services in Hertfordshire was back in the spotlight, as I secured a debate in Parliament.

SEND stands for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. Last month, Ofsted investigated our SEND system and found "widespread and/or systemic failings" that have a ‘’significant negative impact on the experiences and outcomes of children and young people’’.

Our local SEND system was consequently awarded the lowest possible rating.

Part of the issue is the way in which the services are being delivered, but there is a large problem locally with funding and on that front our county suffers from two connected problems of the government’s making.

The first is that the government's flawed National Funding Formula is based on a snapshot of historical spend, not current need.

As needs change there are often huge disparities and this year neighbouring Buckinghamshire received an average of £935 per pupil, whilst Hertfordshire got just £614.

Under the government formula Hertfordshire is expected to catch up…but to do so, will take 15 years!

A second problem is that Hertfordshire County Council’s funding doesn't stretch as far as it could: because we don’t have enough special school places, it is having to spend huge amounts on expensive placements in the independent sector.

During the debate, I tried to press the Education Minister, face to face, for the action and resources Hertfordshire needs to drive improvement forward.

I asked the government to issue an improvement notice to Hertfordshire County Council, to appoint a SEND Commissioner, to release additional funds, and to fix the absurd funding formula which puts children in Hertfordshire at a near-permanent disadvantage.

Annoyingly, with all the changes in government, this is the sixth person to hold the position in the last three years.

Despite my lobbying for two years the minister claimed to be unfamiliar with our circumstances and provided no substantive answers at all.

It might be in my job title to be the ‘most persistent’, but families shouldn’t be forced to fight this hard for this long to get the support their children's need.

Like so many families, I will keep going until our combined persistence pays off.