Special Educational Needs Code of Practice 0-25yrs

  • What is the Code about?

    This statutory code is for headteachers, governing bodies, school staff, SEND coordinators (SENCos), early education providers, health and social services staff & local authorities.


    The government has produced A Guide for Parents and carers:


  • The Code is clear about...

    • Listening to the views, wishes and feelings of the child, young person and parents


    • The importance of the child or young person participating in decisions about them


    • Local authorities supporting children, young people and parents in the development of the child or young person and helping them to achieve the best they can and be prepared for adulthood


  • The code refers to some key things identified by BCRP including the importance of:

    • Early Identification


    • Early Intervention


    • Parents and staff working together


    • High quality support to meet needs


    • Recording progress


    • Using the best approaches which are based on evidence of what works

  • The principles of the system:

    These support the recommendations of the BCRP


    All children have a right to an education that enables them to make progress so that they:


    •  achieve their best
    •  become confident individuals and live fulfilling lives
    •  make a successful transition into becoming an adult – whether that’s into further and higher education, training or work


    All children with special educational needs (SEN) or disabilities should have their needs met, whether they are in early years settings (like a nursery or a childminder), in school or in college.


    When making decisions about SEN or disabilities, your local authority must:


    • have regard to the views, wishes and feelings of children, their parents and young people
    • make sure that children, their parents and young people participate as fully as possible in decisions that affect them
    • provide support to children, their parents and young people so that children and young people do well educationally and can prepare properly for adulthood
  • SEN Support

    Any support your child gets from their school or other setting should meet their needs.


    SEN support is part of what is known as the ‘graduated approach’.  The approach varies in how it works depending on the age of your child – for example, it may work differently in a nursery than it will in a school.


    You may be contacted – for example in schools, this will be by your child’s teacher or SENCO – if your early years setting, school or college think your child needs SEN support. Or you can approach your child’s school or other setting if you think your child might have SEN.


    Every school has a teacher who coordinates the SEN provision - called the SENCO


    You will be involved and your views will be needed throughout the

    process, and you will be kept up to date with the progress made. Young people aged 16 to 25 will be fully involved in designing their own SEN support and provision.


    The four stages of SEN support are

    • Assess

    • Plan

    • Do

    • Review.

    Assess: Your child’s difficulties must be assessed so that the right support can be provided. This should include, for example, asking you what you think, talking to professionals who work with your child (such as their teacher), and looking at records and other information. This needs to be reviewed regularly so that the support provided continues to meet your child’s needs. That might mean getting advice and further assessment from someone like an educational psychologist, a specialist teacher or a

    health professional.


    Plan: Your school or other setting needs to agree, with your involvement, the outcomes that the SEN support is intended to achieve – in other words, how your child will benefit from any support they get – and you need to be involved with that. All those involved will need to have a say in deciding what kind of support will be provided, and decide a date by which they will review this so that they can check to see how well the support is working and whether the outcomes have been or are being achieved.


    Do: The setting will put the planned support into place. The teacher remains responsible for working with your child on a daily basis, but the SENCO and any support staff or specialist teaching staff involved in providing support should work closely to track your child’s progress and check that the support is being effective.


    Review: The support your child receives should be reviewed at the time agreed in the plan. You can then decide together if the support is having a positive impact, whether the outcomes have been, or are being, achieved and if or how any changes should be made.


    Your school or other setting can use the Local Offer to see what help is available that may help achieve your child’s outcomes.

  • Local Offer

    Every local authority must identify education, health and social care services in their local area provided for children, young people and families who have SEN or disabilities and include them in an information directory called the Local Offer.


    Information about the Local Offer can be found on the website of your Local Authority.

  • You can...

    • Ask the people in your child’s setting if they think he/she has SEN or a disability


    • Ask what kind of support your child can get...

    For example in school  support can take many forms. This could include:

    • a special learning programme for your child
    • extra help from a teacher or a learning support assistant
    • making or changing materials and equipment
    • working with your child in a small group
    • observing your child in class or at break and keeping records
    • helping your child to take part in the class activities
    • making sure that your child has understood things by encouraging them to ask questions and to try something they find difficult
    • helping other children to work with your child, or play with them at break time



    • Ask how you will be kept updated about your child’s progress


    • Ask what you can do to help at home


    • Find out about your Local Offer


  • If you want more information these websites may help...

    AFASIC supports parents and represents children and young people with speech, language and communication needs, you might want to read the article about the better communication research programme in AFASIC AbstrAct Autumn 2012: http://www.afasic.org.uk


    Contact a Family is a national charity that exists to support the families of disabled children whatever their condition or disability: www.cafamily.org.uk


    Parent Partnership Services: offer advice and support to parents and carers of children and young people with special educational needs (SEN). The National Parent Partnership Network (NPPN) supports and promotes the work of Parent Partnership Services (PPS) across England and will point you to your local service: www.parentpartnership.org.uk


    Council for Disabled Children this organisation is made up of different groups who support children with disability, they have information about SEN and disability reform: http://www.councilfordisabledchildren.org.uk


    DfE You Tube video: What you need to know about the SEND reforms:



    DfE You Tube video: What you need to know about the local offer:



    DfE You Tube video: What are Education, Health and Care Plans?



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