Implementing the reforms for special educational needs and


Implementing the reforms for special educational needs and disability

Key Messages

May 2014

The vision

 Children’s SEN are picked up early and support is routinely put in place quickly;

 Staff have the knowledge, understanding and skills to provide the right support for children and young people who have SEN or are disabled;

 Parents know what they can reasonably expect their local school, college,

LA & local services to provide, without having to fight for it;

 Aspirations for children and young people are raised through an increased focus on life outcomes, including employment;

 For more complex needs, an integrated assessment and a single

Education, Health and Care Plan are in place from birth to 25

 There is greater control for parents and young people over the services they and their family use.



Reforms timeline

Children and Families Bill introduced to Parliament

Draft regulations and SEN Code of Practice consultation

Proposal to reduce statutory assessment timescales from

26 to 20 weeks



Second draft of the Code of Practice published and public consultation until early December

In East Sussex, work began on new style plans for school starters in 2014 and young people approaching transition (16+) a



Reforms timeline

Royal Assent granted, so the Children and Families Bill became the Children and Families Act

Final Consultation on the Code of Practice until 6 th May

Final Code and regulations to be published



Implementation of provisions

There will be a period of transition from statements to new style plans

– expected completion by April 2018 a

Our logo

• a

Our logo, which places the child and family firmly in the centre, also shows the range of support available.

Services for everyone

Targeted services


Support from your family and and

Family community networks

Specialist services

What’s happening

• The reforms will place children, young people (up to the age of 25 if they remain in education) and their families in the centre of our work, using person centred and outcome focused planning. Staff will be expected to work with families to understand their support needs, priorities and aspirations.

• The Local Offer is a new term to mean the availability of information about services. This work is ongoing and will be primarily web based.

• We will be working across the services which support children, young people and their families to streamline our work and ensure that everyone is clear about who’s doing what and why.

What’s happening

• From September 2014, most children with SEN will have their needs met within mainstream educational settings.

• Some will need an SEN support plan, which will be drawn up and reviewed by families and schools. Plan templates and guidance are available on the ESCC website.

• Children with the highest levels of needs will be assessed for an Education Health & Care (EHC) plan, where evidence shows additional & individual support is needed to support outcomes. The EHC assessment and planning process will include consideration of a personal budget, which many young people and families value as a way to have increased choice and control over their support.

Conversions from statements to

SEN support and EHC plans

We are awaiting the final Code of Practice and regulations, which will give more information about the work to convert existing statements to SEN support or EHC plans.

It is anticipated that the work will be phased over a three year period, details of which will be set out in a local transition plan.

SEND, Safeguarding and Early Help

– the synergies

Although we have different programmes of change affecting different areas of our work there are key principles between them:

• Acting earlier where we can to prevent things getting worse

• Being child, young person, and family centred

• Using outcome-focused planning to get the best result for children and young people

• Focusing on family resilience and strengths

• Working hard to be joined up in our support

Assessment, Planning and

Review – key points

Where children and young people have both a Special Educational

Need, or are disabled, and also need support to be safeguarded from harm they may have more than one assessment or plan in place.

This is okay as long as:

• No-one starts from scratch if there is an existing assessment or plan, and we avoid asking families to tell their story again and again

• Existing plans and assessments are shared between professionals, with family consent

• Professionals talk to one another, and make sure things are joined up – for example having joint review or assessment meetings

• Actions in the plans don’t overlap, duplicate or cause confusion

• We always check, for example when plans are reviewed, whether things can be brought together in to one plan to make things easier

Why different plans?

Purpose Lead Type of plan

SEN Support Plan

(e.g. School, Early Years or

College based plan)

Education Health and Care

(EHC) Plan

Longer-term plan focusing on one particular child and their needs to access learning.

Longer-term plan focusing on one particular child and the range of needs they have across education, health and care where these require specialist responses

Educational setting

Coordinated by ESCC, led by those supporting the child and family

Early Help Plan Early Help Keyworker or

Targeted Early Help service

Family Support Plan / Children in Need Plan / Child Protection


A whole family plan to support families where children and young people are at

Level 3 on the Safeguarding Children

Continuum of Need. Usually shorterterm.

A whole family plan to support families where children and young people are at

Level 4 on the Safeguarding Children

Continuum of Need and their a need for social workers to be involved to protect children and young people. Usually shorter-term.

Children’s Social Care social worker

Coordinating support for children and young people

All children and young people who have an EHC Plan will have a professional leading that plan at some points – and undertaking ‘key working functions’ such as arranging meetings and assessments, communicating with the family, and negotiating with other professionals. This might be someone leading the assessment or it may be someone who is providing ongoing support to that child or family.

– If this is happening they should be talking to any Early Help or Social

Care professionals involved with the child or the rest of their family, and the whole family plan should be shared with them.

– Where there is a professional leading on support around a child or young person’s SEND then Early Help or Social Care professionals should always consult them and include them in any work that is being done on safeguarding.

– The family should be clear who is doing what, and how different professionals will communicate with each other

More information

East Sussex webpage

East Sussex email address and telephone number :

01273 481230

Forms, templates and guidance:

National website

Optional slides below re

Local Offer, Assessment and

Planning and Personal


The Local Offer

The Local Offer

The LO will provide information about provision available including education, health and care services, leisure activities and support groups.

The Local Offer will:

• hold information in one place

• be clear, comprehensive and accessible

• make services responsive to local needs

• be developed with service providers and service users

The regional framework across the South East 7 LAs

The framework sets out:

1: The vision

2: Area wide offer

This is divided by age group. . . .

And by level of need:

• Pre-school • Universal

• School age • Targeted

• Post 16 • Specialist

3: Settings and service offer

Principles for our

Local Offer


Empowering for parentcarers, young people and professionals

Holistic Accessible


Co-produced by parentcarers, young people and professionals

Sustainable and sustained


Starting with what is widely available

Every early years’ setting, school, college and service will need to publish their Local Offer

What do you need to do

• Read the guidance on Czone:

• Answer the questions that will be the basis of your Local Offer.

• Have the answers reviewed by stakeholders, including families.

• Send your answers to

Your own Local Offer will be published on your own website and will be easily identified by adding the Local Offer logo. Service offers will link to the

Area Wide Offer.

Assessment and Planning

A visual of the process

Listen and understand

Collect information

Child / Family-centred

Allocation questions

Agree and allocate

Confirm entitlement

Agree allocation of funding and services


Plan together

Review and learn

Child / young person and family centred

Focus on outcomes

Explore all sources of support options

Working/not working?

Change, revise outcomes, continue

Assessment and Planning works like this as well …

Whether it’s for provision mapping, SEN support plans in an educational setting or Education, Health and Care assessment and planning.


MOST children or young people with SEN should be supported through high quality, personalised teaching as set out in a provision map or similar

SOME children or young people may need additional support which can be set out in an SEN support plan (Early years, school based, college based plan)

A FEW children with the most complex needs, may need an Education,

Health and Care plan.

• Listen to the child/young person and their family – let their voices be heard

• Understand their concerns

• Make a note of their strengths and what works for the child or young person

• Discuss their circles of support

• Understand their aspirations and the outcomes they want to happen.

• Have a shared understanding of the language you are using, the information you are collecting and the actions you will be taking

• Work with everyone involved to agree the outcomes you want to achieve for the child or young person – remember SMART

• Agree the resources that will be allocated to support the child or young person

• Agree the actions that everyone involved will take (including the child or young person and their parents or carers)

• Agree when and how you are going to review the outcomes

• Write down how this is going to be done

• It could be in a provision map

• It could be in an SEN Support Plan (Early Years/School based/College based plan)

• It might be in an Education, Health and Care Plan written after a statutory EHC assessment

• Agree and share the plan with all involved

• There are guidance and templates to help you with this on Czone

Review progress against the desired outcomes with everyone involved as often as necessary but at least once a term for SEN support plans and once a year for EHC plans

• What worked?

• What didn’t?

• What needs to be adapted or changed?

• What else could be put in place?

• Is a plan still needed?

• Is a higher level of support needed?

• What actions need to be taken?

Levels of SEN support:



Provision mapping or similar

• MOST children with SEN will have their support set out this way




• Also called an Early

Years/School/College based support plan

• SOME children will need these


Authority lead

EHC Plan

• A FEW children with the most complex needs will have these

Personal Budgets

Personal budgets

Everyone with an Education, Health and Care Plan can request a Personal

Budget. Where agreed, a budget will be given to support the agreed outcomes.

It should be noted however that personal budgets will not be suitable or available for everyone, this will depend on a child’s assessed needs and the outcomes to be achieved. Funding for personal budgets can come from social care, and/or health, and/or education.

It is likely that only a small proportion of families will receive a personal budget.

Having a personal budget won’t necessarily mean that the family/young person will have the money directly, but it’s about families being fully involved in planning and having clear information about what resources are being provided to support a child/young person’s outcomes.

Personal budgets

Through the assessment stage of EHC planning, there will be conversations with the family and where appropriate with the young person, to include resource allocation questions, to establish how much support is needed.

Consideration is given to eligibility thresholds to establish what funding is available and from which service/s. This available funding forms an indicative budget.

This process enables support needs to be considered against the outcomes set out in the EHC plan. It places the family (and young person where applicable) in the centre of discussions with service providers, including education settings.

Personal budgets

There are options for how personal budgets are managed.

• Some families choose to have their services provided directly to them

• Some use a broker

• Some manage the money themselves to arrange the support

Whichever option a family choose, they will have the options explained so that they’re clear about what’s available.

Personal Travel Budgets (PTBs)

CYP with SEN and disabilities which mean that they cannot use public transport or walk to school or college, have traditionally been offered a taxi as part of the Council’s statutory support.

In tandem with the shift towards greater choice and control, parents are now being offered a PTB as a direct monthly payment. The budget can be used however the family would like and without the restrictions of a taxi, as long as their child gets to school or college safely and on time. If this option does not suit the family, hired transport will still be arranged.

The question of whether special travel assistance is needed is part of a child’s

EHC Plan Assessment and annual review, and is an opportunity to discuss travel options. This should include PTBs and, when ready, the possibility of benefiting from Independent Travel Training (ITT) as an important life skill in the transition to adulthood.