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Schools, academies and free schools (area wide offer)

Education providers such as schools, academies and free schools have a duty to check that, where a child or young person has special educational needs (SEN), barriers to learning are identified at an early stage.

Through working closely with a child or young person, and their parents or carers, education providers should make sure that their pupils:

  • have the best teaching and learning experiences based on their strengths and interests
  • achieve the best possible outcomes

Most children and young people will get all the support they need through ordinarily available provision at mainstream schools.

A small number of children may require a SEN support plan.

This will help the education provider, the child or young person, and their parents or carers, to focus on how best to support learning and meet desired outcomes.

For children and young people who need a higher level of support, an education, health and care (EHC) needs assessment can be made and, where appropriate, an EHC plan will be produced.

SEND services and equipment

Schools and colleges have delegated funding in their budget to support pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

For those children and young people whose needs are beyond that which can be met from a school's budget, additional funding may be required.

This can be through:

Education transitions

Where a child or young person has SEND, their education provider will work with them, and their parents or carers, to plan a successful transition.

Transitions can be from:

  • one class to another
  • one building to another
  • one phase of education to another
  • one school or education provider to another

Parents, carers, children and young people – alongside an education provider's staff – should consider what is be needed for a successful transition.

When a young person has reached the end of statutory education, their education provider will speak to them about their goals and provide careers advice as part of their preparation for adulthood

If the young person has an EHC plan, a transition plan will be written as part of the year 9 annual review, and updated at subsequent reviews.

This planning will take into account the young person's goals and aspirations, and the views of their parents or carers.

Planning will be put into place to support a young person’s aspirations for:

  • independent living
  • employment
  • health
  • community inclusion

Additional support for children and young people with SEND

All education providers must:

  • remove barriers to learning
  • put effective special educational provision in place.

All children and young people with SEND should have access to the full range of activities and opportunities available to other children and young people at an education provider.

Education providers will provide high quality teaching and learning activities, taking into account a child or young person's interests, strengths, areas for development, lifestyle and cultural background.

An education provider's staff will be aware of possible barriers to learning, and how to plan for progress using small steps in each area of the curriculum.

This planning will be personalised for individual children and young people.

Some pupils may require educational provision that is additional to, or different from, this.

Education providers must do their best to ensure that such special educational provision is made available to those who need it.

Disability and accessibility

Education providers must plan for the inclusion of children and young people with SEND in all activities and opportunities.

Under the Equality Act 2010, education providers must publish their accessibility plans, and explain how access will be improved for disabled pupils, staff and visitors to the school within a given timeframe.

This will cover how reasonable adjustments will be made to: 

  • increase access to the curriculum for pupils with a disability
  • improve and maintain access to the physical environment of the school
  • improve the delivery of written information to pupils, staff, parents and visitors with disabilities

All education providers must have equal opportunities for all children and young people to access the wider curriculum and community activities. This includes extracurricular activities such as visits, trips and after school clubs.

It is expected that reasonable adjustments will be made for children and young people with SEND to get involved.