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Education, health and care plans (EHCP)

Requesting an EHC needs assessment

To decide if a child or young person needs an EHC plan, we must conduct an EHC needs assessment. This is a legal requirement.

School or educational settings usually start this process. They will work with parents, carers, young people and professionals to submit a request for an EHC needs assessment to us.

You can download letters to request an EHC needs assessment. These letters can be used by:

  • parents or carers
  • young people with SEND aged 16 to 25

Templates from others sources can be used, or requests can be made using alternative formats as preferred.

If a parent, carer or young person needs help to complete a request for an EHC needs assessment, they can contact the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support (SENDIAS) service.

SENDIAS is at arm's length from Buckinghamshire council and provides free, impartial information, advice and support for children and young people with SEND and their parents or carers.

Anyone else who thinks an EHC needs assessment is necessary can bring a child or young person who has (or may have) SEN to the attention of the local authority including:

  • doctors
  • health visitors
  • social workers
  • early years professionals
  • school or college staff
  • family friends

This should be done with the knowledge and, where possible, agreement of the child’s parent or the young person. Where a child or young person has been brought to the local authority’s attention, they must determine whether an EHC needs assessment is required.