Education Health & Care Plans (EHCP)
Education Health & Care Plans (EHCP)
Schools in England must provide support to children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) as part of their standard offer to children. This is called SEND support.
Where a child/young person requires additional support that goes beyond what a school, college, or nursery can typically deliver from their own budgets or staffing then they may need an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
Reviewed - August 2023
Next Review date - August 2024
Education Health & Care Plans (EHCP)
The majority of children and young people with SEND will have their needs met within local mainstream early years settings, schools or colleges. A small number of children and young people may require an Education Health & Care needs assessment in order for the local authority to decide whether it is necessary for it to make provision in accordance with an Education Health & Care Plan (previously known as statements).
The purpose of an EHC plan is to make special educational provision to meet the special educational needs of the child or young person, to secure the best possible outcomes for them across education, health & social care and, as they get older prepare them for adulthood.
The following people have a specific right to ask a local authority to conduct an education, health & care needs assessment for a child or young person aged 0-25:
- A person acting on behalf of a school or post 16 institution (this should ideally be with the knowledge and agreement of the parent or young person where possible)
- The child’s parent
- A young person over the age of 16 but under the age of 25
If you would like more information on education health & care plans, then please discuss with the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator at your child’s school
Special Educational Needs (SEN) Team 0118 9372674 email@example.com
The EHC Needs Assessment
If you are concerned your child is finding school work difficult or is not making progress, please talk to your child’s education setting in the first instance. Some children may need extra help with their education, and schools have responsibility for meeting children’s needs. Most children with additional needs are supported by the resources ordinarily available in their local mainstream school/setting within SEND support, without the need for an EHCP. In doing this, schools follow the Graduated Response in line with the government’s SEND Code of Practice.
If a child or young person is not making progress despite the interventions put in place at SEN support, an EHC Needs Assessment may be required. The Needs Assessment will find out more about a child or young person's special educational needs and the support they need in order to learn, progress and achieve. The assessment process will also identify if the support required to meet your child’s needs is over and above that which is ordinarily available, and if an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan should be issued.
Who can request a EHC Needs Assessment
Usually your child’s school will request an EHC Needs Assessment. Schools have a duty to assess and make provision for pupils with SEN and will work with you to obtain additional information about your child, including evidence gathered using the “Assess, Plan, Do, Review” approach outlined in the Code of Practice SEN Support in mainstream schools document.
A parent or young person, over 16 years but under the age of 25, can also request an EHC Needs Assessment. It is a good idea to discuss this with the school or college first.
The SEN Team will then need to contact the setting/school and other relevant agencies that may be involved in supporting your child/young person. Your views and the views of your child are very important during this process.
Education, Health & Care Plan - flowchart for parent carers and professionals
The EHC Needs Assessment Process
The Children and Families Act 2014 states that local authorities are responsible for carrying out an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Needs Assessment for children and young people aged between 0 to 25 to achieve the best possible outcomes.
At every stage, the views and wishes of the child or young person and their parent and carer will be listened to.
BFfC has to decide whether or not to carry out an EHC assessment within 6 weeks of receipt of the request. The case is considered by a multi-agency panel and the decision letter is sent to parents within the 6 week timeframe.
If the decision is not to assess, parents will be sent a letter explaining the reasons and offering a meeting to discuss them further, if that would be helpful. The letter also contains details of the appeal process, should parents want to appeal the decision not to assess.
If the assessment is agreed, further information is requested from services working with your child. This can include the education setting, Educational Psychology, Health , Social Care and any other relevant agencies involved with the child or young person.
You will be offered a co-production meeting to go through the outcomes of the assessment.
The EHC panel should decide within 16 weeks of the process if the provision identified in the Needs Assessment can be met at SEN support, or whether an EHCP should be issued. If an EHCP is not issued, an SEND support plan is issued instead and parents are given information about their right to appeal the decision.
If the decision is to issue, then a draft EHCP outlining aspirations, needs, outcomes and provision is sent to you to review. A final EHCP should be issued within 20 weeks.
Education Health & Care Plans (EHCP) - Annual Review Process
Please look at the page below for further information about the annual review process.
I am unhappy with my child's Education, Health and Care plan. Who can I talk to?
If you need further support you can contact Reading IAAS (Information, Advice and Support Service)
This is a statutory service commissioned by local authorities which is designed to help settle disagreements between parents or young people and local authorities over EHC needs assessments and plans and which parents and young people can use before deciding whether to appeal to the First-Tier Tribunal about decisions on assessment or the special educational element of a plan. Mediation can cover any one or all three elements of an EHC plan and must be offered to the parent or young person when the final plan is issued, but they are not able to appeal to the Tribunal about the health and social care aspects of the plan.
Specialist schools and resource bases in Reading
All age special school for children with complex needs, including autism.
0118 937 5554
Primary special school for pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties.
0118 937 5489
Hamilton School – Amended from Phoenix College
Secondary special school for pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties.
0118 937 5524
Secondary mainstream school with a resource for pupils with an autistic spectrum condition.
0118 957 4730
Primary mainstream school with a resource for pupils with an autistic spectrum condition.
0118 937 5434
Primary mainstream school with a resource for pupils with speech & language and communication difficulties.
0118 937 5470
Secondary mainstream school with a resource for pupils with a visual impairment.
0118 937 5800
Mainstream nursery with a resource for pupils with an autistic spectrum condition.
0118 937 5580
Secondary mainstream school resource for pupils with moderate learning difficulties
0118 959 0466
All age special school for children with a diagnosis of Autism
0118 9424 750
Related AdvicePersonal Budgets (Children) What is the Role of a SENCo Vision Impairment - Registering your Sight Loss ORDINARILY AVAILABLE statement - Provision the local authority (BFfC) expects to be made available by schools, early years and post-16 providers & SEND Support in Mainstream Schools Disagreements, Mediation, Tribunals & Appeals Graduated Response Documents for Early Years & Schools Education Health & Care Plans (EHCP) - Annual Review Process EHC Needs Assessment - Timeline - Reading Guide for Parents & Carers
- Education, Health & Care Plan - Flowchart for parent carers - May 2022
- Education, Health & Care Plan - Flowchart for professionals - May 2022
- Annual Review Guidance for Schools
- Annual Review Minutes Template
- Statutory - (FOR SCHOOL USE ONLY) Request for an EHC Needs Assessment - Brighter Futures for Children - December 2019
- YOUR CHILD’S ANNUAL REVIEW OF HIS/HER EDUCATION, HEALTH AND CARE PLAN. A GUIDE FOR PARENTS OF PRE-SCHOOL CHILDREN - 0-5 YEARS - March 2021
- YOUR CHILD’S ANNUAL REVIEW OF HIS/HER EDUCATION, HEALTH AND CARE PLAN. A GUIDE FOR PARENTS/CARERS OF CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE FROM SCHOOL AGE 5-25 YEARS - March 2021