Funding Arrangements for Pupils with SEND In Sutton
Introduction to SEND funding in Sutton
Funding arrangements for pupils with SEND are complex and can be difficult to understand. This section aims to describe the main features of the current funding system for SEND: it is a national system i.e not specific to Sutton alone.
Local authorities receive a grant from the Department for Education called the Dedicated Schools Grant, or ‘DSG’. It is made up of four 'blocks' (the figures in brackets are the 2020/21 amounts for Sutton).
The four blocks are:
Schools’ Block (£163m) - this is money that is provided directly to mainstream schools in the borough as their main source of income. This funding includes an amount called ‘notional SEND funding’ (£19m): this is so schools can provide the SEND provision that is ordinarily available in mainstream state funded education settings. It is provided to meet most of the more ‘predictable needs’ of pupils in mainstream schools i.e those that schools are likely to see most years or in most year groups.
The High Needs Block (£42m) - pays for the provision for all pupils and students aged 0 to 25 where the needs of pupils with SEND are considered ‘exceptional’ (i.e. they need more provision than would be ordinarily available in mainstream state funded education settings). This includes provision in Education Health and Care Plans (EHCPs), the places and top up funding for special schools, opportunity bases and Alternative Provision, together with therapies and SEND support services etc.
The Central Services Block (£1.7m) - pays for some LA costs centrally which are not SEND related.
The Early Years Block (£15m) - pays for the costs of the free childcare entitlement in the Borough for 2, 3 and 4 year olds. Within this allocation there is a small sum of £190k - the EY SEND inclusion fund - to meet the low and emerging SEND needs of children accessing their free childcare entitlement in Sutton early years settings.
Therefore, the two main sources of funding for pupils with SEND in the Borough are schools' Notional Funding and the High Needs Block.
(Text version of piechart: High Needs Block - £42m. Schools Notional Funding - £19m. EY Inclusion Fund - £150k.)