Replacing S139a LDAs and SEN statements

What is happening

From September 2014, statements of special educational needs and S139a Learning Difficulties Assessments are replaced with Education, Health and Care plans (EHC). If you, or your child, receive a statutory assessment after September 2014, you will get an EHC plan (if you or your child qualifies).

The legal criteria for an EHC plan is the same as the criteria for a statement. If you, or your child, has a statement of SEN you should be entitled to an EHC plan unless there is evidence to show that you or your child's needs have changed.

The threshold for EHC plans is the same as those for statements. The only issue of funding will be whether it is reasonable for the school to meet all the special educational needs of you or your child.

If you already have a SEN statement for you or your child, we have three years to convert that statement to an EHC plan. We will review each statement of SEN as we convert it to an EHC plan.

How EHC plans will improve the support you and your child receives

  • EHC plans have stronger duties on health and social care. They can continue up to the age of 25 provided the young person is receiving education and training either in a college or on an apprenticeship.
  • It took 26 weeks to complete a SEN statement but it should only take 20 weeks to complete an EHC plan from initiation to completion.
  • A request for an EHC plan should be made in a multi-disciplinary way with professionals and parents having an open discussion about why an EHC plan is and, perhaps, is not necessary. This should improve the chance of an EHC plan being agreed.
  • A lead professional should be identified as part of the EHC planning process, which could be a number of people from within the network.  
  • The EHC plan should be a live and up to date document, truly reflecting the young person and their needs. The ambition is that with technological solutions the young person and family can up date those parts which reflect them via an app.

Transferring children

We will be transferring children and young people from statements of SEN  to Education, Health and Care Plans between 1 September 2014 and 31 March 2018.
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