Education Health Care Plans
Extract taken from the SEND Code of Practice 0 - 25 years January 2015
(9.1 - 9.3, 9.5, 9.6)
The majority of children and young people with SEN or disabilities will have their needs met within local mainstream early year's settings, schools or colleges. Some children and young people may require an EHC needs assessment in order for the local authority to decide whether it is necessary for it to make provision in accordance with an EHC plan.
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 and social care and, as they get older, prepare them for adulthood.
To achieve this, local authorities use the information from the assessment to:
establish and record the views, interests and aspirations of the parents and child or young person
provide a full description of the child or young person's special educational needs and any health and social care needs
establish outcomes across education, health and social care based on the child or young person's needs and aspirations
specify the provision required and how education, health and care services will work together to meet the child or young person's needs and support the achievement of the agreed outcomes.
A local authority must conduct an assessment of education, health and care needs when it considers that it may be necessary for special educational provision to be made for the child or young person in accordance with an EHC plan. The factors a local authority should take into account in deciding whether it needs to undertake an EHC needs assessment are set out in paragraphs 9.14 to 9.15 of the Code of Practice, and the factors a local authority should take into account in deciding whether an EHC plan is necessary are set out in paragraphs 9.53 to 9.56 of the Code of Practice.
The EHC needs assessment should not normally be the first step in the process, rather it should follow on from planning already undertaken with parents and young people in conjunction with an early year's provider, school, post-16 institution or other provider. In a very small minority of cases children or young people may demonstrate such significant difficulties that a school or other provider may consider it impossible or inappropriate to carry out its full chosen assessment procedure. For example, where its concerns may have led to a further diagnostic assessment or examination which shows the child or young person to have severe sensory impairment or other impairment which without immediate specialist intervention beyond the capacity of the school or other provider would lead to increased learning difficulties.
EHC plans should be forward-looking documents that help raise aspirations and outline the provision required to meet assessed needs to support the child or young person in achieving their ambitions. EHC plans should specify how services will be delivered as part of a whole package and explain how best to achieve the outcomes sought across education, health and social care for the child or young person.
Please click on the link below to view a blank EHC form:
An EHC needs assessment will not always lead to an EHC plan. The information gathered during an EHC needs assessment may indicate ways in which the school, college or other provider can meet the child or young person's needs without an EHC plan. EHC Model letters through IPSEA can be found at IPSEA.
Statutory Timescales for EHC Needs Assessment and EHC Plan Development