Getting the EHC Plan right

This page provides an introduction to statements of special educational needs

All parents want the best for their children. Some children may need more help than usually can be provided by schools and this help must be set out in a Statement of SEN or the new Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan

Before an EHC Plan is written, the local authority will ask your child's school and other professionals to assess your child and write reports.

If the local authority decides to issues an EHC Plan you have the right to make comments and to make a request for the school you want your child to attend

An EHC Plan says what special educational help a child must be given and where they must go to school.

If the local authority decides to issue an EHC plan they must produce a draft EHC plan. Parents must be given 15 days to suggest changes to the draft EHC plan and express a preference for the school they want their child to go to. The local authority must ensure that the whole process (from request to final EHC plan) is completed within 20 weeks.

An EHC plan names the school that the child must go to. Most children with EHC plans go to mainstream school.

The parent normally has a right to send the child to a mainstream school. However, the school must be able to meet the child’s needs and the effect of the child on the education of others will also be a crucial factor.

The parent can appeal to the First-Tier Tribunal (Special Educational Needs and Disability) against a decision not to issue an EHC plan or against the educational contents of the EHC plan, including the school. The parent must consider mediation if they wish to appeal.