Assessment and education, health and care (EHC) planning

What is an education, health and care plan?

An education, health and care (EHC) plan is for children and young people (aged 0 to 25) with more complex educational needs who require additional support over and above what is available in a mainstream, nursery, school or college. View a template of an EHC plan and watch a short video

The plan is a legal document that describes the child or young person’s special educational, health and social care needs and the extra support that will be given to help them. We may agree to do an assessment for an EHC plan when a child or young person is not making the necessary progress through the resources available at their education setting.

The severity or complexity of their needs, together with a wide range of other evidence from parents and professionals, is considered. If your child is already receiving health and social care support but does not have any special educational needs, an EHC plan will not be necessary.

Brent’s Special Educational Needs Assessment Service (SENAS) is responsible for drafting the EHC plan after a needs assessment has been carried out and it has been decided to issue one. If a decision has been made not to carry out an assessment or issue an EHC plan for your child, you will be offered a way forward meeting.

The plan should be written in a way that everyone understands and be clear and detailed about the amount and type of support your child will receive and how it will help them. Parents, children and young people must be involved in the assessment and planning stages, as well as the annual review.

What support is there for children without an EHC plan?

If you have been told that your child is not eligible to receive an EHC plan, this does not mean that they don’t have SEND, rather that their needs are not of the type and severity that would require the intervention of an EHC plan.

SEN support is available in nurseries, schools and further education settings for children and young people who have special educational needs but do not require an EHC plan. Your child’s nursery/school/college should keep you informed about any extra support they are receiving and this should be reviewed regularly to ensure they are making the right level of progress and to adjust the level of support provided if necessary.

The SEND Code of Practice states that schools and colleges must publish a SEND Information Report about how they use their funding to meet the educational needs of all children and young people with additional needs, including those without an EHC plan. You can request this report directly from them or view it on their website.