SEN support

SEN support is available for children and young people who have SEND but do not have an education, health and care (EHC) plan. Nurseries, schools and further education settings must identify which pupils need extra help through SEN support, record this in their records and tell the child or young person's parents/carers.

Education settings must have a special educational needs co-ordinator (SENCO) who is responsible for arranging and organising extra help for pupils with SEND. The SENCO works with class and subject teachers to plan and deliver this support. The setting should draw up a plan, involving you and your child, focusing on the outcomes your child needs and wants to achieve and detailing how the school will support them to achieve these.

The SEND Code of Practice says that nurseries, schools and colleges should use a 'graduated approach', or four-part cycle (Assess, Plan, Do and Review) to support your child. This means that the SENCO and teaching staff should:

  • Analyse your child's difficulties
  • Identify the extra support your child needs
  • Put the support in place
  • Regularly check how well it is working so that they can change the amount or kind of support if they need to

The setting can ask specialist support services, for example, educational psychology, behaviour support or speech and language therapy to carry out assessments and provide further advice and support if necessary. You should be fully involved in discussions about the support your child needs, how it will be delivered and when it will be reviewed. Your child's setting should meet with you at least three times a year to review how your child is progressing. This should be in addition to scheduled parents’ evening meetings. They should also provide you with a report on your child's progress at least once a year.

Read more information about SEN support in mainstream schools.