What is an Education Health and Care Plan?
Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP) are integrated support plans for children and young people with complex special needs and disabilities. They are focused on:
- Achieving outcomes
- Helping children and young people into school, through school, and
- Preparing for adulthood.
The Education Health and Care Plan will be prepared in partnership with the child or young person, parents, carers and relevant professionals working across education, health and social care specialist services.
For a clear explanation of the education, health and care plan process, please watch this animated video.
What will happen to children and young people who have a Statement or Learning Difficulty Assessment?
Education Health and Care Plans will replace a current Statement of Special Educational Needs or a Learning Difficulty Assessment. Children and young people who have a Statement or Learning Difficulty Assessment will gradually transfer to the new system over the next 3 years as they reach a key stage:
- Moving from early years / nursery to infant school;
- Infant school to junior school;
- Primary school to secondary school;
- In Year 9, ready for Year 10
- Secondary school to a post-16 institution (including a training provider or onto an Apprenticeship).
For more details on transferring please go to Transferring from a Statement or Learning Difficulty Assessment .
Is there support available to help families?
Croydon SEND Support (formerly Family Lives) offers advice on local SEN issues and the statutory process relating to SEN. They also provide drop-in advice sessions for parents as well as an Independent Support Service to help any family whose child is going through a transfer from a Statement to an Education Health and Care Plan or those applying for an Education Health and Care Plan.
Mencap and Department for Education have created easy read guides that sets out the new law for those with special educational needs or a disability, and provides support and information on: the Local Offer, Education Health and Care Plans, Support in Schools and Colleges, Planning for the Future and Disagreeing with Decisions.
Another useful website is the Information, Advice and Support Service Network for SEND. Which provide advice, guidance and a directory of local services.
Special Needs Jungle also provide information, resources and support including flowcharts of the SEND system. Please see the link below to their website.
What happens at age 19?
There is no entitlement to continued support or an expectation that those with an Education Health and Care Plan at age 18 must be allowed to remain in education or training from age 19 to 25. A local authority should continue to maintain an Education Health and Care Plan for a 19-25 year old where all of the following conditions apply:
- The education and training outcomes set out in their plan have not yet been achieved
- The young person wants to remain in education or training so they can complete or consolidate their learning, including accessing provision that will help them prepare for adulthood
- Special educational provision is still needed
- Remaining in education or training would enable the young person to progress and achieve those outcomes
Does an Education Health and Care Plan last until the age of 25?
An Education Health and Care Plan can last until a young person is 25 years of age, but for most young people the plan will finish earlier than that, because the Education Health and Care Plan becomes irrelevant once the young person leaves school or college.
Can children or young people in mainstream education have an Education Health and Care plan?
A plan can be requested if a child or young person is in a mainstream setting and their needs require a high level of support to enable them to access the curriculum. An Education Health and Care Plan will be required for all children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities who are placed in special school settings.
Arrangements for identifying and assessing children and young people’s SEN – including arrangements for Education Health and Care needs assessments
An Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) Request is a very detailed look at a child’s difficulties, strengths and needs to decide whether a child requires more or different educational help, and how this could be provided. It may lead to an Education Health and Care plan being developed.
Who can ask for an Education Health and Care Plan Request?
- The child’s parent
- A young person over the age of 16 but under 25
- A person acting on behalf of a school/post-16 provider
- Standardised costs for Education
- SAG Panel dates 2017/2018
Other people who can bring a child or young person to the attention of the local authority include foster carers, health/social care professionals, early years, youth offending team/probation, those responsible for education in custody.
The Education, Health and Care Plan Process
Once the local authority has received a request for statutory assessment, the twenty week process has begun. During this time, the local authority is to identify whether a child or young person requires an EHCP and if required, the local authority is to ensure that a finalised plan is issued within this timescale.
Please see the document below which displays the twenty week statutory assessment process and what can be expected to happen during this timeframe.
Will I have Annual Reviews?
EHCP’s must be reviewed by the Local Authority as a minimum every 12 months. For information regarding this process please see ‘Croydon’s Guidance Notes for the Review Document and Process’ attached below. For guidance on the review process for young people in Years 9, 10 and 11 please also see the ‘Preparing for Adulthood Review Guidance’ attached below. This document presents the guidance notes for all children and young people who hold an Education, Health and Care Plan in Croydon which requires a review. For the ‘Schools Guidance Notes’ please see the schools request section in the tab above.
Please note that these documents have recently been developed and published by Croydon Council. If you have any comments or suggestions you can email SENreform@croydon.gov.uk or if you prefer to write please contact: SEN Department, Floor 2, Zone D, Bernard Weatherill House, 8 Mint Walk, Croydon, CR0 1EA
Arrangements for resolving disagreements and for mediation
The arrangements for resolving disagreements and for mediation are independent from the SEN service and Croydon Council. The current provider is the KIDS London Mediation Service [ADD LINK http://www.kids.org.uk/event/sen-mediation-service ] which provides mediation meetings for parents of children with special needs and the local education authority or the child’s school when there is some kind of disagreement over how best to meet those needs.
Parents’ and young people’s rights to appeal
All decisions made by the local authority can be appealed via the Special Educational Need and Disability Tribunal (SENDIST). The SEN service will provide details in every letter sent from the local authority where a decision is being given.
The contact details of SENDIST are:
HM Courts and Tribunals Service, Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal, 1st Floor Darlington Magistrates’ Court, Parkgate, Darlington, DL1 1RU
Tel: 01325 289350
- T4 EHC Plan Template September 2017 [211.4KB]
- T5 EHC Plan Review Template September 2017 [223.8KB]
- Preparing for Adulthood Review Guidance [25.8KB]
- EHCP Statutory Timeframe and Deadlines [186.9KB]
- The Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) Process [264.4KB]
- EHCP Review Guidance [359.7KB]