Education, Health and Care Plans

The Children and Families Act 2104 is now law!

From September 1st 2014, Education, Health and Care Plans (EHC plans) will replace Learning Difficulty Assessments (LDA) for all new college applicants. Students who already have a LDA, click on the link below:

Before a plan can be written there will be an assessment to make sure it is needed. Everyone who already has a statement should get a plan

The new EHC assessment and plans will

  • focus on the young person (see section below about young people’s rights)
  • enable young people (and their parents) to express their views, wishes and feelings
  • involve young people (and their parents) in decision-making
  • be written in ordinary language, not professional jargon
  • highlight the young person’s strengths and abilities
  • get the views of the young person, and those who know them best, about what they have done, what they are interested in and what they want to do in the future
  • identify the young person’s support needs
  • get the views of relevant professionals
  • produce a plan that helps the young person to achieve what they want in the future

EHC plans

Each local authority will use its own forms to do the assessment and write the plan. But all plans must include the following information (see Code of Practice 9.69 for full details):

(A) The views, interests and aspirations of the young person and their parents, including

  • the young person’s hopes for the future in areas such as work, living and social activity
  • how to communicate with them and include them in decision-making

(B) The young person’s special educational needs (SEN)

(C) The young person’s health needs which relate to their SEN

(D) The young person’s social care needs which relate to their SEN

(E) The outcomes sought for the young person, including

  • what the young person wants to do in areas such as work, living and social activity
  • the type of provision that would help them achieve these goals
  • how their progress will be monitored
  • the help they will get to move into adult life

(F) The provision required by the young person, including

  • the type and amount of support
  • how it will help them achieve their goals
  • if they need residential accommodation
  • how a personal budget will be used (if they choose to have one)

(G) Any health provision reasonably required by the learning difficulties or disabilities which result in the young person having SEN

(H1) Any social care provision which must be made for a young person under 18 resulting from section 2 of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970 (CSDPA)

(H2) Any other social care provision reasonably required by the learning difficulties or disabilities which result in the young person having SEN

(I) Placement

  • the name and type of the college to be attended by the young person

Note: the young person will be sent a draft plan. They can request a particular college to be named, and it will be included in the final plan.

(J) Personal Budget (including arrangements for direct payments)

(K) Advice and information

  • the advice and information gathered during the EHC needs assessment must be set out in appendices to the EHC plan.

This leaflet by the Council for Disabled Children explains the plans for young people:

New rights for young people

Young people from age 16 have new rights about their EHC plans. These are:

  • the right to ask to have an assessment for an EHC plan (which they can do at any time up to their 25th birthday)
  • the right to have their say about the content of their EHC plan
  • the right to have a particular institution named in their EHC plan
  • the right to ask for a Personal Budget for some parts of their EHC plan
  • the right to appeal to the First-tier Tribunal (SEN and Disability) about their EHC plan

This leaflet by the Council for Disabled Children explains these new rights for young people:

The Tribunal

Parents and young people over 16 (until they reach 25) can appeal to the Tribunal about EHC assessments and EHC plans. This usually happens after contact with a mediation adviser.

Parents and young people can appeal to the Tribunal about:

  • a decision by a local authority not to carry out an EHC needs assessment or re-assessment
  • a decision by a local authority that it is not necessary to issue an EHC plan following an assessment
  • the description of a young person’s SEN in an EHC plan; the special educational provision specified; the institution specified in the plan, or that no institution is specified
  • an amendment to these elements of the EHC plan
  • a decision by a local authority not to amend an EHC plan following a review or re-assessment
  • a decision by a local authority to cease to maintain an EHC plan

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