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Academies are pubicly funded independent schools. Academies dont have to follow the national curriculum and can set their own term times. They still have to follow the same rules on admissions, special educational needs and exclusions as other state schools.

Annual Review
Under the Education Act 1996 local authorities had to carry out a review of every Statement of Special Educational Need at least once every 12 months.

Under the Children and Families Act 2014 local authorities must carry out a review of every EHC plan at least once every 12 months.

Children and Families Act 2014
This law came into force on 1st September 2014. Part 3 of the Act sets out the new law on special educational needs and disability.

The Act is supported by the SEND Regulations 2014 and the SEND Code of Practice: 0-25 Years. You can download a copy of the Act at

Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)
CCGs are groups of professionals that work together to commission health services, ensuring there is sufficient capacity contracted to deliver the necessary service to people.

Direct payment
A payment made directly to a parent or young person to purchase specific services. Under the Children and Families Act 2014 a Direct Payment may be made as part of a Personal Budget so that the parent or young person can buy certain services that are specified in their EHC plan.

Direct payments can only be used for provision provided on the school or college premises if the school or college agree.

Disagreement Resolution
Local authorities must provide independent disagreement resolution to help parents and young people resolve disputes with local authorities, schools and other settings about SEND duties and provision. You can find more information on disagreement resolution in the SEND Code of Practice 11.6 to 11.10

Early Years Action/Action Plus
This describes the additional or different support for Children with SEN given by early year’s settings under the previous (2001) SEN Code of Practice. This support was for children with SEN who did not have a Statement of Special Educational Need.

EBD Schools
These are schools for children and young people who have an Emotional Behavioural Disorder, often refered to as 'Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties'.

Education Act 1996
Part IV of the Education Act 1996 was the legal framework for SEN. Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014 now replaces this legislation. However there is a transition period until 2018.

This means, for example, that Statements of Special Educational Need that were in place before 1st September 2014 will continue to have legal force until the child or young person transfers to an EHC plan.

Education Funding Agency (EFA)
The EFA is the government agency that funds education for learners between the ages of 3 and 19 and those with learning difficulties and disabilities between the ages of 3 and 25.

The EFA allocates funds to local authorities, which then provide the funding for maintaned schools. The EFA directly funds academies and free schools.

EHC Needs Assessment
Local authorities must carry out an EHC needs assessment if a child or young person may need an EHC plan. The assessment is a detailed look at the special educational needs that the child or young person has an what help he or she may need in order to learn. It is sometimes called a statutory assessment.

You can find out more in the SEND Code of Practice sections 9.45 - 9.52.

Education Health and Care plan (EHC plan)
An EHC plan describes the special educational needs that a child or young person has and the help that they will be given to meet them. It also includes the health and care provision that is needed. It is a legal document written by the local authority and is used for children and young people who have high support needs.

Education Other than At School (EOTAS)
The Behaviour and Inclusion team are primarily responsible for ensuring that pupils who have been permanently excluded from either Redbridge school or schools from other Local Authorities, where the pupil resides in Redbridge, are placed in appropriate alternative educational provision from the sixth day of their permanent exclusion.

The team also supports schools and families by providing advice relating to legal processes concerning permanent exclusions, including appeals.

Education Welfare Officer (EWO)
EWO's work by inviting schools to discuss children whose irregular attendance is causing concern. They then make contact with parents either by telephone, letter or home visit. Education welfare officers will always work with parents and schools to try to bring about improvements in the level of attendance and also the child's well being at school.

Educational Psychologist (EP / Ed Psych)
A qualified professional who has had training in psychology to understand more about the ways children learn, think and behave. The Educational Psychologist plays an important role in assessing a child's special education needs and giving advice to schools. Local education authorities usually employ educational psychologists.

Foundation Stage
The foundation stage begins when children reach the age of 3. Many children attend an early education setting soon after their 3rd birthday. The foundation stage continues until the end of the reception year and is consistent with the national curriculum. It prepares children for learning in year 1, when programmes of study for Key Stage 1 are taught.

Further Education (FE)
Full or part-time education for people who are over compulsory school age (16 years in England) which does not take place in a school. It can take place in a sixth form college, a further education college or a higher education institution. Further education courses are usually up to the standard of GCSE A level or National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level 3.

Educating children with special educational needs together with children without special educational needs in mainstream schools wherever possible and ensuring that children with special educational needs engage in the activities of the school together with children who do not have special educational needs.

Independent School
A school, which is neither funded by the LA, nor is it a voluntary aided school. Charitable Trusts and organisations, particularly those catering for special educational needs run some independent schools. They usually charge fees.

Independent support
A person recruited by a voluntary or community sector organisation to help families going through an EHC needs assessment and the process of developing an EHC plan. This person is independent of the local authority and will receive training, including legal training, to enable him or her to provide this support.

Individual Education Plan (IEP)
Details of the additional help your child will receive, the targets set and the arrangements for reviewing progress. It is a working document for all teaching staff recording key short-term targets and strategies for an individual pupil. IEPs should be discussed with parents and the child and they should be consulted as part of the review process. IEPs will usually be written for children who have support through Early Years Action, Early Years Action Plus, School Action, School Action Plus and Statements.

Key Stage 1 (KS1)
The level of the National Curriculum taught to children in Reception to Year 2 (Age 4-7)

Key Stage 2 (KS2)
The level of the National Curriculum taught to children in years 3 to 6 (Age 7-11).

Key Stage 3 (KS3)
The level of the National Curriculum taught to children in years 7 to 9 (Age 11-14).

Key Stage 4 (KS4)
The level of the National Curriculum taught to children in years and 11 (Age 14-16).

Someone who provides children, young people and parents with a single point of contact to help make sure the support they receive is co-ordinated. A keyworker could be provided directly by a local authority or local health organisation, a school or college, or from a voluntary or private sector body.

Learning Difficulties
A child has learning difficulties if he or she finds it much harder to learn than most children of the same age or has a disability which affects his or her ability to learn in the same way or the same environment as other children.

Learning Support Assistant
A person employed by the school to provide support in the classroom or undertake specific work with a child or group of children who have learning difficulties. They work under the direction of the class teacher.

Local Authority/Authorities
Local authorities are administrative offices that provide services within their local areas. There are 152 across England which are education authorities. For more information about local government, see

Local Offer
The Local Offer, published by every local authority, tells you what support is available for children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities, and their families. It includes information about education, health and care provision. It also give information about training, employment and independent living for young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities.

Mainstream School
This is a school that provides education for all children, whether or not they have special educational needs or disabilities.

A sign language based on BSL

Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub

Mediation is a type of disagreement resolution. Every local authority must provide independent medication to help parents and young people resolve disputes with local authorities about:

  • a decision not to carry out an EHC needs assessment
  • a decision not to draw up an EHC plan
  • the content of a final EHC plan or amended plan
  • a decision not to amend an EHC plan
  • a decision to cease to maintain an EHC plan

Mediation must also be provided on the health and social care elements of an EHC plan.

You can find more information on mediation in the SEND Code of Practice 11.13 to 11.38.

Mediation Advice
The purpose of mediation advice is to give information about what mediation involves. Parents or young people who wish to register an appeal with the First Tier Tribunal (SEN and Disability) must first seek mediation advice. The advice must be factual and unbiased. After mediation advice has been given the parent or young person can choose whether they wish to go to mediation.

However it is not necessary to seek mediation advice if the appeal is only about the name of the school, or college named on the plan, the type of provision specified in the plan or the fact that no school or other institution is named.

You can find more information on mediation advice in the SEND Code of Practice 11.21 to 11.25.

Involving professionals from a range of disciplines (usually Education, Children's Social Care and Health).

Non-Maintained Special School
A non-profit making school which charges fees. Most non-maintained special schools are run by charities or charitable trusts.

Occupational Therapist (OT)
A person trained to provide assessment, treatment and rehabilitation for children with physical difficulties. They are able to give schools advice on programmes of support, and to advise about suitable equipment and the provision of other facilities.

Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED)
A non-ministerial government department established under the Education (schools) Act 1992, to take responsibility for the inspection of all schools in England. Her Majesties Inspectors (HMI) forms their professional arm.

Section 9.66 of the SEND Code of Practice says:

An outcome can be defined as the benefit or difference made to an individual as the benefit or difference made to an individual as a result of an intervention. It should be personal and not expressed from a service perspective; it should be something that those involved have control and influence over, and while it does not always have to be formal or accredited, it should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound (SMART). When an outcome is focused on education or training, it will describe what the expected benefit will be to the individual as result of the educational or training intervention provided.

Parent Carer Forum
A Parent Carer Forum is a representative local group of parents and carers of disabled children who works with local authorities, education, health and other providers to make sure the services they plan and deliver meet the needs of disabled children and families. They have been established in most local authority areas. For more information please visit: or

Parent Support Advisor (PSA)
The role of the PSA is to enhance childrens achievement in school by working in partnership with families, parents and carers. The PSA will help pupils in a school context to enable them to have full access to educational opportunities and overcome barriers to learning and participation by working directly with parents.

Personal Budget
A Personal Budget is money set aside to fund support as part of an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC plan) for a child or young person with special educational needs. It can include funds from Education, Health & Social Care.

Parents of children with an EHC plan and young people with an EHC plan can choose whether or not they wish to have a Personal Budget.

A person trained to provide assessment and treatment in movement and physical development such as balance, co-ordination, ability to sit, stand and walk. They are able to give advice to schools on programmes of support.

A doctor who helps people who have difficulties with the way they feel and behave. Child psychiatrists specialise in helping children.

Pupil Referral Unit (PRU)
A centre for pupils who are permanently excluded from school. Some PRUs are able to support schools with preventative work.

Protecting children and young people from maltreatment; preventing impairment of children and young people's health or development; ensuring that children and young people are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; undertaking that role so as to enable those children and young people to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.

Speech and Language Therapy

SEND Code of Practice
This is statutory guidance that supports Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014.

It tells local authorities, early years settings, schools, colleges, health & social care providers and others what they must and should do to identify, assess and provide for children and young people with SEN or disabilities.

You can download a full copy of the Code at

You can download a shorter version for parents at

Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal (SENDIST)
An independent body established under the 1996 Education Act that hears appeals by parents against LA decisions on assessments and statements. As from September 2002, parents will be able to lodge an appeal against a school if there is an issue around fixed term exclusions, or if the child's parent/carer feel their child has been discriminated against because of their disability. The tribunal's decision will be binding on both parties to the appeal.

Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO)
A SENCO is a qualified teacher in a school or maintained nursery school who has responsibility for co-ordinating SEN provision.

Early years settings that are part of group provision arrangements are expected to identify an individual to perform the role of SENCO.

SEN Information Report
All schools must publish, on their websites, information about their policy and arrangements for supporting children with SEN. This must be kept up to date.

The information that has to be included can be found in Section 6.79 of the SEND Code of Practice.

SEN Support
SEN support includes any help for children and young people with SEN that is additional to or different from the support generally made for other children of the same age.

The purpose of SEN support is to help children achieve the outcomes or learning objectives that have been set for them by the school. Schools should involve parents in this process.

SEN support replaces Early Years Action / Action Plus and School Action / Action Plus.

Special Educational Provision
For children of two or over, educational provision which is additional to, or otherwise different from, the educational provision made generally for children of their age in schools maintained by the LA, other than special schools, in the area. For children under two it is educational provision of any kind.

Special School
A school, which is resourced and organised to provide specifically for the education of pupils with a Statement of Special Educational Needs.

Speech and Language Therapy (SALT)
This is a Health Care provision. The role and aim of which is to enable adults and children with speech, language and communication difficulties (and associated difficulties with eating and swallowing) to reach their maximum communication potential and achieve independence in all aspects of life.

Statement of Special Educational Needs (Statement)
Under the Education Act 1996 local authorities issued Statements of Special Educational Need for children whose needs could not be met through the provision normally made by schools.

The Children and Families Act 2014 replaces Statements with EHC plans.

Children and young people who already have a Statement will gradually transfer to the new system. Each council publishes a local transition plan to explain how this will happen.

Statutory Assessment
Statutory Assessment is a formal procedure, which involves the collection of information from as many people as possible. Assessment works best when all involved, parents, school staff, health & social services, psychologists and other LA staff work in partnership to secure the best outcome for the child.

Statutory Guidance
Statutory guidance is guidance that local authorities and other local bodies have a legal duty to follow.

Teaching Assistant (TA)
A person employed by the school to provide general support in the classroom. They work under the direction of the class teacher.

Transfer review
A transfer review replaces the annual review in the academic year that the child or young person transfers to the new SEND system.

A transfer review involves an EHC needs assessment to decide what outcomes and provision need to be included in the EHC plan. his should include education, health & social care needs.

You, your child or the young person must be invited to a meeting as part of the transfer review.

A transfer review ends when the local authority sends you (or the young person) a copy of the EHC plan, or when it informs you (or the young person) that an EHC plan will not be issued.

Each council publishes a local transition plan to explain how and when transfer reviews for children and young people with Statements of Special Educational Need will happen.

Transition Plan
A plan devised following the Year 9 annual review and updated at subsequent annual reviews. The purpose of the plan is to draw together information from a range of individuals within and beyond the school in order to plan coherently for the young person's transition to adult life.

An independent body to which parents can take grievances relating to statementing procedures.


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