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Education Health and Care (EHC) Needs Assessments requests

Important Notice:
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Following extensive collaboration with parents, settings, schools and colleges, the EHC documentation has been revised. Please use this documentation for all purposes; Application for statutory Education Health and Care  Needs Assessment (EHCNA); and Annual Review of EHC Plans. Please delete any earlier versions of the EHC Plan and associated documentation from your files.

SEN officers can be contacted by email at the relevant area office:

Information Sharing
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If requesting a statutory Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment (EHCNA) and/or High Needs Funding, please ensure parent or carer consent has been secured thereby avoiding any unnecessary delay.

Kent approach to assessment
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Kent believe in the right approach at the right time and providing Kent pupils with intervention at the earliest stage. Schools and settings should ensure they have exhausted all the local resources available to them before applying for an EHCNA.

The decision to undertake an assessment is the responsibility of the Local Authority.

The majority of children and young people with special educational needs will have their needs met within their local Early Years setting, school or college without the need for an assessment.

Where an assessment is being requested an SEN officer will be allocated to oversee the statutory EHCNA process from point of request through to final decision.

Core principles of the Children and Family Act 2014 are:

  • A co-ordinated approach to assessment ('tell us once')
  • Co-production - incorporation of views of the child, young person, parents and carers.

Appendices and Guidance for education settings
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Advice and Information for the statutory EHCNA
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The Assessment process
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The SEN officer for Early Years, schools or young people will:

  • Seek the family's or young person's views of needs and provision.

The LA will take the decision to conduct an EHCNA on or within six weeks.

If a decision is made to conduct an EHCNA, the SEN officer will:

  • Contact statutory advice givers and others suggested by parents
  • Set out a clear timeline for the assessment
  • Liaise with professionals, clarify six week timescale for reports and ensure flexibility to engage in a range of ways
  • Keep parents and young people informed
  • Explain Personal Budgets.

Decision to issue a plan (or not) will be taken by the LA on or within 16 weeks:

  • The SEN officer will contact families and inform of decision and next steps will be explained to CYP, parent and carers
  • LA will share draft plan with young person, parent and carers, giving them 15 days to consider the draft and discuss their preference for placement
  • The LA will consult with appropriate Schools, Further Education Colleges (FEC) and Early Years (EY) settings.

The process from assessment request to issue of the plan must take no more than 20 weeks.


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