What is an Education, Health & Care Plan (EHCP)?
An Education, Health & Care Plan or EHCP is a document which sets out the assessed education, health and social care needs of a child or young person, and the support that is necessary to help them achieve their outcomes.
The purpose of an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan is to provide special educational provision to:
- Meet the special educational needs of the child or young person.
- Secure the best possible outcomes for them across education, health and social care.
- Prepare young people for adulthood as they get older.
Who needs an EHCP?
EHC plans are for a small percentage of children and young people (age 0-25) who have a special educational need or disability that cannot be met by the support that is already available at their school or college.
Most children and young people with special educational needs will have help given to them without the need for an EHC Plan. This is called SEN support and all schools, academies and colleges receive a notional SEN budget to meet the needs of children or young people with identified special educational needs or disability (SEND).
How do I get an EHCP?
An EHC plan can only be issued following an EHC needs assessment. At the end of that process, the local authority has to make a decision to issue to issue an EHC Plan or not.
Prior to an EHC needs assessment being undertaken, where a child or young person is identified as having SEN, schools should take action to remove barriers to learning and put effective special educational provision in place (SEN Support). Where a child or young person continues to make less than expected progress, despite evidence-based support and interventions the school should then consider involving specialists. A school should always consider involving a specialist where the child or young person continues to make little or no progress or where they continue to work at levels substantially below those of a similar age, despite receiving SEN support.