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What is an EHCP?

Updated: May 3, 2023

EHCP stands for education, health and care plan. An EHCP is issued when a SEND child’s additional needs aren’t being catered for sufficiently in the classroom.

How long does it take to get an EHCP?

The process of getting an EHCP can take up to 20 weeks. Once the plan is granted it is reviewed annually. For early years children it will often be reviewed twice a year.

The EHCP process

As a parent, you can raise concerns about your child. Then the school’s special educational needs coordinator (SENCO) – a role that, by law, every school must have – will investigate those concerns. Alternatively, a teacher may raise the initial concern and ask the SENCO to come and observe the child during lessons to determine if they are presenting with behavioural or academic difficulties, and if so whether they are severe enough that the child isn’t making the expected academic progress or is struggling socially.

The SENCO will often run simple tests in reading, writing and spelling (and sometimes maths) to ascertain the child’s literacy age and then look for discrepancies with where they might expect to be given their actual age. Observations from the teacher and the SENCO are also written up. These results and observations are then discussed with the parents to try and work out the next steps to help the child.

If all parties agree that an EHCP is the right way to go, the SENCO applies to the local authority for an EHCP assessment.

Once the initial request is granted the council will mobilise other professionals, such as educational psychologists or speech and language therapists, to come and observe the child at school and write up their assessments. These will all inform whether the EHCP is granted and if so what form it will take and its funding (and is why the process can take as long as 20 weeks). If the EHCP is not granted, you have the right to appeal through a tribunal.

Understanding the EHCP

Advocacy services like Education Advocacy/SEN Advocates can be a great help in navigating the bureaucracy of an EHCP. They are amazing!

For more information on the timeline of an EHCP, check out this great website.

Looking for personalized support to help your child succeed? Meet Suzanna, she believes working with children is a privilege and honour. She strives to make a difference in the lives of children and promote a love of learning. Learn more about Suzanna and how she can make a difference in your child's education journey: Suzanna

SEND Tutoring has helped my daughter gain confidence in reading and expanding her abilities. There are a variety of fun learning opportunities in each session, putting my daughter at ease and helping her stay engaged. SEND Tutoring has also been extremely helpful in signposting and sharing resources. Highly recommend. Amanda Bialy
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