For independent advice and support about needs assessments and EHC plans, contact Trafford Parent and Young People Partnership Service (PYPPS) or Trafford Independent Support Service.
Our parent guides have been written by the EHC Team with input from Trafford Parent Forum and a range of other services. We are always looking for ways to improve our information so if you have any comments, please let us know by filling in our feedback form.
If you are concerned about your child’s progress, arrange a meeting with the teacher or SEN Coordinator (SENCO) at your school or setting. Agree an action plan using the Assess, Plan, Do, Review (APDR) process. This is a cycle which helps parents, teachers and SENCOs to decide outcomes and monitor the support according to your child’s needs. Most children with SEN will be supported by extra help provided by their school of setting, called SEN Support. Schools have a budget called Element 2 funding which can be used to provide up to £6,000 worth of resources or additional support for a child or young person at SEN Support stage.
Read more in the Guide to SEN Support.
If the support is not working following detailed "Assess, Plan, Do, Review cycles" then school, you or anyone involved with your child can choose to apply for an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Needs Assessment. Usually your child’s teacher and a SENCO will work to gather additional information about your child. Your views and the views of your child are very important during this process. All requests for an EHC Needs Assessment are considered by the Trafford Assessment Panel.
Read more in the Guide to Applying for an EHC Needs Assessment.
If we decide to start an EHC Needs Assessment, you will be allocated an EHC Coordinator. This is a named person who will support and guide you through the process. The assessment is not one single test. It is a series of discussions, observations and assessments by you and the professionals involved. It takes about 12 weeks.
All the information is then submitted to the Moderation and Resource (MAR) group. This group looks at all the information submitted and consider if your child has needs that should be met by an EHC Plan. We must let you know by week 16 is an EHC Plan will be issued or not. If a plan is issued, the MAR group also considers what support the plan should provide and any funding allocated to provide it.
Read more in the Guide to EHC Needs Assessment Process.
The Children and Families Act says there are 2 key points when a parent or young person is entitled to ask for a personal budget:
- When the draft EHC plan is being prepared
- When the EHC plan is being reviewed or re-assessed
Young people that have an EHC plan and have completed Year 11 have the right to request a personal budget in their own right.
Read more in the SEND Personal Budgets page.
As you go through the EHC process, it is important you know what to expect and when.
Read more in our Guide to What to Expect and When.
Your EHC Coordinator will send you a draft EHC Plan by the end of week 16. It will include copies of all the reports that contributed towards the assessment. The draft plan will not include the name of the school or setting that your chid will attend. At this point, you can request a specific school or setting. This could be a maintained mainstream school or special school. We will consult the school on your behalf. You will be asked to approve the proposed EHC Plan and indicate your choice of school or setting within 15 days. The final EHC Plan will be issued within 20 weeks of the original request being received. If you have not been able to reach an agreement, we will finalise the EHC Plan to open your right of appeal to the SEND Tribunal. Details of the independent disagreement resolution service and mediation will be sent to your with the final EHC Plan.
Read more in Guide to What is an EHC Plan?
These referral forms are for families to request an EHC needs assessment: