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What is a statutory assessment, a statement and an Education Health Care plan?

A Statement of Special Educational Needs is now called an Education Health Care plan (EHCP). It is a document written by a Local Education Authority (West Sussex in this case) that details what a child is able to do, any difficulties they may face, their barriers to learning and how a school should address them. An EHCP is written at the end of a process called statutory assessment.

Some children have barriers to learning that are successfully tackled at school using the strategies and tactics identified in a Special Provision Plan. For these children we may also try and to get a specialist professional into school to help give us a new perspective in what the issue is and how best to address it. This will often help particular children to access learning. Sometimes this extra focus can bring to light more issues than initially thought, or clarify the difficulties. For some children we will then think about starting a process for statutory assessment. This is a process led by the Local Education Authority that brings a number of specialists together to make assessments of a child. For instance it may involve an Educational Psychologist, a speech and language therapist, Occupational therapist and others. There are strict guidelines set out by West Sussex as to the barriers to learning which children might have in order to qualify for a statutory assessment. If the assessment concludes that the child’s difficulties fit within the guidance then the child may be put forward to receive an Education Health Care plan, setting out all of the extra issues identified during the statutory assessment.

 Updated September 2022