Government review into SEND launched

In September 2019, the Government announced a major new review into support for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. The review is designed to improve services for disabled children and young people and their families.

The review aims to evaluate the impact of the SEND reforms introduced in 2014, and to identify improvements. The Government has stated that the review will be followed up by action to improve children’s outcomes and increase capacity in the system.

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SEND code of practice: 0 to 25 years

The DfE published the Special Educational Needs code of practice spanning from birth to age 25. The code sets out the requirements for early years providers to support children with special educational needs and disabilities.

The early years guide to the code can be accessed here.

Requirements for early years providers

The code of practice sets out that all early years providers must follow the safeguarding and welfare requirements of the EYFS Framework 2014 and the learning and development requirements. These arrangements should include a clear approach to identifying and responding to SEN. The benefits of early identification are widely recognised – identifying need at the earliest point, and then making effective provision, improves long-term outcomes for children.


Local Offer
Local authorities must publish a Local Offer, setting out in one place information about provision for children and young people in their area who have SEN or are disabled, including those who do not have Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans.

The Local Offer has two key purposes:

  • To provide clear, comprehensive and accessible information about the available provision and how to access it, and
  • To make provision more responsive to local needs and aspirations by directly involving disabled children and those with SEN and their parents, and disabled young people and those with SEN, and service providers in its development and review.