Service Families with Children with SEN
Services available to support service children and how EHC Plans are transferred from one local authority to another.
Service life can mean frequent moves and with that, changes of schools and colleges. The deployment of parents, carers or siblings, while not being a special educational need (SEN) in itself, it can affect service children and young people in different ways. It can cause anxiety, emotional difficulties and dips in educational performance. If a service child or young person has a special educational need or a disability (SEND), then depending on what kind of provision they receive, this could be transferred too.
Here are the range of services available to support children and families as they move in and out of Buckinghamshire.
Service Children’s Pupil Premium
Within Buckinghamshire, there has been a focus on Family Liaison Officers, funded via the Service Children’s Pupil Premium. These Officers provide support to children and families as they move in and out of Buckinghamshire. Schools near Buckinghamshire military bases will have information on how to access this support.
Educational Psychology Service
Within the Service community there will be a number of children and young people who have a level of SEND. Buckinghamshire Council has identified that some Service children with SEND can be vulnerable as a result of Service induced mobility. In addition, some Service children and families may be vulnerable to the effects of deployment and the death and/or injury to parents and/or siblings. Consequently, Service children within these groups are identified as high priority for the Educational Psychology Service.
The Buckinghamshire Educational Psychology Service can be contacted by email email@example.com or by telephone on 01296 383 219.
Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS)
This is a tri-service (army, navy and air force) organisation funded by the Military of Defence (MOD). It was established to provide information and support to Service families and eligible MOD civilians on all aspects of the education of their children in the UK and overseas and now forms part of the MOD’s Directorate of Children and Young People.
CEAS has dedicated Parent Support Officers, former teachers and LA officers who are available to support parents and schools to ensure the SEND needs of Service children are met wherever a Service family is based. You can contact CEAS at:
CEAS Helpline: Monday to Friday: 8:30am to 3:30pm on 01980 618 244 (Military 943 448 244)
The majority of children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) are able to have their needs met in their local mainstream school. However, in a very few cases, settings are unable to meet children and young people’s SEND needs from within the resources ordinarily available to them and it may be necessary to consider a request for an EHC Needs Assessment. If this is the case, and an EHC Needs Assessment is agreed by the Local Authority, then:
- Local Authorities need to consider the likely impact on the child or young person’s needs, and the provision made to meet them, of any relevant Service-related issue, when carrying out an EHC needs assessment.
- If a child/young person is undergoing an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment, the LA must ask CEAS for advice to inform the assessment
When children and young people move home across local authority boundaries, the EHC Plan will be transferred from the ‘old’ local authority to the ‘new’ local authority. This should happen within 15 days of the move, or when the new local authority are informed of the move (whichever is later). The ‘new’ local authority will have to tell the parents/carers/young person, within 6 weeks of the transfer of the plan, whether the authority will bring forward the annual review of the EHC Plan and whether it intends to reassess the child/young person.
The ‘new’ local authority has the same duty to arrange the special educational provision set out in the EHC Plan as the ‘old’ local authority, although a child may have to be placed in a school other than the one named on the EHC Plan if the distance of the move makes it impractical to send the child/young person to the ‘named’ school;
If a Personal Budget is in place at the time of the move, both the ‘old’ and ‘new’ local authorities will work with the parents/carers/young people to ensure that adequate, appropriate and timely arrangements are made in the ‘new’ authority to ensure continuity of provision purchased by the Personal Budget allocated.
For service children and young people moving from outside of England the ‘new’ local authority will use all relevant evidence to plan and arrange the new provision, including statements (for children moving from Wales and Northern Ireland), co-ordinated support plans (for children moving from Scotland), or service children’s assessment of need (for children moving from outside the UK).