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FAQs regarding Education, Health & Care Needs assessment timescales November 2021

In November 2021, a letter was sent out from the Kirklees Learning and Early Support service to update families and schools waiting for Education, Health and Care Needs assessments (EHCNAs). This letter gave the reasons around the delays and what measures were being taken to address them.

Below are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) which for may be helpful for families affected. These will be added to as needed.

The support your child receives for their education will continue as it would during the 20-week assessment processes. Where support needs change during the assessment period, these will need to be considered as part of usual practice for a child at SEN Support.

Your education setting can contact the Inclusion Support Offer (ISO) if they have any questions or need information about supporting children and young people with SEND.

We have already written to all schools highlighting the situation. We have sent further, more detailed communication to them, at the same time as writing to you.

A copy of this letter can be found on the Education section of the SENCO and professionals area on the Local Offer.

Where a Final EHCP is issued beyond 20 weeks we will ensure any top up funding due to your child’s school or setting is back dated to when it would have been received if the assessment has been completed within 20 weeks.

It is not possible to accurately estimate the additional time this assessment will take as there are a number of factors that will influence this.

If you are awaiting assessment by an Educational Psychologist, they will make contact with you as soon as your assessment is allocated to begin.

If your Educational Psychology Assessment has been undertaken then a SENDACT Officer will contact you to discuss the assessment coproduction and the decision making around whether an EHC Plan will be issued following this assessment.

If you have already received a Draft EHC Plan then we will be working through the statutory consultation period, with a view to naming placement and finalising the Plan. Your SENDACT Officer will be able to advise you of expected timescales at this stage.

We are working hard to ensure any delays are minimised as much as possible.

The assessment timescale may be longer; however the assessment process and quality will not change.

For any child without an EHCP (including during EHC needs assessment), applications for school placements are considered through Kirklees Pupil Admissions. If you are considering an immediate change in placement or your child is due to due to start reception, move to junior, high school and college in September 2022 you must follow the usual school admissions processes.

Information regarding school admissions can be found online at https://www.kirklees.gov.uk/beta/schools-and-education.aspx#admissions (opens in a new window) or by calling 01484 225007.

If following assessment, there is agreement to issue an EHC plan for your child, you will be asked to express a placement preference. This can be the same or different to where your child currently attends. From this point, all school admission processes will be dealt with by the SEND Assessment & Commissioning Team (SENDACT).

When your allocated SENDACT assessment coordinator contacts you, you will be able to discuss your preference options in more detail.

If you are thinking of requesting placement within a specialist school or specialist provision, please contact SENDACT to make them aware of this as soon as possible. This will help us consider your child’s individual circumstance and provide advice on how this will be considered. This preference can be sent through to EHCNAsupport@kirklees.gov.uk.

The delays will not affect your rights to access medication or appeal.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please email EHCNAsupport@kirklees.gov.uk.

Last updated: 01/12/2021