Did the school seek support from external services?

Did the school seek support from external services?


Some young people require specialist support that is not normally available to schools in their internal structures and that teachers might not be knowledgeable about. The SEND Code of Practice states:

In deciding whether to make special educational provision, the teacher and SENCO should consider all of the information gathered from within the school about the pupil's progress, alongside national data and expectations of progress. This should include high quality and accurate formative assessment, using effective tools and early assessment materials. For higher levels of need, schools should have arrangements in place to draw on more specialised assessments from external agencies and professionals.

Where a school requires the highest level of support to meet the most demanding needs, the SEND Code of Practice directs them to make a request for an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). The Code states:

SEN support should be adapted or replaced depending on how effective it has been in achieving the agreed outcomes. Where, despite the school having taken relevant and purposeful action to identify, assess and meet the SEN of the child or young person, the child or young person has not made expected progress, the school or parents should consider requesting an Education, Health and Care needs.

Speak to the family and look through the school's records and the panel pack to understand whether or not the school has taken any steps to engage the services of specialist support outside of school.

If you have completed a subject access request and received records, see if any claims the school has made about taking steps to seek extra support for the young person are reflected in the evidence.

Next step? 

Answer the question: Did the school seek additional support from external services?

If the answer is no, consider using the Suggested Wording document: Argument to the governing board: School failed to secure external support

Once you have answered this question, click continue to proceed.



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This information is correct at the time of writing, 5th September 2023. The law in this area is subject to change.

Coram Children’s Legal Centre cannot be held responsible if changes to the law outdate this publication. Individuals may print or photocopy information in CCLC publications for their personal use.

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