Documents to download

This Standard Note briefly outlines the current special educational needs (SEN) system in England, highlights the main proposals in the Government’s green paper on special educational needs and disability, and refers to the Government’s plans to implement changes, including the introduction of draft legislation later this summer. The Note provides some information on the pathfinder programme to test key elements of the green paper’s proposals including the pilot arrangements to try the use of direct payments for educational provision for children and young people with SEN or disability.

The green paper, Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability, proposed:

• a new approach to identifying SEN through a single early years setting-based category and school-based category of SEN;

• a new single assessment process and Education, Health and Care Plan by 2014;

• local authorities and other services to set out a local offer of all services available;

• the option of a personal budget by 2014 for all families with children with a statement of SEN or a new Education, Health and Care Plan;

• strengthening parental choice of school, for either a mainstream or special school; and,

• changing the assessment process to make it more independent.

On 9 May 2012, the Queen’s Speech announced the Government’s intention to introduce a Children and Families Bill that would include SEN reforms. On 15 May 2012, the DFE published its detailed response to the formal public consultation on the green paper and also set out the next steps. It confirmed that the Government would introduce the Children and Families Bill in this session of Parliament and would aim to publish a draft Bill on the SEN measures this summer for consultation and pre-legislative scrutiny.


Documents to download

Related posts

  • This House of Commons library paper gives an overview of the first sale of a tranche of English income-contingent student loans. It gives background to the sale and discusses the impact of the sale on borrowers and whether value for money was achieved by the sale. The Government announced the end of the sales programme in Budget 2020.

  • Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic there have been concerns about the financial impact on universities. Much of this has focussed on the potential loss of international students, but there could also be losses in income from lower home student numbers, a drop in research work and less revenue from accommodation, catering and conferencing. What are the size of these impacts and what has the Government done to support the sector?

  • Higher education underwent fundamental changes to how it was financed in England 2012. There have been ongoing smaller changes since then and prospects for much larger changes following the Review of Post-18 Education and Funding. How has this affected the balance between the broad sources of funding -the taxpayer and graduate and how has the total funding from all sources for universities changed?