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Coronavirus updates for SEND Local Offer

The Government announced on Monday 22 February that all pupils will return to school and college from 8 March in England.

We continue to work with our parent carer forum, schools, settings, social care and health colleagues to ensure we co-produce the right support for our children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.

Please share any ideas you have about support or guidance you feel would be helpful to you at this time, we are keen to ensure you feel as supported and up to date as possible.

See the latest Government guidance for schools.


There is no change to our arrangements for EHC needs assessments, EHCPs or Annual Reviews. Virtual technology will continue to be in used to facilitate EHCPs.

Placement planning also continues unaffected and we'll continue the current arrangements to consult with schools and settings. All our duties relating to EHCPs remain in full force.

There are also no changes to the SEND Tribunal system. Disagreement Resolution and Mediation will continue from our provider Kids, using virtual technology.

Attendance at school or settings

Government guidance confirms school attendance will be mandatory for all pupils from 8 March.

Children and young people deemed clinically extremely vulnerable should not attend their school or setting until further notice. They should remain at home as much as possible. If your child is within this category, speak to your school who will continue to support you.

Schools will continue to use their own risk assessments to take reasonable steps to protect staff, pupils and others allowing schools to implement sensible and proportionate control measures. This reflects Government guidance.

If you have any concerns over your child’s attendance, contact your child’s school to talk it through with them.

If you talk to your school but still have concerns, contact your EHCP Coordinator or use our County EHCP number – details below. We'll do all we can to work through issues with you.

Bespoke packages / EOTAS

We expect children and young people in receipt of EOTAS packages to continue to receive this provision. Where provision cannot continue in its full format, we've asked providers to talk to families about alternative delivery (such as in the home). If provision is not in place, contact us.

Therapies and specialist interventions from external staff

Government guidance says specialists, therapists, clinicians and other support staff for pupils with SEND will continue to provide interventions.

NHS therapy providers and NCC staff (such as educational psychologists and specialist teachers) will continue to make use of remote technology to support children and use risk assessments to inform any face to face delivery.

We continue to fund private providers for the delivery of provision set out in EHCPs.

However, due to risk assessments the delivery may not be possible in the exact way as described in the EHCP. Providers will use remote technology and contingency plans and risk assessments to inform any face to face delivery. This may be within clinical or other settings rather than educational settings. If provision is not in place, contact us.

Transition planning

We're committed to ensuring children with EHCPs, subject to a transition from one phase of education to another, have an identified onward setting in place for September 2021. We'll continue to work to the 31 March deadline.

Meanwhile, schools or settings are making plans for these transitions.

EHCP county contact

Call 01603 679183. The phone line is open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 4pm on Friday.

Short breaks

For information on short breaks and the impact of COVID-19 please visit our short breaks coronavirus update page.

Specialist education

The government has published guidance to support education and childcare settings, special schools and other specialist settings.

Specialist Resource Bases (SRBs)

Visit our Specialist Resource Bases page

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