Children age 0-5 with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) may benefit from some additional support from their early years education provider. This should be organised by the provider using their existing provision and resources, and other non-financial support available from external sources.
A small number of children with SEND may require a higher level of support. In such cases the provider can ask for additional financial assistance or funding, if the support cannot be met by their existing resources.
We have the following additional funding sources available.
However, with the exception of funding for children with an agreed or issued Educational, Health and Care (EHC) plan, there is no guarantee that additional funding will be awarded to a provider.
This non-statutory funding is for eligible children in Norfolk who use free childcare and early education for 2 year-olds, and have an identified need. The fund is limited to £100,000.
To get this funding, the early years education provider needs to send us a SEN funding for 2 year-olds application form that details the child’s need, every term.
This funding is for early years education providers to meet the individual needs of children who have ‘more complex need’ and have either an agreed or issued Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). The child must use the free early education entitlement for 3 and 4-year-olds.
To get this funding, the early years education provider must send us a high needs funding application form. This only needs to be completed once to get funding termly.
The SEN inclusion fund is for early years education providers to meet the individual needs of children with low level or emerging SEN. The child must use the free early education entitlement for 3 and 4-year-olds.
To get this funding, the early years education provider must send us a SEN inclusion fund application form, every term.
Please note, all local authorities had to consult with early years education providers, parents and SEN specialists to develop the SEN inclusion fund. We consulted in May 2017, and the results of the survey shaped the new SEN inclusion fund process.
If a child with SEND does not meet the criteria for the funding sources available, an early years education provider might have to submit an exceptional circumstance funding application. Providers should contact the Early Years team for further guidance.
Early education providers can also apply for additional funding from central government.
Early years education providers can apply for additional funding from the Disability Access Fund (DAF) to support children with SEND who use free early education for 3 and 4-year-olds. Providers will receive a one off payment of £615 per financial year, once the claim for early education funding has been submitted via the portal, and the evidence provided has been verified. The funding will be paid in the second half of the term the child accesses their entitlement initially, and then 12 months thereafter if the child remains eligible, and the claim for funding has been received. It is made directly to the parent’s nominated early years education provider, so they can make reasonable adjustments to their provision to meet the needs of the child.
To be eligible a child must:
Early years education providers are ultimately responsible for identifying eligible children and should speak to the parent or carer to find out if a child meets the eligibility criteria.
The provider will need to check that the child gets DLA by requesting evidence (the award letter from the Department for Work and Pensions) from the parent or carer. The parent or carer must also complete a disability access fund application form with the provider, who will send it to us to check eligibility.
Please note, 4-year-olds in primary or infant school reception classes are not eligible for disability access funding.