Experts at Boyes Turner answer the important questions...
1. What is an EHCNA?
It is a holistic assessment of a child or young person’s education, health and care needs carried out by their local authority. It involves a number of professionals and people within education, heath and care, and is the first step of the Education, Health and Care Plan process. The aim of the assessment is to establish the extent of the child or young person’s needs and what level of provision is required to meet those needs.
2. Who can request an EHCNA?
The following people can make a request for an EHCNA:
3. What evidence do I need if considering requesting an EHCNA?
The local authority needs to be satisfied that the child or young person:
The local authority should consider the following:
Whilst there is no formal requirement for supporting evidence to be submitted, we have found from our experience that it is worth sending what you have relevant from the following along with a written request for an EHCNA:
Generally, such reports should be recent i.e. within 2/3 years, with the exception for diagnosis reports. Some local authorities might request you complete a form in order to request an EHCNA. Whilst there is no legal requirement for local authorities to require a form to be submitted, we have found it is fine to complete a local authority form and submit a separate written request for the EHCNA, along with any evidence you wish to rely on.
4. What information and advice must the local authority gather during an EHCNA?
If advice from any of the above already exists it is not necessary for the local authority to seek further advice if they, parents or young person and the relevant expert are satisfied the existing evidence is sufficient for an EHCNA.
5. What options are there if the local authority does not agree to carry out an EHCNA?
Parents or the young person can appeal to the SEND Tribunal and/or attend mediation with the local authority. The latter can potentially be productive if there is additional evidence for the local authority to consider.
If you are considering requesting an EHCNA, or have the received the local authority’s decision and would like advice, then please contact us at email@example.com – our expert SEN solicitors are here to help.