Assessing a child's special educational needs
If you are worried about your child's learning, you should always speak to their teacher or preschool leader in the first instance.
The outcome of the assessment can either identify that the level of support required can be delivered through the educational local offer or that they need to make special educational provision when an education, health and care (EHC) plan will be written.
Requesting an assessment of the child's needs
The following people can request that we conduct a Special Educational Needs and Disability assessment for a child or young person:
- the child's parent or carer
- a young person aged 16 to 25, acting on their behalf
- a professional acting on behalf of a setting, school or post-16 institution
- professionals such as foster carers and health and social care
- professionals who think an assessment may be required can bring the child or young person to our attention - we will consider if an assessment is required
This should be done with the knowledge and agreement of the parents or carers or young person.
Educational settings must make themselves familiar with the SEND Code of Practice and take relevant and purposeful action to identify, assess and meet the special educational needs of the child or young person. They should confirm that the child or young person has not made the expected progress.
To inform their decision-making, we will need to consider a wide range of evidence from the education provider, such as:
- evidence of the child or young person's academic attainment (or developmental milestones in younger children) and rate of progress
- information about the nature, extent and context of the child or young person's SEN
- evidence of the action already being taken by the educational setting to meet the child or young person's SEN
- evidence that where progress has been made, it has only been as the result of additional intervention and support over and above that which is usually provided
- evidence of the child or young person's physical, emotional and social development and health needs, drawing on relevant evidence from clinicians and other health professionals and what has been done to meet these by other agencies
If we have already undertaken an EHC assessment for the student during the previous 6 months, they are not required to carry out another assessment but may choose to do so if appropriate.
School and education settings
The online system enables schools and educational settings to submit requests for statutory assessment securely and efficiently after considering the details above.
We invite all educational settings with students living in West Northamptonshire to use this form and actively encourage its use for speed and consistency.
You can upload your supporting evidence documents to the form, but if your file size is too large you may need to send it to the appropriate EHC team using a secure email.
Please ensure that you include your supporting evidence from professionals with the online form, failure to do so will delay the process. If you have uploaded your documents to the form you don't need to email them to the locality admin team.
You can contact us to request a template that may help in organising the required information and a document providing help when considering the views of the child or young person.
|School locality area
|Daventry and South Northants
Parents and carers
We recommend that you speak to the SENCo in your child's school before you ask the local authority to conduct an assessment.
This online form can be used by parents to ask the local authority to conduct an education, health and care needs assessment for their son or daughter, aged under 16, as an alternative to writing to request it. We will check if the assessment is necessary, following the Code of Practice 2015.
To conform to the SEND Code of Practice, applications for students aged over 16 must be made by the young person.
Parents will be told of the decision within 6 weeks of receiving the request.
If you decide to use this form, it may help if you prepare any supporting evidence you have, as you can submit them at the same time. This evidence is likely to be letters and reports from medical and other professionals who have worked with or assessed their child. You can save your form and then return to it if needed.
This form was designed with the help of the Northamptonshire Parent Forum Group.
If you need support with your child's application you can contact:
The assessment process
The EHC assessment process has 5 stages and takes a maximum of 20 weeks.
If we decide not to assess, we will write and explain why and will offer a telephone call or meeting to discuss this decision. We will include in the letter the information that we used to make our decision, such as feedback from professionals.
There is a right to appeal the decision. Please see the information about mediation and complaints - an appeal may not be necessary.
Contact the team
If you have any questions about the EHC assessment please contact us.
Last updated 07 February 2024