If your child has more difficulties than most children their age with their schoolwork, communication or behaviour, plenty of help and advice is at hand from specialists, teachers and voluntary organisations.

A child or young person has special educational needs (SEN) if he or she has learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for him or her to learn than most other children and young people of about the same age.

Many children will have special needs of some kind at some time during their education.

Help will usually be provided in their ordinary school, sometimes with the help of specialists. If your child has special educational needs, they may need extra help in a range of areas, for example:

  • schoolwork
  • reading, writing, number work or understanding information
  • expressing themselves or understanding what others are saying
  • making friends or relating to adults
  • behaving properly in school
  • organising themselves
  • some kind of sensory or physical needs which may affect them in school

From September 1 2014, a new system for supporting children and young people with SEN, and their parents, came into effect. The new system aims to ensure that any support your child gets, from their school or other setting, such as their nursery or childminders, should meet their needs.

Full details are available from GOV.UK.

A comprehensive guide for parents and carers of children and young people with special educational needs and disablity is availble here.

Further information is avialble at the following links:

There are Information, Advice and Support (IAS) services in every local area in England providing dedicated and impartial advice to young people and parent carers. You can find contact details for your local IAS at this link.

Your child is entitled to free transport if they can’t walk to school because of their special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) or mobility problem. Full details are available from GOV.UK.

Preparing for Adulthood

The Preparing for Adulthood programme (PfA) is funded by the Department for Education to support young people into adulthood with paid employment, good health, independent living options and friends, relationships and community inclusion.

Full details of the PfA are available at the following links:

or from your local County Council.

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