21st Jan, 2019

Solihull council 'on course' to meet legal deadlines for special education plan conversions

Felix Nobes 22nd Feb, 2018 Updated: 22nd Feb, 2018

SOLIHULL council is ‘on course’ to meet the legal deadline for converting outdated special education plans to the new framework.

After changes made to legislation in 2014, special educational needs (SEN) ‘statements’ and learning difficulty assessments (LDA) have to be replaced by Education Health and Care plans (EHC).

EHC plans provide those aged up to 25 with a legally binding document outlining the support they need for their education.

The legal deadline for the conversion of all statements to EHC plans is March 31 this year.

According to latest figures, Solihull council still has 106 statements to convert but has converted 82 per cent.

EHC plans are more extensive and cover a young person for a longer space of time.

They have sections that look at the young person’s health and social care needs and focus on what help they can get to achieve their goals.

The plans even include an outcome section to measure success.

Coun Ken Meeson, cabinet member for children, education and skills, said: “Much of the difficulty with EHC plans arose from revised government procedures that amended the previous SEN arrangements and requires every council to reassess every case and convert the previous SEN Statements into EHC plans.

“We have invested additional people, time and money to reduce the timescale in processing EHC plans including recently appointing our own educational psychologist to improve our processing time.

“In fact the council is on course to meet the legal target for conversion of SEN statements into the new EHC plans.

“Currently we have converted 81.5 per cent (795) leaving 106 to be done by the March 31. This figure is improving daily.

“All of our work is to ensure that plans are robust and reflect the needs of the individual child so that all our children in Solihull get an education that allows them to develop to their full potential.

“We are working closely with schools to ensure that all relevant paperwork is returned to us in time to meet the deadline.”

 

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