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Special Educational Needs

Question for Department for Education

UIN 48501, tabled on 6 September 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the level of implementation of education, health and care plans are consistent across the UK.

Answered on

21 September 2022

The department publishes annual data on suspensions and permanent exclusions which include capturing those pupils with education, health and care (EHC) plans. It has also published updated Suspension and Permanent Exclusion guidance in July 2022 so that headteachers have the information they need to use these sanctions properly and proportionately.

The updated guidance makes clear that headteachers should, as far as possible, minimise the use of permanent exclusion for any pupil with an EHC plan and that initial intervention to address underlying causes of disruptive behaviour should include an assessment of whether appropriate provision is in place to support any special educational needs and disability that a pupil may have.

In March 2022, the department published the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) and Alternative Provision (AP) Green Paper and Schools White Paper, which set out plans to make sure every child can reach their full potential. They set out a vision of an inclusive education system with excellent local mainstream provision that would improve the experience and outcomes for children and young people with SEND, support those who need alternative provision, and those who need the additional support delivered through an EHC plan.

The Green Paper consultation closed on 22 July 2022 and the department is currently analysing the responses. Later this year, we will publish a national SEND and AP implementation strategy, setting out our response to the consultation and the next steps for implementation of system reform.

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