Caring for children with Special Educational Needs
Special needs children, children with learning disabilities, children with additional needs, or children with SEN – whatever the name used, we have resources to help you support children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) in your childcare setting.
>What is SEND?
>What is the SEND Code of Practice?
>What does the SEND Code of Practice mean for me?
>Resources to support SEND from PACEY
>Other useful links for Special Educational Needs and/or Disability
What is SEND?
A child or young person has SEN if they have a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her (p15 of the SEND Code of Practice 2014).
For example if the child has significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions (p15-16 of the SEND Code of Practice 2014).
You can read the full explanation of what Special Educational Needs and Disabilities is in the SEND Code of Practice 2014.
What is the SEND Code of Practice?
The SEND Code of Practice is a statutory guidance for those who work with and support children and young people with SEND in England.
The SEND Code of Practice has been produced alongside the Children and Families Act 2014. Both the Act and the Code of Practice came into effect in September 2014.
This latest version (changed from the SEN Code of Practice 2001) extends the SEND system to cover children and young people from birth to the age of 25.
The SEND Code of Practice covers the guidance you need to know when supporting children and young people with special education needs and disabilities. The full statutory guidance includes:
- Reference to the relevant legislation
- The principles in practice
- Impartial information, advice and support for parents, children and young people
- How to work together across education, health and care for joint outcomes
- The local offer
- Early years providers, schools and further education
- Preparing for adulthood from the earliest years
- Education, health and care needs assessments and plans
- Guidance when dealing with children and young people in specific circumstances
- Resolving disagreements
What does the SEND Code of Practice mean for me?
Every childcare professional should be aware of their rights and responsibilities under the SEND Code of Practice, and if you’re a childminder or nursery worker delivering free early education for 2, 3 or 4-year olds, you must adhere to the code of practice as statutory guidance.
Many childcare professionals care for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). A child may be diagnosed with a condition before joining your setting, or you may be involved in identifying a special educational need or disability.
Your daily observations and interactions with the children in your care, and the valuable support you offer families, mean that you’re well placed to spot any early signs of additional needs.
The EYFS asks you to provide parents with a brief written development summary of their child’s progress in the prime areas of learning at age 2. From September 2015, health and early years professionals will work side-by-side on integrated reviews for 2-year-olds.
The integration of these reviews aims to combine the expertise of health visitors and early years practitioners to effectively identify additional needs and provide early support. Having knowledge and understanding of the SEND Code of Practice will help identify and support these needs.
For an overview of the SEND Code of practice, take a look at our factsheet for members.
Resources to support SEND from PACEY
SEND Code of Practice factsheet – a free factsheet for members outlining and explaining the SEND code of practice for childcare professionals.
Early support (England) factsheet – a free factsheet for members in England giving you important information on the Early Support initiative to help improve the delivery of services to disabled children, young people and their families.
Early support (Wales) factsheet - a free factsheet for members in Wales giving you important information on the Early Support initiative to help improve the delivery of services to disabled children, young people and their families.
Inclusion factsheet – a free factsheet for members that covers the individual needs of the child and how you can meet them, allowing children to feel equal, respected and valued in your setting.
Intimate care for disabled children - a free factsheet for members on how to provide intimate care for disabled children
Integrated reviews for 2-year-olds – a news page outlining the announcement and our thoughts about the introduction of the integration of reviews for 2-year-olds.
EYFS reference guide – a document that outlines the key features of the EYFS framework to use as a reference guide for members.
Other useful links