On 6 September 2019 I announced a review into special educational needs and disability (SEND) and the support available to children and young people. This will be a cross-government review and is part of government’s commitment to ensure that every child receives the best start in life, including those who need additional support because they have a special educational need or disability.
In 2014, the government introduced significant, widely supported, reforms to improve and join-up the support that children and young people with SEND receive. It is now time to review how that is working, make sure that we are supporting children and young people to reach their potential, and to take account of the lived experience of children and young people with SEND and of their parents. The review is about understanding what is happening across England for children, young people and their families and making sure money is being spent fairly, efficiently and effectively, and that the support available to children and young people is sustainable in future.
The review will look at:
- the evidence on how the system can provide the highest quality support that enables children and young people with SEND to thrive and prepare for adulthood, including employment;
- better helping parents to make decisions about what kind of support will be best for their child;
- making sure support in different local areas is consistent, and that high-quality support is available across the country;
- how we strike the right balance of state-funded provision across inclusive mainstream and specialist places;
- aligning incentives and accountability for schools, colleges and local authorities to make sure they provide the best possible support for children and young people with SEND;
- understanding what is causing the demand for education, health and care plans and;
- ensuring that public money is spent in an efficient, effective and sustainable manner, placing a premium on securing high quality outcomes for those children and young people who need additional support.
The review will inform and support the government’s commitment to revise and update the SEND Code of Practice before the end of 2020.
This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: