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Covid-19 - Temporary changes to SEND regulations

On 30th April, the Department for Education and Department for Health & Social Care issued a joint letter making some tempoary changes to the regulations around SEND and Education Health and Care Plans. These changes aim to ensure that schools, local authorities and health services can continue to provide the best possible support in very challenging times.

You can read the joint ministerial letter here.

The main changes include:

  • Where a reason related to tranmission of Covid-19 may impact on timescales for EHCP assessment, the current timescales are replaced by a duty for local areas to act as soon as practicable.
  • Whike local authories and health commissioners must use reasonable endeavours to ensure continued provision as outlined in EHCPs, it is recognised that the current situation may result in different services being provided.

The letter also includes welcome advice on funding, and links to resources to ensure children and young people can continue their learning during these challenging times.

Detailed guidance on these temporary changes has also been published by the Department for Education in a revision to the SEND Code of Practice.

The revised guidance will be reviewed regularly by ministers, and will currently remain in force from 1st May - 25th September 2020.

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