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Practitioners guides to SEND law and policy

In this section you will find information about the law, statutory guidance and government advice as well as Rotherham’s local policies and guidance that relate to support for children and young people with special education needs or who are disabled.


Children and Families Act 2014

This is the law about how children and young people with special educational needs or who are disabled (SEND) get the support they need. It came into force on 1 September 2014. Some of key changes are:

  • A bigger focus on your aspirations for the future and the support you will need to achieve your goals
  • Statements of Special Educational Needs and Learning Difficulty Assessments will be replaced by Education, Health and Care plans
  • We will consult children, young people and their families about our Local Offer of services
  • You will be more involved in making decisions about how you are supported
  • You will have more information, advice and support to understand your options as you move into adulthood

This summary outlines the key changes the Act makes to the safeguarding and child protection system and services for children and families.

Although incorporated into one Act some changes will come into force at different times. This Act is mainly concerned with England; however, some measures are applicable to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The law and associated regulations:


SEN Code of Practice (0 - 25 Years)

This is statutory guidance for organisations who work with and support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities. This applies to:

  • Academies and free schools
  • Colleges
  • Early years providers
  • Maintained schools
  • Non-maintained special schools
  • Pupil Referral Units.

The SEN Code of Practice 0 -25 Years


Guides for practitioners

The government has produced a number of guides about the support system for children and young people with special education needs and disabilities. They are designed to help understand the code of practice:


Government advice and guidance


Rotherham policies, guidance and SEND vision