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Forward in partnership for children and young people with additional needs: Proposals for reform of the legislative framework for Special Educational Needs (SEN)

The legislation surrounding the SEN framework is over 30 years old and there is plenty of evidence across Wales to prove it needs reforming.

In 2007, the then Welsh Assembly Government indicated its intention to bring forward legislation in this area following the undertaking by the former Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills (ELLS) Committee. There was a consensus that the existing system was too bureaucratic and not sufficiently child-centred or user-friendly.

We are proposing to replace the statutory framework for the assessment and planning of provision for children and young people with SEN with a simpler, more person centred and integrated system for children and young people with additional needs (AN). It is believed that this will;

  • lead to increased trust and confidence of parents and carers in the system
  • provide greater consistency between schools and local authorities, and
  • foster more effective partnerships between agencies.

Central to the proposals is the Individual Development Plan (IDP) which is proposed to replace the existing statements of SEN.

A multi-agency approach is proposed with joined up working between education, health and social care agencies (including the third sector where relevant) for children and young people with the most severe and/or complex needs. This is so as to improve our current early intervention systems and to enable an IDP covering all aspects of identified need, to be established. The IDP will be the plan that either replaces or integrates all other individual planning processes, linked to integrated assessment arrangements.

The proposals for reform are set out in the consultation document.

Consultation Documents
Consultation Body
Welsh Government
Consultation Close Date
18 Oct 2012
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