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The final EHC plan is legally binding and so it is important that you check the content of the draft EHC plan to ensure you are happy with it.

Useful Terms


The SEND Code of Practice says:

An outcome can be defined as the benefit or difference made to an individual as a result of an intervention. It should be personal and not expressed from a service perspective; it should be something that those involved have control and influence over, and while it does not always have to be formal or accredited, it should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound (SMART). When an outcome is focused on education or training, it will describe what the expected benefit will be to the individual as a result of the educational or training intervention provided.

The SEND Code of Practice 2015, paragraph 9.66


Provision that is additional to or different from that made generally for other children of the same age. Detailed, specific, and normally quantified, in terms of type, hours and frequency of support and level of expertise, including where this support is secured through a personal budget.


A child has special educational needs if they have a learning difficulty or disability, which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her. Children with special educational needs all have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn than most children of the same age. These children may need extra or different help from that given to other children of the same age.

Steps to Checking the Plan

Step one

Go through the assessment reports and highlight each need. Check that these cover all your child’s needs.

Step two

Check that these needs are all included in the EHCP, you will find these in sections B, C & D.

Step three

Now highlight all the outcomes in the plan. These can be found in section E. The outcomes should state the expected benefit to your child if they have the training or support stated in the provision section.

Step four

Now highlight all the provision in the plan. This can be found in sections F, G, H1 & H2.

TIP: It may be helpful to write the needs, outcomes, and provision on a table similar to below, so that you are able to check that there is an outcome and provision for each need.

Needs (Sections B, C & D)Outcomes (Section E)Provisions (Sections F, G, H1 & H2)
Example: Jacob has a significant delay in
the understanding
of language and is currently 4
years behind his peers
Example: By the time I’m in year 6 I will be able to follow instructions
containing 4 key words in a small group situation
Example: A programme, devised by a Speech and Language Therapist, will be delivered by teaching staff 3 times per week for 20 minutes. Breaking down instructions into small parts, asking Jacob to repeat the instruction. Use of visual aids will be provided e.g. objects, symbols and photos.


Provision should be detailed, specific and normally quantified, in terms of type, hours and frequency of support and level of expertise, including where this support is secured through a personal budget. To be clear about what your child’s help will amount to on a typical day at school, ask yourself the following:

  • What type of help my child will get? e.g., equipment, learning support, teaching
    programme, speech therapy.
  • Who will give the help?
  • Do they need particular qualifications or experience?
  • How many hours of extra help are there?
  • How often will the help happen?
  • Is help for playtimes and lunchtimes included where necessary?
  • Will your child get help for self-care if needed e.g., around eating or
  • What teaching strategies will staff use?
  • Will teaching be one to one or in small groups?
  • If teaching is in groups, how big will they be?

Make a note of any gaps, anything that is unclear or anything you do not agree with or understand. The plan should avoid words such as:

  • access to…
  • regular help…
  • help as required…
  • where necessary…
  • periodic…
  • opportunities for…
  • would benefit from…

Phrases such as these above leave it up to someone else to decide, so your child may not get the help they need. It’s very important that the EHC Plan says how much help your child will get and how often.

Some examples:

Icon of a red cross Lydia would benefit from access to therapy throughout the year.
icon of a green tick Lydia will receive 45 minutes direct 1:1 speech and language therapy once a week from a qualified therapist.

Icon of a red cross George will have weekly support with developing friendships
icon of a green tick George will attend a nurture group for one hour, three times a week, delivered by a Teaching Assistant.

Naming a School

Your draft plan should not have a school or setting named on it. Once you have agreed the plan contents you can ask the local authority to contact the school or setting of your choice to determine whether they can meet your child’s needs based on the plan.

There are a limited number of reasons that a school can use to refuse a place to a pupil.

(a) the school or other institution requested is unsuitable for the age, ability, aptitude or special educational needs of the child or young person concerned, or

(b) the attendance of the child or young person at the requested school or other institution would be incompatible with:

(i) the provision of efficient education for others, or

(ii) the efficient use of resources.

Children and Families Act 2014, section 39

Further links and resources

EHC Plan exemplar guide 2017

EHCP Plan exemplar guide year 9 and beyond

IPSEA logo

EHC Plan Checklist

B C P Council logo

EHC Plans

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