In this section you can find a variety of information about Education in Coventry and the kinds of educational support that is available for children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP) and those that don’t have them as well.
You can find information here about what is ordinarily available for all pupils and how to request an EHCP if this provision does not meet their needs.
You can also find out about more specific educational offers outside of traditional schools and the people who are there to help a child or young person succeed in their education.
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Coventry Extended Learning Centre is a Pupil Referral Unit for Key Stage 3 & 4 pupils who have struggled to be in mainstream school education due to Social, Emotional & Mental Health (SEMH) issues leading to challenging behaviour.
The core purpose of the ELC is ‘Enhancing Futures’ - maximising the potential of all our students though getting them into mainstream or special education settings or meeting their needs within their centres.
They pride themselves on providing the best quality teaching, fostering ambition and showing their students that they can fulfil their potential through hard work .
Their staff are committed to supporting and developing students to become confident and well equipped with skills to continue their learning journey when they leave them. They have positive expectations of the behaviour and performance of every pupil and foster an atmosphere of mutual respect between pupils and staff.
Students receive a broad and balanced curriculum, with opportunities in Key Stage 4 to access Work Relating Learning.
The Coventry ELC has three centres:
Please visit the Extended Learning Centre website for more information.
All class teachers regularly assess the progress of each of their pupils to check that they are learning well. Once a teacher has identified that a child is not making the progress expected, additional support will be given by the class team- the teacher or/and a teaching assistant working under the guidance of the teacher.
If, after this additional help, the child is still not making good progress the teacher will usually ask for advice from the school SENCo (special educational needs coordinator) who will recommend extra help and support. A student who is being given this additional support will have their progress tracked using the Graduated Pathway (see below).
An EHCP is an Education Health and Care Plan, this used to be known as a Statement of Educational Need. In order to be eligible and considered for an EHCP Assessment, the school will have needed to use every resource available to them in order to support the child or young person with SEND. When a parent or professional requests an EHCP Assessment, Coventry City Council will require proof that the Graduated Pathway steps have been followed and that the school has done everything that they can to address the child or young person's additional needs.
Teachers use a range of strategies to encourage children with SEND to concentrate on their work and manage any distractions. Children with SEND are also helped assess their own work- to think about what they have learned, what they can do well and what they need to do next.
The SENCo will work with teachers and teaching assistants to put in place support for the child. This additional help could include special books, learning activities, materials or computer programmes. The teacher or SENCO might also ask for advice from an outside professional, such as Social Emotional Mental Health and Learning (SEML) professional or a specialist from Complex Communication Team (CCT) or other SEN Support Service, so that the help offered is just right for the child. Parents/carers are informed at an early stage and their knowledge and views taken into account in planning any support for their child. This is the assess, plan, do, review cycle of actions. This cycle continues after a child has started to receive SEN Support.
As illustrated in the Graduated Pathway diagram, all schools and settings are expected to put in place a range of interventions to support pupils identified with additional needs. This support is funded through Element 1 and Element 2 for pupils identified as requiring SEN Support. Through this graduated ‘wave’ approach, schools have a variety of interventions at their disposal to support a child or young person. To enable families, children and young people to understand the provision map of what schools should be providing to meet SEN needs in Coventry, view the ordinarily available provision in Coventry schools. This is provision that should be provided without an Education, Health and Care Plan.
Most children and young people’s needs will be met by the help available through their early years setting/school/post 16 years educational placements. Coventry is working closely with schools to support children with additional needs through My Support Plan.
My Support Plan allows professionals to work together effectively to identify a child’s needs and in time to consider whether an EHC Needs Assessment is appropriate for them. It allows professionals to evidence the support that is in place and have regular review periods to see if the support is working. Schools will involve parents closely in this process and invite you to regular review meetings of the support being implemented.
However, for a very small number of children and young people who need a lot of extra help at school, the Statutory Assessment and Review Service may decide that an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment is required to find out exactly what extra help is needed.
If you would like to talk to someone about your concerns, then please talk to your child's educational setting in the first instance. If you would like further information, then please get in touch with the Statutory Assessment and Review team.
An Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment may be recommended for your child or young person if they do not make progress, despite getting appropriate extra help from their educational setting. If your child's educational setting feel that an assessment is necessary, they will discuss with you the reasons for moving to an education, health and care needs assessment. At this point if you feel it would be beneficial, you will be offered a meeting with the school SENCo (Special Education Needs Coordinator) and the link Education, Health and Care Plan Coordinator from the Local Authority to discuss your child’s additional needs before a formal request is made to Coventry Local Authority (LA). This is part of Coventry’s person centred Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment Pathway which sets out how we will work with parents, children and young people to enable co-production with families.
An Education, Health and Care needs assessment is sometimes referred to as formal assessment and is carried out by Coventry LA under the 2014 Children and Families Act and in accordance with the SEND Code of Practice 2014. Your child's progress, your views and the views of your child's educational setting or those who work closely with your child (this may include health professionals) will all be considered by Coventry LA before an assessment goes ahead.
Most children and young people with SEN or disabilities will have their needs met in their local mainstream early years settings, schools or colleges. Some children and young people may need to have an EHC Needs Assessment in order for the local authority to decide whether it is necessary for it to make provision in accordance with an EHC Plan. Local authorities use criteria to help them make fair and transparent decisions about whether or not to carry out EHC needs assessments. In addition to these criteria, the panel that makes the decision will consider all the abilities, strengths and needs of the child or young person. Although Coventry has criteria this is not applied as a blanket policy and we will consider every request individually based on the information provided.
To make an EHC Needs assessment request schools and colleges will need to use the Request for Statutory Assessment – non early years form.
If Early Years Setting wish to make a request the Request for Statutory Assessment – Early Years will need to be fully completed.
We would always recommend that you speak to your child’s educational setting before making a request as they will be able to help you with this. If you decide to make a request directly to us then you will need to write a letter detailing why you believe an EHC needs assessment is required together with any supporting evidence which outlines your child’s special educational needs.
If we receive a request to carry out an EHC needs assessment, together with all the information to enable us to make a decision, then a panel will decide whether or not to carry out an assessment within six weeks.
If a decision is made to carry out an assessment then, following the assessment, you will receive a decision in writing about whether or not an EHC Plan has been agreed and your rights of appeal within 16 weeks from the original request for assessment.
If it is agreed to issue an EHC Plan then the whole process should take 20 weeks, although there are some exceptions to this, such as during the school summer break.
Your request will be considered by a Panel of Professionals to decide if the request meets Coventry’s Criteria for an EHC Assessment (weblink to EHCP Process/criteria to be inserted). Please note that every request is considered on an individual basis but to bring fairness to the process there is a set of local criteria. After the request has been to the Panel you will be contacted by the SEN Team to advise if your request has been agreed. If it has been refused you will be notified of the reasons for refusal together with information about how you can appeal the decision and where you can access impartial information, advice and guidance.
When an EHC Needs Assessment is agreed we will spend the next 6 – 12 weeks gathering advice from professionals who may know your child and any new advice that is required to inform the outcome of the EHC Needs Assessment.
Once all of the information has been gathered a decision will be made as to whether an Education, Health and Care Plan is required. If following the assessment it is evident that an EHC Plan is not required to meet your child’s needs we will contact you to inform you of the reasons why the decision has been made and offered information as to how your child’s education provider can use the assessments to support your child’s special educational needs. You will also be notified of your right to appeal and offered impartial information, advice and guidance.
An EHC Plan is needed to support your child’s Special educational needs a draft EHC Plan will be developed using the professional advice gathered during the assessment. Once the EHC Plan is drafted a copy will be sent to you with the offer of an opportunity to meet with your link EHC Plan Coordinator to discuss any amendments or additions you would like to be included. It is often useful to meet at this point to co-produce the Outcomes to be included in the EHC Plan. At this point you will also be asked to express a preference for an educational setting. You will have 15 days to respond to the Draft Plan.
Any final amendments will be made to the EHC plan and consultations made with educational setting/s. Educational settings have 15 days to respond.
The final EHC Plan will be sent to you with all the appendices (advice reports used to write the plan) naming the educational setting in section I. Copies will also be sent to the Educational setting and professionals that provided advice for the EHC Plan.
The SEND Information and Advice Service is also there to help you at any point.
Any professional working with a child, young person or family can make a referral to the authority for an Education, Health and Care assessment. It is usual for referrals to come from the child/young person's educational setting.
A parent/young person (over the age of 16) can make a direct request for an Education, Health and Care Assessment. However, we recommend that they speak to the young person's teacher or Special Needs Coordinator (SENCo) first as they will be able to help you.
Parents/Carers can ask us to make an education, health and care needs assessment if you feel that your child is falling seriously behind, despite getting extra help from their educational provider. If you decide to make a request directly to us then you will need to write a letter detailing why you believe an assessment is required together with any supporting evidence which outlines your child’s needs. You will need to send the letter and supporting evidence to Statutory Assessment and Review Service, PO Box 15, Council House, Coventry CV1 5RR.
We would suggest that you should always talk to your child's education provider first before asking for an assessment. Coventry Local authority will carefully consider your request and if we feel it is necessary, will carry out the assessment. If we decide that an assessment is not needed, we will write to you and your child's educational provider to explain the reasons for our decision. We will give you details about your right to appeal against the decision to the SEN Tribunal. We will also tell you about the informal disagreement resolution arrangements available through the SEND Information, Advice and Support Service and Mediation Services.
When a child has been referred for an Education Health and Care Needs Assessment, a panel will look at all the information provided to see if any concerns around the child’s health and wellbeing have been identified. A health representative is invited to attend the panel to ensure health needs are specifically discussed. If a health need or potential health need is identified, Coventry City Council will notify the relevant health service provider and request their advice to be provided within 6 weeks.
This advice can take different formats;
Please check if a referral form is needed when seeking advice for a child not already known to the service.
024 7683 1614
Parent, carers and young people can get support from a number of agencies throughout the EHC process.
This includes the SEND Information, Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS). For more information about the support available please visit the SENDIASS website.
The support that SEND IASS could offer includes:
If the decision is made to carry out an assessment, an SEN Education Officer will take you through the rest of the process. If the decision is not to carry out an assessment, you and the school will be given the reasons in writing including your rights of appeal and the time limits for appealing. The routes of appeal are:
When disagreements arise between parents, carers or families and local authorities or schools about an aspect of a child or young person’s education they can be difficult to resolve.
Local authorities are required to provide parents, carers and families with an independent way of addressing any such disagreement. Mediation is a positive way of resolving conflict and can help to avoid the traditional adversarial approach to disagreement resolution without affecting other rights of appeal. It can work within or alongside the time frame for the SEND first-tier tribunal. You should first speak to your SEN Officer to see if the disagreement can be resolved locally. If we cannot come to an agreement, there are other options open to you.
Disagreement Resolution helps resolve disputes between parents and the Local Authority about the education of children and young people with special educational needs.
Mediation is a way of helping families where relationships have broken down to reach agreement about the future. It can be an alternative to tribunal appeals or work alongside them. Mediation provides a safe, neutral place where parties can talk through difficult and sometimes distressing issues with the support of a skilled professional family mediator who will not take sides or make judgements. It aims to improve communication, reduce stress and enable families to move forward into the future.
The Tribunal hears appeal against decisions made by Local Authorities in relation to children and young people’s EHC Needs Assessments and EHC Plans.
Where parents disagree with the decisions of the Local Authority (LA), they have the right to appeal to the SEN and Disability Tribunal, which is an independent body.
Parents can appeal in the following circumstances:
The LA will keep parents informed about their right of appeal during the assessment process.
The Government are extending the powers of the First-tier Tribunal (SEND), sometimes referred to as the ‘SEND Tribunal’, to make non-binding recommendations about the health and social care aspects of Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans as part of a two-year trial. The trial will apply to decisions made or EHC Plans issued/amended from 3 April 2018.
To date, you have only been able to appeal the educational aspects of EHC plans. The trial gives you new rights to request recommendations about the health and social care needs and provision specified in EHC Plans, in addition to the educational aspects, when making a SEND appeal. This gives you the opportunity to raise all your concerns about an EHC plan in one place.
It is only possible for the Tribunal to consider the health and/or social care aspects of the EHC plan where you are already making an appeal in relation to the education aspects of the EHC plan and the education aspect must remain live throughout the appeal.
For more information, please visit the SENDIASS Single Route of Redress webpage
All mainstream schools are required to contribute the first £6,000 of additional educational support for a pupil from their notional SEN budget. For more information about budgets please refer to the financial support portion of the website. Pupils should only require an Education, Health and Care Plan if they need support above what is ordinarily available.
Because mainstream schools are required to contribute the first £6,000 of additional educational support for a pupil from their notional SEN budget, the EHCP will only be required to provide additional funding to the school in exceptional circumstances.
We will discuss the contents of the Plan with you and the school to agree how best the Plan can describe what special help is needed. We will always begin by trying to meet your child's needs in a mainstream school although in some cases it may be necessary to consider the provision available within specialist provision.
The Hospital Education Service is team of teachers and other education support staff who provide education for school age children who are unable to attend their usual school temporarily due to accident or illness. Their illnesses could be mental or physical.
We have knowledge and experience with:
We work with children, teachers, parents/carers, medical staff and other agencies to promote the development and learning of children aged 4 -16 years.
We work directly with children and young people who have difficulties with things like:
Looked After Children are young people whose care provision is the responsibility of a local authority.
The Virtual School makes sure that there is educational provision for Looked After Children, regardless where they are placed. We are asked to do "all that a good parent would" by encouraging and supporting Look After Children's educational, social and emotional development.
The Virtual School monitor their pupils' education by supporting Personal Education Planning (PEP) meetings. Support for Looked After Children is implemented via the educational provider. Since April 2018, The Virtual School has also offered support & advice to pupils who hold the status 'Previously Looked After'.
024 7683 4162
My Support Plan is a document that can be used to support children and young people with Special Educational Needs (SEN). It contains information about their needs, the support that will be put in place to meet these needs and their progress in school.
My Support Plan is usually used for children and young people who have lots of different professionals working with them. It allows information from all of these professionals to be written in one place.
My Support Plan is used in lots of nurseries and schools across Coventry. This means that if a child or young person with SEN moves schools, their new school can find out quickly about their needs and how to support them.
When children and young people have severe or complex special educational needs, the information in My Support Plan can be used to help request an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment.
024 7678 8400
Not all children and young people with SEND have or want to have an Education Health and Care Plan. In this case, it is important to know the educational provision that is available without one of these plans.
At the age of 16, a young person can make a choice about whether to continue in education, employment or training.
Some schools offer sixth forms so that a young person can stay in school; however this depends on which school the young person attends. Individual schools and the Prospects Careers advisers will be able to provide more information about this.
A young person could also apply to sixth form college, 16-19 academies, specialist post 16 institutions or vocational training providers in the voluntary or public sector.
The range of study programmes is broad and includes A Levels, vocational qualifications at all levels, apprenticeships, traineeships, supported internships.
Further education (often abbreviated to FE) covers the type of education which goes beyond compulsory education (ages 5-16), but which is not at degree level (higher education). It may be at the same level, at a higher level, or at a lower level than secondary education.
There is a range of colleges in Coventry. The Prospects Careers advisers will be able to give more information +about these or you can contact the colleges directly to ask for information about courses and the support they offer.
The majority of schools in Coventry offer 6th form provision, for more details see the individual school websites.
There are 2 colleges in Coventry – Coventry College (Henley and City campuses) and Hereward. They both offer a wide variety of courses and support arrangements. There are also several colleges in the areas surrounding Coventry that Coventry young people can access.
Hereward is a much smaller college, with smaller class sizes, than Coventry College. All students at Hereward have an Education Health and Care Plan. Hereward offers a range of study programmes that relate to sport, business, computing, performing arts, music and visual arts.
Colleges outside of Coventry that might be of interest are: Warwickshire College Group, NWH College, and Solihull College.
Level 1 and above course usually require students to have GCSE level qualifications.
All colleges also offer general supported learning programmes. These allow students to continue to develop their basic skills in English, Maths and ICT. Students can also access personal development opportunities and do taster/foundation courses in a range of vocational areas available at the college.
This college is organised over two Campuses. Henley Campus and City Campus. It offers full and part time courses and Apprenticeships
Hereward offers a range of full time courses and supported internships. The majority of applicants will need to have an Education Health and Care Plan.
Leamington Spa, Moreton Morell, Rugby Campus, Pershore, Warwick Trident Centre, Evesham and Malvern Hills.
Offers full and part-time courses and Apprenticeships.
North Warwickshire and Hinckley College offer full and part-time courses and Apprenticeships.
Full and part-time courses and apprenticeships
Stratford upon Avon College offers full and part time courses and apprenticeships
Parents and carers have a legal duty to ensure that their children of compulsory school age receive a suitable full-time education. It is also vital that they encourage their child's regular and punctual attendance at school.
It is important that everyone works together to help children obtain the best possible start in life with a good education. Parents and carers should work in partnership with the school, notifying them of the reason for any absences and highlighting any areas of concern so they can be addressed promptly.
If you have school attendance concerns or queries, your child has received a fixed-term or permanent exclusion or is at risk of exclusion, view the Attendance and Inclusion website.
SENCOs are Special Educational Needs Coordinators. It is a legal requirement for every school to have a designated SENCo in place. This person has to be a qualified teacher and must have completed the National Award for Special Educational Needs Coordination.
The SENCo identifies the children and young people who are on the schools SEND (Special educational needs) register. They monitor the progress of the children and young people on the SEND register and usually co-ordinate the interventions for these individuals. The SENCOs liaise with and refer to specialist outside agencies to ensure that children and young people have the support that they require. The SENCO is responsible for all children and young people with Education Health and Care Plans and their annual and interim reviews. They will also write requests for Education Health and Care plans, although these can be requested by anyone, not just educational professionals.
SENCOs work with external professionals including health care, social care and educational professionals. These professionals include, but are not limited to, speech and language therapists, CAMHS (Rise) professionals, Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, Educational Psychologists, Doctors/Nurses, Social Workers, Mental Health Nurses, Sensory Support and Coventry SENDIASS. The SENCo also has a link SEN officer who works for the local authority.
The best way to get in touch with the school SENCO is to speak to the school reception team. They who will know who the school SENCO and will be able to direct you to that person.
The majority of children and young people with Special Educational Needs will have their needs met within a mainstream school or college setting.
The SEND Code of Practice 2014 says that it expects that children and young people will be in a mainstream setting, and that parents and young people have the right to express the choice to be in a mainstream setting.
However, a minority of children and young people will need a more specialised curriculum to support their needs. This is delivered in a specialist setting.
Parents and carers can express a preference for a specific school to be named within a child or young person's Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP). The Local Authority has a duty to name this choice unless:
Efficient education means providing each child or young person with:
Only children and young people with complex needs which cannot be met within mainstream would require a specialist setting.
Therefore, to be considered for a specialist setting a child or young person will need to have an Education, Health and Care Plan where the setting would be named in Section I.
The SEN Code of Practice 2014 section 9.80 outlines when a Local Authority would name a specialist setting:
The local authority must consult the governing body, principal or proprietor of the school or college concerned and consider their comments very carefully before deciding whether to name it in the child or young person’s EHC plan, sending the school or college a copy of the draft plan. If another local authority maintains the school, they too must be consulted.
For more information, please email the Coventry City Council SEN Team
Support available in primary and secondary education settings
All pupils in Coventry schools have access to a broad and balanced curriculum, including extra-curricular activities.
All Coventry schools take account of a child’s additional needs in every area of school life and all children have the opportunity to experience the full range of subjects and activities offered by our schools. Teachers and support staff make sure all children’s needs are met by arranging appropriate classroom organisation and activities. Learning activities are made up of small, achievable steps that are made to meet the needs of individual children. Extra adult support will be offered where needed.
To enable families, children and young people to understand what schools should be providing to meet SEN needs in Coventry, view the Ordinarily Available Provision in Coventry schools. This outlines provision that should be provided without an Education, Health and Care Plan.
Teachers adapt the way they teach to ensure that the written and spoken language can be understood by students. When they prepare for lessons, teachers identify key concepts/ideas in the curriculum and teach and reinforce these to prepare children with SEND to learn successfully alongside other children. Teachers use adaptations to the curriculum to recognise and respond to moderate or severe levels of sensory impairment such as a hearing or visual impairment. Sometimes, special one-to-one or small group programmes are taught alongside other lessons.
All schools are required to make reasonable adjustments for any child or young person who has specific long or short term health needs or a disability. This might include looking into and following recommendations about physical adaptations or assistive technology that would make the school environment more accessible for the student.
Some examples are:
If after this additional help the child is still not making progress, the SENCo (Special Education Needs Coordinator) might decide that the child or young person should receive SEN Support. Parents and carers must be informed as soon as SEN Support begins.
Children who receive SEN Support usually have a written plan or a provision map prepared for them that describes what additional or different support the school will offer, and how parents/carers and the school will work together to help the child make progress. Our schools will work together with parents/carers to plan and monitor the impact of the SEN Support.
SEN Support might include extra help with reading, writing and maths but might also focus on speaking and listening, visual enhancement, motor/movement or mobility skills or social and emotional development. SEN Support can be delivered by staff from the school or from outside professionals such as specialist teachers. Even when support is delivered by these external professionals, it is the responsibility of the child’s class teacher to monitor the progress the child is making as part of the Assess, Plan, Do, Review cycle. This is presented in more detail in the Criteria for EHCP Assessment.
Schools have a number of approaches and programmes that they use to support children with social, emotional or mental health difficulties, and schools can also ask for advice from external specialists to tailor these approaches for individual needs. Underpinning this work is the on-going focus in Coventry schools to prevent bullying of any kind.
Children can receive support from the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service.
When a young person is placed in custody, the Youth Offending Service will contact the Special Education Needs (SEN) Team to find out if they have an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
If there is an EHCP in place, the SEND Coordinator and the Youth Offending Services (YOS) Case Manager for the young person in custody will then meet with each other.
Together they will ensure that the custodial establishment (the person or organisation that has custody of the child or young person) has all the information that they need to provide education for the young person during their period of remand or sentence and plan for their release and re-integration into education within the community.
Please visit the Youth Offending Service website for more information.