Special Educational Needs

A child has Special Educational Needs if they have learning difficulties or disability that needs special educational provision. In most cases, the special provision that is needed can be made within a mainstream school.

For some children and young people, it may be agreed that a special school would be most appropriate for their needs.

The Department for Education produces guidance called the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice, which must be followed by the Local Authority, Schools, Health, and other organisations working with children and young people.

The Department for Education also produces guidance for families called Special Educational Needs and Disability a guide for parents and carers.
This provides useful information on what the law says about Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), key points about the SEND Code of Conduct, and what to expect from the system which supports children and young people with SEND.

Using the SEN Service

The SEN Service is available for:

  • Children and young people 0 to 25 with special educational needs, and their families, who live in the City of Nottingham or attend a City school
  • Children with special educational needs who are looked after by Nottingham City but living elsewhere
  • Schools, Academies, Colleges, Early Years providers, and other educational establishments
  • Colleagues within the Local Authority
  • Colleagues from partner agencies including Health

What the SEN Service Provides

The SEN Service provides:

  • A statutory assessment and Education, Health and Care Plan EHC Plan
  • Provides advice to schools on statutory requirements about special educational needs and transport
  • Manage all placements at specialist provision within the City
  • Monitor annual reviews of EHC Plan or statements of SEN, and ensure that Plans or statements are kept up to date
  • Provide advice to parents about adapted schools and support available for their child's specific difficulty
  • Identify and develop appropriate help for pupils with special educational needs
  • Devise and assist schools in implementing individual programmes for pupils
  • Provide schools with advice on where to obtain specialist training and support
  • Administer SEN support funding to schools

Contact Us

The team is based in Bilborough and can be contacted by email, telephone, or in writing.

Email: special.needs@nottinghamcity.gov.uk

Tel: 0115 876 4300

SEN Service
Building 5
Woolsthorpe Depot
Woolsthorpe Close

Please note that requests for Education, Health and Care Plans need to be made using our form. 

Frequently Asked Questions

When your health visitor or doctor makes a routine check, they might suggest that there could be a problem. If you have any worries, you should talk to your health visitor or family doctor.

At school, there will be a teacher called a Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO), who is responsible for planning the provision made for individual children with SEND.

If you are concerned that your child may not be receiving the support they need, you should talk initially to your child's teacher or the SENCO. You will be able to talk over your concerns, find out what the school thinks, and what happens next.

Working together with your child's teachers will often help to sort out worries and problems. The closer you work with your child's teachers, the more successful any help for your child can be.

Information about how the provision supports pupils with special educational needs must be made available in their SEN Policy. 

Schools and other settings in Nottingham use a graduated approach to meeting SEN needs, using a range of strategies and support depending on the needs of the individual.

The school or setting has the responsibility to involve parents in the planning for and meeting of their child's special educational needs. 

For most children and young people, the SEN Support provided for them within the school or setting will be enough the meet their needs.

Some children and young people (those with complex SEN and disabilities needing more intensive specialist support) may need an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).

Only a very small percentage of children and young people with SEN will require an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). This is a detailed plan that brings the individual's educational, health and care needs together into a single legal document.

The EHCP is created by the Local Authority (LA), based on specialist advice along with input from the parents or carers and the child or young person themselves.

More information on the EHCP process in Nottingham, along with how to request an EHC Plan, is available on the related page 'Education, Health and Care Plans'.

Children and young people can only be educated in a Special School if it is named in their EHCP.

However, an EHCP does not necessarily mean a Special School place is best suited: many children and young people with an EHCP can be successfully supported in a mainstream school or college.

Nottingham City's Local Offer website is a central point of information about all services, support and activities for children and young people with SEND.

Contact information for some of the local organisations that provide information and support is also given below:

Ask Us Nottinghamshire
Tel: 0800 121 7772
Comment online here.

Rainbow Carers Forum
Tel: 07837 278981
Email: admin@rainbowparentscarersforum.org.uk

Ask Iris
Tel : 0115 853 3291
Email: advice@disabilitynottinghamshire.org.uk


Useful Documents 

Also see

Contact Us

SEN Service
Building 5
Woolsthorpe Depot
Woolsthorpe Close

Tel: 0115 876 4300

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