Changes to SEN Law


28 July 2014 New SEND Code of Practice approved by Parliament

21 July 2014 IPSEA publishes a checklist that sets out what legally must be included as a minimum in any Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC plan) issued by a Local Authority

26 June 2014 IPSEA's submission to the House of Lords Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee re: our concerns regarding the draft Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice.

11 June 2014 DfE publishes the SEND code of practice (statutory guidance for organisations who work with and support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities)

6 May 2014 IPSEA responds to the consultation on the revised Code of Practice

10 February 2014 The Children and Families Bill finishes its passage through Parliament

27 January 2014 As part of the SEN Information Organisations Group, IPSEA has co-produced two documents about the myths surrounding the changes proposed in the C & F Bill. Here is the first of these myth busting resources. The second resource will be published very soon.

10 December 2013 IPSEA responds to the draft SEN regulations, draft SEN Code of Practice & Transitional arrangements consultation

24 October 2013 IPSEA releases analysis of draft regulations and draft code of practice.

4 October 2013 IPSEA issues a Press Release about the newly published draft SEN regulations and draft SEN Code of Practice and the latest report on the SEND Pathfinder pilots

12 September 2013  The Department for Education (DfE) sent a letter to Pathfinder Local Authorities (LAs) clarifying the legal position of EHC Plans issued under their pilot schemes. This was in response to a number of queries that IPSEA raised with Pathfinders and the DfE directly.

21 May 2013 IPSEA revises its key messages on the Children and Families Bill, left largely unchanged by its passage through the House of Commons so far.

28 March 2013: IPSEA publishes a briefing on the potential hazards in the indicative SEN Code and draft Regulations. This alerts all those interested in protecting the rights of children with SEN and/or a disability to the fundamental issues that will negatively affect the children we want to protect

22 March 2013: Edward Timpson MP, Minister responsible for SEN and Disability at the Department for Education, wrote to the Council for Disabled Children outlining plans for developing the recently published indicative Code of Practice and draft SEN Regulations. Read his letter here

14 March 2013: Indicative SEN regulations and Code of Practice published. These can all be found on the right hand side of this web page

12 March 2013: IPSEA submits written evidence to the House of Commons Public Bill Committee. This submission spells out why the Bill still does not go far enough to carry forward current protections and includes suggested amendments

5 March 2013: IPSEA's Chief Executive, Jane McConnell, gives evidence to the House of Commons Children and Families Bill Committee. You can find all the transcripts of the Children and Families Bill committee meetings here

5 March 2013: Edward Timpson, the Minister responsible for SEN and Disability within the Department for Education, gave evidence to the Children and Families Bill Committee. He announced that the Government will place a legal duty on Clinical Commissioning Groups to secure health services that are specified in Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs). Information about this duty is here

5 March 2013: The Department for Education and the Department of Health published a joint progress report on the pathfinder programme. The report can be downloaded here

19 February 2013: IPSEA publishes 3 documents explaining what the Children & Families Bill means for children with special educational needs and/or a disability

5 February 2013: The Bill is published. You can download a copy of the Bill and see IPSEA’s initial response on this web page

4 February 2013: The Children and Families Bill, which contains the changes to SEN Law, received its first reading in Parliament.

December 2012: The Education Committee publishes ‘Pre-legislative scrutiny: Special Educational Needs’. You can read IPSEA’s response here

October 2012: IPSEA launches a blog to answer parents’ questions about the proposed changes to SEN Law. The Education Committee undertakes pre-legislative scrutiny of draft legislation. IPSEA submits evidence and writes parent briefings on the proposals

September 2012: The Department of Education published the draft changes to SEN legislation that the Government are proposing to introduce

August 2012: Second Quarterly report evaluating the SEND Pathfinder Programme is published – you can see it here

July 2012: Standard note SN05917 published – outlining the main proposals in the green paper and the Government’s plans to implement changes

June 2012: House of Commons Education Committee takes oral evidence from 5 witnesses including Jane McConnell, IPSEA’s Chief Executive. The committee also heard from the Minister who said there would be time for proper scrutiny as “we do not expect to receive Royal Assent until 2014”. This means that the new laws won't come in to effect until 2014

June 2012: Quarterly report evaluating the SEND Pathfinder Programme is published – you can see it here

May 15 2012: Government published its detailed response to the formal public consultation on the green paper in “Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability - progress and next steps”. This confirmed that the Government will publish a draft Bill on the SEN measures for consultation and pre-legislative scrutiny. Read IPSEA’s response here

May 9 2012: Queen’s Speech announced the Government’s intention to introduce a Children and Families Bill that would include the SEN reforms. The legislation would draw on evidence from the 20 local pathfinders set up in September 2011. IPSEA responded to this announcement

February 2012: IPSEA's Chief Executive, Jane McConnell, took part in the Labour Party's Special Educational Needs Policy Review at the House of Commons

November 2011: Following a debate on the Education Act in the House of Lords, new clauses were added to allow councils to test the use of direct payments

October 2011: 20 pathfinders were announced - covering 31 local authorities. The Pathfinders will test core proposals from the green paper: single assessment process; ‘Education, Health and Care Plan’; greater engagement of the voluntary sector; use of personal budgets

June 2011: IPSEA responds to the Government's proposals for reform of the SEN system – using results from their extensive parent survey to evidence their views

May 2011: House of Commons Education Committee took oral evidence on the SEN green paper - Jane McConnell, IPSEA’s Chief Executive was one of 5 expert witnesses. IPSEA began a survey asking parents for their views on the proposals

March 2011: Green Paper “Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability” was published. It contained wide-ranging proposals to respond to the criticisms of the present system. A consultation period began – running ran from 9 March to 30 June 2011. IPSEA’s Press Release is here

October 2010: IPSEA submitted their response to the call for views

September 2010: Government invited views from everyone with an interest in SEN and disability in order to inform a green paper on SEN

June 2009: Lamb Inquiry call for evidence closed. 3,400 replies were received

April 2009: Brian Lamb submitted his Report to the Secretary of State on the Lamb Inquiry Review of SEN and Disability. In his accompanying letter, Brian outlined his recommendations and identified further issues

March 2008: The Lamb Inquiry started its work. Jane McConnell, IPSEA’s Chief Executive was part of the expert panel

June 2006: Select Committee on Children, Schools and Families reported on SEN, highlighting strong concerns about parents’ confidence in the system. Part of the Government’s response was to ask Brian Lamb, the chair of the Special Educational Consortium, to carry out an inquiry into how parental confidence in the SEN assessment process might be improved