A Statement of Special Educational Needs

A statement is a legal document setting out in Part 3 the special educational help which a child must receive by law. The legal entitlement only has worth, however, if the statement is written in accordance with the law and provides detailed information about the child’s difficulties and the help provided to address those difficulties.

The format of the statement is as follows:

Personal details including the child’s name, address, date of birth, religion etc and contact details for the parent.

A list of the advice reports from parents and professionals which are attached as appendices to the statement.

PART 2 - Special educational needs.

This part should reflect all the educational difficulties identified in the parents’ and professionals’ reports.

PART 3 - Special educational provision.

This part divides into three sections.

1. The first describes the objectives of the provision. This should be aspirational, pull together each distinct area of need and say what the extra help is intended to achieve for the child.

2. The second part sets out the special educational provision which is intended to meet each of the child’s special educational needs. This must be specified and normally quantified (any exception to quantification must be dictated by the child’s needs not the LA’s).

It must include any appropriate

  • facilities and equipment
  • staffing arrangements
  • curriculum, including any disapplications and modifications to the National Curriculum
  • residential accommodation if appropriate

3. The arrangements to be in place to ensure the implementation and monitoring of the statement.

When the LEA issues a proposed statement, this part will be blank to give the parents the opportunity to state a preference for a maintained school, or make representations for an independent or non-maintained school.

Part 4 of the final statement must set out the type of school which is considered appropriate (e.g. mainstream, special, residential, MLD, EBD, etc) or educational arrangements otherwise and should normally, but not always, name a particular school.

Non-educational needs are described here.

Non-educational provision is described here.

Please note:
There is no duty on the LEA to provide help listed in Part 6 so it is important to check whether difficulties described in Part 5 should appear in Part 2 and whether the help in Part 6 should appear in Part 3.

Sometimes LEAs list help such as speech therapy in Parts 3 and 6 – this does not reduce their obligation to provide the help but the help should be clearly set out in Part 3 and properly specified and quantified.