Case overview 

A parent applied to judicially review their local authority’s (LA) decision to refuse to provide the speech and language therapy specified in their child’s Statement of Special Educational Needs (this was an earlier version of an education, health and care (EHC) plan. The High Court refused the application for judicial review, but the parent successfully appealed to the Court of Appeal.  

What does this mean? 

This case confirms that LAs have an absolute obligation to secure the special educational provision  set out in an EHC plan, as set out in section 42 Children & Families 2014. Whilst Statements have been replaced with EHC plans since this case, the principle remains the same, meaning this case is still relevant. 

If the child or young person’s situation changes, an EHC plan may be amended, but the LA must follow the proper procedure for amendment first; and until a final amended EHC plan is issued, the LA always has a duty to implement the existing plan in its current form. 

The full case report forN v North Tyneside Council [2010] EWCA Civ 135 is available online.