When to appeal a SEND decision (Education, Health and Care Needs Assessments or EHC Plans)

If the Local Authority (LA) makes a decision regarding the EHC Plan process that you do not agree with then parents and young people (after the end of year 11) can make an appeal to the (First-Tier) Tribunal.

If you wish to register an appeal with the First Tier Tribunal (SEN and disability) you first have to consider whether to enter mediation and obtain a certificate saying you have considered it. This is called mediation advice. If you decide not to go into mediation and tell the mediation adviser, they will send you a certificate within 3 working days and you can then register your appeal. You do not have to go into mediation if you do not want to – you only have to consider whether to or not.

For further information about mediation in Bath and North East Somerset, please visit the Global Mediation page.

What you can appeal

  • A decision by the local authority not to carry out an EHC needs assessment or re-assessment
  • A decision by the local authority not to issue an EHC plan following an EHC assessment
  • The contents of the EHC plan
  • Amendments made to the EHC elements of the plan
  • A decision made by the local authority not to amend the EHC plan following a review or re-assessment
  • A decision made by the local authority to cease to maintain the EHC plan
  • The Government are extending the powers of the First-tier Tribunal (SEND), 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.

 

Parents and young people have two months to register an SEN appeal with the Tribunal from the date the local authority sent the notice containing a decision

or

One month from the date of certificate issued following mediation or receiving mediation advice.

You can find out more about appeals to the Tribunal in the SEND Code of Practice sections 11.39 to 11.55.

How to Lodge an Appeal

Following mediation or receipt of a mediation certificate parents and young people can lodge an appeal with the First Tier Tribunal:

Advice on making SEND appeals to the Tribunal and the appeal form is available on the GOV.UK website and further guidance can be found in the trial toolkit of support.  How to appeal can be obtained from HM Courts & Tribunals Service, Special Educational Needs & Disability Tribunal, 1st Floor, Darlington Magistrates’ Court, Parkgate, Darlington, DL1 11RU

Telephone 01325 289350,

or email sendistqueries@hmcts.gsi.gov.uk

What can the Tribunal decide?

The Tribunal has powers under the Children and Families Act 2014 to:

  • Dismiss appeals
  • Order the local authority to carry out an EHC assessment
  • Order the local authority to make or maintain an EHC plan
  • Amend or correct the existing EHC plan

In making decisions about the special educational provision specified in the EHC plan the Tribunal should take in to consideration the education and training outcomes specified in the EHC plan, and whether the educational provision will enable and empower the child/young person to progress towards achieving their aspired outcomes.

SEND Tribunal Trial

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.  Please find further details about this pilot in SEND Tribunal Single Route of Redress – National Trial.

Information, Advice and Support

If you require further information, please visit our information, advice and support page.