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The government has announced further restrictions on mixing between households in any indoor setting in County Durham, in a bid to control the rising infection rates of COVID-19. Find out more about the latest measures at Gov.uk: Indoor inter-household mixing restricted in parts of the North East

All SEND services in County Durham are following government guidance set out by Gov.uk: Education, health and care needs assessments and plans: guidance on temporary legislative changes relating to coronavirus (COVID-19). See our Changes to special educational needs and disability services (SEND) for more information about some of the changes to our services.

Personal budgets for children and young people with an Education, Health and Care plan


A personal budget is an amount of money that you can use to arrange and pay for support that has been agreed in your Education, Health and Care plan. The amount depends on the needs and agreed outcomes identified in the plan and can alter as they change.

All children and young people in receipt of an Education, Health and Care plan or their parents can request a personal budget.

Personal budgets:

  • give you more choice and control over the support for your child
  • provide you with flexibility in achieving your child's aspirations and agreed outcomes

What is included in a personal budget

A personal budget can include funding from education, health and social care services. If this is used for services in a nursery, school or college, the headteacher or principal must agree.

There are three options for controlling a personal budget, or a combination of the three:

  • Notional arrangements - where the council retains the funds but the parent/young person is more involved in how it is used.
  • Third party arrangements - where funds are paid to an individual or another organisation on behalf of the parent/young person and they manage the funds.
  • Direct Payments - where individuals receive a payment to buy the services themselves.

Information on how to request a personal budget and eligibility criteria is detailed in the  Icon for pdf Personal Budget Policy and Procedures for children and Young People with an Education, Health and Care Plan (PDF, 273.7kb) .

The benefits of a personal budget

  • You can be creative and flexible with your personal budget.
  • You (and your child) can have greater control over how the goals identified for your child, in their Education, Health and Care plan are achieved.
  • As young people move into adulthood they can have greater control over how the goals identified in their Education, Health and Care plan are achieved.
  • Your caseworker will discuss these options with you during the Education, Health and Care assessment or subsequent review.

Find out more

You can find out more about Direct Payments on our website. Please note that although the information on that page is more about direct payments from social care, similar arrangements for children and young people with an Education, Health and Care plan will apply.

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