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Durham County Council

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Special educational needs support

There are a variety of specialist services and teams who provide support and advice for children with special educational needs (SEN).

Full information on support services is now available in one place on our Local Offer.

Who can help?

If your child is at school or in an early education setting, your first point of contact should be your child's teacher or the school SENCO (the person with responsibility for co-ordinating help for children with Special Educational Needs). If the school agrees that your child has special educational needs, they will adopt a step by step approach to meeting those needs.

Educational Psychology Service/SEND Support Team

The Educational Psychology Service and SEND Support Team work with children and young people, their families/carers and professionals in educational settings and in other services.

The service they provide is designed to promote the best possible outcomes in terms of learning, social and emotional development, wellbeing, and their inclusion within their community. To do this the staff can work directly with children and young people, offer advice and consultation, training and development for professionals and information and guidance to parents.

More information, including contact details, is available on the Local Offer pages:

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Statutory Casework Team

The SEND Statutory Casework Team provide a service for children and young people with SEND who:

  • are undergoing an Education Health and Care (EHC) Assessment
  • have an EHC Plan or a Statement of Special Educational Needs
  • require support from services through The Local Offer

The teams are:

The responsibilities include the following:

  • Making sure that both children and young people's views and their parent/carers are central to any decision making about SEND support arrangements.
  • Acting as a main point of contact for parent/carers of children and young people with SEND.
  • Contacting a range of professionals from education, health and social care as part of the assessment process.
  • Working with children and young people, parents and carers and other professionals on the agreed content of an EHC Plan.
  • Supporting children and young people, parents and carers during the transfer from Statements to EHC Plans.
  • Representing the council at Disagreement Resolution, Mediation and Tribunal.
  • Considering requests for specialist equipment and Personal Budgets for children and young people with SEND.
  • Arranging a school or college place for children and young people with an EHC Plan or an Enhanced Mainstream Provision for children and young people with a SEN Support Plan.
  • Arranging additional support for nursery aged children with SEND.
  • Making sure that providers comply with their duties under the Equality Act 2010.

Early Years SEND

The Equalities and Inclusion Education Development Advisors are part of the Early Years Development Team, Education Durham.

We offer a countywide service to practitioners, early years providers, children's centres, schools and other professionals in order to promote inclusion, raise aspirations and improve outcomes for children aged 0-5 with Special Educational Need and Disability (SEND).

For more information contact us.

Durham Special Educational Needs and Disability Information Advice and Support Service (SENDIASS)

Durham SENDIASS is a statutory service supporting parents/carers of children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and children and young people with SEND.

Durham (SEND) Information Advice and Support Service was formerly known as Durham Parent Partnership Service.