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All SEND services in County Durham are following government guidance set out by 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.

Support in the early years

All early years settings - such as nurseries, playgroups and childminders - that are registered with Ofsted have to follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). This framework makes sure that there's support in place for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

This includes providing you with a written progress check when your child is 2 years old, ongoing observations of your child's progress, and a written assessment in the summer term of reception year in school. Your child's health visitor will also carry out a health check on your child when they are about 2 and a half.

If your child has special educational needs they will be able to receive SEN support arranged by the special educational needs coordinator (SENCO). 

If your child needs more help than the early years setting can normally provide, they may need an Education, Health and Care (EHC) assessments and plans.

What if I think my child has special educational needs but they don't go to a nursery, playgroup or childminder?

Talk to a doctor or health adviser if you think your child has SEN but they don't go to a nursery, playgroup or childminder. They'll tell you what support options are available.

Home-based teaching for pre-school children with additional support needs

Durham Portage Service is a home visit educational service for preschool children who have development learning difficulties, physical disability or other additional support needs. We will work with you to help your child learn new skills and our trained staff will offer weekly home visits.

Find out more on our The Portage Service: pre-school education support service for children with complex developmental needs page.




Contact us
SEND and Inclusion Service
03000 267 800
Our address is:
  • Broom Cottages Primary and Nursery Schoo
  • Ferryhill
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DL17 8AN
01740 657 792
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