Code of Practice

A guide to schools and local education authorities (LEAS) about the help they can give to children with special educational needs. Schools and LEAs must have regard to the Code when they deal with a child with special educational needs.

Learning difficulties

A child has learning difficulties if he or she finds it much harder to learn than most children of the same age.

Local Education Authority (LEA)

Local government body responsible for providing education and for making statutory assessments and maintaining statements.

Mainstream school

An ordinary school.

Maintained school

A state school.

Named Officer

An officer of the LEA who will deal with your child's case.

Named Person

A person identified by the LEA, with your help, to give you information and advice about your child's special educational needs. A Named Person can be a friend, a relative or a member of a voluntary Organisation.

Non-maintained special school

A non-profit-making special school which charges fees. Most non-maintained special schools are run by charities or charitable trusts.

Note in lieu of a statement

A note in which the LEA will set out the reasons for their decision not to make a statement after a statutory assessment.

Special educational needs (SEN)

A child has special educational needs if he or she has learning difficulties that need special educational provision.

Special educational provision

The special help given to children with special educational needs.

Special Educational Needs Tribunal

An independent body that hears appeals against decisions made by LEAs.

Special School

A school which is specially organised to give help to pupils with special educational needs.

Statement of special educational needs

A document that sets out a child's needs and all the extra help he or she should get.

Statutory assessment

A very detailed examination of a child's special educational needs. It may lead to a statement.

Transition Plan

A plan drawn up at the first annual review of a statement after a child's 14th birthday. It sets out the steps needed for him or her to move from school to adult life.


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