An education, health and care plan, also called an EHCP or EHC plan, must have a formal annual review within 12 months of the final plan or the last review.
The annual review is a way you can raise concerns or suggest changes if you’re not happy with the content of an EHC plan.
In some situations, you can ask the school (or placement) and local authority for an early annual review. This can help you get significant changes to your child’s plan without waiting for the next annual review.
A significant change might be getting another diagnosis. A ‘placement’ or ‘setting’ can be a nursery, school, college or apprenticeship. The process should be the same but who you contact might vary. For schools, it’s usually the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO).
You must receive the written information 2 weeks before the meeting
The SENCO must give you the information 2 weeks before the meeting.
Everyone in the review meeting will have the same information.
You need time to check it to see if there’s anything new or that you’re not expecting. If you do not have time to read the information, you do not have to go to the meeting and can reschedule it.
Check documents before the meeting
Check the annual review forms before the meeting. You will be able to see the sorts of questions you will need to answer.
The annual review report
The school will submit the annual review paperwork as a report to the local authority. They should also send it to everyone who attended.
The report will cover:
your child’s progress towards the EHCP outcomes
everyone's views and recommendations
any changes to provision needed to support your child
any changes to your child’s outcomes or goals
all the information or reports submitted before the meeting
If you have not received the report within 2 weeks of the review meeting, ask the school for a copy.
The local authority must tell the parents and school what they are going to do with the EHCP within 4 weeks of the review meeting.
Changes to the EHC plan
How the review will affect your child’s EHCP depends on what the review panel decides and if the local authority agrees.
Changes to your child’s EHC plan could mean:
different or additional provision for your child’s support
changes to the outcomes
changing schools (or placement)
changes to social care that affect education
changes to health that affect your child’s educational support needs
The local authority does not have a deadline for sending you their planned changes. But the SEN Code of Practice does say:
“If the plan needs to be amended, the local authority should start the process of amendment without delay” Paragraph 9.176
If you disagree with changes to the EHCP
The local authority will send you a draft EHC plan and an 'amendment notice' telling you the planned changes. The notice should include any evidence that supports the changes.
You will have 15 days to make a written objection. You must explain why you disagree. You can also ask for a meeting with a local authority officer. They must meet with you if you ask within the 15 days.
You can talk to the SENCO about the local authority’s decision. If they agree with you, ask them to write a letter to the local authority explaining why. You also need to send your own letter.