What is an Education, Health and Care Plan? (EHCP)

An Education, Health and Care plan (EHCP) describes a child’s special educational needs (SEN) and the help (provision) they will get to meet them. An EHCP also includes any health and social needs related to their SEN and provision that is needed. It is a legal document written by the Local Authority and is intended to ensure that children and young people with an EHCP receive the support they need. The special educational needs provision in an EHCP must be provided.

The SEND Code of Practice says:

The purpose of an EHCP is to make special educational provision to meet the special educational needs of the child or young person, to secure the best possible outcomes for them across education, health and social care and, as they get older, prepare them for adulthood.       (9.2)

An EHCP can only be provided once an EHC needs assessment has taken place (see 'who needs an EHCP')