Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


My Child has been put on a part time, timetable is this legal?

In very exceptional circumstances a pupil can be put on a part-time timetable. There needs to be full agreement from the parent/carer. It needs to be temporary with a time limit stating when it will end and regular meetings with the school to see how they are going to get the pupil back into full time education. If the child has an EHCP (Education Health and Care Plan) it may be that an early review needs to be called.

School keep sending my child home are they allowed to do this?

No. These are classed as illegal exclusions and are unlawful regardless of any agreement from a parent/carer. Any exclusion of a pupil even for a short period must be formally recorded. Please look at our exclusion booklet for more information. For more information read our Exclusions Booklet.

I keep being asked to take my child home for lunchtime, should the school be doing this?

Each lunchtime exclusion must be recorded as a half day exclusion. You must receive a letter from the school about this. You and school should be working together to get your child back into school at lunch time. For more information read our Exclusions Booklet.

School has told me that my child can only have SEN support or an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) with a diagnosis.

This is not correct. A child does not need to have a diagnosis to receive SEN support or an EHCP. A child only needs to be identified as having a special educational need.

The school are not providing any SEN Support for my child

The code of practice says educational settings have to use their ‘best endeavours’ to make sure that a child with SEN gets the support they need. A child with SEN should have a SEN Support plan in place following a four stage cycle Assess, Plan, Do, Review called the graduated approach. The school should review your child’s progress and the difference that the help has made. Every mainstream school gets a basic funding entitlement to support children with SEN. Arrange a meeting with the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) and class teacher at your child’s setting to discuss. For more information read our SEN Support booklet.

Who can apply for an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) assessment?

A child's parent/carers, a young person over the age of 16 but under 25, or a person acting on behalf of a school or post 16 provision. You can request an EHCP assessment by contacting the local authority by telephone 0344 800 8020 or you can find the form on the Norfolk Local Offer by visiting

School/college/nursery have told me that my child isn’t bad enough for an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) and wouldn’t qualify for one, is this correct?

No, this is not correct. There are legal tests and criteria that a local authority have to use in determining whether a child needs an EHCP or not. This is done on a case by case basis using evidence provided. For more information on the EHCP needs assessment see our booklet or the SEND Local Offer.

I have been told that an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) is just a piece of paper and nothing is ever done with it, is this right?

No, this is not correct. An EHCP is a legal document that details your child’s needs and the provision to support those needs. Legally an educational setting must comply with what is written in the EHCP. It is the local authorities’ responsibility to make sure the EHCP is being followed and legally compliant.

I have my child’s draft EHCP, what should I do now?

This is your chance to check that everything you expected to be in the plan is there and to tell the local authority EHCP Co-ordinator if you think that there is anything missing or wrong. See our booklet - Reading and Understanding an EHCP available on our website.

Whose responsibility is it to provide my medically unfit child with an education?

Children and young people with medical conditions are entitled to a full education. In the first instance it is the educational setting (school) that the child is on roll at. The governing body must ensure there are arrangements in place to support pupils with medical conditions. The Local Authority (LA) is responsible for arranging suitable, full- time education for children of compulsory school age, who because of illness, would not receive suitable education without such provision. The LA should be ready to take responsibility for any child whose illness will prevent them from attending school for 15 or more school days, either in one absence or over the course of a school year, where education is not otherwise being arranged. LA should arrange provision as soon as it is clear that an absence will last more than 15 days and it should do so at the latest by the 6th day of the absence.

How can I get information, advice and support

You can contact the helpdesk at Norfolk SEND Partnership on 01603 704070 and speak to an advisor or you can email us at or use our information booklets available on the website.