Early Years SEN Funding Panel

The purpose of additional SEND Funding

Many children with special educational needs and disability may benefit from additional support/intervention. In the first instance this must be organised by the early years setting where existing provision resources and other non-financial support currently available from other external sources should be optimised.

Any additional support is intended to enable EY settings to meet the needs of children with additional or special educational needs and disability, keeping within the principles of the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Code of Practice.

Funding for additional SEND support

The Local Authority has limited funding available to enable EY settings to support children under the age of 5 (up to Nursery class only) with complex additional needs. Where a setting cannot offer the necessary additional support due to financial constraints, an application should be submitted to panel for consideration.

What is the SEND Funding for?

The additional funding is intended for children with identified complex additional needs.

Additional support may be required for:

  • Accessibility – specialist disability equipment
  • Children requiring additional adult support in order to access the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum i.e. individual or group activities
  • Children with specific areas of difficulty requiring individual education programmes i.e. specific researched based interventions
How much additional support will be funded?

Decisions about the level of support will be based on the application and supporting evidence submitted. All applications will be considered within the context of the setting per application cycle (termly).

Who can make a referral for additional support?

Referrals should be made by the EY setting.

What evidence should be included?

Application forms must be completed through the online application system accompanied by relevant evidence. Reports, Short Term Plans/reviews must be the most recent (preferably within the last 6-8 week) and relevant to the current needs of the child.

Who makes the decisions and how are they made?

Decisions are made by members of the Early Years SEND Funding Panel. The panel consists of professionals from Education, Heath, Children and Social Care, PVI and maintained Children Centre representatives. Decisions are reached through group discussion on the information / evidence provided. If the evidence is either incomplete or inadequate, the funding request may be declined or delayed pending the supply of further information.

How frequently do the EY SEND Funding Panel meet?
  • The EY SEND Funding Panel will meet once a term, Autumn, Spring and Summer.
  • The EY SEND Funding panel allocates funding over 38 weeks across the year.
Is there a deadline when referrals must be received by?

Referrals to the EY SEND Funding Panel must be submitted no later than two weeks (10 working days) before the panel meets.

What decision may the panel determine for an application?
  • Agreed
  • Not Agreed
  • Pending (usually concluded when an application is incomplete or insufficient evidence is provided)
  • Alternative Outcome
How will I know the outcome?

Letters will be sent out to settings via email and will give a brief summary of the decision.

Monitoring the outcomes and impact of the funding

Settings must complete a monitoring form as part of a repeat request form funding along with information/evidence on how the funding was used and the outcomes and impact achieved.

The Area SENCO team will visit or make contact with settings and liaise with health professionals involved with the child each term to assess progress and the use of funding. Any further funding request will not be available until this has been completed.

Find further information on the Early Years SEND Funding.

If you have any queries about making an initial EY SEND Funding request please contact Pauline Foster, Area SENCO Team Leader on 020 7527 5599.

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