ASCL comment on increase in EHCPs

Pepe Di’Iasio, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, responds to data from the Department for Education showing the number of Education, Health and Care plans has increased by more than 58,000 in the last year.
“The continuing rise in the number of EHCPs is reflective of the increasing number of children and young people with complex needs. Failure to match rising demand with appropriate government investment has brought the whole SEND system to the brink of collapse, with schools being unable to afford the costs of SEND provision, a lack of places available in special schools, and local authorities having huge high needs deficits.

“The next government must – as a matter of urgency – ensure that funding matches need. In the longer term, policymakers must put a much greater emphasis on supporting specialist early intervention as this is the key to getting help to these children at a stage in their lives where the challenges they face can be addressed without them escalating to the point of requiring EHCPs. This is better for children and families, and it is better for the sustainability of the SEND system.”