How are decisions about requests for EHC Needs Assessments made?

Decisions about requests for EHC Needs Assessment’s and decisions to issues an EHC Plan are made by the Complex Needs Panel. The panel is made up of professionals from the SEN Team, Educational Psychology Team, Speech and language Service and head teachers / SENCOs from local schools.

Prior to the panel meeting, representatives consider the paperwork / evidence provided for any request made. The panel members then meet as a group and discuss the information provided and make a decision as to the next steps. The SEN Team will communicate any decisions to the relevant parties (e.g. parents / carers, schools).  


What is considered at Complex Needs Panel?

The LA will be looking for evidence that the child or young person has a significant difficulty in learning compared to other child or young person of the same age and that the child or young person has not made expected progress despite the setting taking relevant and purposeful action to identify, assess and meet their special educational need.

It will need to consider whether the child or young person now requires support that is different/additional to the provision normally available in a mainstream setting.


A wide range of evidence will be considered such as:

  • the views, wishes and feelings of the child or young person and his/her parents
  • academic attainment and rate of progress
  • detailed information about the child or young person’s SEN
  • evidence of action already being taken to address the child or young person’s sen
  • evidence of the difference that the additional support and enhanced teaching and learning strategies have made
  • evidence of the child or young person’s physical, emotional and social development and health needs. – this can be by way of reports from other professionals
  • for a child over the age of 18, whether they need additional time to complete their education or training.


What do members have to consider when sitting on Panel?. If you would like further information about this, click here to read Barnet Complex Needs Panel - Meeting the needs of children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disability and Appendix B, The Education Health and Care (EHC) Needs Assessment Process.