The EHC Needs Assessment is a step before an Education and Health Care plan, but does not always lead to a plan being written. The information gathered during the EHC needs assessment may indicate ways in which the setting can meet the child or young person’s needs without an EHC plan.


If the EHC Needs Assessment is agreed, information to inform the assessment will be gathered. This takes place between weeks 6-12 of the 20 week process. The SEN team will write to the parents and/or young person to confirm that an EHC assessment has been agreed. They will also write to relevant professionals to tell them that the assessment has been agreed and ask them, if necessary, to submit further information or to carry out additional assessments.

The local authority will ask for information about the child/young person’s education, health and care needs, desired outcomes and special educational, health and care provision that may be required to meet identified needs and achieve desired outcomes.  SENDIASS can provide you with advice and guidance on this part of the process.  You may also find the "Special educational needs and disability: A guide for parents and carers" from the Department of Education useful.


Advice and information requested by the LA must be provided within 6 weeks. The parents or young person will receive copies of all the paperwork received through the statutory assessment process.

After the local authority has undertaken its assessment, it will then decide whether an EHC plan is necessary.  The local authority will consider all the information gathered during the EHC needs assessment, together with all the information originally submitted when the request for assessment was first made. If the Local Authority agrees to issue the plan, they will begin preparing a draft of the EHC Plan.  If, following the assessment, the Local Authority feels that a plan is not necessary they will issue a summary of need, which is a summary of the information gathered throughout the assessment process.