Further education funding

The  SEND Code of Practice says:

“Colleges, including sixth-form colleges and academies have a duty to use their best endeavours to secure the special educational provision that the young person needs… whether or not the students have EHC plans.” (7.3)

Students who are over the age of 16 with high needs will be allocated the standard funding that all post-16 students receive.

In addition to this, there will be £6,000 for each organised high needs place in the educational establishment the student attends. 

Go to the Local Offer website to view funding information published by the local authority.

Core funding

Colleges are funded by the Education & Skills Funding Agency for…

  • students aged 16 to 19 and
  • students up to the age of 25 when they have an education, health and care (EHC) plan

It is for colleges to determine their approach to using these resources to support the progress of young people with SEN.

Colleges should provide a clear description of the types of special educational provision they normally provide. This will help parents and others understand what they can normally expect the college to provide for young people with SEN. 

Colleges are not expected to meet the full costs of more expensive support.

Young people do not need to have an EHC plan to receive top-up funding, except those young people aged 19 or over.

High needs students
  • High needs students (HNS) are those who receive support from their local authority high needs budget.
  • High needs students include; students aged 16 to 18 with high levels of SEN in schools and academies with or without an EHC plan; or those aged 19 to 25 who have an EHC plan with support costs exceeding £6,000 from the high needs budget.
  • High needs students in mainstream schools and academies are funded through a combination of the core funding plus the additional £6,000 education support fund.
  • Top-up funding may be commissioned by the local authority. 
  • Local authorities should be transparent about how they will make decisions about high needs funding and education placements. They should share the principles and criteria which underpin those decisions with schools and colleges and with parents and young people.
Special Schools – Post 16

Places in special schools, special academies and non-maintained special schools are funded at £10,000 per place.