Education, Health & Care needs assessments & plans (EHCPs)

What is an EHC plan?

The SEND Code of Practice says:

"The purpose of an EHC plan is to make special educational provision to meet the special educational needs of the child or young person, to secure the best possible outcomes for them across education, health and social care and, as they get older, prepare them for adulthood.." (9.2)

Frequently asked questions (EHC plans)



An Education Health and Care (EHC) plan is a legal document written by the local authority and is used for children and young people with high support needs that cannot be met by the support that is usually available at their school or college.

EHC plans replaced Statements of Special Educational Need and Section 139 Learning Difficulty Assessments (LDA) on 1 September 2014.

They describe a child’s special educational needs (SEN) and the help they will get to meet them. An EHC plan also includes any health and social care provision and can start from a child’s birth and continue into further education (not applicable for higher education) and training up until age 25. 


What is an EHC needs assessment?

An Education, Health and Care (EHC) needs assessment is the first step in the process, however, requesting assessment will not necessarily result in securing an Education, Health and Care plan. Click through our tiles which take you through the process step-by-step...



Learn more about what an EHC plan is by watching our video:

Download our leaflets explaining EHC needs assessments and plans

             EHC needs assessment                                         EHC plans


Suffolk County Council will be launching a new online tool for the EHC process. Read more about their plans.