Q&As

What powers do a local authority have to compel a school named in an EHC Plan to admit a child when they refuse to do so?

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Produced in partnership with Shazia Akhtar of Gatehouse Chambers
Published on LexisPSL on 06/10/2017

The following Local Government Q&A produced in partnership with Shazia Akhtar of Gatehouse Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What powers do a local authority have to compel a school named in an EHC Plan to admit a child when they refuse to do so?
  • Naming a school in section I of an EHC Plan
  • Duties of local authorities in respect of EHC Plans
  • Duties of schools to admit a child
  • What can a local authority do to ensure a child is admitted?

What powers do a local authority have to compel a school named in an EHC Plan to admit a child when they refuse to do so?

Naming a school in section I of an EHC Plan

Under Regulation 12(i) of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, SI 2014/1530, an EHC Plan must set out ‘the name of the school… to be attended by the pupil and the type of that institution or, where the name of a school or other institution is not specified in the EHC Plan, the type of school or other institution to be attended by the child or young person (section I)’.

Duties of local authorities in respect of EHC Plans

Section 42(4) of the Children and Families Act 2014 (CFA 2014) provides that where an EHC Plan is maintained, the ‘local authority must secure the specified special educational provision for the child or young person’.

The SEND Code of Practice 2015 (SEND COP 2015) paras 9.131–9.132 is also of relevance.

It provides:

‘When an EHC plan is maintained for a child or young person the local authority must secure the special educational provision specified in the plan. If a local authority names an independent school or independent college in the plan as special educational provision it must also meet the costs of the fees, including any boarding and lodging where relevant.’

Therefore the duty on

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