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SEN Law and Guidance


The law relating to Special Educational Needs are found in  Part 3 of the Children And Families Act 2015.

The Children and Families Act 2014 came in to force on 1st September 2014 and was then updated in 2015.  

You can find the legislation using the following links:

Children and Families Act 2014 Part 3




The SEND Code of Practice ("COP") is statutory guidance for organisations that work with and support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities. It sets out duties, policies and procedures relating to Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014 and associated regulations, and it applies to England.

All professionals working with special needs children  must have regard to the Code of Practice. This means that whenever they are making decisions they must give consideration to what the Code says. They cannot ignore it. They must fulfil their statutory duties towards children and young people with SEN or disabilities in the light of the guidance set out in it. They must be able to demonstrate in their arrangements for children and young people with SEN or disabilities that they are fulfilling their statutory duty to have regard to the Code. So, where the text uses the word ‘should’ it means that the guidance contained in this Code must be considered and that those who must have regard to it will be expected to explain any departure from it.


Click here to access the SEND Code of Practice COP 2015


For a Guide for Parents and Carers click here


Other relevant legislation:


Equality Act 2010 


Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970


Children in Need - Section 17 Children Act 1989