The Government are trialling extending the powers of the First-tier Tribunal (SEND) to make non-binding recommendations about the health and social care aspects of Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans as part of a special educational appeal. The trial applies to local authority decisions made and EHC plans issued/amended from 3 April 2018 and will run for two years.
A toolkit providing a number of resources has been created to support local authorities, health commissioners, parents and young people in preparation for and throughout the trial. A breakdown of these resources can be found on this page and in the following toolkit index:
SEND National Trial Toolkit
 Guidance for local authorities, health commissioners, parents and young people
This guide is for all local authorities, health commissioning bodies and parents and young people in England, who from the 3 April 2018 will be taking part in a national trial to extend the powers of the First-tier Tribunal SEND to make non-binding recommendations about health and social care aspects of Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans. The guidance can also be used to inform advice that Information, Advice and Support Services and others provide to parents and young people.
The guidance sets out the extended powers and duties in the Special Educational Needs and Disability (First-tier Tribunal Recommendations Power) Regulations 2017
It explains how the appeal process will work, what happens if recommendations are not followed and the support available for commissioners and families.
This guidance is also published on GOV.UK. at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/extended-powers-send-tribunal-national-trial.
 Short summary explaining the key elements of the national trial
Short document providing a summary of the context, aims and objectives of the trial, responsibilities of local authority SEND teams, health and social care commissioners, and the support available.
 Short summary for parents and young people explaining the key elements of the national trial
Short document setting out the aims of the trial and what it means for parents and young people. This includes the support available for parents and young people.
 Sample local offer wording for local authorities
Example wording local authorities can use to populate their local offers. It is a statutory requirement that all local authorities include information on the extended rights of parents as part of the national trial within their local offers.
 Sample decision letter checklist and summary wording for local authorities
A decision letter checklist which acts as a guide to support local authorities to amend or create the necessary decision letters in a compliant manner, along with summary wording on the trial to include. It is a statutory requirement that all local authorities include information on the extended powers of the Tribunal in their decision letters.
 Sample letter template for drafting responses to recommendation letters for health and social care commissioners
A response letter template with sample wording to provide a consistent structure for drafting responses to recommendation letters for health and social care commissioners.
 The Council for Disabled Children’s advice for Education, Health and Care Plans
The purpose of these documents is to support local authorities to set up processes that facilitate getting good health and social care advice and can be found at https://councilfordisabledchildren.org.uk/help-resources/resources/education-health-and-care-plans-examples-good-practice.
 Appeal forms
Appeal forms which are required to be completed and sent to the SEND Tribunal if parents or young people wish to appeal can be found on the GOV.UK website.
 Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Answers to the questions that local authority SEND teams, health and social care commissioners, parents, and young people ask most frequently.
 Tribunal guidance on presenting evidence
Resource to be made available in due course
Guidance provided by the Tribunal around how to present evidence during the tribunal process.
 Summary presentation slide on the national trial
To be used for briefing teams. Includes the context, aims and objectives of the trial, responsibilities of local authority SEND teams, health and social care commissioners, and the support available.
 Legal context for decision making, for education, health and social care
Resources from the ‘SEND Decision Making and the Law’ workshops setting out the legal context. This includes training resources used to assist local authorities (SEND and social care representatives) and health care representatives in interpreting and applying the legal requirements, including example case studies, of the Children and Families Act 2014 to some of the key decision points and can be found at: http://www.sendpathfinder.co.uk/send-decision-making-and-the-law-workshops.
A webinar providing an overview of the sessions covered at the January and February 2018 regional induction events informing and supporting local authorities and health commissioners in preparation for the trial. Available at http://www.sendpathfinder.co.uk/send-single-route-of-redress-national-trial-local-area-induction-events-webinar.
 Presentation slides from the local area stakeholder induction events
Full presentation slides from the local area stakeholder induction events that took place in January and February 2018.
 Special Educational Needs and Disability (First-tier Tribunal Recommendations Power) Regulations 2017
The full regulations explaining the new powers conferred on the Tribunal and the new duties on local authority SEND teams and health and social care commissioners in regards to the recommendations can be found at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2017/1306/contents/made.
 Joint letter from the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families and the Minister of State for Care, announcing the launch of the national trial
Letter (3rd April 2018) from Nadhim Zahawi, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families, and Caroline Dinenage, Minister of State for Care, written to Directors of Children’s Services, Directors of Adult Social Services and Chief Nurses or their equivalent in Clinical Commissioning Groups announcing the start of the SEND Tribunal single route of redress national trial.
 Grant funding agreement letter
The Department for Education will be providing funding of up to £4,000 per case to cover expenses incurred by local authorities and health commissioners. This is the grant funding letter and associated guidance for local authorities to complete prior to claiming expenses for submission to Mott MacDonald via SENDDeliverysupport@mottmac.com.
 Grant claim form
Grant claim form with associated guidance for local authorities to claim expenses by sending to SENDdeliverysupport@mottmac.com.
 Privacy Notice: SEND Tribunal – Single Route of Redress National Trial
 Parent Carer Webinar
A webinar for parents and carers on the national trial setting out the reasons for single route of redress national trial, making clear duties, roles and responsibilities of the local authorities (LA) and health bodies. The webinar informs parent carers what support is available, what families can expect if they appeal to the Tribunal and provides details about the guidance and support available and can be found at:
Please find below previous national trial newsletters, to sign up to the newsletter distribution list please email SENDdeliverysupport@mottmac.com.
If you would like subscribe to the national trial newsletter mailing list to receive updates on the progress of the trial, please email SENDdeliverysupport@mottmac.com. All previous newsletters can be found at the bottom of this page.
Contact the Support team:
If you have any queries please direct these to SENDdeliverysupport@mottmac.com or call the SEND delivery support helpline on 0207 651 0308