The SEND Tribunal is the legally identified route of redress against Local Authority decisions for specified matters concerning EHCPs. It is an independent national tribunal which hears parents’ and young people’s appeals against Local Authority decisions about the special educational needs of children and young people. Specifically, parents/young person can appeal to the SEND Tribunal against the following Local Authority decisions:
- not to secure an EHC Needs Assessment
- that it is not necessary for special educational provision to be made in accordance with a Plan
- where an EHC Plan is maintained for the child or young person and it is first finalised, or thereafter amended or replaced
i. specified special educational needs – Section B
ii. specified special educational provision – Section F
iii. named school/institution/specified type – Section I
iv. the fact that no school/institution is named – Section I
- not to secure a re-assessment following a request
- not to amend/replace a Plan following review/re-assessment
- to cease to maintain a Plan.
The SEND Tribunal has the power to make a binding decision on these issues and has extensive powers to do so. The outcome of a SEND Tribunal replaces the decision that the Local Authority made which you are appealing.
The SEND Tribunal service is free to use and you are able to pursue the process unrepresented. However, many parents choose to take legal assistance and commission specialist evidence such as expert reports – these costs are not recoverable from the Tribunal.