SEND tribunal appeals – an overview

Appeals that can be made

Appeals can be brought by the parents of a child or a young person where they disagree with the decision of the Local Authority:

  1. not to secure an EHC Needs Assessment
  2. that it is not necessary for special educational provision to be made in accordance with a Plan
  3. where an EHC Plan is maintained for the child or young person and it is first finalised, 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
  4. not to secure a re-assessment following a request
  5. not to amend/replace a Plan following review/re-assessment, and
  6. to cease to maintain a Plan.

There is no right of appeal to SEND about the health and social care matters within an EHCP but there is currently a pilot scheme taking place in certain Local Authorities. Under the pilot scheme, when the Tribunal is determining an appeal concerning an EHCP matter, the Tribunal may make recommendations in respect of certain health and social care matters in an EHCP.

Tribunal powers

The Tribunal’s powers are to:

  1. dismiss the appeal
  2. order Local Authority to arrange an assessment or a reassessment
  3. order Local Authority to make and maintain a Plan
  4. refer the case back to Local Authority to reconsider whether it is necessary to determine special educational provision
  5. order Local Authority to continue to maintain the Plan in its existing form
  6. order Local Authority to continue to maintain the EHC Plan with amendments to the assessment of special educational needs/provision, or
  7. order Local Authority to substitute in the Plan the school/institution/type specified.


An appeal must be lodged within 2 months of the decision made by the Local Authority or within 1 month of a Mediation Certificate, whichever is the later.

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