What is an Annual Review?

What is an Annual Review of an Education, Health and Social Care (EHC) plan?

When a child or young person has an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC plan) there is an ongoing requirement for the EHC plan to be reviewed by the local authority at least annually. This is referred to as the Annual Review.

In Early Years an EHC plan should be reviewed every 3 to 6 months (CoP 9.178). 

The Annual Review is more than just a review meeting, it is a process that must be completed on or before the anniversary of when the EHC plan was first issued or the anniversary of the last review.

An Annual Review must be undertaken in partnership with the child and their parent or the young person, and must take account of their views, wishes and feelings, including their right to request a Personal Budget.

An easy to follow animation to explain the Annual Review process

How do you request an Annual Review?

A request for an Annual Review of an EHC plan can be made to the local authority at any time, as long as you have a good reason. This is particularly important if you believe that there is an urgent need for a change to the child or young person’s EHC plan.

The local authority must arrange a statutory review of the EHC plan at least once every year, not the school, college or the health service. However, the evidence gathering for an Annual review meeting may be delegated to the school or college by the local authority as part of the process.

Is there further guidance on the Annual Review process?

Click here to access a free online training module on the annual review process produced by the Council for Disabled Children.

CDC has aslo produced further guidance that meet both the letter and the spirit of the Children and Families Act 2014. These can be found at: 

Click here for a useful factsheet providing an overview of the key duties which apply to Local Authorities, schools and education providers as set out in the Children & Families Act 2014.

Click here for guidance on the timetable for an Annual Review in five steps.

Click here for guidance on Person Centred planning meetings aimed at IAS Services and practitioners working across education, health and social care who are supporting parents and young people with an Annual Review.

Case studies

Click here to read how the Annual Review improved current support arrangements, helped plan for the future and addressed breakdown in communication between parent and the school.

Click here to read highlights of how the IAS Service caseworker engaged with the YP with the assistance of the CDC Annual Review animation, thus enabling her to fully understand and participate in the process and ensure her voice was heard.

Click here to read how good support and preparation for an Annual Review reduces anxiety, improves communication and restores hope.

How to find and access further information and support? 

Click here to find further information on how to contact your Information Advice and Support Service, Local Offer and the national helpline