DfE publish results from family survey on EHC process

Today government published their report on the results from their survey of families and young people who received an EHC plan.

The survey was completed by over 13,000 parents and young people asked respondents for their views on different aspects of the EHC needs assessement process and what impact the EHC plan has had for them. It found that two thirds (66%) of parents and young people were satisfied with the overall process and 62% agreed that it would achieve the outcomes agreed for the child or young person.

However, only two fifths felt the process was a positive experience for the child or young person suggesting there is still much to be done in improving the process and support provided during the assessment and planning.

There were also variations in experience based on the age of the child or young person. Those aged 16-25 had more negative perceptions of the EHC process. Just 49% felt their plan will achieve the outcomes agreed compared to 74% where the child was aged under 5. Only 39% felt the EHC plan will improve their chance of geting paid work and 44% that the plan will improve their chances of living independently.

The report also highlighted gaps in the participation of children and young people in the EHC process. Overall, 26% thought the EHC plan was easy to the child or young person to understand rising to 40% in cases where the young person was aged 16-25. Only 19% felt that the child or young person was given choices of how to take part in the process and 35% that steps were taken to help them understand what was happening and why.

In terms of length of process 62% felt the 20-week target was missed with those with no previous Statement in place being more likely to take longer (72%).

Other headline findings include:

  • 63% of respondents had transferred from a Statement to an EHC plan 
  • 15% had to make more than one request for an EHC plan
  • Only 5% of families are taking advantage of Personal Budgets
  • 80% of parents agreed that they opinions had been included in the EHC plan but only 55% of young people felt the same
  • Just 51% said they agreed that the help and support will help the child or young person achieve what they want in life

You can find the full report on the Department for Education's website using the link below.