(Please note that this section is under review).
Most children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities will have the support that they need from within the school or setting’s budgets.
There are three levels (called ‘elements’ of funding by the government) for education support for children and young people with special educational needs. Details about the levels of funding can be found below:
- Level 1 funding makes provision for every child or young person on roll in an early years setting, school or college. It pays for the school building, class teachers, etc.
- Level 2 (or delegated) funding is a part of the budget in schools and further education settings that is especially for children with additional needs, including special educational needs and disabilities.
The government has said that a mainstream school or college has up to £6,000 to spend on each child with additional needs from within the school or setting’s budget, if they need extra help to be able to make progress. Schools can use this to provide early intervention support, which may include, for example, small group or individual support or special equipment. Delegated funding can be used for any child on roll, no matter where they live.
- Level 3 (top-up) funding - if a child or young person with special educational needs and disabilities has been receiving early intervention support but are still not making sufficient progress, it is possible that they will need to access top-up funding. There is more information about top-up funding in the sections below.
The High Needs Block is money provided by the government to fund education provision for Camden children and young people aged 0-25 with more complex special educational needs and disabilities when they attend education settings.
The High Needs Block funds top-up funding for any child or young person and comes from the borough where that child lives. Camden’s High Needs Block funds special schools and some specialist services in Camden, and any extra provision made for Camden children who attend a school or setting outside Camden. Camden has devolved some level 3 funding in to our mainstream school budgets already. This is to support Camden residents when they need it without having to request top-up funding from the Local Authority.
Settings can access support services such as health therapies, teaching support teams and family work that they do not need to fund themselves. Each service will make their own assessment that determines the level of support offered from that service.
If a child needs more support than is ordinarily available in a setting (including school nurseries), the setting will apply to the borough where the child lives for additional funding. If the child lives in Camden, the setting will apply for Camden Local Inclusion Funding (CLIF). In Camden, we have added top-up funding to CLIF so that settings can get the support they need for a child through CLIF.
We also employ specialist teachers to work in settings, including private, voluntary and independent settings and school nurseries, to make sure that settings can meet more complex needs without having to request an Education, Health and Care needs assessment.
In exceptional circumstances, for example where a child is likely to be placed in a special school when they reach Reception, the setting is likely to request an Education, Health and Care needs assessment.
If a child lives in another Local Authority and attends a Camden setting, the setting will need to contact that borough to find out what funding is available.
If a child lives outside of Camden provision can be made by the setting that costs up to £6,000. If a child needs a higher level of provision than is ordinarily available, the Camden school will request High Needs Block top-up funding from the borough where they live. This is usually through requesting an Education, Health and Care needs assessment.
If a child lives in Camden and needs a higher level of provision than is ordinarily available, we have made more funding available in our schools. Camden Council has already provided top-up funding in our primary and secondary schools (including free schools and academies) so they have more than the first £6,000 to make provision. This enables schools to make ordinarily available provision costing up to £11,000 for Camden resident pupils, when it is needed, without the need to access top-up funding through an Exceptional Needs Grant (ENG) or EHC plan.
The amount of top-up might increase or decrease over time, for example if a child’s needs change, or they go to a different type of school or setting.
Schools publish the support that they provide from within their budgets. You can find this information in their ‘SEN Information Report’ on their school websites. You can access these reports by clicking here.
Since 2018, we have provided Camden mainstream primary and secondary schools with top-up funding for individual children and young people through an Exceptional Needs Grant, or ENG. This is a faster alternative to EHC plans. An ENG is only available for children who live in Camden, because all top-up funding is for that borough’s residents.
Where the evidence shows that a child’s needs are exceptional, by which we mean they cannot be met within the level 2 funding and devolved level 3 top-up already in the school’s budget, we have a system of funding the additional support through an ENG.
An ENG has the same thresholds and same level of funding as an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), but the process is faster and easier, and funding starts from the day the ENG was agreed. In Camden, we currently have two bands of funding through an ENG just as we do for an EHCP.
SENDCos from all Camden schools participate in five Cluster Inclusion Forums across the borough, together with senior SEN Officers, Educational Psychologists, Early Help managers, and this may include other health and care professionals. The Cluster Inclusion Forums meet each half term to consider requests for an ENG.
Schools can make requests for funding to deliver specific interventions, and require parents / carer agreement to make the request just as they do for an EHC needs assessment. Most funding is agreed for one or two years but it can be up to the end of primary or secondary school. It can be extended as many times as it is still needed to deliver the interventions a child needs.
The overall framework for SEND funding for Camden residents in Camden mainstream schools are shown in the diagram below.
When it is agreed a child who lives in Camden needs top-up funding, it will come from Camden’s High Needs Block regardless of where they attend school. If the evidence shows that a child needs more provision than can be made through what is ordinarily available, and the school has demonstrated how they have used devolved funding, the school can make a request to Camden Local Authority for an Education, Health and Care needs assessment.
SEND funding for Camden residents in mainstream schools in another borough are shown in the diagram below.
Special schools are funded in a different way to mainstream schools. Camden funds an agreed number of places, and there is a top-up amount set for each place that is filled. There is no band 1 or band 2 funding like there is in mainstream schools.
Many young people attending FE who had additional support in school no longer need the same level of extra help when they attend college. This is because the course might be better suited to their interests and abilities, and the hours of study are likely to be shorter and the delegated funding available in College is often sufficient to provide the support they need.
However, if the evidence shows that a young person needs more provision than can be made through what is ordinarily available, and the College has demonstrated how they have used devolved funding, the College can make a request to Camden for funding. This does not have to be an Education, Health and Care needs assessment as we have a system of funding requests from FE Colleges.
Universities have their own funding arrangements for those young people needing additional support. The Local Authority’s SEN team are no longer involved once young people leave school or FE College.
When the Local Authority has agreed to issue an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), it will describe what resources are attached to the plan. This may include additional money on top of the school’s budget, or level 3 ‘top-up’ funding. This is funding allocated to the school for a named individual children or young people.
An EHCP has the same thresholds and same level of funding as an ENG, but funding is determined when an EHCP is issued. In Camden, we currently have two bands of funding through an EHCP, just as we do for an ENG. Click here for more information.
The levels of top-up funding if agreed in an EHC plan are the same as those for an Exceptional Needs Grant (ENG).