Under the new SEND Code of Practice (DfE, 2014), a child is deemed to have Special Educational Needs or Disabilities, or SEND, if he or she has ‘significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age’, or his or her disability ‘prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in a mainstream school’. Special educational provision is needed for him or her, over and above that which can be met through high quality classroom teaching and differentiation.
Broad areas of need are identified as:
· communication and interaction;
· cognition and learning;
· social, emotional and mental health difficulties;
· sensory and/or physical needs.
These may be for a short period or throughout a child’s educational life. They may be identified before a child has even entered school or they may come to be recognised at a specific point in their education.