Criteria and Timeline for Accessing Support for Severe Learning Difficulties

Timeline and criteria for accessing support.

Criteria and Timelines are under review as part of the SEND Transformation Programme. They are also impacted by the current significant financial constraints and pressures facing education.

Criteria for Accessing Support from the Service

A child or young person can access the SEN Inclusion Service for Severe Learning Difficulties without a Statement of Special Educational Needs.

Resources are available to schools who are supporting children and young people with SLD recorded as their primary need, under the SEN Category of Cognition and Learning. There are no criteria for accessing these.

Training is available for school staff. This includes online training, which school staff may access via the Children and Young People's Service Training Programme. There are no criteria necessary to access this.

Face-to-face training may be requested by liaising with your SENIS SLD Advisory Teacher and school SENCo.

Advice and Guidance is available to teachers, classroom assistants and other relevant professionals as well as parents or carers of children and young people with SLD who have been referred to SENIS SLD by the Educational Psychology Service.

Pupil Support may be available, where appropriate, to children and young people with Severe Learning Difficulties.

To access support, a pupil will need either

  • a SENIS SLD Referral Form submitted by an EA Educational Psychologist as well as the school’s action as contained in the PLP under Stage 1 including the outcomes of regular reviews, or;
  • a Statement of SEN where access to advice and support from our Service is indicated in Part 3 (Special Educational Provision) of the pupil’s Statement

Timeline for Accessing Support from the Service

An Educational Psychologist makes a referral to the SEN Inclusion Service for Severe Learning Difficulties via email.

Once a referral is received and if criteria are met, the parent or carer will be contacted within 4 weeks and SENIS SLD will assign an Advisory Teacher to the child or young person.

We will aim to commence support within 8 weeks. The most appropriate package of support will be developed to support the child’s current needs. This will be done in collaboration with them, their parents and the school.

A child with SLD may need more support from our Service during key milestones and less support at other times. Support is always provided on a needs-led basis.

If a child or young person receives a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) while being supported by our Service, their needs may be better met by professionals within the Autism Advisory and Intervention Service (AAIS).  We will liaise with our colleagues in the AAIS on how best to support a child with SLD and ASD.

1 Referral received

4 weeks

2 Initial contact with parent or carer

4 weeks

3 Support provided (if required)

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Contact the Severe Learning Difficulties Service

The Moderate Learning Difficulties Service can be contacted for advice and information specific to children and young people who have, or may have, severe learning difficulties.