SEND stands for special educational needs and disability.
A child or young person aged from 0 to 25 years old is said to have special educational needs or a disability if they:
- have a learning difficulty or disability which makes it much harder for them to learn than the majority of other pupils of the same age
- require special educational provision to be made for them because they have a disability that prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools
Supporting children and young people with SEND is everyone’s responsibility.
However, local authorities have responsibilities by law to support children and young people with SEND, up to the age of 25. This includes helping them to prepare for adulthood and independence, and transition to further support when they are ready. You can read the Government’s SEND Code of Practice here to find out more about our responsibilities as a local authority.
For explanations of the most common terms and abbreviations used in SEND, view the jargon buster from Devon Information Advice and Support (DIAS).
We want every child to dream, believe and achieve and fulfil their potential. Children with SEND may need a little extra help or support to do this and to ensure they have the same opportunities as others of the same age.
You can read our SEND Strategy. This strategy has been produced in collaboration with families and professionals and sets out how we will support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.