What are special educational needs for children under 5?
A child who is under compulsory school age has a special educational need if they have a learning difficulty or disability that is likely to require special educational provision when they reach compulsory school age or they would do, if special educational provision was not made for them. For children under the age of two, special educational provision means educational provision of any kind, including home-based programmes.
Support for young children with SEND and their parents
Support can take a range of forms including:
Specialist support from educational psychologists, speech and language therapists or specialist teachers such as teachers of the deaf.
These specialists may visit families at home to provide advice and information. Training for parents in using early language programmes to promote play, communication and language development.
Home-based programmes such as Portage, which offer a carefully structured system to help parents support their child’s early learning and development. For example material visit the National Portage Association website
How Early Years providers support SEND
All early years providers have duties under the Equality Act 2010 and the Early Years Foundation Stage, and must have regard for the 0-25 SEND Code of Practice to:
- promote equality of opportunity for disabled children
- provide inclusive practice
- remove barriers to learning
- ensure children with medical conditions get the support they need
- make reasonable adjustments including aids to prevent disadvantage.
Thought must be given in advance to what disabled children might require and what adjustments might need to be made to prevent disadvantage.