Special Educational Needs

Education written question – answered on 21st July 2010.

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Photo of Anne McIntosh Anne McIntosh Chair, Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee, Chair, Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Education what recent estimate he has made of the average length of the time taken for a child with special educational needs to be statemented by the relevant local authority in (a) North Yorkshire and (b) England.

Photo of Sarah Teather Sarah Teather The Minister of State, Department for Education

The statutory time limit for finalising a statement of special educational needs (SEN) is 26 weeks from an originating request for an assessment. The relevant Regulations set out exceptions to the internal time limits which make up the 26 weeks, for example when local authorities do not receive advice from the health service within time.

The Department does not collect data on the average length of time taken to finalise statements. However, last year the Department published data on the percentage of statements which local authorities completed within the statutory 26 weeks. The data showed that, in 2008-09, across England 91% of statements where none of the statutory exceptions applied were completed within time and 82% of all statements, including ones where the statutory exceptions applied. The figures for North Yorkshire were 85% and 80% respectively. The data is available at the Department's website:


A Statistical Release providing these data for 2009-10 will be published in December 2010.

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