The figure of £6,000 was determined on the basis of research undertaken by PricewaterhouseCoopers as part of a school funding review in 2009. Evidence showed that the cost point above which children with special educational needs (SEN) became fewer in number and it would be appropriate to describe them as having high needs was around £6,000.
In order to better understand the financial incentives that influence how schools, colleges and councils support children and young people with SEN, the Department for Education will be gathering more evidence early in 2019. This will include looking at the first £6,000 schools pay for special educational provision before accessing additional funding from local high needs budgets.
We will also provide additional high needs funding allocations, for all local authorities, totalling £250 million over 2018 to 2019 and 2019 to 2020. This brings the total allocated for high needs this year to £6.1 billion and £6.3 billion in 2019 to 2020.