Our Blog

Want to know the latest in disabled children's policy? Visit our blog

Visit our Blog

Children and Families Bill introduced into Parliament


The Children and Families Bill has today (Tuesday, 5 February 2013) been published by the Department for Education.

The Bill includes clauses on special education needs (SEN) which aim to reform the SEN system. The clauses include the duty on local authorities to draw up Education, Health and Care plans and to set out a 'local offer' of services available to parents and young people.

Christine Lenehan, Director of the Council for Disabled Children, welcomed the introduction of this Bill into Parliament.

"CDC is pleased to see that the Bill has been laid before Parliament.

"We are particularly pleased to see changes in the clauses around mediation and the clauses which strengthen the participation of children and young people.

"We look forward to following the lively debate in Parliament as the Bill progresses,  and a real examination of the particular issues that impact on this group of young people and their families."

Letter from Minister to CDC regarding the Children and Families Bill 

Edward Timpson, the Minister responsible for SEN and Disability within the Department for Education, has written a letter to CDC as Strategic Partner with more detail about the government's response to the select committee's report and what happens next in the process. It includes information on:

  • The inclusion of an explicit right to request an assessment
  • The requirement of Local Authorities to consult parents and young people in preparing Education, Health and Care Plans
  • The provision for those on Apprenticeships to have an Education, Health and Care Plan
  • Provisions for the new SEN Code of Practice to be consulted upon
  • The work of the SEN and disability pathfinders

The Minister's letter can be found at this link.

More information on the Children and Families Bill is available on our website. CDC's analysis of the Bill will be available in due course.

Special feature on the Bill available in our next e-bulletin 

CDC is releasing a special feature on the Bill as part our next edition of the CDC Digest, due out at the end of February.  You can subscribe for free to our Digest by e-mailing 'Subscribe' to cdc@ncb.org.uk.