Before you read further have a look at this

The draft is received when all the professional input that was requested during the assessment phase has been received and the Case Work Officer (CWO) has taken the input and compiled it into an EHCP Draft. When you receive the EHCP you’ll also receive copy of all the professional reports that went into creating the EHCP draft.

EHCP is an evidence based document. So the caseworker cannot write something themselves. They can make it easier to read and summarise somethings but that is where the role ends, as they are not a professional from education or health.

With that established the most important things is to be familiar with the professional evidence that has been drawn upon when getting your draft in place. The list of these documents is in section K. Per statutory requirements the Local Authority has to get advice and information from all professionals who are involved, this includes health , social case, education (school), an EP , SALT , OT etc. Contrary to common belief, the LA does not have a statutory requirement to have full assessments or for the reports to be specified and quantified. Although the Code of Practice calls for this Code of Practice is not Statutory requirement but a hard recommendation, in such LA’s breach it all the time and you cannot Judicially Review them for non-compliance.

Anyway, coming back to topic, make yourself familiar with all the reports. The EP report is the most important, and has the most weightage. The EP themselves have to look at the other evidence before making recommendations. The EP report will already be very close in resemblance to the EHCP as it is based on the same format and normally a copy/paste job for the Case Work Officer.

In the EP Report you’ll need to focus on section B,E,F

While it is accepted that your child’s strengths and needs will be captured in sprit of SEND COP, you need to make sure the strengths are real and also not written as to sugar-coat the the real needs. A needs will be divided into the common heading of cognition and learning, communication and learning, social emotional and mental health, sensory and physical, independence and self-care. You can put diagnosis of ASC or SPD etc in to this section. The Case work officer (CWO) will normally copy paste them into draft and give them number from B1 onwards. Make sure they have not missed any of the needs specified by the professionals. Not all needs will be in EP report. If you find one that is in another report but not captured by EP, then feel free to add it to the draft using the KEY.

Leeds like to mix Section E and F. They like to have an outcome per heading, so one for cognitions and leaning, one for communication, one for SEMH, one for sensory etc. And under each outcome they have the provisions in a table. Where provision is described, then by whom, and how often. While I don’t like this format, this is unfortunately legal for them to do so , and thus in this case lets work within the template that they have used. Try and avoid words like Key Adults, unless Key adults are defined some where. Also make sure that the qualifications and experience of those working with the child are outlined. In the By when/how often column you may find a lot of Throughout the day, During interaction with child, to be reviewed and updated, to be discussed regularly, embedded in 1:1 , periodically, continuously, Daily , etc. These should all be removed and properly quantified.

A good example of a need is

XX has a significant receptive and expressive and receptive language disorder.

XX has considerable difficulties understanding a range of grammatical constructions including past tenses and complex embedded sentences.  His understanding of grammar is developing but is still significantly delayed.

A good example of a provision, is

“XX requires speech and language therapy input for no less than 60 minutes per week from a qualified speech and language therapist with experience in working autistic children. These sessions should be observed by XX along with adults who are supporting him.  The time will include time for writing up notes.” by “SALT/ Adults working with XX” . How often : “60 minutes per week Ongoing”

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