High needs strategic planning fund

Information for local authorities about strategic reviews and funding of high needs provision for children and young people with SEND.


High needs benchmarking tool

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These documents provide local authorities with:

  • details about high needs strategic planning fund allocations for 2016 to 2017, how to use it, and how the money has been paid
  • a benchmarking tool to help compare high needs provision and spending between local authorities

Information about local authorities’ high needs review and planning role is in the ‘High needs funding: operational guide’.

If you’re a local authority in need of capital funding to help increase or improve your special education provision, see ‘Special provision fund: allocation for local authorities from 2018 to 2020’.

High needs funding is funding for children and young people with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) who need extra support at school or college, or for those in alternative provision. Alternative provision is for children who can’t go to a mainstream school.

Published 14 December 2016
Last updated 28 March 2018 + show all updates
  1. Updated 'High needs benchmarking tool' to include 2016 to 2017 Section 251 outturn data and the latest 2018 to 2019 national funding formula allocations.
  2. Updated 'High needs benchmarking tool' to fix some compatibility issues.
  3. Updated high needs benchmarking tool to include the latest available data for 2017 to 2018 and the impact of the final national funding formula.
  4. Updated high needs strategic planning fund allocations and added the benchmarking tool.
  5. First published.