Statutory guidance

SEND code of practice: 0 to 25 years

Guidance on the special educational needs and disability (SEND) system for children and young people aged 0 to 25, from 1 September 2014.



This statutory code contains:

  • details of legal requirements that you must follow without exception
  • statutory guidance that you must follow by law unless there’s a good reason not to

It explains the duties of local authorities, health bodies, schools and colleges to provide for those with special educational needs under part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014.

The code, which applies to England, is for:

  • headteachers and principals
  • governing bodies
  • school and college staff
  • special educational needs (SEN) coordinators
  • early education providers
  • local authorities
  • health and social services staff

This document replaces the ‘Special educational needs (SEN): code of practice’ 2001. The 2001 code still applies for those who have a SEN statement under part 4 of the Education Act 1996, rather than an education, health and care (EHC) plan under the Children and Families Act 2014.

Other SEND guides are also available.