SEND in Cambridgeshire and England

This page gives the background to SEND reforms nationally since 2014 and then the local picture.  It includes the latest Local Area Inspection Report (2017) and the link to the Local Offer – where the Local Authority sets out everything it offers children with SEND in Cambridgeshire.

SEND Reforms and the SEND Review

There have been huge changes to SEND services and support for children and young people across the UK in recent years, thanks to the Children & Families Act 2014, which came into force in September 2014. The aim of the new law was to join up services across education, health and social care from birth up to the age of 25. The inspection report below shows how Cambridgeshire services are working together to identify and support children and young people with additional needs and disabilities.

Information on the SEND Reforms, SEND Review Commission 2019 and SEND Review 2022.

Cambridgeshire SEND Inspection Report 2017

A core principle in the reforms has been that children and parent carers must be listened to and be equal partners in co-producing the services and support for children with SEND.  You can read more about this in the co-production section.  This was also the principle behind the founding of parent carer forums, including the National Network of Parent Carer Forums.

The DfE SEND review: right support, right place, right time (Green Paper)

This was published by the Department for Education (DfE) in March 2022.  You can read more here.

In time we expect this to become a ‘white paper’ linked to new legislation (as would be usual for the Government).

The DfE SEND And Alternaive Provision Plan March 2023

The Government produced a new Green Paper in March 2023.  Ypu can read the full version here. There is an easy read version here.

The Local Offer

logo of Cambridgeshire local offerAll local authorities across the UK must publish information outlining health, education and social care services and support information for SEND children and young people. This must include eligibility criteria. This is called a local offer and is the first port of call for support and services for children and young people with SEND.   You can find Cambridgeshire Local offer here.

Free and Impartial SEND Advice in Cambridgeshire – SENDIASS

All Local Authorities must offer an information advice and guidance service  – here you can find out more about the Cambridgeshire SENDIASS offer.

Cambridgeshire’s SEND Strategy and Pledge

In 2018 – 2019, Cambridgeshire County Council co-produced and then consulted on a new SEND Strategy for 2019-2024.  It then invited schools and providers to sign a pledge to support the Strategy and its principles. Read about them here.

SEND Jargon Buster

Finding your way around the world and the language of special needs and specialist services can be a challenge for parent carers and professionals!  We’ve found a link to a useful resource that lists some of the jargon and explains it in plain English.

Jargon-buster to help you through the maze of SEND speak.


SEND related policies in Cambridgeshire

This section is challenging to keep up to date as policies are being developed by partner organisations all of the time.  Here is our best attempt to put them all in one place.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough SEND Strategy 2019 – 2024

Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Local Transformation Plan 2021 refresh and overview of
2015 – 2021 and new Children and Young People’s Mental Health Strategy 2022 – 2025

Best Start In Life Strategy 2019 – 2024

Strong Families Strong Communities Strategy 2021

NHS Long-Term Plan 

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Better Births and Equality Plan 

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough All-Age Autism Strategy

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Autism Strategy Toolkit

Cambridgeshire SEND Transformation Programme

Joint Strategic Needs Assessment

Cambridgeshire County CouncilSufficiency Statement Children in Care & Care Leavers 2021 – 2024

All Age Carers Strategy 2018 – 2022

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Children’s Commissioning Local Area Risk Assessment

Cambridgeshire County Council Ofsted Reports

Cambridgeshire Poverty Action Plan


Education Endowment Foundation

The Education Endowment Foundation is an independent charity dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement. We do this by supporting schools, colleges, and nurseries to improve teaching and learning through better use of evidence.

Special Needs Guidance Report

Making the best of teaching assistants

Teachng Assistant Interventions

Teaching and Learning Toolkit