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Visual Impairment :
Special Educational Needs

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Personal Budget (including arrangements for direct payments)

This section should provide detailed information on any Personal Budget that will be used to secure provision in the EHC plan.

It should set out the arrangements in relation to direct payments as required by education, health and social care regulations.

The special educational needs and outcomes that are to be met by any direct payment must be specified.

A personal budget is an amount of money identified by the local authority to deliver provision set out in an EHC plan where the parent or young person is involved in securing that provision. Local authorities must provide information on Personal Budgets as part of the Local Offer. They are optional for the child’s parent or the young person but local authorities are under a duty to prepare a budget when requested. The child’s parent or the young person has a right to request a Personal Budget, when the local authority has completed an EHC needs assessment and confirmed that it will prepare an EHC plan. They should reflect the holistic nature of an EHC plan and can include funding for special educational, health and social care provision. The implications of this are considerable as parents could seek to use support, eg. VI teachers, SALT, mobility instructors, who are independent of the LA.

There are four ways in which the child’s parent and/or the young person can be involved in securing provision:

Direct payments – where individuals receive the cash to contract, purchase and manage services themselves

An arrangement – whereby the local authority, school or college holds the funds and commissions the support specified in the plan (these are sometimes called notional budgets)

Third party arrangements – where funds (direct payments) are paid to and managed by an individual or organisation on behalf of the child’s parent or the young person

A combination of the above

Direct payments are subject to separate regulations, e.g the Special Educational Needs (Direct Payments) Regulations 2014.

9.110 The Personal budget can include funding from education, health and social care.


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