The Children and Families Act 2014 brings in the biggest reform of the legal system for special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities for 30 years. The changes will have a direct and significant impact on the lives of children, young people and their families across the country, giving them a greater say in the local services and the specific support they receive. Preparing for and managing young people’s transition to adulthood is a significant feature of the reforms.
Local government has supported the changes and has a key role to play in making these reforms a success. From September 2014, councils, along with their health partners will be required to start to introduce the changes to the system across education, health and social care that are outlined in the Act to their local areas. Councils will have overall responsibility for children and young people with SEN and disabilities from birth up to the age of twenty-five.