Special Educational Needs and Disability

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Number of topics: 3

Gain a basic understanding of how to support children with special educational needs (SEND) with our FREE 'Introduction to supporting children with SEND' online course with Pacey.

In this course you will learn what SEND means and explore some potential barriers to attending early education that children with SEND and their families face. You will also find out how you can best support such children and families.

Key topics:

  • Understand how SEND is defined
  • Challenges faced by children with SEND and their families when accessing childcare
  • How you and your setting can best support them.

This course has been developed in partnership with Pacey thanks to Department for Education grant funding, and is also available to Pacey members.


Number of topics: 4

This course is suitable for early years practitioners in England responsible for the coordination of SEND provision within their early years setting. The course will help you understand the education, health and care Plan (EHCP) process. It will provide an overview of the steps within the process, and the role of early years practitioners in supporting children who need or already have an EHCP in place. 

Course Topics

  • Understand the role of the education, health and care plan in supporting children with SEND 
  • Identify the sections of the education, health and care plan 
  • Know when and how to request an education health care needs assessment. 
  • Know the legal timelines and expectations as defined by the EHCP process
  • Working in partnership with all those involved in a child’s education health and care plan
  • Identify the key steps in the annual review process. 

Number of topics: 4

Early years practitioners recognise that all children are unique and they all have their individual needs. However, some children face challenges that impact on their learning and development. In order to nurture these children fully, it is crucial that practitioners are armed with a professional curiosity, knowledge and a willingness to create inclusive and supportive environments. This course has been designed to deepen the knowledge of practitioners in the early years and support better outcomes for young children with special educational needs and/or disabilities.


  • Support early years practitioners to develop their knowledge and awareness of SEND in the early years, to improve the experiences of the children in their care
  • Raise knowledge within the early years workforce to improve early identification of SEND

Number of topics: 5

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Explain key points from legislation and research regarding parents involvement and rights in the SEND process
  • Explore how to build positive relationships with parents and how to overcome barriers to engagement
  • Reflect on what it's like to be a parent in the SEND process
  • Investigate the benefits of two-way information sharing and effective communication skills in working with parents
  • Illustrate how to help build parents confidence in the planning and decision making process.

Who should complete this course?
This is suitable for any early years practitioner who works with children in their setting including nurseries, pre-schools and childminders in England. It is particularly relevant for those responsible for the coordination SEND provision within an early years setting.


Number of topics: 4

Early years settings are committed to providing support for all children in the early years to ensure the best possible start to their lives. Every child is unique and has their own individual strengths and areas for development. However, when a child has special educational needs and/or disabilities, it is essential that these are identified as quickly as possible so that the right early interventions can be put in place. 

This course aims to support practitioners in identifying those children that require more targeted support to ensure they have the same opportunities for success as their peers. With the right approach, settings can ensure their practice is inclusive and aspirational for all of the children in their care.