Identifying SEND in the early years

If your child is aged between two and three and attends an early years setting, the early years practitioners must review your child's progress and provide you with a short written report around your child's development.

This report/progress check focuses in particular on communication and language, physical development and personal, social and emotional development. This progress check must identify your child’s strengths and any areas where your child's progress is slower than expected.

If there are emerging concerns (or an identified special educational need or disability) practitioners should develop a targeted plan to support your child, involving other professionals such as the setting’s Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO).

What to think about

The progress check must highlight:

  • areas where good progress is being made
  • areas where some additional support might be needed
  • any concerns that a child may have a developmental delay (which may indicate Special Educational Needs or disability)
  • the activities and strategies the provider intends to adopt to address any issues or concerns.

If your child moves settings between the ages of two and three it is expected that the progress check will be undertaken in the setting where your child has spent most time.

The special educational needs and disability code of practice has further details.

Related links

What is expected in the early years

SEND and funded childcare