School's SEND funding

Funding is available for students within your school who have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). Find out about the top up payments available for pupil placements.

High Needs Top Up Payments to Schools

Element 3 funding follows a pupil’s placement and should only be paid to a school for the period that the pupil is on roll at that school.

Funding should reflect both the children leaving and joining the school, and so budget figures provided by the local authority in their Indicative Schools Budgets are based on estimates. Schools should make their own assumptions about joiners and leavers and calculate their own estimate of their likely Element 3 income for the year.

The amount paid for pupils with an EHCP will be based on the number of school days that the pupil is on the school roll in that month as a proportion of the total number of school days in the full financial year (April to March).

Example (the calculation of the amount of Element 3 funding paid within a month for a pupil):

  1. Child A has an EHCP that states that his Element 3 top-up funding is Band F within the mid-level funding table. This is an annual amount of £15,750.
  2. He has been on roll at the current school since 1 September 2017.
  3. In May 2018 there are 18 school days out of 194 days (including inset days) for the full 2018- 19 financial year.
  4. The calculation for Child A's Element 3 funding for May 2018 is 18 days / 194 days x £15,750 which is equal to £1,461.34.
  5. If Child A changes schools on 1 June 2018 the new school will be funded from 1 June 2018. Funding to the previous school will cease.

From May 2022 a revised SEND Resource Ladder will become operational for all new requests for an Education, Health and Care Plan.

An easy to use guide on how to use the resource ladder and how money is given to schools has been produced.

Roles and Responsibilities 

Any changes to a pupils school place or funding band will be provided to Education Finance by the Disability Enablement Service (DES). DES is responsible for providing the Education Finance team with the data upon which schools will be funded.

Schools will be provided with a payment schedule on a monthly basis showing the pupil level data that supports the year to date payments made to the school.

Please note: Schools are required to review the schedule and submit changes to Education Finance via a template by the first or second of each month by email. All changes will be authorised by the DES before the placement data is changed.

Where the local authority’s data has to be retrospectively corrected, the adjustment to the data will be reflected within the next month’s payment to the school.

School Cash Payments

It is recognised that this payment method can lead to cash flow problems for schools in April and August, as the summer term payments will be lower than under the previous fixed monthly budget share method, while the autumn and spring term payments will be higher.

To alleviate cash-flow pressures schools will receive a supplementary advance payment - equivalent to 10% of the school’s Annual Element 3 Top-Up estimate, as set out February's School Forum report - this will be made in April of each year. This cash advance will be recovered in seven equal installments from September to March. 

In the case of two Special schools, two supplementary payments will be made, one in April and the other in August to better reflect the cash flow compensation required.

Last update: Tuesday 16th of January 2024 11:05:22 AM