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Support available for children with SEND in an Early Years setting

Below we have listed the current support from the Local Authority, available to your early years and childcare provider in order to help them meet the needs of your child.


SEN Support

The statutory guidance in the Special educational needs and disability (SEND) code of practice: 0 to 25 years (2015) emphasises the importance in the early years of working in partnership with parent/carers to identify need and make the necessary special educational provision. SEN Support builds on high-quality teaching which has been differentiated and personalised for individual children and should be firmly based in the setting’s approach to monitoring the progress and development of all children. The SEND Code of practice promotes the use of the graduated approach for all settings in identifying and meeting the special educational needs of children. The graduated approach is the four stages of Assess Plan Do Review and embeds involvement of parent/carers and children at the earliest possible stage.  The graduated approach ensures that earlier decisions and actions are revised with a growing understanding of needs and of what supports the child in reducing any barriers to learning. Barnsley’s Early Years Graduated Response (EYGR) document (available in downloads section of this page)  supports settings to co-construct and record their graduated approach of assess, plan, do review with parent/carers and children. 

Early Years SEN Support Inclusion Toolkit

The Barnsley Early Years SEN Support Inclusion Toolkit provides guidance for Early Years settings, schools and services on identifying and meeting the special educational needs (SEN) of children in the early years, through quality first teaching and SEN support. The guidance within the toolkit is built around the DfE and DoH 2015 statutory guidance Special educational needs and disability (SEND) code of practice: 0 to 25 years and the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).

The aim of the Early Years SEN Support Inclusion Toolkit is to build confidence and consistency in further facilitating and enabling educational settings and services to work together in partnership with parents/carers to meet the needs of all children.

The toolkit communicates a shared understanding of quality first teaching and SEN support within Early Years. It offers guidance in relation to identification of special educational needs and disability (SEND), understanding of barriers to learning, and advice on practice and provision to build on strengths and reduce those barriers. The toolkit includes signposting and webpage links to resources and services to further support the graduated approach and can be accessed via the downloads section to the right hand side of this page.


The role of a SENCO

The role of the SENCO involves:

• Making sure everyone in the setting knows their duties to children with SEN

• Making sure everyone knows the settings approach to identifying and meeting special educational needs.

• Making sure parents are closely involved with their child’s education.

• Communicating with professionals or agencies beyond the setting.

Group setting early years and childcare providers in Barnsley have a trained Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator amongst their staff.

Most childminders in Barnsley have done training in their duties as a ‘SENCO’.

Specialist Training

Barnsley Council offers a full early years training programme to meet the needs of the children accessing settings within the borough.

The 2019-2020 ‘Passport to Inclusion’ programme includes:

  • Music Interaction, delivered by inclusion team
  • Autism Spectrum, Using & Implementing Visual Structure,
  • Advanced Next Steps (Level 3 accredited)
  • People Moving People,
  • Language Ladder
  • Pronunciation Difficulty
  • Makaton                                                                                                       

Alongside this, with funding  from the Early Years Inclusion Fund, the Educational Psychology Service provides training on;

  • Inclusive Environments in Early Years Settings,
  • Understanding and planning to meet the needs of children with:
    • social communication difficulties.
    • emotional and behavioural difficulties.
    • developmental delay.
    • speech language and communication difficulties

Your early years and childcare provider should regularly update the Family Service Directory (FSD) record ‘Local Offer’ with any specialist training they have attended.

"Including Me" Toolkit

‘Including Me’ Toolkit                                                                                 

The Including Me Toolkit was developed with support from parents and professionals.

Every early years and childcare provider in Barnsley should have access to the toolkit.

The toolkit supports childcare providers in the early years to include all children. It provides information on:

•             Personalised Risk Assessments

•             Specific Medical Conditions

•             Care Plans

•             Current Available Funding


Early Years Inclusion Grant

Early Years Inclusion Grant                                                                           

The Early Years Inclusion Grant is for early years providers to help them support the needs of individual children with lower level or emerging SEN.

The grant should be used towards providing extra resources and support where an early years provider is unable to meet the costs from their own funds, but it isn't expected to cover full costs.

There's a limited amount of funding available, meaning not all eligible applications can be awarded the grant.

Who can apply?

A childcare provider including childminder or school\academy who is registered with Ofsted that delivers 2 and\or 3 & 4 year old funded places.

Who is it for?

  • A 2, 3 or 4 year old child (not in a reception class) who attends a childcare or childminder setting in Barnsley and meets one of the criteria below: 
  • A 2, 3 or 4 year old nursery funded child who has low level or emerging special educational needs who is on SEN support and requires support which is over and above a reasonable adjustment.
  • A 2, 3 or 4 year old nursery funded child who has more complex needs and is in the process of applying for an Education Health and Care Plan.
  • Priority will be given to a supporting a child’s nursery funded hours but in exceptional circumstances consideration will be given to applications for:
  • A  2, 3, or 4 year old child who accesses wraparound hours paid for by the parent/carer.

How can a childcare setting apply?

A childcare setting can apply for the funding by gaining consent for an application from parents, filling in an application form and providing evidence to support the request. Parents\carers who require further information should speak to their chosen childcare provider if they feel their child would be eligible for a grant.

How much can a setting apply for?


If a child needs a specific resource or has a resource at home that cannot practically be shared with the setting the childcare setting can apply for funding from this grant up to a maximum of £2500. Small resources with an individual cost of under £250 will not be supported through this grant.

Additional Staffing

The grant is given to support providers to appropriately staff their settings to ensure they are inclusive.

The staffing rate paid by the grant is £6.05 per hour. The rate along with Early Education Funding, Two Year Old Funding rate (which is paid by the government) or parental will support but may not fully cover the cost of an extra member of staff for the amount hours required.

Disability Access Fund (DAF)

Disability Access Fund (DAF)                                                                      

What is the Disability Access Fund?

The Disability Access Fund is for three- and four-year olds who are taking up their free funding entitlement and are in receipt of Disability Living Allowance.

How much funding will each child receive if eligible?

DAF is paid to the child’s early years setting as a fixed annual rate of £615 per eligible child. This funding is not payable for children attending a reception class.

What happens if the child is attending two different settings?

If the child is attending two different setting to access their free funding entitlement, then the parent/carer needs to choose which setting will be allocated the DAF.

Do I need to complete a form to access the DAF?

Parents can apply for their childcare provider to claim the DAF for their child by filling in the application form. This should then be emailed to us.

What if a child moves to another childcare provider half way through the year?

If the child moves settings half way through the year, the funding will stay with the current setting, it is not transferable and does not follow the child. 

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