What does "special educational needs and/or disabilities" mean?

Special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) can affect a child or young person’s ability to learn.

They can affect their:

  • behaviour or ability to socialise, for example they struggle to make friends
  • reading and writing, for example because they have dyslexia
  • ability to understand things
  • concentration levels, for example because they have ADHD
  • physical ability
  • ability to access to facilities provided in mainstream education

They may need extra or different help from that given to other children or young people of the same age.

The four broad areas of special educational needs are:

  • communication and interaction
  • cognition and learning
  • social, emotional and mental health difficulties
  • sensory and/or physical needs

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