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SEND education and travel

Children reach statutory school age in the academic year they become five years old. Enfield school admissions can provide information on how to apply for a reception school place. For more information, visit school admissions.

  • Community schools are managed by the council and not influenced by business or religion. They follow the national curriculum.
  • Faith schools are associated with a particular religion. They follow the national curriculum except for religious studies, where they are free to only teach about their own religion. The admissions criteria and staffing policies may be different, but children of any faith can apply and all faith schools are made up of children from all faiths.
  • Academies are state schools that are governed by trusts rather than the local authority. These schools have the freedom to determine their own policies on admissions, the curriculum, school hours, term dates and staff pay. They receive their funding directly from the government.
  • Free schools are new schools set up by parents, teachers, charities or businesses. They are funded by the taxpayer and are free to attend. They have the same freedoms as academies and receive their funding directly from the government.
  • Special schools are available if your child has severe or complex needs that can’t be met in a mainstream school. Special schools usually take children with particular types of special needs, such as profound and multiple disabilities or autistic spectrum disorder.

A transition is when your child moves from one educational setting or phase to another, for example nursery to primary school.

Transitions are important in children’s lives and need to be carefully planned. During this time you and your child should be supported by staff at your child’s current educational setting. This can be done through meetings, liaising with support services, giving advice and visiting the new setting.

Unless a child has a proposed or final Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), parents must apply for a secondary school place through the coordinated admissions process on the application form provided by us.

Children with an EHCP moving from primary to secondary school

We are committed to ensuring that all children with special educational needs and disabilities have the opportunity to learn, play and develop alongside their peers so they have similar opportunities and life chances.

When your child is in year six, during the autumn term the SEN service will write to you with information relating to the secondary transfer process, outlining the steps in the process and the anticipated timeframes for completion. You will receive a proposed EHCP and be asked for two preferences of a secondary school you would like your child to transfer to. The SEN service will consult with your preferred schools as well as the one that is most local to your home address.

A secondary school must be named (written) in your child's EHCP by 15 February.

For more information see our guidance leaflet (PDF) or email sen@enfield.gov.uk.

Regular attendance at school, and being on time, is important. Parents are expected to make their own arrangements to take their children to and from school, however some parents may need extra help because of the type or severity of their child’s needs.

You may be eligible for travel assistance if:

  • the child or young person is of compulsory school age and it is not reasonable for them to walk to school because of their special educational needs or mobility difficulties
  • the local authority has not offered a closer school

For more information on eligibility, see our getting to school policy (PDF). This aims to:

  • promote an independent approach to travel assistance
  • ensure a genuine partnership with children, young people, parents and carers, to agree suitable travel arrangements
  • identify the most cost effective travel options

Apply for travel assistance (PDF)

If you're not happy with the outcome of your application, you can appeal on certain grounds set out in our travel assistance appeals process (PDF).

Further education

Young people with SEND are expected to remain within the community to access further education. If you choose to attend a college which is further from your home and the course you have selected is offered at a local college, we may not be able to provide travel assistance.

To be eligible for assistance, you must have special educational needs, a disability or mobility problem which affects your ability to walk. The distance from home to college must also be more than three miles.

Our travel assistance panel will consider your special educational needs, the distance to your chosen college and the course details. Each case is considered on an individual basis. If travel assistance is agreed, it will only be for one academic year. A new application will need to be submitted each year.

For more information, email travel.assistance@enfield.gov.uk.

We’ve been consulting with parents and other stakeholders about our SEND strategy through the Our Voice parent’s forum and other groups. Our SEND strategy presentation (PDF) details the increasing demand on special school places and the plans we propose to meet this demand. 

For more information on school expansions, see our school expansion programme.

Further information:

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