Supporting children's learning: code of practice (revised 2010)

Statutory Guidance relating to the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004 as amended.

Glossary of terms

Action plan - a coordinated, structured plan which sets out timescales, responsibilities and services required to meet a child's assessed needs. (See integrated action plan, personal learning planning, IEP, CSP and Child's Plan).

Additional support - provision which is additional to, or otherwise different from, the educational provision made generally by an education authority for children or young people of the same age in schools (other than special schools) under the management of the education authority responsible for the school education of the child or young person, or in the case where there is no such authority, the education authority for the area to which the child or young person belongs.

Appropriate agency - an agency, or any person, specified in the Act, or by regulation, as having duties under the Act. Other agencies, whether statutory or voluntary, may work with local authorities to support a child's or young person's learning without being under a statutory duty.

Assessment - an ongoing process of gathering, structuring and taking a holistic approach to making sense of information about a child or young person, and their circumstances, in order to inform decisions about the actions necessary to maximise children's potential and improve their well-being.

Advocate - someone who with the agreement of a parent, or young person, may conduct discussions on their behalf or support them in representing their views and interests to appropriate agencies

Carer - includes parents and other people with parental responsibilities. The term could also include public foster carers, formal kinship carers (relatives and friends who are caring for looked after children), informal kinship carers (relatives and friends who may be caring informally for a child with parental agreement, and private foster carers (who are not close relatives, care for children with parental agreement, and must be approved as private carers after 28 days) (See also parent)

Child's plan - a written care plan for a child or young person looked after by a local authority or with additional needs that require a co-ordinated input from more than one agency. It includes consideration of the child or young person's family contact arrangements as well as education, health and future care arrangements.

Co-ordinator - person responsible for ensuring, so far as possible, that the services required to deliver the additional support identified in the CSP are in place for the child or young person and for taking action to secure services when necessary.(See also Lead Professional).

Complex factor - in the context of a CSP. one which has or is likely to have a significant adverse effect on the school education of the child or young person. Complex may have different meanings in terms of other professional assessment procedures.

Co-ordinated Support Plan ( CSP) - a statutory plan to help identification and ensure provision of services for children or young people, whose additional support needs arise from complex, or multiple factors, which have a significant adverse effect on their school education and are likely to last at least a year, and which require support to be provided by an education authority and at least one other non-education service or agency.

Dispute resolution - the involvement, under regulations supporting the Act, of an independent, external adjudicator to review a disagreement between parents, or a young person, and an education authority, over the exercise by the authority of any of its duties or functions under the Act, and to make recommendations for parties aimed at resolving the dispute.

Disability - the code uses the definition of disability, set out in the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, as being a physical or mental impairment, which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on a person's ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.

Duty - where the law requires an education authority or appropriate agency to do something (see power)

Early Intervention - identifying and meeting a child's needs early in the life of a child, the spectrum of complexity or the life of a crisis, in order to prevent escalation or deterioration in a child's difficulties

Education authority - In legal terms, education authority and local authority are both defined as a council constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994. The code refers to an education authority when considering a local authority's educational functions; and to a local authority when referring to functions other than educational ones, such as social work services.

Grant Aided School - a school in receipt of grant funding from the Scottish Government. At present there are eight such schools. Jordanhill School and seven Grant Aided Special Schools ( GASS) - Corseford, Craighalbert Centre, Donaldson's, East Park School, Harmeny, Royal Blind School and Stanmore.

Holistic - a holistic view is one which addresses the whole child and his/her circumstances rather than focusing on specific isolated aspects. A holistic approach is one that considers the whole range of needs that influence a child's healthy development and well-being.

Home education authority - the authority for the area in which the child or young person lives

Host education authority - an authority other than the authority for the area in which the child or young person lives

Independent school - a school at which full time education is provided for children or young people of school age (whether or not such education is also provided for children or young people over that age), not being a public school or grant- aided school.

Individualised Educational Programme ( IEP) - written document which outline the steps to be taken to help children and young people who additional support needs to achieve specified learning outcomes. (See resources section)

Integrated Assessment Framework- a common means for all agencies and professionals to assess children's needs and to share information about them. Now integrated into the broader GIRFEC Assessment, Analysis and Recording practice model that seeks to ensure that assessment leads to an integrated plan (where necessary) leading to improved outcomes.

Lead Professional - where two or more agencies are working together to meet the identified needs of a child, a Lead Professional should be appointed. The role is to co-ordinate action, ensure the plan is produced, monitored and reviewed, ensure the child and family views are taken into account, and to ensure the child is supported through key transition points.

Looked after child or young person - The Children (Scotland) Act 1995 has a statutory definition of a looked after child which covers children looked after at home and children looked after away from home.

  • Looked after at home: where the child or young person is subject to a supervision requirement with no condition of residence through the Children's Hearing system. The child or young person continues to live in their normal place of residence (i.e. often the family home).
  • Looked after away from home (i.e. away from their normal place of residence): where the child or young person is subject to a supervision requirement with a condition of residence through the Children's Hearing system under section 70(3) of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995, or is provided with accommodation under section 25 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995; or is the subject of a Permanence Order made under section 80 of the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007. The child or young person is cared for away from their normal place of residence, e.g. in a foster care placement, residential/children's unit, a residential school, a secure unit or a kinship placement.
  • In addition to the above, a child or young person may be the subject of a warrant instigated by a Children's Hearing or Sheriff Court. These are short term measures where the child or young person is considered Looked after for the duration of the warrant.

Mediation - a voluntary process whereby an independent third party seeks to enable both parties to a disagreement to reach an agreed resolution of their differences.

Multi-disciplinary - where more than one professional from different disciplines within the same agency work together ( e.g. speech therapist and health visitor).

Multi- agency - where professionals from different agencies work together (e.g. teachers and health or social workers).

Multiple factors - in the context of a CSP, these are factors which are not by themselves complex but which, when taken together, have or are likely to have a significant adverse effect on a child's or young person's school education.

Named Person - Person in universal services who has responsibility to facilitate early intervention and support and to make sure that the child has the right help in place to ensure his or her development and well-being across each key life stage.

Parent - has the same meaning as section 135(1) in the Education (Scotland) Act, as amended, and includes guardian and any person who is liable to maintain or has parental responsibilities (within the meaning of section 1(3) of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 in relation to, or has care of a child or young person. (See also carer)

Personal learning planning - process by which children, young people and parents are involved in discussions with school about the goals of learning, including those for personal development. Its focus is on supporting dialogue and ultimately about engaging children and young people in their own learning.

Placing request - written request made to education authority for their child to attend a particular school. (See resources section for Choosing a school)

Power - where the law allows an education authority do something, but there is no duty to do so.

Pre-school provision - Act refers to pre-school provision (generally for three and four year olds (as within the categories of (prescribed pre-school children)) under the management of an education authority. It also covers circumstances where the education authority have an arrangement for the purposes of section 35 of the 2000 Act with a private provider, normally referred to as partnership nurseries. In certain circumstances, an education authority has a duty under the Act to make provision for disabled children under the age of three years.

Prescribed pre-school child - child eligible for pre-school provision from the start of school term following their third birthday until end of the school term before they are first eligible to attend primary school (generally between the ages of three and five).

School - within the Act the term 'school' has the same meaning as in the 1980 Act and means a primary, secondary or special school, and includes nursery schools and independent and grant-aided schools.

School age - generally from the age of 5 to 16 years.

Special school - a school or any class or other unit forming part of a public school which is not itself a special school, the sole or main purpose of which is to provide education specially suited to the additional support needs of children or young people selected for attendance at the school, class or (as the case may be) unit by reason of those needs.

Specified school - a school identified in a placing request by a parent, or, as appropriate a young person, which the parent wishes his or her son or daughter to attend, or the young person wishes to attend.

Supporter - someone chosen by the parent or young person to be present at any discussions with the authority for the purpose of supporting them in the course of those discussions.

Targeted services - action by services designed to help specific children and young people for particular needs i.e. social work, the Reporter, police, a whole range of voluntary sector provision.

Transitions - refers to changes in education, for example, starting nursery school, moving from primary to secondary school, leaving school and transferring schools within or outwith an education authority's area.

Universal Services - services which all children and young people have access to throughout their childhood i.e. health and education provision.

Well-being - The areas of a child's life or circumstances that when optimised will give them the best start in life and make them ready to succeed. They are Safe, Healthy, Achieving, Nurtured, Active, Respected, Responsible and Included

Young carer -young people who provide care to a family member.

Young person - is a person who has attained the age of 16 years and who is not 18 years of age. Throughout the code the term young people is used instead of young persons, for ease of understanding.

Back to top